How To Use & Leverage The Citrix End User Activity Report

By |2018-09-11T17:29:50+00:00September 19th, 2016|

goliath-technologies-blogThe Organization: US Government Department

The Organization’s Infrastructure: Citrix XenApp 6.5, Citrix XenDesktop 7.6 & VMware

Their Products: Goliath Performance Monitor

The Business Challenge: Measuring Citrix XenApp & XenDesktop Usage for Remote Users   

A major government agency enacted a new policy allowing employees to work from home using Citrix during times of inclement weather. This policy introduced a new visibility challenge for the organization.

When employees worked in the office, it was relatively easy for management to measure Citrix usage, but it became much more difficult when they worked from home. In an attempt to resolve this issue, the Citrix support team was tasked with finding a solution for obtaining the Citrix XenApp & XenDesktop end user activity or usage of the application.

The Citrix team knew that simply auditing end user session time was going to be insufficient. They needed a solution to validate that employees were actually productive during the hours that they were connected to the environment, and active within their sessions.

The Solution: Track User Sessions within Citrix Published Apps, Shared Hosted Desktops, or Virtual Desktop Sessions

The government agency had been utilizing Goliath Performance Monitor (GPM) for monitoring and troubleshooting the Citrix environment for a few years. Knowing that GPM had rich out-of-the-box reporting capabilities, the support team looked to Goliath first for a solution.

Goliath has over 66 out-of-the-box reports pre-configured within the products and the information required for user auditing of Citrix XenApp and XenDesktop was already in place and available in these reports.  The End User Activity Report tracks user sessions within Citrix published applications, shared hosted desktops, or virtual desktop sessions.

In addition, not only does it track the number of user sessions for a particular user, it also tracks if the user is actually active within a session. This unique capability provides data points that reflect when a user is being productive within their active session.

As shown in the report image below, events such as logon, logoff, and session idle time are omitted in the overall end user activity metric ‘active hours.’ Therefore, even though the total session time was eight hours long, during that session not all time was actively used, and the report was able to accurately reflect that fact.


The Results

This customer now runs the End User Activity Report at management’s request to gain insight into the user session activity. As a result, they are able to analyze Citrix usage and use the information to truly understand how productive their remote workforce truly is.

The End User Activity Report can be scheduled to run on an hourly/weekly/monthly basis, or on-demand. The End User Activity Report is exportable to many formats including PDF, CSV, and other integrated data analysis tools which allows for easy access by management.

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About the Author:

Heather Hanlon is a Senior Technical Analyst with Goliath Technologies and 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.