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May 4, 2010

Homedrive fails silently to mount at logon (Vista/Windows 7)

After the update to Vista/Windows 7, mapping of the UserHome drive fails silently at logon. All other drive mappings made by a logon script are successful. This happens always if the UserHome is mapped through the AD user-object. UserHome mapping configured by GPO is not affected. There are no error messages logged and it is hard to find a reason for this behavior 🙁

Disabling UAC helps, but should not be the final solution, since it opens up many security holes.

Not really a Citrix problem but annoying if you happen to stumble upon it. Since it took me some time to find a solution, i thought it might be a good idea to post it here.

The following registry key allows again for a successful UserHome mapping:

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System]
“EnableLinkedConnections”=dword:00000001

The original solution has been posted here.

Regards
Ecki

October 21, 2008

Smart Card Single Sign On with PNAgent

All available documentation regarding “Single Sign On” or “Credential pass-through” with Smart Card and Citrix clients is limited to the Program Neighborhood client only, as can be seen exemplarily at Brianmadden . I don’t use this client in customer projects for a couple of years now but use the PNAgent or the Web client instead.

With these clients, a pass-through of the Smart Card PIN didn’t work, because they do not read their settings from the APPSRV.INI, which would allow for the neccessary settings.

Since client version 10.0, an Active Directory Group Policy Template can be found in every client installation directory, named “icaclient.adm”. All clients, starting with 10.0 now read the policy settings first and make use of the APPSRV.INI only in case, no policy is defined. This new feature allows now for a “Single Sign On” with SmartCard and PNAgent.

Here is, what you need to do, to get it up and running:

1. On the Presentation Server /XenApp Server

  • Confirm proper operation by logging in to a full desktop on the Citrix server. Insert a Smart Card and it should begin reading it. Enable “Trust requests sent to the XML Service”. This is necessary if using smart card pass through logon.

2. On the Web Interface Server

  • SSL must be configured and active (a web server certificate has to be installed) and the “Directory Service Mapping” has to be activated. This option can be found in the IIS Manager below the properties of the “Web Sites” folder:
  • Web Sites propertiesDirectory Service Mapper

  • The Web Interface site itself must now be configured. Open the Citrix Access Suite Management Console on the Web Interface server and run discovery if necessary to find the Web Interface site you wish to work with.
    Under “Configure Authentication” select “Smart Card with Passthrough”.

3. Registry

  • Check HKLM\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\TerminalServer\WinStations\ICA-tcp the value for “UseDefaultGina” should be 0 (1 disables the CtxGina).

4. Active Directory Policy

  • Import the ADM template into a Policy
  • Go to the “User Configuration” of the policy, leave the Computer part set to “not configured”. The following settings have to be enabled:
  • Citrix Policy

  • <PolicyName>\User Configuration\Administrative Templates\Citrix Components\Presentation Server Client\User Authentication\Smart Card Authentication has to be “Enabled” and “Allow Smart Card Authentication” and “Use pass-through authentication for PIN” have to be activated.
  • Leave everything else to “Not Configured”, provided that you are testing just Smart Card and PIN pass-through.

Now “Single Sign On” with Smart Card and PNAgent should work 😀

Unfortunately these instructions only work for Windows XP and Server 2003. At the moment, no Citrix client, including 11.0, allows for PIN pass-through with Vista and 2008 Server 🙁

Here are some more interesting links:

Regards
Ecki

June 18, 2008

IE kiosk mode

I recently had a customer that wanted Internet Explorer to be published as a locked down version without toolbars and userinterface. The goal was to publish a browser based application to allow for a smart card rollout and not allowing users to browse away from this site. The search for a solution was harder than expected.

The solution most frequently found with Google was the built in “kiosk mode” of Internet Explorer. This mode can be activated by appending the parameter -k to the IE shortcut. For more details see http://support.microsoft.com/kb/154780. In this mode the IE starts in full screen mode, but without the ability to access the navigation panes, toolbars and menus as it would be possible when switching to full screen view by pressing F11. To end such a session, the user is forced to use the Alt. + F4 hotkey and all navigation in IE has to be done through hotkeys too. Not the solution we wanted for standard users 🙁

The next approach were Microsoft Group policies, but they too had too many constraints and issues. One issue here was, that there is no way, to hide the standard toolbars through group policies. It would have been therefore inevitable to manipulate the HKCU branch of the users registry at logon. This is a subject, where the otherwise “overloaded” IE policies are not detailed enough 🙁

The solution came through a VBS object. Internet Explorer can be addresses and controlled through VBS. This gave me the possibility to adjust the user interface of the IE and to hide all toolbars, navigation panes and menues, without disabling basic functionality. The following code starts IE with a predefined URL and makes it much more difficult for users to break out of the predefined environment 🙂

DIM IE
Set IE = CreateObject("InternetExplorer.Application")
IE.Navigate "http://this.is.the.url.to.be.shown"
IE.Visible=True
IE.Toolbar=no
IE.Menubar=no
IE.Statusbar=no
IE.Width=750
IE.Height=600
IE.Resizable=yes
'IE.Top=5
'IE.Left=5

The entry IE.Navigate stands for the target URL. Take care that the whole URL is surrounded by double quotes. Optional parameters are for the windows size (IE.Width/IE.Height) and the windows position on the users desktop (IE.Top/IE.Left).

IE kiosk mode

This script works perfect under Windows XP and 2003 Server. With Vista and 2008 Server administrative privileges are required!

Regards
Ecki

July 17, 2007

LANMANServer and LANMANWorkstation Tuning

I recently stumbled across this realy good article about terminal server tuning. This article introduces and explains all the relevant LANMANServer and LANMANWorkstation parameters and registry keys.

Following that, the article discusses the potential optimizing actions and their risks and provides even an ADM template that allows to tune your environment through GPOs.

The complete article can be found here.

Regards
Ecki

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