XenApp 6.5 / XenDesktop 5.6 Best Practice Policies

One of the most common mistakes that Citrix Engineers make in a XenApp/XenDesktop deployment is not taking the time to fully understand Citrix Policies.  There are several articles such as the XenApp and Desktop Policy Planning Guide and the XenDesktop and XenApp Best Practices Reference Guide I suggest reading.

I been in environments running pretty large farms where policies are not applied at all.  It is very important to take the time to go over these, as you can provide better session control and most importantly a better end user experience, specially when working with high latency connections for remote offices.

The policies below are from a collection of the docs mentioned above, as well as my own experience.

XenApp Baseline User Policy:

Apply this policy as your baseline to all users connecting to your XenApp farm.

ICA\Adobe Flash Delivery\Flash Redirection
Flash acceleration – Enabled
Flash default behavior – Enable Flash Redirection
Flash event logging – Enabled
Flash intelligent fallback – Enabled
Flash latency threshold – 30 milliseconds

ICA\Audio
Audio Plug N Play – Allow
Audio quality – Medium
Client audio redirection –  Allow
Client microphone redirection –  Prohibit

ICA\Desktop UI
Desktop wallpaper – Allowed
Menu animation – Allowed
View window contents while dragging – prohibited

ICA\File Redirection
Client floppy drives – Prohibit
Client optical drives – Prohibit
Host to client redirection  Disable
Read-only client drive access – Disable
Use asynchronous writes – Enabled

ICA\Port Redirection
Auto connect client COM ports – Disable
Auto connect client LPT ports – Disable
Client COM port redirection – Disable
Client LPT port redirection – Disable

ICA\Printing
Client printer redirection – Allow
Default printer – Set to client’s main printer
Printer auto creation log preference – Errors
Wait for printers to be created (desktop) – Disabled

ICA\Printing\Client Printers
Auto-create client printers – Default printer only
Auto-generate generic universal driver – Disabled
Client printer names – Standard names
Direct connections to print servers – enabled
Retained and restored client printers – Allowed

ICA\Printing\Drivers
Automatic installation of in-bo printer drivers – Disabled
Universal driver usage – Use Universal Printing only if requested driver is unavailable

ICA\Printing\Universal Printing
Universal printing EMF processing mode – Spool to printer
Universal printing image compression limit – Best Quality
Universal printing optimization defaults – Standard Quality
Caching of embedded images
Caching of embedded fonts
Universal printing preview preference – Use for auto-generated and generic

ICA\Session Limits
Linger Disconnect Timer Interval – 5 Minutes
Linger Terminate Timer Interval – 10 Minutes
Pre-Launch Disconnect Timer Interval – 15 Minutes
Pre-Launch Terminate Timer Interval – 30 Minutes

ICA\Shadowing
Log shadow attempts – Allow
Notify user of pending shadow connections – Allow
Users who can shadow other users – Defined by security

ICA\Time Zone Control
Estimate local time for legacy clients – Enable
Use local time of client –  Use Client time zone

ICA\TWAIN devices
Client TWAIN device redirection – Enabled
TWAIN compression level – low

ICA\Visual Display\Moving Images
Moving Image Compression – Enabled
Server Session Settings
Session importance – Normal
Single Sign-on – Disabled

XenApp Baseline Computer Policy Setting.

Apply this policy as your baseline to all Servers in your XenApp farm.

ICA
ICA listener connection timeout – 120000 ms
ICA listener port number – 1494

ICA\Auto Client Reconnect
Auto client reconnect – Allow
Auto client reconnect authentication – Not required
Auto client reconnect logging – Disabled

ICA\End User Monitoring
ICA round trip calculation – Enable
ICA round trip calculations for idle connections – Disable

ICA\Graphics
Display memory limit   32768 KB
Display mode degrade preference – Degrade Color Depth First
Dynamic Windows preview – Enabled
Image caching – Enabled
Maimum allowed color depth   32 bit
Notify user when display mode is degraded – Disabled
Queuing and tossing – Enabled

ICA\Graphics Caching
Persistent Cache Threshold – 3000000 Kbps

ICA\Keep Alive
ICA keep alive timeout – 60 seconds
ICA keep alives – Enabled

ICA\Multimedia
Windows Media Redirection – Allowed

ICA\Session Reliability
Session reliability connections – Prohibited

ICA Shadowing
Shadowing – Allow

Licensing
License server host name – License Server name
License server port – 27000
Server Settings
DNS address resolution – Enabled
Full icon caching – enabled

Server Settings\Health Monitoring and Recovery
Health Monitoring – Enabled
Health Monitoring tests – Use Defaults (please configure as you see fit.)

Server Settings\Memory/CPU
CPU Management server lever – preferential load balancing
Memory optimization – Enabled
Memory optimization interval – enabled

Server Settings\Reboot Behaviour
Reboot logon disable time – Choose a value to suit your clients
Reboot Schedule frequency – Choose a value to suit your clients
Reboot Schedule start date  – Reboot Schedule Choose first day of the reboot
Reboot Schedule time – Choose time to restart server
Reboot warning interval – Choose interval which the users are notified about pending restart
Reboot warning users – enabled
Scheduled Reboots – enabled

XML Service
Trust XML requests – enabled
XML server port – 8080

XenApp WAN/External User Policy.

Apply this policy for users working from branch offices or remote locations with low bandwidth and/or high latency connections.

ICA\Adobe Flash Delivery\Flash Redirection
Flash acceleration – Enabled

ICA\Audio
Audio quality –  Medium

ICA\Client Sensors\Location
Allow applications to use the physical locations of the client device – allowed (Tablet Devices)

ICA\Desktop UI
Desktop wallpaper – prohibited
Menu animation – prohibited
View window contents while dragging – prohibited

ICA\File Redirection 
Use asynchronous writes – Enabled

ICA\Mobile Experience
Automatic Keyboard Display – Enabled (Tablet Devices)
Launch touch-optimized desktop – Enabled (Tablet Devices)
Remote the combo box – Enabled (Tablet Devices)

ICA\Printing  Wait for printers to be created (desktop) – Disabled

ICA\Printing\Universal Printing 
Universal printing optimization defaults – Standard Quality
Caching of embedded images
Caching of embedded fonts

ICA\TWAIN devices
Client TWAIN device redirection – Disabled

ICA\Visual Display 
Max Frames per Second – 15 FPS

ICA\Visual Display\Still Images
Extra Color Compression – Enabled
Extra Color Compression Threshold – 8192 kbps
Lossy compression level – High
Lossy compression level threshold value – Unlimited