UK Citrix User Group Spring 2019 meeting

Eventbrite - UK Citrix User Group Spring 2019 Meeting


Wednesday 20th March 2019
09.30am to 5.30pm (followed by drinks reception until 7pm)


Renaissance Manchester City Centre Hotel
Blackfriars Street
M3 2EQ


Manchester Piccadilly4.8km
Manchester Victoria station 1.6km
Market Street Tram 1km


Venue hotel ~£130 per night
Premier Inn ~£60 per night (3 min walk)
Travelodge ~£50 per night (2 min walk)


We’re putting the finishing touches to the agenda. Check back soon for details!

Join online

If you can’t make it to London, we try and broadcast our meetings online via GotoWebinar. You will need to register here. We can’t guarantee great audio or visuals, as they a dependent on A/V facilities in the venue and reliable internet connections but we’ll do our best. We’ll monitor the questions feed so you can ask presenters questions during each session. The best experience will also be from being in the room.

Submit your session idea

Have a good topic, project or case study you’d think would be of interest to others? Submit your session idea for consideration for a future meeting


Our meeting are free to attend thank you to our generous sponsors. You’ll be able to speak to most of them in the exhibitor lounge at the meeting.

Eventbrite - UK Citrix User Group Spring 2019 Meeting

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UK Citrix User Group XX: Birmingham so much more to offer than a Motorcycle Museum

Covering topics on Netscaler, Multi-factor Authentication, Windows Profiles, Citrix layering and XenApp Essentials, this was our 20th event, and our first in Birmingham. Thanks to our excellent sponsors Liquidware Labs, Lakeside SoftwareFS Logix, Unicon Software, AppEsnure, Ivanti, Bitdefender, eg Innovations, ControlUp, 10Zig, Atrust, Cloudhouse and Igel this was, for the big 2 zero, a free-to-attend meeting.


The UK Steering Group would like to thank all the presenters for their time, effort and engaging presentations: especially for those presenters presenting for the first time at our user group. Thanks to the 3D-realtime-non-augmented-VR attendees for providing insightful feedback and great questions – possibly one of the most vocal and interactive we’ve had to date. It is always splendid to meet and greet new faces and there were a lot more for our first visit to Birmingham: and see, we do read the feedback forms with suggestions for venues.  Thanks also to those attending on-line via Go-to-Webinar. For those of you keen to know how the fancy gold microphone is getting on, it is doing just fine thanks.

post event drinks.. soft drinks for those driving – obviously

Who attends UK Citrix User Group events? For XX we had almost 100 registered and we had a good turnout on the day. While we had an international lineup in-keeping with the location’s airport, we did manage at least some people actually from Birmingham (thanks guys). That said, we appreciate the feedback that many found the venue location handier than London, we’ll bear that in mind for the future.

Again, thanks to our sponsors for this free-to-attend event. Significantly, fsLogix for the lovely lunch which had some great pie, and Unicon Software for refreshment and appreciated cookies and Lakeside Software for the post-event drinks and nibbles.

We covered…

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Migration, Migration, Migration….

To Migrate, or not to migrate, that is the question?

Will desktop migration ever end?  It wasn’t that long ago that we were all hurtling headlong towards April 8, 2014, the date when Microsoft ended the extended support of the Windows XP operating system.

Some of us made it in time, while others didn’t, and the rest just took the decision to carry on anyway and accepted the risks involved. There were even a few that decided to pay out the extortionate amounts of money required for Microsoft to continue supporting them until they had completed their migration.

Move the clock forward to today; here you are now having successfully completed your migration, and for those that moved to Windows 7, or were deploying new machines that came pre-built, you are happily running on Windows 7 with an end of extended support date until January 14, 2020, which is way off into the future. Migration is probably one of the last things on your project list, right? Well maybe not if you are looking to deploy the latest Intel-based client devices.

desktop OS share Nov2016In August 2016 Intel announced the latest ‘Kaby Lake’ processors, with the mobile versions first shipping in Q3 2016, followed by desktops and workstations due to ship in Q1 2017. So, all good so far, new, faster CPU’s, faster clock speeds, and improved graphics architecture/performance. What’s not to like?

I hate to be the one to spoil the party, but I’ve got some bad news for you. Microsoft are only planning on supporting Windows 10 on the Kaby Lake platform, which means for those of you still running Windows 7, which, by the way, is just over 40% of the market if you take a look at the figures on the graph. If you are wanting to deploy Kaby Lake-based hardware in your current Windows 7 environment, then you could end up finding yourself being unsupported yet again.

So, what are your options?

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UK Citrix User Group XIX Review: Civilised Engineering

Citrix UK User Group logo

Thanks to our excellent sponsors (AppEnsureExtraHopLiquidware LabsNutanix, Uniprint, AppSenseAtlantis Computing, eg Innovations  FS Logix and UniDesk) this was, yet again, a free-to-attend meeting.


