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Measuring Citrix bandwidth usage

Joe_Budden asked

We are currently running Citrix servers in a Windows 2003 PS4.0 farm. All servers and clients are in one site.

Our clients access the applications via PNA.

We will shortly be integrating a new site into our network, and want to ensure the bandwidth of the line would be enough to handle Citrix traffic.

i) Is anyone aware of how I can do this either via Citrix itself or the Windows 2003 servers? I'm not a network person so not sure how I can do this on the routers/switches.

ii) When the new site comes on, is there anyway to limit the bandwidth available to ICA sessions?

iii) Let's say I run some sort of trace and see that one sessions takes up x kps of bandwidth. Does this mean that 100 sessions would take up 100x, or does Citrix not work like this?

Any help appreciated.

Watch Question

There are a few methods for measuring the bandwith used by a Citrix session(s).
To limit session bandwidth either use QoS on your WAN links or if that's not an option you can set a policy within Citrix to restrict overall session bandwidth.
As for the measure one user an times by number of users, yes this is the way to estimate bandwidth. Although this will vary if your users have different requirements, for example a user who streams video will use much more bandwidth than one who is just using email and word.
You just have to measure the usage of a few users who represent  the type of users you have and extrapolate from there
Also, this document from Citrix has good info on session bandwidth http://support.citrix.com/servlet/KbServlet/download/616-102-8139/ICA_Client_Bandwidth_Analysis.pdf  
FYI, things like scanning can spike your bandwidth upstream (from the clients) and printing can spike your bandwidth downstream.  You may need to throttle individual activities if you see this causing interruptions in service.  Active users will require much more bandwidth than those sitting on static screens and not interacting with the system much.  

It may help to disable any features that take bandwidth that you won't be using (COM port redirection, audio, etc).  Also, setting the lowest screen size and color depth your applications use might help (our apps are only using a 16-bit pallate so I cap my sessions there).  


Thanks guys.

Just one more question; if we were to use our network devices to measure the traffic, what sort of traffic are we looking for? ICA only, or is there more involved?
ICA traffic will be the bulk of the traffic and will give you a good idea, although the following list shows all default ports used by Citrix (from (http://www.lubby.org/stable/index.php?page=Databases.result&ArticleID=106)

80 http (Standard Port for Web and Citrix XML-Service)
135 DCOM (AMC)
443 https (Standard Port for SSL connections via CSG)
515 Print (Standard Port for Windows Printing)
1433 IMA DB (IMA Communication to IMA Database)
1494 ICA (Standard Port for ICA connections)
1604 ICA Browser (UDP, obsolete)
2512 IMA (Independent Management Architecture)
2513 IMA (CMC)
2598 CGP (Session Reliability)
3389 RDP (MS Terminal Server connections)
8082 LMC (Communication to License Management Console)
27000 Licensing (Communication Server to License Server)


AMC - (Citrix) Advanced Management Console - Microsoft MMC based Citrix Console, first introduced witch CPS 3.0
CGP - Common Gateway Protocol - Wrapper for encapsulated ICA traffic, needed for "Session Reliability"
CMC - Citrix Management Consol - Java based Management Consol for Citrix Metaframe- and Presentation Servers
CSG - Citrix Secure Gateway
CPS - Citrix Presentation Server - formerly known as Citrix MetaFrame Server
DB - Database
DCOM - Distributed Component Object Model - network aware interprocess communication and dynamic object creation in Windows
http - hyper text transfer protocol - used for Web (www) communication, see w3c.org
https - hyper text transfer protocol secure - used for secure Web (www) communication, see w3c.org
ICA - Independent Computing Architecture - Citrix core protocol for (Thin-) Client / Server communication
IMA - Independent Management Architecture - Citrix underlying architecture for configuration, monitoring and operating CPS
IP - Internet protocol
LMC - License Management Console
RDP - Remote Desktop Protocol - T.share / T.120 based Microsoft core protocol, analogue ICA
TCP - Transmission Control Protocol - connection oriented networkprotocol of the IP - family
UDP - User Datagram Protocol - minimal, connectionless networkprotocol as part of Internetprotocol in contrast to "tcp"
XML - Extended Markup Language - see w3c.org