How to configure Citrix Zone failover

Posted on 2013-11-05
Last Modified: 2013-11-06
Hi There,

Got a XenApp 6.5 setup as follows:

1 Farm
Two Zones both joined to the one farm
Each Zone has 20 servers in them
One zone is the production side
Other zone is located elsewhere and will be the DR site.
One application published and will want zone 1 servers assigned to it and zone 2 on failover
The environment will also use StoreFront 2.1 and the clients will have receiver 3.4 enterprise (we are using the legacy webservice feature in storefront 2.1). We will have 4 storefront servers 2 in each zone.

The simple way I guess to put this is we are doing an automated failover system, part of a bigger project, and what I am wanting is on failover to the DR the published application will start using the Zone 2 servers instead of the Zone One servers and that’s it.

How do you configure XenApp 6.5 (Enterprise) to do this?
(For info happy to use workergroups and policies and StoreFront config if that can help)

Thanks and help appreciated,

Question by:objectivity
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Expert Comment

by:Ayman Bakr
ID: 39626514
1. You will have to create Workergroup1 and include in them the 20 servers in zone1. You will create another Workergroup2 and include the 20 servers in zone2.

2. In AppCenter, find the Load Balancing Policies and create a one. check the box Configure application connection preference based on worker group.

3. configure in the policy a prioritized list of worker groups. Place Workergroup1 with higher priority than workergroup2.

4. Filter the policy on all your users in site 1, or all the client devices in site 1; whichever is more appropriate for you.

Please note two things:
1. Load Balancing Policies are not tied to zones in XenApp 6.x. You could have equally well achieved the above with one zone only!! Workergroup1 contains 20 servers in your main site and Workergroup2 contains the 20 servers existing in the disaster recovery site.
2. You have to filter the load balancing policy; otherwise, unlke other policies, it doesn't get applied at all.

Author Comment

ID: 39626618
Hi Mutawadi,

First of all thanks so much for your quick reply.

I actually agree now that this can be done with one zone, so use to the old way before worker groups, so actually going to do that now and that will help with n/w traffic as well I believe.

Just one question the users will stay where they are in this setup, they are actually located in three sites but have a high specked WAN/LAN so can all access either site as required so daft question I can just set the filter to all clients and they will just be applied to the load balance as required - this is in the step 4 above you mention?

Sorry one more question do you have to do anything special to storefront/web interface as well or is that irrelevant for this part?

Big thanks for this,

LVL 23

Accepted Solution

Ayman Bakr earned 500 total points
ID: 39626666
1. Yes, apply the filter to all your clients (mentioned in step 4) since you want all these clients to access site 2 (disaster recovery) only and only if all servers in site 1 are either down or overloaded (reporting a load of 10,000).

2. For Web Interface you don't need to do any specific configuration even if all XenApp servers in Site 1 are down; assuming the Web Interface server will still be up. However, in the scenario where the whole site goes down (infrastructure issue), then the web interface server/s in Site 1 will not be available either. To mitigate the risk of such a scenario you will need a mechanism to load balance or fail over your Web Interface servers available in both sites. For this you can use the simple Windows NLB combined with DNS configuration, or you can opt for a more complex hardware oriented solution like NetScaler or F5 or any third party solution available in the market. As for storefronts, I guess the same concept will apply, but I have seen certain configurations within the web.config in storefronts that will allow users to failover to storefronts in other sites in case storefronts in their own sites are no more available. Unfortunately, I have not configured such a setup and I will not be able to be of more help on such a topic.

Author Closing Comment

ID: 39626760
Hi Mutawadi,

Thanks so much for your help with this you have answered this perfect for me and to be honest so glad I can do this with one zone which i believe will be much better with N/W Traffic from what i read.

...oh and re the StoreFront i do beleive with the 2.1 version there is a lot of config options so should be easy enough to configure this. I will share this later in case it helps anyone.

Many thanks,

LVL 23

Expert Comment

by:Ayman Bakr
ID: 39626998
Thanks to you too for your interest in sharing additional information.

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