Deployment Guide Citrix XenDesktop

Deploying the BIG-IP LTM v11 with Citrix XenDesktop

What’s inside: 2 Prerequisites and configuration notes 2 Configuration example 4 Configuring the BIG-IP LTM for Citrix XenDesktop 5 Health monitor configuration 8 Modifying the Citrix XenDesktop Web Interface configuration 9 Troubleshooting

Welcome to the F5 deployment guide for Citrix® XenDesktop® with BIG-IP v11. This guide shows how to configure the BIG-IP Local Traffic Manager (LTM) for directing traffic, ensuring application availability, improving performance and providing a flexible layer of security for XenDesktop version 5.0. Citrix XenDesktop lets you create virtualized desktops quickly and easily, then make them available to users on demand through any device. The BIG-IP LTM provides mission critical availability, enhanced security, simple scalability and high operational resiliency to the Citrix XenDesktop deployment.

Why F5 In a Citrix XenDesktop environment, the BIG-IP LTM provides intelligent traffic management and high-availability by monitoring and managing connections to the Citrix Web Interface. In addition, the built-in performance optimization capabilities of the LTM provide faster operations to facilitate a better end-user experience. The LTM also keeps persistence records for certain connections to always be directed to the same server for a specified period of time, to ensure that the workflow in the XenDesktop environment is fully preserved.

10 Document Revision History To provide feedback on this deployment guide or other F5 solution documents, contact us at [email protected]. Products and versions tested Product

Document Version 1.1

Version

BIG-IP LTM

v11

Citrix XenDesktop

5.0

DEPLOYMENT GUIDE Citrix XenDesktop

Prerequisites and configuration notes The following are general prerequisites and configuration notes for this guide: hh For  this deployment guide, the Citrix XenDesktop installation must be running version 5.0. hh T his document is written with the assumption that you are familiar with both F5 devices and Citrix XenDesktop products. For more information on configuring these devices, consult the appropriate documentation. hh F or this deployment guide, the BIG-IP LTM system must be running version 11.0 or later. If you are using a previous version of the BIG-IP LTM system, see the Deployment Guide index on F5.com. The configuration described in this guide does not apply to previous versions. hh If  you are using the BIG-IP system to offload SSL, we assume you have already obtained an SSL certificate and key, and it is installed on the BIG-IP LTM system. hh C  itrix Session configuration must be set to Direct mode (see Figure 1). For specific information on configuring the Citrix Session mode, see the Citrix documentation.

Figure 1: Citrix Session configuration

Configuration example This configuration example describes the typical configuration of the BIG-IP LTM system to monitor and manage the critical component of a Citrix XenDesktop environment: the Web Interface servers (WI) and Desktop Delivery Controllers (DDC). In this implementation, traffic to the Citrix WI and DDC servers are managed by the BIG-IP LTM system. When necessary, the BIG-IP LTM ensures that each client connects to the same member of the farm across multiple sessions using persistence. The BIG-IP LTM system is also setup to monitor the Citrix WI and DDC servers to ensure availability, authentication and to automatically mark down servers that are not operating properly. 2

DEPLOYMENT GUIDE Citrix XenDesktop

This guide also addresses SSL offload - the ability of the BIG-IP system to terminate SSL sessions in order to offload this CPU-intensive processing from the XenDesktop WI servers. We strongly recommend SSL offload for XenDesktop deployments, which is available with a simple addition of the Client SSL profile to the WI virtual server, referred to in this guide. If for some reason you have requirements that traffic is encrypted all the way to the XenDesktop servers, in order to preserve persistence and benefits from all F5 functionality, we recommend you terminate SSL on the BIG-IP and then re-encrypt the traffic to the Citrix server. F5 Application Delivery Control for XenDesktop provides high availability in conjunction with advanced monitoring that looks at XenDesktop farm availability on DCC servers and authentication through WI servers provides the ultimate flexibility to deliver a resilient and available environment. Internal Citrix Clients

Citrix Clients

Internet

Internal Network

BIG-IP LTM

Figure 1: Logical configuration example

3

Citrix Web Interface Servers

Citrix XenDesktop Delivery Controllers (DDC) BIG-IP LTM

DEPLOYMENT GUIDE Citrix XenDesktop

Configuring the BIG-IP LTM for Citrix XenDesktop The following table contains a list of BIG-IP LTM configuration objects for XenDesktop with any non-default settings you should configure as a part of this deployment. Unless otherwise specified, settings not mentioned in the table can be configured as applicable for your configuration. For specific instructions on configuring individual objects, see the online help or product manuals. BIG-IP LTM Object

