One of my favourite Citrix products is Citrix PVS aka Provisioning Services. I first came across this product back in 2012 when it was being used for deploying a Citrix Presentation Server 4.5 Farm. This was back in my tech support days and I didn’t really take much notice.
Roll forward 2 years and I was working as a Consultant on a VDI Project where we were implementing PVS 6.1, creating and deploying the Windows XP image. After we deployed the XP image we then upgraded to Windows 7. I was blown away how quickly and easily we could deploy the Operating System to so many devices with ease. Yes it has it’s downsides, it has a pretty complicated infrastructure to deploy. You also need to think about things within the Operating System and applications to tailor to a non-persistent image.
But if you get it right, it’s amazingly powerful. We can literally deploy thousands of devices in just a few hours.
With the ever changing world of Microsoft constantly updating Windows 10 Citrix PVS is a very nice method of easily controlling OS Deployment. On one project where we went from Windows XP to Windows 7, we literally just created the image and flipped all the target devices. It took us around a week to update 1200 Devices. That’s powerful.
I am looking forward to playing around with the new features. But first of all let’s get it installed. In this post I will go over the base configuration. In future posts I will go over a full end-to-end deployment including creating the Windows 10 Master Target, creating devices, delivery groups etc.
Before deploying please check out the requirements here: https://docs.citrix.com/en-us/provisioning/current-release/system-requirements.html
So let’s head over to the installation. I am not going to cover the first part of the installation, as it is just next next next next, you get the idea. We will over the configuration
Our first decision is how the target devices will receive their IP address. Choose the setting which is relevant to your environment
Next we need to decide if we are creating a new farm, or joining an existing farm. As we are creating a brand new farm we will select “Create farm”
Now we need to enter our SQL Server details. These must be configured beforehand. For my home lab environment I just use SQL Server Express which you can download for free
Next enter your configuration details which will be specific to your environment
The next decision to make is the location of the vDisk store. The vDisk store is the location where you will be holding all your images so make sure you have plenty of space. If you are only creating one image then 100GB should be enough for now, but this can grow quickly.
Enter your licence server details. This must be the licence server which contains all the production licences
If you want to use a service account for the stream or SOAP Services enter the service account details here
Here we can configure how often the computer account machine passwords are reset. If you are unsure please speak to your AD Administrator
The next set of options is to select our NIC’s. As this is my lab I only have 1, but in a production environment it is recommended to have a single, or multiple dedicated NICs to streaming traffic
Now we need to select how TFTP will be used. We can either use a 3rd party one (like Solarwinds) or use the inbuilt TFTP Server
On this screen double check that you have got the correct Stream NIC’s. We can also edit the settings if we need to
The next screen lets us import a SSL Certificate for configuring Linux target devices. I am not doing this so we can safely skip it
Here we can enter our MyCitrix account details for uploading logs and problem reports.
Finally we can check our settings and it everything is OK then press Finish
The configuration will now be finalised and the services restarted
We now having a fully configured Citrix PVS Installation
The next steps we will configure our Windows 10 Master Target to create our images from.
Until next time!!