WEM 2012 UPDATE AVAILABLE

Intro

What a year 2020 has been. Despite all the ups and downs, Citrix continues to push out updates. They have released the last version of WEM for 2020, version 2012. You can download the new version here (requires Platinum/Premium licenses and login to Citrix.com). I’ve provided the release notes below.

What’s new in 2012

Workspace Environment Management 2012 includes the following new features. For information about bug fixes, see Fixed issues.

WEM agent integration with the Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops product software

The WEM agent is integrated with the Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops product software, letting you include the WEM agent when installing a Virtual Delivery Agent (VDA). This integration is reflected in the Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops 2012 product software and later. For more information, see Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops 7 2012.

If you enable the Citrix Workspace Environment Management check box on the Additional Components page, the WEM Agent page appears. That page is titled Citrix Cloud Connectors used by WEM Agent. Enter a comma-separated list of Cloud Connector FQDNs or IP addresses. Then click Add. The WEM agent on the VDA communicates with those Cloud Connectors.

Optimized WEM agent startup

Previously, the WEM agent startup workflow had the following issues:

  • The agent did not refresh the Citrix Cloud Connector settings after startup. As a result, the Cloud Connector settings deployed to the agent through group policies did not work as expected.
  • In a non-persistent environment, when the agent cache file resided in the base image, the agent could experience cache synchronization issues. As a result, WEM settings might not be applied properly.

Starting with this release, the agent refreshes Cloud Connector settings after startup, just like it refreshes other settings. To ensure that the agent cache is up to date, the agent automatically recreates the cache in non-persistent environments. For more information, see Agent startup behaviors.

For information about how to make the WEM agent work optimally, see Prerequisites and recommendations.

New agent cache utility options

This release adds the following agent cache utility options:

  • -RefreshSettings or -S: Refreshes agent host settings.
  • -Reinitialize or -I: Reinitializes the agent cache when used together with the -RefreshCache option.

For more information, see Agent cache utility options.

Citrix optimizer

Citrix optimizer now provides you with an additional option that enables WEM to automatically select templates for your OSs:

  • Automatically Select Templates to Use. If you are unsure which template to use, use this option to let WEM select the best match for each OS. You can also apply this option to custom templates with different name formats by using the Enable Automatic Selection of Templates Starting with Prefixes option.

For more information, see Citrix optimizer.

Support for the Windows 10 2004 template

WEM adds support for the Windows 10 2004 template introduced in Citrix optimizer. You can now use WEM to perform template-based system optimizations for Windows 10 2004 machines. For information about using Citrix optimizer, see Citrix optimizer.

Support for editing Group Policy settings

Previously, you could change only the name and description for a GPO after importing your GPO settings. You can now edit registry operations associated with a GPO. You can also add new registry operations to a GPO if needed. Currently, WEM supports adding and editing only Group Policy settings that are associated with the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE and the HKEY_CURRENT_USER registry hives.

When editing Group Policy settings, you have the following actions: Set valueDelete valueCreate keyDelete key, and Delete all values. For more information, see Edit Group Policy settings.

Multiple selection support for action groups

Previously, when adding actions to an action group, you moved each action present in the Available pane to the Configured pane one by one. You can now move multiple actions in a single step. For more information about action groups, see Action Groups.

WEM agent (advanced notice)

Microsoft Sync Framework 2.1 will reach End of Life on January 12, 2021. WEM will retire the associated legacy agent cache sync service and switch to using the latest agent cache sync service to keep the agent cache in sync with the infrastructure services. The latest agent cache sync service relies on Dotmim.Sync, an open-source sync framework. How does this change impact you?

  • If you use Workspace Environment Management 1912 or later, this change does not require action on your part.
  • If you use Workspace Environment Management 1909 or earlier, upgrade to Workspace Environment Management 1912 or later.

This change is scheduled to be rolled out in March 2021.

Known issues

  • After you upgrade the WEM agent to version 1912, the memory consumption of Citrix WEM Agent Host Service might exceed 2G. If debug mode is enabled, you can see that the following messages appear many times in the Citrix WEM Agent Host Service Debug.log file:
    • Adding history entry to the DB writer queue
    • Initializing process limitation thread for process [WEM-9432, CVADHELP-15147]
  • After you upgrade the WEM agent to version 2005, Citrix WEM Agent Host Service might consume between 10% and 30% of the total CPU resources, affecting the user experience. [WEM-9902, WEMHELP-47]
  • The WEM administration console might fail to display the changes you made to the working directory for an installed application the next time you edit the application. [WEM-10007, CVADHELP-15695]
  • When using the application security feature, you see a green checkmark next to a user or user group in the Assigned column of the Assignments section in the Edit Rule or Add Rule window. The green checkmark icon does not necessarily indicate that the rule is assigned to that user or user group. Only a user or user group that has a blue highlight in the background is the one to which the rule is assigned. [WEM-10047]
  • In non-persistent environments, changes you make through the administration console might fail to take effect on the agent hosts. The issue occurs because the agent cache file in the base image might cause cache synchronization problems. As a workaround, users need to first delete the cache on their agent hosts and then refresh the cache manually to synchronize the cache with the infrastructure services.