LLNote Use a unique name for each BIG-IP object. We recommend names that start with the application name , such as xendesktop-wi-pool

Health Monitor (Main tab-->Local Traffic -->Monitors)

Non-default settings/Notes See Health monitor configuration on page 5 for instructions on configuring the health monitors Web Interface Pool Health Monitor

Select the Web Interface monitor you created

Load Balancing Method

Choose your preferred load balancing method

Address

Type the IP Address of the Web Interface nodes

Pool (Main tab-->Local

Service Port

80 (repeat Address and Service Port for all nodes)

Traffic -->Pools)

Desktop Delivery Controller Pool Health Monitor

Select the Desktop Delivery Controller monitor you created

Load Balancing Method

Choose your preferred load balancing method

Address

Type the IP Address of the Desktop Controller nodes

Service Port

80 (repeat Address and Service Port for all nodes) Parent Profile

http

Redirect Rewrite

All

Insert X-Forwarded-For

Enabled

HTTP Compression

Parent Profile

wan-optimized-compression

Web Acceleration

Parent Profile

optimized-caching

TCP WAN

Parent Profile

tcp-wan-optimized

TCP LAN

Parent Profile

tcp-lan-optimized

Persistence

Persistence Type

Cookie

OneConnect

Parent Profile

oneconnect

Parent Profile

clientssl

Certificate and Key

Select the Certificate and key you imported

Parent Profile

If your Citrix server is using a certificate signed by a Certificate Authority, select serverssl. If your Citrix server is using a self-signed certificate, or an older SSL cipher, select serversslinsecure-compatible.

Certificate and Key

Leave the Certificate and Key set to None.

HTTP

Profiles (Main tab-->Local Traffic -->Profiles)

Client SSL

Server SSL1 (for SSL Bridging only) (Profiles-->SSL)

Web Interface HTTP virtual server

Virtual Servers (Main tab-->Local Traffic -->Virtual Servers)

1

Address

Type the IP Address for the virtual server

Service Port

80

iRule

_sys_https_redirect

T he Server SSL profile is only necessary if you require encrypted traffic all the way to the Citrix servers. For SSL Offload (recommended), you do not need a Server SSL profile.

This table continues on the following page

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DEPLOYMENT GUIDE Citrix XenDesktop

BIG-IP LTM Object

Non-default settings/Notes Web Interface HTTPS virtual server

Virtual Servers (Main tab-->Local Traffic -->Virtual Servers)

Address

Type the IP Address for the virtual server

Service Port

443

Protocol Profile (client)

Select the WAN optimized TCP profile you created above

Protocol Profile (server)

Select the LAN optimized TCP profile you created above

OneConnect Profile

Select the OneConnect profile you created above

HTTP Profile

Select the HTTP profile you created above

HTTP Compression Profile

Select the HTTP compression profile you created above

SSL Profile (Client)

Select the Client SSL profile you created above

SSL Profile (Server)1

If you created a Server SSL profile only: Select the Server SSL profile you created above.

SNAT Pool

Automap

Default Pool

Select the Web Interface pool you created above

Persistence Profile

Select the Cookie Persistence profile you created above

Desktop Delivery Controller

1

Address

Type the IP Address for the virtual server

Service Port

80

Protocol Profile (client)

Select the WAN optimized TCP profile you created

Protocol Profile (server)

Select the LAN optimized TCP profile you created above

HTTP Profile

Select the HTTP profile you created above

HTTP Compression Profile

Select the HTTP compression profile you created above

Web Acceleration Profile

Select the Web Acceleration profile you created above

SNAT Pool

Automap

Default Pool

Select the pool you created above

Persistence Profile

Select the Cookie Persistence profile you created above

The Server SSL profile is only necessary if you created a Server SSL Profile as described in the Profiles section.

