Citrix has released a new version of the Personal vDisk. Version 5.6.13 has the following new features:
Personal vDisk v5.6.13 is the latest release which includes a redesigned filter driver that improves overall application compatibility. PvD no longer requires an assigned drive letter for the app space (currently the V: drive) and offers dynamic free space balance between the apps and profile space on the user’s personal vDisk. This release contains the reduction in the PvD generated CPU overhead by 44%.
Review the Citrix Personal vDisk Administrator’s Guide. This document contains information on the release, system requirements, and install instructions. For more configuration details, please refer to Citrix eDocs.
You can download this new version here at the Citrix downloads section (a valid My CitrixID is required).
Citrix has released Personal vDisk version 5.6.10.
The following issues have been fixed in this release:
- In some cases, upgrading personal vDisk from 5.6.0 to 5.6.5 or 5.6.7 may fail because some registry keys on the virtual desktop cannot be deleted. [#0353652]
- Configuration changes made by Internet Information Services (IIS) are not persisted after restarts. [#0353639]
- In some scenarios, if an application installed by a user on a personal vDisk registers a Managed Object Format (MOF) file, the image update process fails due to MOF registration issue 0x2000002F. 
- An administrator who creates a master image with a personal vDisk catalog cannot log on to one of the virtual desktops created from the image, and a temporary profile is created. 
- Users are unable to access mount points and junctions on a virtual desktop. 
- AppSense Environment Manager 8.3 is not compatible with personal vDisk. 
- Downgrading from Version 5.6.5 or later to Version 5.6.0 might damage the personal vDisk volume and prevent it from attaching. From then on, regardless of the version of personal vDisk that is used, the error message “Cannot load Personal vDisk – Status Code 7, Error Code 0x20000006” is displayed.
Download the new version here (requires a MyCitrixID).
Read more information on this version on the eDocs here.
Personal vDisk v5.6.7 provides a redesigned filter driver that improves overall application compatibility. This release also removes the need for an assigned drive letter for the app space (currently the V: drive) and offers dynamic free space balance between the apps and profile space on the user’s personal vDisk. This release reduces the PvD generated CPU overhead by 44%.
You can download Personal vDisk v5.6.7 here from the Citrix download center. A valid My Citrix ID is required to download the software.
You can read or download the administrator’s guide here.
Customer might notice that the “Pooled with Personal vDisk” type catalogs might be created but these catalogs remain in a “Preparing state”.
When the master image is cloned at the hypervisor, only core settings such as storage, CPU, and networking are duplicated for the newly created machines and all other settings maintain their default values from the hypervisor. Customers that have made changes related to disabling drives, ports, and other hardware loose these changes and the newly created hardware add these devices back and are unable to update the drives as the base image kernel is in a read only state
When configuring the master image, before you take the snapshot that will be used to create your catalog, start the machine into the BIOS of the Virtual Machine and reset all settings to default. This allows you to deploy your new images without them being blocked by newly found hardware. If your security requirements require these devices disabled, then you can remove them from the target devices.
The original article on the Citrix knowledgebase can be found here.
Citrix Personal vDisk failed to start. To disconnet, selelct Log off. To troubleshoot the problem, select Continue.
Status code: 3 Error code: 0x2
Following error might show in PvDSvclog
RegQueryValueEx failed size retrieval for Userinit, Error:2
inlogon userinit command:C:Windowssystem32userinit.exe,”C:Program FilesVMwareVMware ViewAgentbinwssm.exe”
Base image has VMware view agent service “WSM” installed.
- Remove Virtual Desktop Agent (VDA) software from the Base Image
- Remove “WSM” View agent service
You can read the original post here.
What’s New in Personal vDisk 5.6.5
Citrix personal vDisk 5.6.5 includes a new registry and file-system architecture for
personal vDisks, which ensures better usability and application compatibility.
In previous releases, the part of a personal vDisk that stores applications, the .vhd file,
was mapped by default to the V: drive. In personal vDisk 5.6.5, the .vhd file no longer
requires a drive letter, so only one drive letter is used. By default, this is still P: and
stores the profile and other user data.
In addition, a new algorithm automatically adjusts the relative sizes of the two parts of
the vDisk (the space for applications and the space on P:) depending on how the vDisk
is used. For example, if a user installs several big applications on the personal vDisk so
space becomes limited, the application space is increased relative to the space on P:.
The overall size of the personal vDisk does not change. You can configure this feature.
