Monthly Archives: October 2012

Netflix and error w8156-c0262500

Quick post,

If you get this error message on Netflix using Windows 8 you need to remove Hyper-V, it is an issue with silverlight and hyper-v so haven’t found any other fixes yet.
So remove Hyper-V everything works!

Netscaler and DDoS

A part of many Network admins day to day tasks involves mitigating DDoS attacks. And they come in many types of shape and size.
But they are share a common goal, disrupting the service for the users. These types of attacks make the service unresponsive and therefore cannot service the regular users who actually need to access the service. Trough out the years there have been many DDoS attacks on many of the HUGE online services.

For instance PayPal, Visa many online banks (Such as DNB in Norway) have suffered of these kinds of attacks, and if you think about it what happens if an online bank is offline ? The business loses a lot of income and the regular users cannot access their online bank account.

Now back to the kind of DDoS attacks. The most common ones are

SYN Flood:
Happens when a host sends a flood of TCP/SYN packets, which are often from an forged address. Each of these packets is handled like a connection request, causing the server to spawn an half-open connection. This is actually just a simple exploit of how TCP connections are established.
I like to think of it as an old lady (who is in disguise) to gives a bag to the server and says (can you hold this bag for me ? ) and of course the server is happy to oblige and therefore holds the bag and then the old lady runs of, and the server is standing there with the bag yelling (“Old lady?”) and then again there comes another old lady (in disguise) which comes with another bag which again the server is happy to help out and again is stuck with two bags.
And as you can see it is only a matter of time before the server cannot hold anymore bags.

ICMP Flood:
Which again is split up in more different types.
The primary with these kinds of attacks is that it uses ICMP. Now the Ping command is pretty simple when run it asks a server, “Are you alive?” and the server says “yes” If you have thousands upon thousands of these kinds of requests they can quickly use up much of the network bandwidth at the server.

Smurf Attack (which is an ICMP flood Attack)
Is another type of attack (Which is usually used where the network isn’t configured correctly) What happens is that a attackers, sends a spoofed IP address ping to an broadcast address in a network, and the reply to address is set to a server address. What happens is that all the clients in that subnet (which are alive and gets the ping request, will repond to the ICMP packet to the server)
These kinds of attacks are usually easy mitigated at the network.
For instance with Cisco you can set a pretty ACL to limit the ICMP traffic

config t
Access-list 100 permit icmp any {your network} {your subnet} echo-reply
Access-list 100 permit icmp any (your Network) (your Subnet) echo
Interface e1
Rate-limit input access-group 100 512000 8000 8000 conform action transmit exceed action drop

Or what you should do is use the command no direct ip-broadcast

Now these 2 are the most common types of low-layer attacks. There are a bunch of layer 7 attacks I will discuss in a later post.
So how does Netscaler come into the picture ?

SYN Flood:

A NetScaler appliance defends against SYN flood attacks by using SYN cookies instead of maintaining half-open connections on the system memory stack. The appliance sends a cookie to each client that requests a TCP connection, but it does not maintain the states of half-open connections. Instead, the appliance allocates system memory for a connection only upon receiving the final ACK packet, or, for HTTP traffic, upon receiving an HTTP request. This prevents SYN attacks and allows normal TCP communications with legitimate clients to continue uninterrupted.

SYN DoS protection on  NetScaler appliance requires no external configuration. It is enabled by default.

ICMP Flood:

The NetScaler also protects network resources from ICMP based attacks by using ICMP rate limiting and aggressive ICMP packet inspection. It performs strong IP reassembly, drops a variety of suspicious and malformed packets, and applies Access Control Lists (ACLs) to site traffic for further protection.
Now if you type sh ns ratecontrol


You can see the allowed ICMP packets per MS. 100 is the default value. And by default there are no rate control set on UDP and TCP.

Citrix Netscaler and SDN

There is a lot of talk now about SDN, so I would like clarify what is actually meant with SDN.
First of the name SDN is for Software Defined Networking, the concept Is actually pretty simple. It is built upon that a network administrator can share traffic from a single console Instead of having to configure each switch individually.
And for instance, it allows for an admin to allow SharePoint traffic but not regular HTTP traffic, it steps away from the regular ACL deny/grant and performs at a more granular level.
Hence the name, Software Defined Smile

So you have to think that instead of configuring the switches, acls, router etc., an it-admin configures the software that goes trough the network(application control)
So there is a lot of speculation that this is going to be a Cisco killer or Cisco kill switch because this would allow for a multi vendor solution but still have that single control plane.

