GLADIATOR@MSFT

Adventures in Desktop, Application, and User State Virtualization

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  • Blog Post: App-V 5: On App-V Package Modernization with the OPC (Open Package Container) or: One Package Container to rule them all!

    Much of the changes in App-V 5 revolved around moving to more integrated components (NTFS, a “real” registry, native API’s on the client, representational state transfer on the server side, etc.) – but one of the most major key developments was the modernization of the AppV Package...
  • Blog Post: App-V 5 and Citrix Integration Resources

    Whether it is integration with XenApp, XenDesktop, PVS, or UPM, App-V 5 is the recommended application virtualization and streaming model for Citrix Session and VDI environments. I work with a lot of customers who leverage App-V in this capacity and they have been asking me to maintain a “living...
  • Blog Post: App-V 5: On Application Launch

    In previous blog posts, I discussed what happens when a package is added/configured, published, and when streamed. But what happens when an application is double-clicked? App-V needs to determine if the application needs to be virtualized, and if so, which virtual environment. The Shortcut is launched...
  • Blog Post: App-V: On Virtual Registry Nomenclature

    In previous blog posts, I’ve discussed items related to App-V’s virtual registry, including the VREG subsystem itself and the new Registry Staging System introduced with App-V 5. I have also been explaining concepts and App-V nomenclature as well so I thought it was very timely to discuss...
  • Blog Post: AppV 5: Important Considerations and Ramifications for Package Upgrade and VFS Write Mode

    If you are running any version of the App-V 5 client or Sequencer prior to App-V 5.0 Service Pack 2 Hotfix 4 – stop reading. This does not apply to your environment. If you are running HF4 or sooner, you need to have a good understanding of the net effects of toggling VFS Mode on and/or off during...
  • Blog Post: App-V 5: On the (now sometimes) Immutable Package Cache Location

    When you add/configure and publish a package in App-V, the primary file assets and source registry hives are stored in the package cache location. It defaults to %PROGRAMDATA%\App-V. The package cache will store packages in a <PACKAGE_GUID>\<VERSION_GUID> directory structure for each package...
  • Blog Post: App-V 5: Application Troubleshooting: “Fly-by-Night” Error Messages

    To continue the discussion of application troubleshooting, I wanted to provide some clarification on a certain type of application failure. In a blog post a while back ( http://blogs.technet.com/b/gladiatormsft/archive/2013/05/15/app-v-process-exit-codes-and-why-they-matter-when-troubleshooting-virtual...
  • Blog Post: App-V 5: On App-V Nomenclature

    As you may have figured out by now, App-V 5 has components that are referred to by multiple names depending on context. In some cases, App-V 5 basically takes the synonym concept to interesting levels. This can be misleading if misinterpreted. This can lead ISV’s and IT Pros down the wrong path...
  • Blog Post: App-V 5: Installing to the PVAD: Don’t do it . . . Yes . . . I said it.

    If you have ever dealt with me directly as a customer, attended one of my presentations, or even simply stomached one of my diatribes in a casual, technical conversation, you have no doubt heard about one of my pet peeves (no, not “Tips –n- Tricks” – we’ll visit that another...
  • Blog Post: App-V 5: Revisiting Registry Staging

    Last year, I wrote a blog post on registry staging in App-V and how it can affect initial publishing times – particularly on VDI ( http://blogs.technet.com/b/gladiatormsft/archive/2013/09/25/app-v-on-registry-staging-and-how-it-can-affect-vdi-environments.aspx ) and many people wrote me to tell...
  • Blog Post: App-V 5 – How App-V 5 Handles Software Clients, Application Capabilities, and URL Protocol Handlers

    App-V 5 brought a lot more options for integrating virtual applications with the local operating system. This is a big win for those organizations wanting to move as many of their applications as possible over to the APPV package format. These Extension Points can be defined within the App-V package...
  • Blog Post: Free App-V Training from Microsoft Virtual Academy!

