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Citrix XenApp 6.5 Datastore

Posted on 2011-10-12
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We are in the process of having a company upgrade our current Citrix XenApp farm from 4.5 to 6.5.  The old 4.5 farm utilized a SQL 2000 box that has since been virtualized.  We are implementing a physical SQL 2008 R2 Standard box to host a couple of other databases and it was my intention to host the new Citrix datastore on this box as well until I received the following from the consulting company doing the XenApp upgrade...

The Citrix datastore server is not just the database but a Citrix server (including RDS) that also happens to host SQL Server Express for the database.  This server is also the license server for both Citrix and RDS.  It is the primary server of the farm.

Before determining that you want to move that you need to confirm that the other applications you want to run will also play well with Citrix and vice versa.  In general though, Citrix likes to be its own thing because of all it runs.  Trying to run Citrix on a server that is tweaked to be a SQL Server likely won’t work well.  The functions would get in each other’s way.

I am not a Citrix engineer and would be interested in your thoughts as to the validity of the consultant's statement.

It would not be my intention to make the new SQL server a part of the farm but would instead host the database(s) for application(s) that would be on server(s) in the farm.

Your comments and opinions are much appreciated....
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Question by:Indy_Admin
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Expert Comment

by:Carl Webster
ID: 36959286
Citrix does not recommend that SQL Server be installed on a XenApp Server.

Citrix does not recommend that XenApp be installed on a SQL Server.

http://support.citrix.com/proddocs/topic/xenapp65-planning/ps-planning-datastore-intro-v2.html

"Do not install XenApp on the SQL Server or Oracle database server."
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Assisted Solution

by:KrAzY
KrAzY earned 400 total points
ID: 36960331
In an Evaluation/Proof of Concept, you can use the default install of XenApp that installs SQL Express, the License Server, and Web Interface on a single server.

But as CalWebster points out, that is not recommended for a production environment.  It also depends on how big your environment is, the specs of your VMs/Servers, and stability/high availability.

For example if that was all on one server and one of the components or the applications your publishing caused server instability or a BSOD, that wouldn't be good.

In large enterprise deployments you typically run the WI's, Datastore, and License Server on separate servers.  You can even go as far as running your ZDC's and XML's on separate servers.
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Author Comment

by:Indy_Admin
ID: 36964060
Perhaps my ignorance of how Citrix works is getting in my way.

Regarding the Citrix datastore... Is that data being managed on a SQL server?  If it is, then does that need to be the SQL Express listed in KrAzY's post and should that be a seperate server?

My current environment/farm is:

XenApp 6.5 Server 1 (Hyper-V VM) Hosts all Citrix Applications (Office, Acrobat, etc.)
XenApp 6.5 Server 2 (Hyper-V VM) Hosts all Citrix Applications (Office, Acrobat, etc.)
XenApp database (Hyper-V VM) Hosting SQL Express (Datastore), WI's, and maybe the license server???.

I also have a seperate physical SQL 2k8 server.  My thought was to put the datastore on the physical SQL.  It is NOT my intention to install XenApp on the SQL server...

Thoughts??
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LVL 37

Expert Comment

by:Carl Webster
ID: 36964078
The data store can either be on SQL Server Express that runs on the XenApp 6.5 server or it can be on a separate full blown SQL Server.

Create a blank database on the SQL 2008 Server and during the configuration of XenApp 6.5 when you create your new farm, select the option to use a SQL Database.
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Author Comment

by:Indy_Admin
ID: 36964122
Which scenario would provide better performance assuming the SQL server is enterprise class and can handle the load?
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Accepted Solution

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Carl Webster earned 1600 total points
ID: 36964200
Always SQL Server.
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Expert Comment

by:Carl Webster
ID: 36964218
Should have added that SQL Server Express is limited to one CPU (or vCPU) and the RAM it can use.  SQL Server has no such limits.
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