The Steering Group would like to thank all the presenters for their time, effort and engaging presentations: especially for those presenting for the first time at the user group. Thanks to the 3D-realtime-non-augmented-VR attendees for providing insightful feedback and great questions. It is always splendid to meet and greet new faces. We had more chairs this time with your own special little desk: see, we do read the feedback forms.  Thanks also to those attending on-line via Go-to-Webinar. We a couple of niggles early doors, but also a fancy new microphone that just about survived the event unbroken, hopefully that helped.


Who attends UK Citrix User Group events? For XVIX over 110 registered and we had about 70% turn up on the day – with a number of on-the-door registrations (which is always possible btw). It is mainly end users of attendees on the day but, you know here in the UK, we enjoy inclusivity. Of those attending  :-

  • 70% end users/partners – we did see lots of new faces (looked to be about a third). Thanks to the experienced hands who made the trek down/across/up and for the select group who caught a cheeky mid-session pint, but still came back.
  • 10% from Citrix. As always, good to see you – especially during the Interesting Licensing and Value Questions that came up in the Round Table. A user group needs the support and focus from the vendor to be successful and we appreciate your contribution. All being well we could well have a special event in 2017, focused on meeting with the engineering teams directly. I’ve likely already said to much… LOOK..! Over there! Its a squirrel!
  • 1% came from Sponsors
  • The rest put “other” for those of you who like completeness.

Again, thanks to our sponsors for this free-to-attend event, especially Liquidware for the lovely lunch which had some great pie, and Appensure for refreshment and Extrahop for the post-event drinks and eats.

We covered…

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Death, Taxes and The Evolution of the Enterprise Desktop – are you prepared?

In life we all know a few things are for certain — besides the obvious “death and taxes” — another certainty is that there will also ALWAYS be change.

This maxim can especially be applied to the IT industry and certainly about the desktop/workspace/user/BYOD/DAAS/VDI/SAAS landscape we are seeing morph before our eyes. All of these options certainly raise plenty of questions to an organization trying to figure out what their go-forward desktop strategy should look like.

  • “How do I get started?”
  • “What are the best options for me now and in the long-term?”
  • “How do I keep from making expensive mistakes?”
  • “Am I actually PREPARED to act on my decisions when I want to or more importantly when I NEED to?”

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Welcome to the new UK Citrix User Group!


Citrix UK User Group logo

Welcome to the new-look UK Citrix User group!

Introducing the UK Citrix User Group

A few dedicated Citrix engineers and consultants decided the UK had gone without a proper Citrix user group for long enough. So over a beer, a plan was hatched and the results of which you are now reading. It’s still early days, but it’s a start and we look forward to growing the group to become an established part of the Citrix community in the UK over the next few years.


We don’t want the group to become a London-only user group, and plan to hold meetings around the country. We welcome suggestions on suitable venues and you can post your own suggestions in the various regional group forums.


Membership is currently free, although we are investigating the option of having a tiered membership system where a paid membership gives you a number of additional benefits such as discounts on Citrix courses and exams, and access to the Citrix Community Lab infrastructure.

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Citrix User Group XXVII review

To use the terminology of our CUGC colleagues from the left of “the pond”, this was the UK User Group’s 27th “XL” event (which means we, as always, dedicate a full day to our community sharing, and not just an afternoon like the Americans and Irish do). All jocularity aside, it’s a big effort to be able to consistently provide an entire day of presenters for the dedicated Citrix users, admins, consultants and architects out there – something which was stretched to the limit for this particular event, but which was once again managed successfully.

The venue was Societe Generale’s offices in the heart of Tower Hill (and fantastically close to the Tube station, meaning that I didn’t even have to invoke Google Maps to find the venue, for once in my life). Equipped with an excellent view and excellent staff (particularly the very friendly man who supplied Neil with batteries), it was a fitting surround for our final event of 2018.

Having finally been given a day off back in September, Neil was understandably forced straight back into presenting the news section, although this doesn’t excuse his failure to correctly insert the microphone 😉 Coming prior to Citrix Summit, there isn’t often a huge amount of news kicking about for the winter event, although the acquisition of Sapho was perhaps a signal of intent as to the future strategic direction of the company. There was of course the release of 1811 to be covered, along with any new features, and the deprecations – and also, bizarrely enough, the un-deprecation of Browser Content Redirection for IE11 (which I’m pretty sure isn’t even a word).

If you missed any of the content Neil covered, you can download his (now cat-free) news slides here.

It was our hosts from Societe Generale who kicked off the main part of the day, an engaging presentation from Paul Yates about their XenApp migration. Interestingly, there was also a debate within this (which is close to my heart) about the problems of Internet browsing and advertisements, which just goes to show that the tried-and-tested techniques of Citrix User Groups gone by are still bringing value to the community today. It’s always good to see people from the community bringing stories of their experiences to these events, and we can only encourage it more – Bring Your Own Session (BYOS) is something we’d love to see ramping up in 2019. More please!

If you want to download Paul’s session slides, they are available here.

Next up we had (maybe for the last time?) the inimitable Nigel Woods with his sidekick Steve Whitfield, talking about FSLogix and where they stand now they’d they’ve been absorbed into the behemoth that is Microsoft. Microsoft’s market positioning was something of a theme for the day, but Nigel and Steve gave an honest and frank assessment of where the acquisition leaves them, their partners and their customers. It was also a chance to reflect on how much FSLogix have achieved over the last few years, and hopefully we haven’t seen the last of them around Citrix user group events!

