sepago Community Tools

A couple of hours ago, sepago started the Community Tools blog as a publishing platform for freely available tools. So far it contains the tools which I and my colleague Helge Klein have published in the past. New tools by other co-workers will be made available there. The first addition is Profile Nurse developed by two colleagues. Helge has written a detailed announcement. Enjoy this site and the future content.

Reading Farm Information from the XML Service

After writing and publishing the XmlServiceExplorer, I was asked several times just how much information is disclosed by the XML service. There were also comments (in Brian’s forums) about a possible security breach caused by offering the access lists of all published applications which I described in a tutorial to the XmlServiceExplorer. Although it is possible to suppress the access lists being disclosed by the XML service, the switch is not documented.

Pausing (not Suspending) Virtual Machines to Preserve Resources

When working with several virtual machines on my laptop, I often run into situations when system resources become scare. The most obvious bottleneck is physical memory. And despite the efforts of the desktop virtualization vendors to reduce the amount of physical memory required, this happens very frequently and results in heavy swapping while Windows attempts to resolve the issue. This causes a lot of stress on the local hard drive causing Windows to perform even worse.

The Necessity of Managing User Profiles

I have recently had the chance to write an article for a German journal called LANline. The article focuses on user profile management and why modern approaches of application delivery create the need for a user profile management solution.

The article can be read in the printed issue published in October 2008. Please note that this article is written in German.

XmlServiceExplorer

This tool offers a graphical user interface to build requests to be sent to the XML service. The response is displayed for inspection. Thus, the XmlServiceExplorer allows administrators to debug how the XML service works and what kind of information is passed to Web Interface.

Where is my XenApp 5.0 for Windows Server 2003?

A couple of weeks ago, Citrix released XenApp 5.0 to the web. Rest assured, I was really eager to be one of the first to download this new major release and immediately set up a new box with it. Of course, I wanted to know how the RTW compares to the Early Release of Project Delaware which I wrote about in Delaware Test Drive.

Suppressing Access Lists to be Exposed by the XML Service

In an earlier article about the XmlServiceExplorer, I explained how to obtain the access list of all published applications in a farm from the XML service.

As this information is offered without authentication, it can be considered a security issue. The XML service should rather offer the resulting list of published applications based on the access lists instead of the access list themselves.

Fortunately, this behaviour of the XML service can be suppressed by changing a registry key on the Presentation Server / XenApp server:

Debugging Using XmlServiceExplorer - Part 3

In the last part of this tutorial about the XmlServiceExplorer, I introduced requesting useful information from the farm as well as resolving addresses.

Now, I’d like to demonstrate how chatty the XML service is when it comes to applications and their configuration. Some pieces of information are required for Web Interface to operate while others can be regarded as compromising.

Debugging Using XmlServiceExplorer - Part 2

In the first part of my tutorial about the XmlServiceExplorer, I have explained how session management is performed by the Web Interface and how the same behaviour can be reproduced by the XmlServiceExplorer. I recommend you also read the initial article: Talking to the XML Service.

Now I’d like to introduce several requests providing useful information about a farm and its servers through the XML service.

Debugging Using XmlServiceExplorer - Part 1

After publishing the XmlServiceExplorer, I’d like to give you some ideas how to use this application to do some debugging. In this article, I will demonstrate how Web Interface manages sessions using the XML service and how the same effects are achieved using the XmlServiceExplorer.