The recommended best practice is to use a persistent location for the agent cache. If the agent cache resides in a non-persistent location, take these steps before sealing the base image:

  1. Stop Citrix WEM Agent Host Service.
  2. Delete these agent local database files: LocalAgentCache.db and LocalAgentDatabase.db. [WEM-10082]
  • The following options are not mutually exclusive. However, the administration console does not allow you to configure them at the same time.
    • Hide Specified Drives from Explorer and Restrict Specified Drives from Explorer (on the Policies and Profiles > Environmental Settings > Windows Explorer tab) [WEM-10172, WEMHELP-52]

Deprecation

Click here to see deprecated features.

Thanks for reading,
Alain

WEM 2009 UPDATE AVAILABLE

Intro

Fall is the season and the Citrix Developers didn’t make like a tree and leave. Citrix has released the next version of WEM,version is 2009. You can download the new version here (requires Platinum/Premium licenses and login to Citrix.com). I’ve provided the release notes below.

What’s new in 2009

Workspace Environment Management 2009 includes the following new features. For information about bug fixes, see Fixed issues.

Support for the Windows 10 1909 template

WEM adds support for the Windows 10 1909 template introduced in Citrix optimizer. You can now use WEM to perform template-based system optimizations for Windows 10 1909 machines. For information about using Citrix optimizer, see Citrix optimizer.

Profile Management

Workspace Environment Management now supports all versions of Profile Management through 2009. The following new options are now available on the Administration Console > Policies and Profiles > Citrix Profile Management Settings > Profile Container Settings tab:

  • Enable Folder Exclusions for Profile Container (option for excluding the listed folders from the profile container)
  • Enable Folder Inclusions for Profile Container (option for keeping the listed folders in the profile container when their parent folders are excluded)

For more information, see Profile Container Settings.

Administration console

The administration console user interface has changed:

  • In Administration Console > Policies and Profiles > Citrix Profile Management Settings, there is a new Profile Container Settings tab for you to configure Profile Management profile container settings.
  • The Enable Profile Container option now moves to the Profile Container Settings tab. Previously, the option was present on the Synchronization tab.

Depreciated Features

Click here to see depreciated features.

Thanks for reading,
Alain

WEM 1909 UPDATE AVAILABLE

Intro

With every changing season, Citrix releases another version of WEM. This version is 1909. You can download the new version here (requires Platinum licenses and login to Citrix.com). I’ve provided the release notes below.

What’s new in Workspace Environment Management 1909

Workspace Environment Management agent installer

This release provides a new, unified Workspace Environment Management (WEM) agent installer. The installer bundles the WEM on-premises and service agents into a single executable. It eliminates the need to configure the ADMX templates and to edit group policies. You can choose to install the agent interactively or use the command line. For more information, see Agent.

The new WEM agent installer also introduces name and installation path changes. The changes include:

ISWasWhat
Citrix WEM Agent Host ServiceNorskale Agent Host Service Display name of the WEM agent service (WemAgentSvc) that appears in Windows Services.
WEM Agent Service Norskale Agent ServiceLog name that appears in the Windows Event Log.
Citrix.Wem.Agent.Service.exeNorskale Agent Host Service.exeFile name that appears in the agent installation folder.
%ProgramFiles%\Citrix\Workspace Environment Management Agent%ProgramFiles%\Norskale\Norskale Agent HostDefault agent installation path. This change applies only to the default installation path when you perform fresh installation. In case of in-place upgrades, the installation path remains unchanged.

Agent switch

This release introduces the agent switch functionality that lets you switch from the on-premises agent to the service agent. The functionality can be useful in migration use cases where you want to migrate your existing on-premises deployment to the WEM service. It simplifies and expedites the migration process. For more information, see Agent switch.

Infrastructure service

This release includes the following enhancements to the infrastructure service to improve the user experience:

  • The Active Directory (AD) subsystem has been redesigned to improve performance. It can now dynamically blacklist detected dead forests. Dead forests remain in the blacklist unless they are no longer dead two hours later. The infrastructure service does not search for AD objects in forests that are in the blacklist. As a result, some OUs in the blacklisted forests might be missing in the Organizational Units window when you click Add OU from the administration console.
  • The infrastructure service can now cache data related to the configuration set for the agents. As a result, the infrastructure service retrieves data from AD less frequently. This also reduces the time it takes for the agents to retrieve the information from the infrastructure service. Time reduction is particularly noticeable when there are many connected agents.

Infrastructure service configuration

This release introduces the “Enable performance tuning” option on the Advanced Settings tab of the WEM Infrastructure Service Configuration utility. You can now optimize the performance in scenarios where the number of connected agents exceeds a certain threshold (by default, 200). As a result, it takes shorter time for the agent or the administration console to connect to the infrastructure service. This feature is especially useful when the agent or the administration console intermittently disconnects from the infrastructure service. In this scenario, you can set the minimum number of worker threads and asynchronous I/O threads to a greater value. For more information, see Configure the infrastructure service.