So again the network becomes app-driven

And back to the topic, Citrix has already laid plans for the future with its Netscaler product and SDN.
They have already established many partnerships with different vendor for this to happen.

Cisco has announced that they are going to discontinue their production of their ACE module, and has already gone into partnership with Citrix to work with SDN.
They have that that for instance Netscaler and their Cisco ASA (Their firewall product) will include integrations which are based upon SDN.

Citrix has also aligned themselves with a lot of other partners such as.

* Palo Alto
* Trend
* Aruba
* WebSense
* Bluecat
* Splunk

You can read more about them here –>

And Citrix themselves has a lot they can offer with Netscaler
With for instance AppTemplates they have many finished templates a company can use (For instance SharePoint, Citrix has made their own template based on best practices which allow for the best kind of user experience )
a template can include (policies for caching, compression, rewrite and other NetScaler functionality used to optimize the application.) So instead of typing in all the information all the Netscaler needs is the IP of SharePoint and Netscaler will do the rest, pretty easy instead of writing ACLs, setup up the service adding load-balancing etc.
You can find them here –>

So it’s a step in the right direction Smile
And with integration with System Center, an Netscaler deployment infront. a Netscaler can detect if there is need for more servers in the back and automatically deploy more.
But the conclusion is, SDN is become more and more popular subject so be ready for it Smile

Monitoring Citrix with Operations Manager 2012

In the earlier days if you have Operations Manager 2007 you would have MP’s available for the most of the Citrix products. On the installation media on XenApp 6.5 you would for instance have a management pack which you could use in OpsMgr 2007.
Now with 2012, Citrix have said that they would no longer continue with development of these management packs and have pushed the development to a partner called ComTrade.

ComTrade have developed a bunch of Management Packs for most of Citrix’s products including;

* XenApp
* XenDesktop
* XenServer

Now for instance Netscaler is primarily a network device so you have “free” monitoring capabilities via SNMP but for extended monitoring and pro capabilities Citrix actually has a new MP which was released in September.
When regarding the MP’s you can sign up for a free trial at ComTrade’s website here–>
I’m going to take a quick walkthrough of how XenApp monitoring is set up and how it works.

After you have received the user information you can start downloading the MP’s
The installation process is pretty straight forward, next. next, finish and the setup will automatically import the management packs.


So if you open the console and check under adminitration –> Management packs
You can now see ComTrade Management Packs appear.
If you go back to the monitoring pane, you will see that there are a bunch of new options under ComTrade XenApp

As well as under reports there a new bunch of new reports available for XenApp.
This will give you a good insight in your Citrix environment, and regarding what applications users actually use. And what kind of performance issues they might be having.
We will take a further look at this later when we are finished setting up the connection to XenApp.

When the installation process is finished you will receive a new start-menu shortcut which allows you to complete the process of setting up the monitoring, you can see a shortcut called “XenApp connector”
Here you have to enter information about the XenApp farm, a farm administrator and password.

Now remember that you have to be a farm administrator if it is to setup correctly. And you have to get a valid license from ComTrade in order to use it. After that you have to set the scom agent as an proxy you can do this under managed agents in the administration pane on SCOM.

After this you have to go to the monitoring pane and find under Comtrade XenApp servers, from there choose the XenApp server you wish to monitor. On the right side you have the option to install a XenApp MP agent, so run this command.
When the installation is done (You can see this in the event viewer) you can see (in a while) that data starts being populated into SCOM.
So Yay! now we have a good and solid XenApp monitoring solution along with the rest of the infrastructure.
Now we can start monitoring SLA on our infrastructure (XenApp, Netscaler, SQL Server, Web-interface)

And as simple as that ( I have no real licenses on my XenApp server, therefore I get an error message each time I logon to the server around the licenses. ) And it also appeared in Operations Manager


Azure integration pack for SP1 Beta

Microsoft just released a integration pack for Azure which allows you to create runbooks attached to Azure.
The activities included in the integration packs are:

