Double-hop configured with Citrix Receiver inside a published desktop

 

We started a new project with one of our clients creating a new MCS master with Windows Server 2016. One of their most critical business applications do not support Windows Server 2016 with their current version of the application. In the best of world it woulds, we would just update the application, but sometimes this is just not possible or an option. One of our ideas to solve this was to create a second master with Windows Server 2008R2 and publish the application in the Windows Server 2016 start menu with Citrix Receiver. I will guide you below how we managed to get this to work very smoothly.

 

The first thing you will want to do is to install Citrix Receiver on to the Windows Server 2016 Master. If you installed Citrix Receiver with the VDA-agent, you may skip this step. If not, you must install Citrix Receiver using below parameters:

 

After this you will want to create a new GPO, apply it to all your Windows Server 2016 Targets and configure the following settings:

When the user logs in we want Citrix Receiver to start immediately and connect to the StoreFront. Since we are using redirected start menus for all users we published the following icon in the ”startup” folder.

Starting Citrix Receiver with the tag ”ipoll” will contact the server to refresh application details, but if no authentication context is available, prompt the user for credentials. You may read more about the Citrix Receiver tags here.

 

The next thing you will want to do is to log in with a test user. Citrix Receiver should now start for the user in the background and connect to the StoreFront. Log in as an administrator to the session host and browse to ”HKEY_USERS\{SID_FOR_TEST_USER}\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall”. You may now see all published applications as keys.

You’ll want to focus on the registry setting ”LaunchString”. Copy the value in ”LaunchString”. It should look something like below.

 

This string is unique for every application. This string is not unique for every user. We will want to use this string with Citrix Receiver.

 

Optimal would of course be to publish a shortcut in the redirected start menu, but since the string is to long the shortcut is capped with max characters. We must therefore create a script like below.

 

Browse to the redirected start menu and create a shortcut with target like below.

When the user logs in to the session and launches the application it should start from the Windows Server 2008R2 machines like below.

 

Hope this works as well for you as it does for me. Give me a comment below if you have any problems.

Disclaimer: All information on this blog is offered "as is" with no warranty. It is strongly recommended that you verify all information and validate all scripts in isolated test environments before using them in production environments.