Citrix Director: More Than Just a Help Desk Tool


In the quest for efficient management of the virtual environmentCitrix Director is seriously under-rated. You might be missing out on useful insights by overlooking this Web-based management toolset, which has been built into XenApp and XenDesktop since at least 2013.

If you don't think of Director as invaluable, it might be because you see it as simply a user support tool. Actually, Director is an essential console that simplifies management and automates workflows for virtual desktop administrators.

So, it pays to look more closely at other use cases for Director. From quickly catching delivery control errors in critical Citrix apps to monitoring for login failures, policy issues or infrastructure disruptions, Director can help you uncover a range of problems early for faster resolution.

Below are key ways that you can use Director to improve your virtual desktop operations.

Three ways Director can improve your effectiveness

No matter where you sit in the IT hierarchy, you can benefit from using Director to its fullest. The following are some of the most striking examples:

Basic monitoring for faster troubleshooting. Are routine user logins unusually slow and/or logins unexpectedly failing? Director can quickly reveal spikes in login time and other out-of-the-ordinary events so you can quickly investigate issues before they become crises. You can also monitor performance trends over time to spot worrisome recurring or growing performance trends, e.g., system outages occurring at the same time each week.

Monitoring Citrix Infrastructure. Have you ever spent hours trying to pinpoint why users are unable to access your Citrix environment only to find out that the SQL DBA was doing maintenance on your Citrix database? By using the Director console, you will have a visual indicator—in the form of a green or red checkbox— telling you whether the SQL server is working, or if perhaps it's offline for scheduled maintenance.

Notifications/alerts. Director enables you to set up notifications or alerts that are automatically triggered by certain events. By alerting you when, say, logins are taking longer than 30 seconds, you can head off issues before users even notice a problem was brewing.

No matter where you sit in the IT hierarchy, you can benefit from using Director to its fullest.

Getting started with Director

It's fairly simple to take advantage of Director benefits in the Citrix environment, since it's built into Citrix virtualization products. But, you can configure it for optimal use. For example, you may find value in limiting access to read-only for network admin or engineers, or storage engineers and infrastructure pros to limit control of the platform.

The bottom line? Director is anything but your run-of-the-mill help desk tool. You can use it to identify and resolve issues quickly and easily—cutting down on your time, money, and frustration. And who doesn't appreciate those outcomes?

Burwood Group is pleased to publish this post in partnership with Citrix, our trusted partner in creating secure, mobile solutions for application and data delivery. All opinions are our own.


January 9, 2018