After configuring the monitor as shown in the following section, be sure to also perform the procedures found in Modifying the Citrix XenDesktop Web Interface configuration on page 8

Important

Health monitor configuration To ensure traffic is directed only to those servers that are responding to requests, it is important to configure health monitors on the BIG-IP LTM to verify the availability of the servers being load balanced. For Citrix XenDesktop, we create two advanced monitors. The first monitor is for the Web Interface servers and attempts to login to the servers by using the user name and account of a test user. We recommend you create a test user that reflects users in your environment for this purpose. If a particular server fails authentication, traffic is diverted from those servers until those devices are fixed. If all authentication is down, users will not be able to connect. We recommend setting up a Fallback Host for these situations. Please see F5 product documentation on setting up Fallback Hosts in your pools The second monitor is for the Desktop Delivery Controller servers. This monitor determines the availability of the Desktop Farm to which users connect. If the farm is not available on the controller, it is taken out of service. Note

The first monitor uses a user account (user name and password) that can retrieve applications from the XenDesktop server. Use an existing account for which you know the password, or create an account specifically for use with this monitor. 5

DEPLOYMENT GUIDE Citrix XenDesktop

For the second monitor, you need to know the name of your farm. This information can be found in your Citrix XenDesktop Management Console. Both health monitors are created using a script, available on DevCentral https://devcentral.f5.com/wiki/TMSH.BIGIPV11-Citrix-Xen-Desktop-Monitor.ashx. Download the script to a location accessible by the BIG-IP device. Optionally, you can cut and paste the script directly into the TMSH editor on the BIG-IP device. However, cutting and pasting is errorprone and therefore we provide instructions here on how to copy the file to the BIG-IP device using secure-copy (SCP). To create the Web Interface Monitor and the Desktop Delivery Controller Monitor using the script, you must first copy the script into the BIG-IP device. The following procedures show you how to copy the file both on a Windows platform using WinSCP, and on Linux, UNIX or MacOS system using SCP. To import the script on a Windows platform using WinSCP 1. D  ownload the script found on the following link to a computer that has access to the BIG-IP device: https://devcentral.f5.com/wiki/TMSH.BIGIPV11-Citrix-Xen-Desktop-Monitor.ashx 2. O  pen a Windows compatible SCP client. We recommend WinSCP. It is available as a free download from http://winscp.net/. The login box opens. 3. In the Host name box, type the host name or IP address of your BIG-IP system. 4. In the User name and Password boxes, type the appropriate administrator log on information. 5. Click Login. The WinSCP client opens. 6. In the left pane, navigate to the location where you saved the script in step 1. 7. In the right pane, navigate to /shared/tmp/ (from the right pane drop-down list, select root, double-click shared, and then double-click tmp). 8. In the left pane, select the script and drag it to the right pane. 9. You can now safely close WinSCP.

To import the script using Linux/Unix/MacOS systems 1. D  ownload the script: https://devcentral.f5.com/wiki/TMSH.BIGIPV11-Citrix-Xen-Desktop-Monitor.ashx. 2. Open a terminal session. 3. U  se your built in secure copy program from the command line to copy the file. Use the following syntax: scp @:

In our example, the command is: scp create-citrix-monitor.tcl [email protected]:/shared/tmp/create-citrix-monitor

The next task is to import the script you just copied to create the monitor. The following tasks are performed in the BIG-IP Advanced Shell (see the BIG-IP manual on how to configure users for Advanced shell access). 6

DEPLOYMENT GUIDE Citrix XenDesktop

To run the monitor creation script 1. On the BIG-IP system, start a console session. 2. Type a user name and password, and then press Enter. 3. Change to the directory containing the creation script. In our example, we type: cd /shared/tmp/

If you copied the script to a different destination, Use the appropriate directory. 4. C  hange the permissions on the script to allow for execute permission using the following command: chmod 755 create-citrix-monitor

You have now successfully imported the script. The next step is to run the script and provide the parameters to create the Citrix XenDesktop monitor for your environment. To run the monitor script 1. A  t the system prompt, type tmsh and then press Enter. This opens the Traffic Management shell. 2. Enter CLI Script mode by typing cli script. The prompt changes to root@bigip-hostname(Active)(tmos.cli.script)#

3. F rom the command prompt, use the following command syntax, where file path is the path to the script: run file /

In our example, we type run file /shared/tmp/create-citrix-xendesk-monitor

The script starts, you are prompted for four arguments. You are automatically switched to interactive mode. 4. At the What is the User Name prompt, type the user name of the XenDesktop user. 5. At the What is the Password prompt, type the associated password. 6. At the What is the Farm name prompt, type the name of the farm of your XenDesktop farm you would like to check is available. In our example, we use HOME. The Farm name is also called the Site name. You can find your Farm or Site name from the XenDesktop Studio. In the navigation page, click Configuration. In the Site wide settings box, you see the Site name.

