Notes for Citrix XenDesktop 5 Administration Exam 1Y0-A19: Part 2/3 – Provisioning Services

Setup, Configure, Administer

For best experience when launching a virtual desktop and with fault tolerance in the event of Provisioning Services server failure, consider →
Cache on the target device and redirect the cache to a share within a shared storage repository

Note: redirect cache to RAM – general estimate of file cache for a provisioned workstation running only text-based applications (like Word, Outlook,) and which is rebooted daily, is around 300 to 500 MB.

In a Provisioning Services environment, the default location of the write cache is a subdirectory of the vDisk location.

To install provisioning service and connect to an SQL database the host name and instance name must be supplied

To configure a target device to start up from a vDisk
i: Add target device to a collection
ii: Assign a vDisk to the device
iii: Set the device to start up from vDisk

Machine type to be used when creating catalog with provisioning services based virtual machines = streamed

Two components to be installed on the master image that will be used for streamed machines →
i: Virtual Desktop Agent
ii: Provisioning services target device

After changes to the vDisk, to use the original image instead of the updated image →
Copy the rollback file to the updates folder, use the 'Schedule Automatic Disk Updates' option and select 'Check for incremental updates' on the server

If the vDisk assigned to the target devices are in 'private image mode' then automatic disk image update changes to vDisks are not replicated automatically.

Needed to create a streamed machine catalog for a XenDesktop environment →
i: Device collections configured to load the vDisk over the network
ii: Active Directory computer accounts managed by Provisioning services for each target device in the device collections
iii: A Provisioning service deployment with a vDisk imaged from the master virtual machine and assigned to the target device

When using Image Builder, the default behaviour when converting a master image to a vDisk, is that all files and folders in the destination path will be deleted.

Three requirements when using Provisioning services to manage an Active Directory machine account of a device →
i: Machine account password changes must be disabled for the target devices
ii: The 'Enable automatic password support' option must be enabled on the Provisioning services host
iii: The 'Active Directory machine account password management' option must be enabled on the vDisks

The following hardware configuration for a single Provisioning services host, can support a single standard-mode vDisk image to 2500 targets →
Physical machine with 2 hex-core processors, 8 GB RAM and two 1 Gbps network adapters
Note: PVS host must be physical as per best practice; more 1 Gbps network adapters is better than one 10 Gbps one, and the more processing power and RAM the better

To protect against failure of Provisioning services host, one solution is to have the write cache located at the read-write shared storage location

For desktops hosted on blade servers with SSDs in each, a good solution for write cache location is on the RAM of the target

Correct startup order for creating a template for a streamed catalog → Network > floppy drive > hard drive

Components to be installed on a master image that will be used for streamed machines →
Hypervisor integration tools, Virtual Desktop Agent, Provisioning services target device


If target devices using a particular vDisk are experiencing a large number of retries, this suggests TCP task offload is enabled

Virtual desktop became unresponsive while the target device was starting up to the operation system → Citrix PVS Stream Service is NOT running

Desktop unresponsive with message 'Connecting to Provisioning services. Please wait....' → The Stream Service is stopped on the Provisioning services host

When troubleshooting intermittent PXE boot timeout failures in a XenDesktop environment →
i: Switch the vDisk from standard to private image mode
ii: Disable TCP large Send Offload on both the server and target devices

When the master target device starts up, the system tray icon displays a red X →
i: The master target device started up from the local hard disk instead of starting from the PXE compliant network card
ii: The Windows firewall on the Provisioning services host is preventing inbound communication from the master target device

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