For the complete administrator’s guide please click here.
Click here to download the update (requires a valid MyCitrix ID)
This document provides the installation steps required to setup the personal vDisk feature of XenDesktop 5.6 with either Machine Creation Services (MCS) or Provisioning Services (PVS) running on the Citrix XenServer virtualization platform. This guide assumes the infrastructure aspects for Citrix products have been installed, including Citrix Licensing Server 11.9, Citrix XenDesktop 5.6, Provisioning Services 6.1, etc. Upon completion of the steps outlined in this document, an enterprise can provide XenDesktop virtual desktops with the personal vDisk feature enabled.
Implementing XenDesktop is not a difficult or particularly complex process. However, installing XenDesktop should not be performed in a production environment without adequate testing beforehand. It is recommended to install in a test or lab environment and conduct thorough systems and user acceptance testing to determine the optimal configuration for the enterprise environment. Success Accelerator kits are available at http://www.citrix.com/successaccelerator/to ensure XenDesktop projects delivers value to the organization.
This document can be downloaded here.
This article describes how to resize the Personal vDisk (PvD).
The following points should be kept in mind while resizing the PvD:
- A PowerShell script is included in this release that allows you to resize existing personal vDisks in a catalog. The script iterates through the machines in the catalog, changing the size where possible. Resizing takes effect the next time the machines are turned on.
- You cannot resize Windows XP machines hosted on VMware ESX using the script.
- Do not use the script to manage existing environments in other ways. Use Desktop Studio or Provisioning Services for other management operations.
- Before following this procedure, determine the current size of the personal vDisks and choose a new size. In addition, the following PowerShell snapins must be installed on the computer running the script:
the following procedure to resize the PvD:
- Put the machines in the catalog into maintenance mode.
- Locate the script resize-personal-vdiskpool.ps1 in the SupportToolsScripts folder of the full or upgrade image.
- At a command prompt, run the script and select the catalog whose personal vDisks you want to resize. If a script error occurs, dismiss it by running Set-ExecutionPolicy RemoteSigned.
Note: If you do not have full administrator rights in Desktop Studio and you are using a 64-bit system, run the script from a 32-bit PowerShell administrator command prompt.
- Accept the defaults for the storage location and, if displayed, the decision on thin provisioning.
- The script displays these properties, which you should not change.
- Enter the new size for the personal vDisks. The minimum is 3 gigabytes (GB). Additional space may be required for user applications and data.
- When prompted, confirm the selections you made.
- Enter the administrator’s user name and password.
- Wherever possible, the personal vDisks in the catalog are resized and the machines they are attached to is restarted. When disk preparation is complete, the machines shut down. This process might take several minutes to complete.
Note: The script lists the machines whose vDisks cannot be resized. Check the power state of these machines, and rerun the script to complete the resizing operation on the entire catalog.
You can read the original KB article here.
Citrix has released a planning guide for XenDesktop 5.6 personal vDisk implementation.
Personal vDisks are available in all versions of XenDesktop 5.6. Generally, the use of a Personal vDisks is evaluated when there is a strong desire for personalization of the virtual desktop. This could include a need to use a variety of departmental applications with a small, distinct user groups or general personalization that is beyond what is available in the user profile. However, there is no defined limitation of Citrix Personal vDisk technology to these specific use cases. It is entirely possible to utilize Personal vDisks in scenarios that may not maximize flexibility or virtual desktop density, yet are entirely appropriate to the enterprise environment.
The use of Personal vDisks should be part of the consideration of most virtual desktop implementations, particularly when considering Dedicated Desktops. When considering Personal vDisks, the following topics should be reviewed during a virtual desktop implementation design. Continue reading “Personal vDisk Technology Planning Guide”
Q: How does personal virtual Disk work?
A: Unlike traditional Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) dedicated pooled deployments, where users lose their customizations and personal applications when the administrator alters the base virtual machine, deployments using personal vDisk retain those changes. This means administrators can easily and centrally manage their base virtual machines while providing users with a customized and personalized desktop experience.
Personal vDisk provides this separation by redirecting all changes made to the user’s virtual machine into a separate disk attached to the user’s virtual machine (the personal vDisk). The content of the personal vDisk is blended at runtime with the content from the base virtual machine to provide a unified experience. In this way, users can still access applications provisioned by their administrator in the base virtual machine.
Continue reading “personal vDisk FAQ”