Important

7. At What is the domain name prompt, type the Windows domain used for authentication of users. In our example, we use corpdomain. Do not use the fully-qualified-domain-name from DNS here; this is referring to Windows Domain only. The script creates the monitor. You can view the newly created monitor from the web-based Configuration utility from the Main Tab, by expanding Local Traffic and then clicking Monitors. The name of the monitors starts with the farm name you configured in step 6. In our example, the two monitors that are created are: Home-CitrixDDCFarm and Home-CitrixWICredentials.

7

DEPLOYMENT GUIDE Citrix XenDesktop

Modifying the Citrix XenDesktop Web Interface configuration The next task is to make important modifications to the Citrix servers.

Modifying the Web Interface servers to point at the BIG-IP virtual server You must modify the Web Interface server configuration so the Web Interface devices send traffic to the BIG-IP XML Broker virtual server and not directly to the Desktop Delivery Controllers. You must also make sure “Use the server list for load balancing” is unchecked, as shown below. To modify the Web Interface servers to point at the Desktop Delivery Controller virtual server 1. From a Web Interface server, open the Access Management Console. 2. In the Navigation pane, expand Citrix Resources, Configuration Tools, Web Interface and then your site name. 3. From the middle column, select Manage server farms. 4. From the list, select the appropriate farm, and then click Edit. 5. In the Server box, select each entry and then click the Remove button. 6. Click the Add button. 7. T ype the IP address of the XML Broker virtual server (the address you added in the third bullet on page 8). In our example, we type 10.10.10.1. 8. Clear the check from the Use the server list for load balancing box. 9. Click the OK button. Repeat this procedure for any/all additional Web Interface servers. 10. R  epeat this change for each Web Interface server. Make sure to restart each Web Interface server for the changes to take effect.

8

DEPLOYMENT GUIDE Citrix XenDesktop

Troubleshooting This section contains troubleshooting steps in case you are having issues with the configuration. hh U  sers can’t connect to the Web Interface servers Make sure users are trying to connect using the BIG-IP virtual server address (or a FQDN that resolves to the virtual server address). hh U  sers initially see an IIS page or a page other than the Citrix log on page This is typically a web server configuration issue. Make sure the proper Citrix URI is the default web site on your web server. Consult your web server documentation for more information. This may also be the case if all of your Web Interface servers are being marked DOWN as a result of the BIG-IP LTM health check. Check to make sure that at least one node is available. You can also use the procedure in the following section to temporarily disable the monitor itself. hh C  itrix Desktop Delivery Controller servers being incorrectly marked DOWN by the BIG-IP LTM If your servers are being incorrectly marked down, you may have made an error in the configuring the health monitor script. The health monitor is very precise, calculating the Content Length header based on your responses. To see if the issue is coming from the health monitor, you can temporarily disable the health monitor and reattempt the connection. If the connection succeeds with the monitor disabled, we recommend you re-run the script, as the monitor is extremely difficult to manually troubleshoot. To disable the monitor 1. F rom the Main tab of the BIG-IP Configuration utility, expand Local Traffic, and then click Pools. 2. From the Pool list, click the pool you created for the Desktop Delivery Controller servers. 3. In the Health Monitors section, from the Active list, select the health monitor and then click Remove (>>) to disable the monitor. 4. Click the Update button. 5. W  hen you want to reactivate the monitor, select the Desktop Delivery Controller monitor you previously removed, click the Add (<<) button to reactivate it, and then click Update.

9

10 DEPLOYMENT GUIDE Citrix XenDesktop

Document Revision History Version 1.0

Description New Version

Date N/A

Corrected the link to the monitor script on DevCentral. 1.1

F5 Networks, Inc. 401 Elliott Avenue West, Seattle, WA 98119

Removed a reference to Appendix A for creating a Server SSL profile, and added information and instructions for using a Server SSL profile to configure SSL Bridging (SSL re-encryption).

888-882-4447

www.f5.com

F5 Networks, Inc. Corporate Headquarters

F5 Networks Asia-Pacific

F5 Networks Ltd. Europe/Middle-East/Africa

F5 Networks Japan K.K.

[email protected]

[email protected]

[email protected]

[email protected]

© 2012 F5 Networks, Inc. All rights reserved. F5, F5 Networks, the F5 logo, BIG-IP, FirePass, and iControl are trademarks or registered trademarks of F5 Networks, Inc. in the U.S. and in certain other countries.

05/07/2012

Deploying the BIG-IP LTM v11 with Citrix XenDesktop - F5 Networks

May 7, 2012 - Address. Type the IP Address of the Web Interface nodes .... In the Host name box, type the host name or IP address of your BIG-IP system. 4.

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