Of course, we couldn’t have an FSLogix presentation without some mention of UKCUGC’s own Jim Moyle, who rather than being present was away on his yearly “Rambo Retreat” battling injustice in the Far East – or more likely just drinking beer.

Nigel and Steve’s slides are available here.

Next up was my good self, James Rankin (all alone this time, despite the promises on the agenda), with a not-deliberately-controversial-at-all-title to my presentation “Windows Virtual Desktop – is this the end of Citrix?” All click-baityness aside, the advent of Windows Virtual Desktop is a significant change in direction from Microsoft and one which certainly cuts across some of Citrix’s core markets. We are expecting announcements further around this at Summit as Citrix reposition themselves around this, and obviously the WVD service will develop as it is revealed through 2019, but in true consultant style, I managed to answer the question posed by own presentation with an emphatic “it depends”. And I also, it must be noted, managed to get through an hour’s presenting with only three uses of sweary language – a new record.

The slides from James’ session are available to download here.

After this we handed across to rapidly-becoming-a-regular festively-attired PowerShell guru Guy Leech for a session where he talked for the most part about dumps. The content of dumps, when to take dumps, what his dumps look like, what dumps are good for, how to make yourself take a dump – this content just writes itself. Guy’s deep technical sessions are always good for the hardcore amongst us and this one didn’t disappoint. And neither did his shirt.

The content of Guy’s dumps are available for the curious here.

After a (very nice) lunch we resumed with another deep technical session, this time a community presentation from Priya Saxena of Cloudhouse discussing the intricacies of MSIX. Priya gave us a great rundown of the internals of MSIX application packaging and the fun you can have with PSF, and the depth of technical detail was very impressive. All the more impressive given that she spent a chunk of time sidestepping late arrivals back from lunch (you know who you are) and still managed to wrap it all up a full ten minutes ahead of schedule 🙂

Priya’s session is also available for download here.

Now, prior to the event the agenda had to be quickly re-jigged due to Steve Atkinson falling ill, and much kudos is due to CTA Ronnie Hamilton offering to fly in from Dublin at short notice to fill in. What’s also worth mentioning is that he was also out on a Christmas party the night previously, so there was always the chance that fate might conspire to keep him away from the airport the next morning. But no – despite looking slightly under the weather he not only arrived on time but also made a fantastic effort to deliver his session even more quickly than Priya did. His presentation was about his favourite subject (Nutanix) on Citrix Cloud and even an unfortunate collision with the microphone couldn’t stop him from delivering it, well done to Ronnie!

If you’d like to go through Ronnie’s slides at non-warp speed (and yes the irony of James “speaks faster than Andy Morgan” Rankin making jokes at rapid-pace presenters is not lost on me), you can get them here.

Given that we were running ahead of schedule (and we had to have a plan C in case Ronnie’s plane crashed), we also need to give kudos to Dave Holborn from the UKCUGC steering group for coming up with a quick presentation at short notice and delivering it, which brought us nicely back onto time. Dave has spent a long time dealing with issues around Office365, Azure AD and Citrix Cloud and was more than happy to complain about them some more in the interests of community discussion. Again, great show for being willing to present at such short notice!

After the afternoon break we then had another community session from familiar face Andy Cooke, who gave us a presentation on Security Risks That Citrix Admins Aren’t Aware Of. As usual for Andy’s sessions it was pretty much an open discussion, and there were some frank conversations had around the security arena, and particularly about the age-old battle of security versus usability. There were also some salient points made around how we use application management technologies, and whether we should still adapt them as a security mitigation.

Andy’s slides are available to download here.

Andy’s session more or less merged into the round table session, with the security discussion feeding this very adequately. As usual, there was a lot of frank and forthright discussion, even in the absence of usual #1 Round Table Contributor Jim Moyle.

And that was that – naturally we followed on with plenty of industry and non-industry conversations in the networking drinks and food afterwards, but all in all a good community day with a broad range of subjects covered off for the attendees. Also, the raffle we hosted managed to (in the end) raise a total of £400, so thanks to everyone for participating.

So 2018 has managed to be a good year for the UK CUGC again, but it’s not something we can do without our sponsors, so a shout out to all of those again, particularly LiquidWare who have occupied the Diamond sponsor slot. The great bunch of sponsors that we have are the only people who keep the UK CUGC events free to attend, and hopefully we can continue this into 2019 and still maintain the great level of presenters that we’ve done in 2018.

And like I was saying in the bar afterwards – let’s try and get more sessions from the attendees next year. I have personally presented at each meeting this year and although I enjoy doing so, there’s always a need for new, fresh voices to shake things up. So even if it’s for just ten minutes- there’s no need to tie yourself down to a long slot – bring your experiences and ideas to the table. You can even bring problems – present issues that you have and put them out there to the community experts in the room. As long as it ties in to Citrix, no subject is off the menu.

So here’s wishing you a happy Christmas and New Year, and hope to see you back at events again in 2019!