Step-by-step guide to learn everything about deploying layered images in Citrix App Layering.

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In the previous posts of this series, we learned how to install and configure a new Enterprise Layer Manager appliance. We also discussed how to create OS, Platform and App layers. In this post, we will review how to deploy Layered Images in App Layering.

Note: Layered Images are bootable images composed from an OS layer, a Platform layer, and any number of App layers. Layered images are published from an image template.

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Requirements

For this lab, you need the following:

  • ELM appliance up and running.
  • OS Layer, Platform Layer and App Layers created and deployable. You can create an image template without App layers.
  • PVS connector created and configured (Ex: PVS Connector).
  • App Layering Agent installed on the target infrastructure.
  • Enough free space in the target infrastructure.

Best Practices to Create and Publish a new Template with Citrix App Layering

Create and Publish a new Template with Citrix App Layering

An image template stores the list of layers to include in the layered images that you publish.

Create a new template

Go the the ELM console > Images and select Create Template.

App Layering Image Deployment - Template - Create a new template
App Layering Image Deployment – Template – Create a new template

In the Template Wizard, enter the name of the template and pick an icon.

App Layering Image Deployment - Template - Name and Description
App Layering Image Deployment – Template – Name and Description

Select the OS Layer to be integrated in this image.

App Layering Image Deployment - Template - OS Layer
App Layering Image Deployment – Template – OS Layer

Select the connector.

Note: In this example, we will publish the image directly to PVS. 

App Layering Image Deployment - Template - Select Connector
App Layering Image Deployment – Template – Select Connector

Select the Platform Layer.

App Layering Image Deployment - Template - Platform Layer
App Layering Image Deployment – Template – Platform Layer

Add Layered Image Disk settings.

App Layering Image Deployment - Template - Select Layered Image Disk
App Layering Image Deployment – Template – Select Layered Image Disk

Select Create Template and Publish.

Note: Create Template does not deploy the image to the target infrastructure. 

App Layering Image Deployment - Template - Create Template And Publish
App Layering Image Deployment – Template – Create Template And Publish

ELM will start to create the template.

App Layering Image Deployment - Template - Template creation in progress
App Layering Image Deployment – Template – Template creation in progress

First step is to duplicate the OS Layer revision in the repository.

Location: /mnt/repository/Unidesk/Layered Images/

App Layering Image Deployment - Template - Template in the repository
App Layering Image Deployment – Template – Template in the repository

Next step is to compose the layers.

App Layering Image Deployment - Template - Composing layers
App Layering Image Deployment – Template – Composing layers

Location: /mnt/repository/Unidesk/Layered Images/

App Layering Image Deployment - Template - Composed
App Layering Image Deployment – Template – Composed

Apply Application recipes.

App Layering Image Deployment - Template - Processing Recipes
App Layering Image Deployment – Template – Processing Recipes

Once the image is ready, ELM will copy it in the PVS store configured in the PVS connector.

App Layering Image Deployment - Template - Copy to target infrastructure
App Layering Image Deployment – Template – Copy to target infrastructure

Copy in the PVS store in progress.

App Layering Image Deployment - Template - Copy to target infrastructure in progress
App Layering Image Deployment – Template – Copy to target infrastructure in progress

Once the disk is copied in the Store, ELM will add the disk in the PVS configuration.

App Layering Image Deployment - Template - Adding in the Citrix configuration (only PVS, MCS)
App Layering Image Deployment – Template – Adding in the Citrix configuration (only PVS, MCS)

ELM will add a timestamp in the vDisk name (Ex: 2016_TEMPLATE_YYYY_MM_DD_HH_MM_SS.vhd)

App Layering Image Deployment - Template - Image deployed
App Layering Image Deployment – Template – Image deployed

The disk was added in the PVS store but not published to any devices. This step is still a manual step.

App Layering Image Deployment - Template - Image deployed in PVS
App Layering Image Deployment – Template – Image deployed in PVS

ELM will also apply the pre-configuration defined in the PVS Connector such as Cache Type, Cache Size, Load Balancing, etc.

App Layering Image Deployment - Template - Image configuration in PVS
App Layering Image Deployment – Template – Image configuration in PVS

Take a look at the PVS store repository.

App Layering Image Deployment - Template - PVS Store repository
App Layering Image Deployment – Template – PVS Store repository

In ELM, you can have more information about the template. Right click on the template and select Properties.

App Layering Image Deployment - Template - Properties
App Layering Image Deployment – Template – Properties

See below the information displayed about the template.

App Layering Image Deployment - Template - Properties details
App Layering Image Deployment – Template – Properties details

Publish a new template

Go to ELM console > Images and right click on the template you want to update.

Right click on the template and select Publish Layered Image.

App Layering Image Deployment - Template - Publish Template
App Layering Image Deployment – Template – Publish Template

Validate the configuration and then select Publish Layered Image.

App Layering Image Deployment - Template - Publish Template confirmation
App Layering Image Deployment – Template – Publish Template confirmation

Reconfigure an existing template

Go to ELM console > Images and right click on the template you want to update. Then select Edit Template.

App Layering Image Deployment - Edit template
App Layering Image Deployment – Edit template

You can change all settings here.

App Layering Image Deployment - Edit template - Name and Description
App Layering Image Deployment – Edit template – Name and Description

Select a new OS Layer.

App Layering Image Deployment - Edit template - Edit OS Layer
App Layering Image Deployment – Edit template – Edit OS Layer

Add / Remove Application layers from the template.

App Layering Image Deployment - Edit template - App Layers
App Layering Image Deployment – Edit template – App Layers

Pick a different connector.

App Layering Image Deployment - Edit template - Connector
App Layering Image Deployment – Edit template – Connector

Select a different Platform layer.

App Layering Image Deployment - Edit template - Platform Layer
App Layering Image Deployment – Edit template – Platform Layer

Reconfigure Layered Image Disk.

App Layering Image Deployment - Edit template - Layered Image Disk
App Layering Image Deployment – Edit template – Layered Image Disk

Then click on Save Template Changes to validate. You can also Publish a new image from here.

App Layering Image Deployment - Edit template - Confirm the changes
App Layering Image Deployment – Edit template – Confirm the changes

Clone Template

Go to ELM console > Images and right click on the template. Select Clone Template.

App Layering Image Deployment - Clone Template
App Layering Image Deployment – Clone Template

ELM will immediately clone the template.

App Layering Image Deployment - Clone Template - Cloned
App Layering Image Deployment – Clone Template – Cloned
App Layering Image Deployment - Clone Template - Edit properties
App Layering Image Deployment – Clone Template – Edit properties

Delete Template

Go to ELM console > Images and right click on the template. Select Delete Template.

App Layering Image Deployment - Delete Template
App Layering Image Deployment – Delete Template

Select Delete Template to confirm the deletion.

App Layering Image Deployment - Delete Template - Deleted
App Layering Image Deployment – Delete Template – Deleted

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