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Earlier this week, I was working with a customer who is using Goliath Performance Monitor to monitor their Citrix XenDesktop 7.6 applications. This customer is a law firm that has 19 offices located all over the world. In total, they have over 1,000 end user and 300 VMware vSphere virtual machines supporting their Citrix XenDesktop 7.6 environment.

The Issue to Solve: Too Many End User Complaints about Slow Logon Times 

Their primary concern was reducing end user complaints resulting from application and server issues, specifically with slow logon times. By configuring our product they were able to isolate the root cause of slow logon times and be alerted to impending issues proactively so they will now have time to react and solve problems before end users complain. This blog will speak to how the law firm achieved their goal.

Step #1 – Deploy the Intelligent Agent to Collect Data 

So first we brought in their VMware vSphere and Citrix XenDesktop 7.6 environment through our ‘First Time Run Wizard’ using our APIs for VMware and Citrix. Once the Citrix infrastructure was listed in inventory, we deployed our Intelligent Agent. Our agent is not like most agents.

It is very lightweight and uses less than 0.1% CPU, 1.5 MB on disk, and about 50 to 80 MB RAM. The agent deployed to the environment within minutes and instantly started to collect data. Once deployed, we were then able to jump right into configuring the product.

Step #2 – Analyze Logon Times & Drill Down into Logon Duration 

To start analyzing their logon times and drill down into the logon duration breakdown, the customer went to the XenApp/XenDesktop Session Display. From this display, you can view current and historical Citrix sessions and see metrics including logon duration, ICA latency, connection times, and more.

Since the customer’s main concern was looking at slow logon duration times, we then sorted this display by clicking the ‘Logon’ header to bring the sessions with the slowest logon times to the top of the screen, as shown in the below screenshot.

 logon-duration-xa-xd-session-display-goliath-technologies

The customer was then able to click into the sessions and view 3 levels of Logon Duration information. These levels included the following and are pictured below:

  1. The high level breakdown of the logon duration for each of the logon stages
  2. The breakdown of the logon as seen by the broker/controller
  3. The logon details as seen by the session itself

logon-duration-logon-session-goliath-technologies

When the customer saw all of logon data that Goliath received they were blown away and stated that the detail was “amazing” and that they “didn’t know this detail was possible.”

Step #3 – Drill Down into Group Policy & Logon Duration Detail to Identify End User Issues 

With the ability to drill down into group policy information, they were able to view what their group policies were actually doing. The customer was able to see each of the shared drives being mapped, printer mappings, and group policy extensions being processed.

Using this Logon Duration detail, the customer was able to identify multiple problems in the users’ sessions loading right away. One item included a group policy extension that was taking 27 seconds, which is higher than normal, pictured below. Using this information, the customer was able identify the group policy object that it came from, open it, and see an entire registry tree that was unnecessary was being added in.

logon-duration-details-goliath-technologies

Overall, having visibility into the logon duration process was hugely impactful for this customer. Since implementing our technology, they have been able identify multiple areas that were causing logon times to increase. They have also implemented alerting and reporting around logon duration as well.

Step 4 – Get Proactive by Configuring Preemptive Alerts Based on Thresholds 

Finally, we used the root cause information to be proactive by configuring preemptive alerts based on thresholds we determined from the issue isolation trending analysis. If leading indicators begin to occur, an alert will be triggered so they now have time to proactively address the issue before users are impacted.

It is very rewarding to implement the product and achieve these types of results for customers who have been frustrated in the past. Stay tuned for additional “proactive stories from the IT front lines”.

Get a 30-day Free Trial or Demo of Goliath Performance Monitor

To get a fully supported 30-day free trial or demo of the proactive Goliath Performance Monitor, Windows OS tablet perfor, simply complete the form below. 

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About 

Heather Hanlon is a Senior Technical Analyst with Goliath Technologies and as such, works with customers daily to help them move from reactive to proactive in IT. Heather is an author on IT Insights from the Front Line where she shares her experiences working with customers to solve the formidable challenge of Being Proactive.

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