Citrix XenApp Performance Monitoring - An Overview

Citrix based environments are growing in popularity as cost-effective, efficient modes of accessing a variety of heterogeneous applications on-demand. By hosting applications on Citrix farms and making them accessible over a distributed network, IT administrators can allow users in different locations effectively access and share hardware resources and software licenses. While such thin-client environments offer economies of scale, there are significant challenges in maintaining and operating these environments. In order to be an effective alternative for desktop applications, Citrix environments must deliver the same quality of service that users have come to expect from their desktop applications.

Typically, Citrix server farms include multiple tiers of software. A front-end web interface (Nfuse or StoreFront) server is used to support web-based accesses to the server farm. Active directory servers handle user authentication and rights association, while user profiles are loaded from profile servers. The authenticated requests are passed to the Citrix XenApp servers that host a number of applications. In turn, the applications may use backend databases, printers, etc., for different functionalities. Owing to the multi-tier nature of Citrix environments, a slow-down in one tier (e.g., the authentication server) can cause a slow-down of the entire service. When a slow-down occurs, an administrator of the Citrix farm has to quickly determine what the source of the problem could be - i.e., Is it the network? Or the web interface server? Or the Active Directory server? Or the profile server? Or the Citrix XenApp server? Or the backend database? Accurate, fast diagnosis of problems helps reduce downtime and improve customer satisfaction.

The eG Enterprise offers 100% web-based monitoring of Citrix XenApp server farms. The eG Enterprise includes extensive, pre-defined, customized models of the different applications in the Citrix farm including Citrix XenApp, Citrix ZDCs, Nfuse server, the Citrix StoreFront server, the access gateways, the netscaler LB, the Secure Ticketing Authority, the Windows domain controllers, infrastructure servers like DNS, LDAP, Active Directory, and other network devices.

This document discusses the monitoring models offered by eG Enterprise for the Citrix XenApp servers.

The foundation of the Citrix Access Suite, Citrix XenApp server, is the world’s most widely deployed server for centrally managing heterogeneous applications and delivering their functionality as a service to workers, wherever they may be.

Using a specialized Citrix XenApp 4/5/6.x monitoring model, eG Enterprise provides monitoring support to Citrix XenApp Servers 4.0/4.5/5/6/6.5. To monitor Citrix XenApp servers v7 (and above), eG Enterprise offers a dedicated Citrix XenApp monitoring model.

Note:

All versions of Citrix XenApp can be monitored only in an agent-based manner.