XenApp: Publishing Server desktop

For some non-windows clients or for some legacy applications, sometimes we needs to publish server desktop running XenApp. After publishing servers desktop, users are given access to server running XenApp and all the underlying resources, so it is risky as users can change any configuration of the underlying XenApp that may end up in messing the environment. To minimize risk, server desktop should not be published to less experienced users or if published, proper policies through GPO should be implemented.

Access Management console is required to publish XenApp desktop.

Below are the steps required to publish a Server desktop.


  1. Citrix Access Management console should be installed on the XenApp farm.
  2. Person who is publishing server desktop should have full administrative rights on Access management console.


  1. Double click on the desktop icon “Access Management Console” or launch the exe “CmiLaunch.exe” from "C:\Program Files\Common Files\Citrix\Access Management Console – Framework\". Citrix Access Management console window will be launched. Left side of window will have tree structure as shown below. It has a node for Presentation server and under it, there is a node for XenApp farm. It has different folders under it to manage the farm. For this article, our interest is the “Applications” folder under it.           image 
  2. Right Click on “Applications” folder and Select New –> Create Folder as  shown below:            image
  3. Following screen will appear: image                                Enter the application name and click ok. It will create “Desktops” folder under the applications node.
  4. Right click on “Desktops” folder and select New –> Publish application. “Welcome” screen will appear: Click Next
  5. “Name” screen will appear, add the following details and Click Next:                                                                                     Display Name: desktop – SERVERNAME | Application description: desktop – SERVERNAMEimage
  6. “Type” screen will appear, Select the radio button for “Server desktop” and Click Next.                                                          image
  7. “Servers” screen will appear, Click on “Add” button to add all the servers whose desktop needs to be published. Servers added here will be having load balancing.image
  8. “Users” screen will appear for adding users who will have access rights on the published desktop. Click Add button and it will open “second screen”. On that screen, click on “Add List of Names” button to add the users. “third Screen” will appear. Enter the users into the screen and click “Check Names” button to see the validity of the entered users. Once verified click Ok. Click Ok on second screen and click Next on First screen.                              Note: You can add any number of users from the below screens but the best practice is to have active directory group containing all the required users and that group can be added directly to the below screen. With active directory group it is very easy to manage users. By manage I mean, addition and deletion of users.image
  9. “Shortcut Presentation” screen will appear. Enter “Desktops” folder in the textbox for “Client application folder”. If the user access is through web ICA, do not check the checkbox for “add to the client’s start menu” and “add shortcut to the client’s desktop”.                                                                                 Note: You should enter the folder name that you have created at step 2 above. Users will see the application icon under this folder in their web ICA session. image Check for the icon to be displayed to the users. If you want to change it, click on change icon button, following screen will appear, select the appropriate radio button and get the required icon and click Ok and then click Next to the parent screen.image
  10. “Publish immediately” screen will appear, select the checkbox for “Configure advanced application settings now” and click next.image
  11. Access control screen will appear: Keep the default options and click Next.image
  12. “Limits” screen will appear: Depending on the application architecture and the bandwidth, check the checkbox for “Limit instances allowed to run in server farm” and then add Maximum instances. Click Next.image
  13. “Client options” screen will appear: Select the different options based on your requirements like the bandwidth, security or printing requirements. Click Next.                                                  Note: For Client audio, refer to the article https://mdaslam.wordpress.com/2009/11/24/xenapp-legacy-audio/image
  14. “Appearance” screen will appear: Select the appropriate session window size and required color depth. Click Finish.                 Note: For seamless mode, selecting any value under “session window size” will not make any difference. For Color depth, refer to my article: https://mdaslam.wordpress.com/2009/09/22/xenapp-colors-depth-in-published-application-properties/image After this step, server desktop will be published and available under “Desktops” folder. Users who are given access to this icon, will be able to see it in Web ICA session.  

To learn how to publish application in XenApp, refer to my article https://mdaslam.wordpress.com/2010/06/10/application-publish-in-xenapp/



6 thoughts on “XenApp: Publishing Server desktop

  1. Hello Aslam,

    I found your blog interesting. It is nice that you are helping people by providing them knowledge.

    The user uses ICA to connect to the application. The published application is not available to the users. Can you please help me to solve this problem .

    • Yes sure, please send me more information on my email “mohd.aslam1@gmail.com”, I will try my best to help you out…

  2. Peace Aslam, this is Mustafa. We are looking into deploying Citrix Published server desktops and while looking for resources. I ran into your website. Wow!!! It’s exactly what I was looking for. So, I wanted to drop a line and say thank you for your hard work. May God reward you for your hard work and contribution to the user community. This is priceless for people like me.

    • Computer should be the part of same farm. You need to first create the farm and then on same farm all the computers that are added will be shown in the screen automatically. You can then select the computer whose desktop you want to publish.

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