    There is a wealth of on-demand and live training available at the MVA web site: (www.MicrosoftVirtualAcademy.com) Now there is free on-demand App-V 5 Training featuring Ron Dockery and yours truly! http://www.microsoftvirtualacademy.com/training-courses/mdop-application-virtualization-deep-dive...
  • Blog Post: App-V 5: On App-V 4.x to 5.x Token Transitions

    Tokenization is essential to application virtualization. This is where traditional directory paths are replaced with tokenized paths to ensure portability and flexibility. While hard-coded paths have not left the world of software development (although it should have more than two decades ago) most modern...
  • Blog Post: App-V 5: On Asset Intelligence

    Asset Intelligence has been used for years to enhance the inventory capabilities of Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM) by extending hardware inventory and adding license management functionality. The Asset Intelligence features of SCCM (2012, 2012 SP1, and 2012 R2) can report application...
  • Blog Post: Chatting All Things Dash V with Richard C on RunAs Radio!

    Last week, Chris Jackson appeared on RunAs Radio talking about about the benefits of Windows XP Migration (Yes, we still have customers who have not made the jump to a modern OS.) You can view the recording here: ( http://www.runasradio.com/default.aspx?showNum=374 ) It is an honor to be following...
  • Blog Post: App-V 5: On Streaming

    Now that Hotfix 4 for App-V 5.0 SP2 has been out now for several weeks, many of you have likely already seen our Updated Guidance for Performance Recommendations now available on Technet ( http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dn659478.aspx .) It almost goes without saying that the new stream-to...
  • Blog Post: App-V 5: On AddPackage and ConfigurePackage

    The other day I was troubleshooting a package add issue where I was running into a brick wall that turned out to be an awfully simple solution. While troubleshooting this, it came to me that I have not really gone into much depth as to what happens during an AddPackage or a ConfigurePackage operation...
  • Blog Post: App-V 5: Be Careful Toggling Shared Content Store Mode

    One of my colleagues in support let me know of an important note for those upgrading to App-V 5.0 Service Pack 2 Hotfix 4. It appears that the value for Shared Content Store (registry value SharedContentStoreMode in HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\AppV\Client\Streaming or the same option using...
  • Blog Post: App-V 5: The Case of the Failed Connection Group Descriptor (or . . . Another Reason not to Use Notepad for XML File Creation)

    Have you ever noticed that when you go to save a newly created file in Notepad, the default encoding is ANSI? And this matters to App-V how you ask? Normally this may not matter to you but I should inform you that this actually is important – especially if you are a purist and insist on...
  • Blog Post: App-V 5: Creating and Testing Office 2013 Connection Groups in Stand-Alone Mode

    App-V 5 has evolved significantly since its initial release in the fall of 2012. Many of these changes have had an effect on how the Office 2013 AppV Package interacts with the Explorer shell and, as a result, have created a challenge for those of us (like me) who like to first test Connection Groups...
  • Blog Post: App-V 5: On Sequencing Using Tokenized Paths, PVAD’s, VFS, and VFS Write Mode

    When sequencing applications, you often never know how the application was written with regards to what paths are actually referenced via hard-coded paths or through tokenized, or well-known paths or KNOWNFOLDERIDS. In previous versions of App-V and Softgrid, these paths were referenced using %CSIDL...
  • Blog Post: App-V @ #msTechEd 2014 - View the recordings in case you missed it!

    We had quite a few breakout sessions on App-V at TechEd North America this year! If you were there and were not able to attend all of them or missed TechEd altogether, you can view the recorded sessions here on Channel 9: My Presentation :) Sizing App-V 5.0: Planning and Designing a Highly Available...
  • Blog Post: App-V 5: Application Troubleshooting: On the Origins of an Error Message

    Have you ever been testing a virtualized application and it fails with a bizarre application error that is either extremely vague (unknown error) or coupled with some random hex code? Your first reaction usually is “Where’d that error come from?” That is a good reaction to have as it...
  • Blog Post: MDOP 2014 Released - along with App-V 5 SP2 Hotfix 4 - plus New Performance Guidelines!

    MDOP 2014 is now available: http://blogs.windows.com/windows/b/business/archive/2014/05/01/improving-your-organization-s-security-and-performance-with-the-microsoft-desktop-optimization-pack.aspx In addition, Hotfix 4 for the App-V Client (no new server patches in this hotfix) is also available...
  • Blog Post: App-V 5: On Virtual Fonts

    App-V has many virtualization subsystems that make up how App-V isolates itself from other applications. Often I, and others have discussed virtual COM, virtual kernel objects, virtual services, etc. when discussing App-V in depth. Until now, one virtual subsystem that has not been discussed much in...