  • Azure Certificates- the Azure Certificates activity is used in a runbook to add, delete, and list management and service certificates
  • Azure Deployments- the Azure Deployments activity is used in a runbook to create, delete, get, and swap deployments, change deployment configurations, update deployment statuses, rollback an update or upgrade, get and change deployment operating systems, upgrade deployments, walk upgrade domains, and reboot and reimage role instances
  • Azure Cloud Services- the Azure Cloud Services activity is used in a runbook to create, delete, and get cloud services, check cloud service name availability, and create affinity groups
  • Azure Storage- The Azure Storage activity is used in a runbook to create, delete, update, and list storage accounts, get storage account properties, get and regenerate storage account keys, create, list, and delete containers, and put, copy, delete, list, snapshot, and download blobs
  • Azure Virtual Machine Disks- the Azure Virtual Machine Disks activity is used in a runbook to add, delete, update, and list virtual machine disks and virtual machine data disks
  • Azure Virtual Machine Images- the Azure Virtual Machine Images activity is used in a runbook to add, delete, update, and list virtual machine operating system images
  • Azure Virtual Machines- the Azure Virtual Machines activity is used in a runbook to create virtual machine deployments, download virtual machine remote desktop files, as well as get, delete, start, restart, shutdown, capture, and update virtual machine roles


You can find the integration pack for download here –>

Automating Configuration Manager 2012 SP1 with PowerShell

First part of this series, I showed how you could run and install all the necessary prerequisites silent and automated, this time I will write a bit more instead of just adding the commands.
In Service Pack 1, Configuration Manager will finally include cmdlets for PowerShell this allows for a scripted and automated setup process. Therefore I took the liberty of creating this post which will show you how-to.

Now with this you can actually create a script for a new customer (If you already have knowledge of the customers infrastructure) with contains all the necessary you need to setup a fully site. Then where you are at the customer, run the script and take the rest of the day of.

Now what do we need in order to setup a fully Configuration Manager site?

We need a boundary group (Which contains a boundary, refer my earlier post –> ) Which again contains a distribution group and is assigned a site.
And we need to activate discovery objects to fetch information such as Users, Group, Computer objects.
We also need to setup AD publish (In case we did a manual ConfigMgr site agent install we wouldn’t have to setup this but for the administration ease we are going to do so)
Next we are going to Create Computer Collection which is going to include our test servers. We are also going to Create User Collection b
After that we are going to Create an application which we are going to deploy to our computer collection

All using PowerShell.
Now in order to start PowerShell against Configuration Manager, just click the file button inside the Console and press the Connect using PowerShell.

You can use the get-command –module ConfigurationManager to show all the commands available for Configuration Manager
You can also use the get-help cmdlets if you are unsure of the parameters that you need to use.
Also you can use the get-help cmdlets –examples if you want to show some examples.

NOTE: Will trying to get this fully automated, I find its hard with the current release of the PowerShell cmdlets but still I’ve gotten far.  So this post will be updated periodically.

Create a new Boundary: New-Cmboundary -type ADsite -value “Default-First-Site-Name”

Create a new BoundaryGroup: New-CmboundaryGroup -name Test -DefaultSiteCode TST

Add boundary to group:
Add-CMBoundaryToGroup -Boudaryid 16777218 -GroupName “Test”

I got this BoundaryID using Get-CMboundary since the command didn’t parse the value ID properly.

You can use the Get-Cmboundary and Get-CmBoundaryGroup to view the values. And you need to add the site code to the command so it assigns
that as the default site for the boundary group.

Get info from Active Directory Forest: New-CMactiveDirectoryForest -ForestFqdn demo.local -EnableDiscovery $true

Install Configuraiton Manager Agent: Install-CMClient -DeviceName ConfigMgr -includeDomainController $false -AlwaysInstallclient $false -SiteCode TST

Create a new device collection: New-CMdevicecollection -name “My Servers” -LimitingCollectionName “All Systems” -RefreshType Manual

Still more to come

Configuration Manager 2012 silent install

To run the Setup Downloader from command promt

setupdl \MyServerMyShareConfigMgrUpdates

  • /VERIFY: Use this option to verify the files in the download folder, which include language files. Review the ConfigMgrSetup.log file in the root of the C drive for a list of files that are outdated. No files are downloaded when you use this option.
  • /VERIFYLANG: Use this option to verify the language files in the download folder. Review the ConfigMgrSetup.log file in the root of the C drive for a list of language files that are outdated.
  • /LANG: Use this option to download only the language files to the download folder.
  • /NOUI: Use this option to start Setup Downloader without displaying the user interface. When you use this option, you must specify the download path as part of the command-line.

