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Citrix XenDesktop 7 is probably one of the most important product releases by Citrix ever. The consolidation of two of the strongest products, XenApp and XenDesktop into one unified architecture is a big step forward.

 XenDesktop 7 Director – Real-time assessment

Desktop Director is a Web-based tool that enables IT support and help desk teams to monitor a XenDesktop environment, troubleshoot issues before they become system-critical, and perform support tasks for end users. Director 7  is installed by default as a website on the Delivery Controller and  is not compatible with XenApp deployments or XenDesktop deployments earlier than version 7. In mixed environment Citrix recommends installing Director 7 on a separate server from the Director console that is used to monitor XenApp 6.5 sites.

Desktop Director is available at: http://servername/director

Desktop Director provides different views of the interface tailored to particular administrators. XenDesktop permissions determine what is displayed and the commands available.  The built-in roles and permissions for XenDesktop also determine how administrators use Director:

Administrator Role

Permissions in Director

Full Administrator Full access to all views and can perform all commands,including shadowing a user’s session, enabling maintenancemode, and exporting trends data.
Delivery Group Administrator Full access to all views and can perform all commands,including shadowing a user’s session, enabling maintenancemode, and exporting trends data.
Read Only Administrator Can access all views and see all objects in specified scopes aswell as global information.
Can download reports from HDX channels and can export Trends data using the Export option in the Trends view.Cannot perform any other commands or change anything inthe views.
Help Desk Administrator Can access only the Help Desk and User Details views and can view only objects that the administrator is delegated to manage. Can shadow a user’s session and perform commands for that user. Can perform maintenance mode operations.Can use power control options for Desktop OS Machines.Cannot access the Dashboard, Trends, or Filters views.Cannot use power control options for Server OS machines.
Machine Catalog Administrator No access. This administrator is not supported for Directorand cannot view data.
Host Administrator No access. This administrator is not supported for Directorand cannot view data.

The Dashboard provides an overview of the key aspects of a deployment, such as the status of sessions, user logons, and the site infrastructure. Information is updated every minute. If issues occur, details appear automatically about the number and type of failures that have occurred.

  • Filters view– Drilling down into session details is the key to being able to quickly resolve issues. From the Troubleshooting Dashboard, administrators are able to click on the failure or sessions number and are immediately taken to the Filters view.  In this table view, it is easy to see exactly who has been affected by the failures, what machines are affected, failure reason, time of failure, plus many more details.  Global actions can be performed from this page enabling quick remediation of issues.
  • Trends view – As the dashboard presents the last 60 minutes, it is useful to be able to see what has been occurring over the past 24 hours or perhaps over the past week. From the dashboard, the administrator can click on “View Historical Trends and is taken to the Trends view, in context, from the dashboard.  Data from the configuration log provides reasons and accountability with regards to changes that have been made in the site.   For example, it may be that these changes have been the root cause of user connection failures.
  • Help Desk View – This enhancement enables access to a new actionable Help Desk view (Activity Manager page) and an updated User Details view that provides additional troubleshooting capabilities and will help customers increase their first call resolution.

If you think that you need more information about Desktop Director feel free to leave me a message.

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