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New Free App-V Self Support Tool (and how to make friends at the helpdesk)

New Free App-V Self Support Tool (and how to make friends at the helpdesk)

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I stumbled across this on Brian Maddens Forum the other day and it looks pretty darn handy!

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When you deploy App-V applications on laptops and pc, you will get a lot of helpdesk calls. While App-V is a mature application virtualization solution, it is interesting to see that a simple design decision does actually not make a lot of sense…

One of the things that you will find out early on when actual users start working with App-V, is that sometimes they need to reset, preload and refresh their virtualized applications. As a result you will need to give users access to the App-V client MMC plug-in.

The problem is, the MMC is typically off-limits in enterprise environments because of security policies. And even when users have access, try explaining non-technical users how to work with the App-V client MMC plug-in. The App-V client configuration is simply way too cluncky for normal users.

This may seem like a minor issue, but imagine how much helpdesk calls the App-V client can generate in a 100.000 App-V user environment…

This is why Peter Nap, from Login Consultants with some decent coding skills, decided to develop a light-weight, super user friendly tool which does not require MMC access.

This App-V Self Support Tool consists of a single .exe (App-V SST.exe) and a XML config file (App-VSelfSupportTool_settings.xml). Just copy these to the PC/Laptops and make sure user can access the tool through a shortcut on the desktop or start menu. You can change the banner to your liking and the languages can expanded easily by expanded the XML file.

The interface is deliberately simplified, so users can find their way around. There are only a few options: View, Language, Repair, Cache, Start and Refresh. Users do not need anything more, and more importantly, they are not required to ask the helpdesk to support them.

The tool is so simple documentation is overkill. All information you need is condensed into a 5 minute video included in the download.

The App-V Self Support Tool is free and available in the tools download section of www.loginconsultants.com (registration required).

PS: We tried virtualizing the App-V tool itself, but this bring not great results: so virtualization of the App-V Self support tool is not recommended. ;-)

Comments
  • I have packaged this into an MSI to simplify deployment. You can get the download from my blog.

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