Last week Citrix released the long awaited StoreFront 3.0 together with the new Receiver 4.3 / Receiver X1. With Citrix StoreFront 3.0 we finally say goodbye to the Green Bubble theme, at least, if you disable the Classic Receiver Experience (I will show you how to do that in this blog). StoreFront 3.0 has a completely new web interface which can be easily modified in the Storefront console. Also the Citrix Receiver interface has exactly the same customized layout as the web interface, a great user experience improvement!
In this blog I show you step-by-step how to install, creating the deployment and configure Citrix StoreFront 3.0 including the customizations.
I will use the following resources in my environment;
Server OS : Windows Server 2012 R2
Name : RHSF01
IP : 192.168.1.29
Internal Domain name : robinhobo.com
SSL Cert : wildcard for robinhobo.com
XenDesktop controller : RHXD01
Creating the DNS record
In one of my previous blogs (see here) I showed you how to configure Citrix StoreFront in a Load Balanced environment. I will skip that part in this blog, but for future configuration I will configure the StoreFront Base URL to a generic name and not to the name of the first StoreFront server. Therefore I will create a DNS record pointing to my first StoreFront server first.
On the domain controller open the DNS Console and add an A Record. In my case I will create the record StoreFront pointing to the IP of my first StoreFront server.
Installing Citrix StoreFront 3.0
Start the setup, select I accept the terms of this license agreement and click Next
The StoreFront administration console will now start automatically, but close it for now. To enable a secure connection over HTTPS, it is important to first install the server certificate and configure the default site bindings before configuring StoreFront (The StoreFront Base URL can be changed afterwards, but why not configure it with the right Base URL in the first place?)
Installing the SSL certificate
Using a secure connection to Citrix StoreFront over SSL is optional, however it is a Citrix best practice and it is easy to implement.
Open the Internet Information Services (IIS) Manager and open Server Certificates
On the right side of the window click Import. To import your existing (wildcard) certificate. If you don’t have a SSL certificate already you can create one by clicking on Create Certificate Request. See my Citrix StoreFront 2.0 blog (here) to see the particular steps to create a new SSL certificate.
Browse to the certificate file, fill in the Password and click OK
Within the Internet Information Services (IIS) Manager, navigate to the Default Web Site. On the right side of this window, click Bindings
Select https as Type, select the imported certificate and click OK
Creating the Deployment in Citrix StoreFront 3.0
The next step is to configure Citrix StoreFront 3.0. For that, open the Citrix StoreFront console.
Click on Create a new deployment
Fill in the Base URL in my case https://storefront.robinhobo.com and click Next
Fill in a Store name, in my case RobinHobo
Click Add to add a Delivery Controller like you XenApp or XenDesktop controller
Fill in the information of your XenApp, XenDesktop, AppController (XenMobile) or VDI-in-a-B0x server and click OK
For this blog I will skip the Remote Access part. For information on how to configure remote access with the NetScaler see this blog of me (click here)
Configuring Citrix StoreFront 3.0
In this part of the blog I will configure Citrix StoreFront 3.0 including the customizations and the new enhanced features.
If you are upgrading from an older version of StoreFront the Classic Receiver Experience is enabled by default. This means that the Green Bubbles layout is still active and the new enhanced features like the customizations and featured app groups are not available. The enable this, go to the Receiver for Web page within the StoreFront console and click on Disable Classic Receiver Experience on the right side of the screen.
I will walk though the configuration of StoreFront 3.0 starting with the Authentication page. Click on Add/Remove Methods on the right side of the window.
Click on Configure Trusted Domains
My internal domain name is robinhobo.com. Fill in your domain name information and click OK
Click on Manage Password Options
Select what is appropriate for you and click OK
Open the Stores page and click on Set Unified Experience as Default
As the dialog describes, here you can set the default website for the store that will be used (including the customizations). Click OK
Click on Customize Receiver Appearance
Here you can customize the StoreFront webinterface (including in the Citrix Receiver) with custom logo’s and text and link colors. Click OK
Click on Manage Featured App Groups
Give it a Name (anything you like, but it will be displayed for the user). You select the following definition methods;
Keyword ; Must be divined in the application properties within XenApp / XenDesktop
Application Category ; Must be divined in the application properties within XenApp / XenDesktop
Application Name ; Fill in the list of Applications you want in this group
For now I choose Application catagory and select the Microsoft Office 2010 group (configured in XenDesktop)
For this blog I will add a second App Group, so I click Create.. one more time
This time I will add the AppSense Application category. Click OK
Testing Citrix StoreFront 3.0
Now it’s time to test Citrix StoreFront 3.0. When I open a browser and navigate to the StoreFront webinterface I see the new layout with the custom logo.
After logon, I see the customized page, with the logo and the custom colors. The default landing page is the Favorites page. On the Desktop and Apps page you can add resources to this Favorites page.
On the Apps page you can see the Application Category Groups and the other published applications.
As you can see on the screenshot above, you have the same interface now integrated in the new Citrix Receiver!
Robin Hobo works as a Consultant Mobility with focus on different Enterprise Mobility Management (EMM) solutions like Citrix XenMobile, Microsoft Enterprise Mobility + Security (EM+S), VMWare Workspace One / AirWatch, BlackBerry and MobileIron. In recent years, Robin did many technical implementations of different products. These were mainly Citrix and Microsoft products.
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