Citrix Cloud: Smart Tools Reloaded!

Hello and thank you for reading my latest article on Citrix Smart Tools, formerly Lifecycle Management.

If you’re not aware, on 22nd December 2016, we renamed Lifecycle Management to Smart Tools and the features within. To bring you up to speed, here are the old and new names:

Design & Deploy is now Smart Build. This service includes all the current blueprint design and deployment features in Lifecycle Management.

Update is now Smart Check. This service includes the current Update feature and pairs it with diagnostic health checks to help you keep your XenApp and XenDesktop Sites running smoothly.

Migrate is now Smart Migrate. This service includes all the current functions for easing

Smart Scale is now… Smart Scale 🙂

Ok, so we have some new names and a few new features but for anyone who has looked at my previous posts on the Smart Tools features and functionality, let’s have a look at the updated service:

Citrix Cloud

When logging into Citrix Cloud, you now have an updated landing page.

screen-shot-2017-01-17-at-09-51-47

Clicking on Smart Tools brings us here:

screen-shot-2017-01-17-at-10-04-27

Smart Build (formerly Design & Deploy)

Clicking on Smart Build, we see the familiar Library page and access to the Blueprint Catalog.  As you can see, the XenApp & XenDesktop PoC Blueprint has an update available (updated to version 7.12)

screen-shot-2017-01-17-at-10-04-48

If we click on the Blueprint Catalog tab, we see the familiar blueprints available to us and the option to update the XA/XD PoC BP.  Click on Update.

screen-shot-2017-01-17-at-10-20-50

The blueprint will now update to the latest version.

screen-shot-2017-01-17-at-10-21-01

For more information on deploying blueprints, see my previous blog – Citrix Cloud: Part 1 – Using Blueprints to deploy a XenApp/XenDesktop 7.x Site

 

Smart Migrate (formally Update)

Clicking on the Smart Migrate tab and we have a redesigned landing page for us to start the migration of settings and configuration from a XenApp 6.5 farm to a new XenApp/XenDesktop 7.x Site.

screen-shot-2017-01-17-at-14-01-34

Clicking on Add a Migration Project allows you to choose a migration type and get the ball rolling.

screen-shot-2017-01-17-at-14-04-36

You have the same options to choose between a Fully Automated or Partially Automated migration.

screen-shot-2017-01-17-at-14-07-14

screen-shot-2017-01-17-at-14-07-27

Although I haven’t been through the process since the update, I believe it is the same as before and therefore will not document this any further.

If you wish to see my run through on how the Smart Migrate tool works and how I migrated a XenApp 6.5 Farm built in Azure to my newly deployed XenApp 7.x Site, then please read the following:

Citrix Cloud: Part 2 – Using Citrix Lifecycle Management to migrate from XenApp 6.5 to XenApp 7.x

Citrix Cloud: Part 3 – Using Citrix Lifecycle Management to “complete” our migration from XenApp 6.5 to XenApp 7.x

Smart Scale

Smart Scale appears to be largely unchanged, so for now, please see my previous article on how to setup and configure Smart Scale to control your VDA workloads.

Citrix Cloud: Part 4 – Using Citrix Lifecycle Management Smart Scale to intelligently control your cloud-hosted workloads!

screen-shot-2017-01-17-at-14-09-25

This is a great tool and can greatly help control your infrastructure costs when running VDAs in a public cloud such as Microsoft Azure or AWS.

Smart Check

Currently, Smart Check is in Preview as the newly renamed Lifecycle Management Update feature now includes additional features such as:

  • Scheduling health checks to run on your XenApp/XenDesktop Site
  • Finding any potential health issues affecting your site, such as repeated errors or warnings in the Event Logs
  • Find recommended fixes and product updates for the Delivery Controllers and Machine Catalogs in your XenApp and XenDesktop Site.
  • View comprehensive reports about your Site’s health (akin to CIS today)

 

Just to be clear, at present, Smart Check only offers these services for XenApp & XenDesktop. The plan is to eventually have all of our health check services available through Smart Check, not just XenApp & XenDesktop but for NetScalers, PVS and XenServer as well.

 

Smart Check is supported for the following items:

  • Deployments running XenApp and XenDesktop 7.6 LTSR and 7.11.
  • XenApp and XenDesktop deployments running on the following cloud providers and hypervisors:
    • Amazon Web Services (AWS)
    • Microsoft Azure Resource Manager
    • Citrix XenServer 6.2, 6.5, and 7.0
    • VMware vSphere 5.1, 5.5, and 6.0
  • Machine catalogs that use Machine Creation Services (MCS).

Also, at this stage, Smart Check is not supported for deployments using the XenApp and XenDesktop Service in Citrix Cloud.

 

I hope this has proven useful into the updates made to the newly named Smart Tools service via Citrix Cloud and I’ll be sure to keep you updated on any big news in the Citrix Cloud/Smart Tools front.

Also, keep an eye out for planned Citrix Cloud: XenApp & XenDesktop Service series which I hope will include video walk-throughs.

 

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