This is a quick tip to show you how to get the Citrix Configuration Log, plus all the old and new property values, and convert this all to JSON.
Here is a quick tip for you. I had a need to get the Citrix Configuration Log, so I dropped into PowerShell and ran Get-CtxConfigurationLogReport. That is all good and well, but you do not get all the old and new values of the changed properties. However, converting this output to JSON will do just what I want. Plus, converting to JSON is better for me anyway as I want to push this stuff over to Splunk to do some analytics. Here is what you need to do:
Step 1 – Create your UDL file to connect to the database
This will prompt you for your SQL credentials. You can use Windows integrated security if you like, but I’m saving my creds for later use outside of my interactive PowerShell session later.
Step 2 – Get the things
# Load the Citrix Common Commands Snapin
Get-PSSnapin -Registered "Citrix.Common.Commands" | Add-PSSnapin
# Get the configuration log and convert to JSON
Get-CtxConfigurationLogReport -DataLinkPath C:\conflog.udl | ConvertTo-Json -Depth 10
Here is some sample output (notice the property old and new values)
The day 2 keynote this year is focused on things that are yet to come. Traditionally, the first day keynote intermingled the “what’s available now” stuff with the “what’s coming in the next 6, 12, 18, n” months. By breaking these things up into 2 days, it is a little more clear that what is shown today isn’t readily available, but is more of the direction of Citrix. Continue reading “Citrix Synergy 2015 Day 2 Keynote Live Blog”
At Citrix Synergy this year, the “one more thing” at the end of the keynote was a new offering called Citrix Workspace Services. There was immediate debate on Twitter as to how this impacts certain market segments. This article covers ways in which Citrix Workspace Services could help or hinder the Citrix Service Provider Market.
Automation and self-service are two major factors for CSPs. Citrix Workspace Services potentially helps with both of these factors. Since CWS isn’t a real thing yet that we can get our hands on, I’m not quite sure to what extent we can automate things. This is important because CSPs have to automate in order to keep costs down and still maintain enough margin to remain profitable. Automation is also key because CSPs are not merely delivering just a remote desktop; they are delivering a suite of services, apps, data, backup, etc. and Citrix is a portion of the overall offering. Self-service is also important for CSPs because people are expensive. The more you can offload to the tenant via self-service (which relies on automation) the less man power you need.
How Citrix Workspace Services Work
XenApp and XenDesktop environments need five basic things to work:
Citrix Workspace Services can move 4 out of 5 of those things to the cloud (Azure for now). Basically, all you need is the workloads (VDAs) on your premises. Then, you just point those VDAs to the provisioned Citrix Workspace Service instance in Azure and off you go. Since a picture is worth a thousand words, here ya go:
Does this help or hurt the CSP?
So the question is, “is Citrix Workspace Services a slap in the face to CSPs”? I personally believe CWS could be a huge help to CSPs. When I was the Director of Technology for Xcentric (a CSP), I would have loved to have this. There are less moving parts for me to manage and on-boarding new clients could potentially be sped up as there is less work for the CSP to do. Keep in mind that a lot of my opinion hinges on the automation aspects of CWS (which is still unknown at the time of this writing). There could be some inherent risk in potential down time, but a CSP tenant is already prepared for a risk like this by the shear nature that they signed up for a hosted service the CSP provides in the first place.
On the converse, stealing a line from @Shawn Bass, CWS could potentially cause a CSP market saturation as CWS lowers the bar of entry. You no longer need a significant capital expenditure to get started as a CSP. I personally do not see this happening, but time will tell.
What is lacking (potentially)?
The automation question is still up in the air. I believe Citrix will make this a solution that can be automated with APIs, but how easily CSP can hook into whatever Citrix offers could potentially hinder the CSPs workflow.
Compliance (SAS, HIPPA, PCI, etc.). In most cases, data is still kept with the CSP, but potential identifiable information could flow from CSP to Azure and back (although this is yet to be determined). This could be a show stopper for certain markets.
Moving from Citrix Workspace Services to on premises. Since CWS was built using Azure services like Azure App Services, Azure Active Directory and Azure Virtual Network, it would be nearly impossible to move from CWS back to on premises. It’s kind of like the Mob – once you’re in you’re in, and you’re not getting out.
Reporting is yet to be seen, but I sure hope Citrix builds this in for SPLA-like reporting. All CSPs have to report to at least Microsoft and Citrix on a monthly basis about usage and pay up as you go/grow. I used to rely on home-grown tools to do this, but it would be better to have this from the vendor.
So, I think CWS will be a major help to CSPs as long as there is a strong and extensible automation engine involved. Could there be downtime that has nothing to do with the CSP-owned infrastructure? Sure, but that is the nature of the business in the first place. There are still lots of unknowns, but I’m hopeful as this just seems to make sense to me.
Citrix Synergy is back in Anaheim, California this year and I will be live-blogging the keynote. You can watch the keynote live at CitrixSynergy.com as well. I am sure there will be a focus on mobility, but with the release of XenDesktop and XenApp 7.5, I am excited to see Citrix getting back to the future (again).
Starting with XenDesktop 7, Citrix stores the data the Desktop Director displays in a SQL database. Citrix opened up this data via a Monitor Service API that uses OData. I’m not going to go deep into the details of the API as it is fairly well documented at the eDocs site. The examples in the documentation show you how to access this data via web browser, Microsoft Excel, and LinqPad. What I want to do in this article is show you how to use PowerShell with this API.
To start out, let’s take a look at the Citrix Monitor Service schema (click to enlarge):
Suppose we want to get all sessions as well as the all the connection/disconnections to the session. The following URL will return the data we want in XML format.
Citrix Synergy is in Anaheim, California this year. With the recent release of Excalibur, it will be interesting to see what is revealed during the keynote. I’ll be live-blogging the keynote this year. Check it out here or on Twitter @JasonConger.
It is time for Citrix Synergy, and I will be live-blogging the keynote. With the recent release of Excalibur, I expect the keynote focus to be a lot around capabilities and features. I also expect to see some more around mobility, networking, and cloud. Be sure to stay tuned here and/or follow me on Twitter.
Citrix Synergy has returned to Barcelona, Spain. That means that I will be live blogging the keynote again this year.
Citrix Synergy has returned to Barcelona, Spain. That means that I will be live blogging the keynote again this year. Last year in Barcelona and earlier this year in San Francisco, Citrix talked a lot about public/private/personal cloud. I am looking forward to see som fruition out of their vision. I also fully expect Mark Templeton to have “one more thing” at the end of the keynote as well. Stay tuned… Continue reading “Citrix Synergy Barcelona 2012 Keynote Live Blog”