Profile Management

Workspace Environment Management now supports all versions of Profile Management through 1909. The following new options are now available on the tabs in the Administration Console > Policies and Profiles > Citrix Profile Management Settings pane:

  • Migrate user store. Available on the Main Citrix Profile Management Settings tab, this option lets you migrate your user store without losing any data.
  • Automatic migration of existing application profiles. Available on the Profile Handling tab, this option lets you automatically migrate existing application profiles.
  • Outlook search index database – backup and restore. Available on the Advanced Settings tab, this option ensures the stability of the Enable search index roaming for Outlook feature.

For more information, see Citrix Profile Management Settings.

Administration console

The user interface of the administration console has changed:

  • An Agent Switch tab is provided in the Advanced Settings > Configuration pane. The tab lets you switch from the on-premises agent to the service agent. For more information, see Agent switch.
  • An “Auto Prevent CPU Spikes” option is provided on the System Optimization > CPU Management > CPU Management Settings tab. You can use this option to automatically reduce the CPU priority of processes that overload your CPU. For more information, see CPU Management.

Support for migrating Group Policy Objects (GPOs)

Starting with this release, you can migrate a zip backup of your GPOs to Workspace Environment Management (WEM) service. To do so, click Migrate in the ribbon of the WEM administration console. The Migrate wizard provides the flexibility to migrate your GPOs. You can select Overwrite mode or Convert mode for your migration. The Overwrite mode overwrites existing WEM settings (GPOs) when there are conflicts. The Convert mode converts your GPOs to XML files. Then you can manually import the XML files to WEM using the Restore wizard. Doing so gives you granular control over settings to be imported. For more information, see Ribbon.

Support for exporting and importing Active Directory (AD) objects

As of this release, Workspace Environment Management service adds support for exporting and importing AD objects using the administration console. To export AD objects, use the Backup wizard, where the Active Directory (AD) objects option is provided on the Select what to back up page. To import AD objects, use the Restore wizard, where the Active Directory (AD) objects option is provided on the Select what to restore page. You can specify which type of AD objects to back up and restore. For more information, see Ribbon.

Fixed Issues

  • Attempts to connect to the WEM administration console might take a long time to complete. The issue occurs when domains to which Active Directory objects (for example, groups and OUs) belong are no longer available. [WEM-3103, LD0725]
  • When you enable the process launcher on the Administration Console > Transformer Settings > Advanced > Process Launcher tab to launch a Windows built-in application (for example, calc.exe) as entered in the process command line field, the agent host might keep opening the application after you refresh Citrix WEM Agent. [WEM-3262]
  • You might experience the following two issues:
    • Attempts to connect to the WEM administration console might take a few minutes to complete.
    • It takes a long time to load WEM configurations on agent hosts. The issue occurs when you have a large Active Directory deployment and there are many connected agents. [WEM-4225]
  • Attempts to map a network drive to users might fail if the assigned drive letter is already in use by an existing network drive. The issue occurs when the existing network drive failed to connect as indicated by a red “X” on the network drive icon. [WEM-4495, LD1552]
  • The agent splash screen can persist for a long time when there is a large amount of data associated with user statistics. [WEM-4674, LD1167]
  • The Workspace Environment Management administration console might unexpectedly exit if you edit the application security rules. The issue occurs when there is a long list of users and user groups present in the Edit Rule window and you scroll down to view them. [WEM-4960, LD1818]
  • You might find that there are two Citrix Components nodes in the left pane of the Group Policy Management Console. [WEM-5012]
  • When you log on to a Workspace Environment Management agent machine, the logon process might take longer to complete. The issue occurs because the Workspace Environment Management agent logon service (Citrix.Wem.Agent.LogonService.exe) delays the logon process for several seconds even though the Endpoint Management group policy processing is disabled. [WEM-5237]

Known Issues

Workspace Environment Management contains the following issues:

  • When you use a configuration object with Workspace Environment Management PowerShell modules SDK cmdlets, all parameters must be specified. If they are not, the command fails with an InvalidOperation error. [WEM-691, WEM-693]
  • In PowerShell, when you use the help command with the -ShowWindow switch to display help in a floating window for a Workspace Environment Management PowerShell cmdlet, the Examples section of the help is unpopulated. To see the examples, use the get-help command with the -examples-detailed, or -full switch instead. [WEM-694]
  • In Transformer (kiosk) mode, and with Log Off Screen Redirection enabled, WEM might fail to redirect the user to the logon page after logging off. [WEM-3133]
  • Registry entries might not take effect if you assign them to a user or user group through an action group. However, they do take effect if you assign them directly. The issue occurs when you assign registry entries to be created in one of the following locations:
    • %ComputerName%\HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Policies
    • %ComputerName%\HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies [WEM-5253]

Depreciated Features

Click here to see depreciated features.

Thanks for reading,
Alain