Setup Downloader starts, verifies the files in the \MyServerMyShareConfigMgrUpdates folder, and downloads only the files that are missing or newer than the existing files.

To run the prerequisites downloader from command prompt 

  1. Open a command prompt and browse to <ConfigMgrInstallationMedia>SMSSETUPBINX64 or <ConfigMgrInstallationPath>SMSSETUPBINX64.

  2. Type prereqchk.exe /LOCAL to open Prerequisite Checker and run all prerequisite checks on the server.


To install the ConfigMgr 2012 console unattended from command prompt.

consolesetup.exe /q TargetDir=”D:Program FilesConfigMgr” EnableSQM=0

To install a ConfigMgr 2012 Primary Site

First of you need to create a setup.ini file where you need to define a lot of variables. For a Primary site these are the ones you need.
After you have created this file you need to start the setup with the following command. setup.exe /script scriptpathandname

Content of the setup.ini file



SiteCode=<Site Code>
SiteName=<Site Name>
SMSInstallDir=<ConfigMgr install folder path>
SDKServer=<FQDN for SDKServer>
PrerequisitePath=<Prereqs folder path>
ManagementPoint=<FQDN MP server>
DistributionPoint=<FQDN DP server>
AdminConsole=1 (0 is you don’t want to install the console)

SQLServerName=<FQDN SQL server machine>
DatabaseName=<SQLServerNameInstanceName> (leave blank for the default instance)


Now last but not least, unattended install of SQL server 2012.

/SQLSVCACCOUNT=”<DomainNameUserName>” /SQLSVCPASSWORD=”xxxxxxxxxxx”

So next time I will start with PowerShell automation with ConfigMgr

Updated with ADK install since you need this for SP1

Install Windows ADK silent

 Feature     Identifier
Application Compatibility Toolkit (ACT)     OptionId.ApplicationCompatibilityToolkit
Deployment Tools                                               OptionId.DeploymentTools
Windows (Windows PE)                                    optionId.WindowsPreinstallationEnvironment
User State Migration Tool                                 OptionId.UserStateMigrationTool

adksetup /quiet /installpath <path> /features <featureID1><featureID2>

adksetup /quick/ installpath C:programfilesadk /features OptionId.ApplicationCompatibilityToolkit OptionId.DeploymentTools optionId.WindowsPreinstallationEnvironment OptionId.UserStateMigrationTool

Windows Server 2012 deployment via PowerShell

Now with the release of Windows Server 2012, Microsoft has added a huge huge huge improvement in PowerShell, there are about 2400 cmdlets available, and Microsoft have said that there are more to tome.
Just to display how easy it is, I thought Id give a walkthrough deployment of a simple Server 2012 farm.
1x AD Domain Controller
1x RDS server session deployment with remoteapps.
1x File Server using data DE duplication and used for serving the user profile disks on the RDS server with NIC teaming. And Having 3 disks in a storage space and volumes using disk parity.

Now we are going to host all of these 3 servers on a WS2012 Hyper-V server. So first of we create a virtual network where these hosts are going to be.

First we create the switch

New-VMswitch –name vm-switch –switchtype internal

Then we create the first virtual machine and add it to that internal network.

New-VM -NewVHDPath e:vmad.vhdx -NewVHDSizeBytes 20GB -BootDevice CD -MemoryStartupBytes 2GB -Name AD
Remove-VMNetworkAdapter –VMName AD –Name “Network Adapter”
Add-VMNetworkAdapter -VMName AD -Name “Network Adapter” -SwitchName vm-switch

After that we can boot the first computer. This is going to be our domain controller, and for the purpose of this demonstration we are going to install this as a Server Core server. (Server Core is a stripped down server which basically gives you an command prompt that you can work from.
IF you wish to manage the server you either need to use sconfig, PowerShell or Server Manager

If you wish to install full GUI on it afterwards you can do this using the commands

Install-WindowsFeature server-gui-mgmt-infra,server-gui-shell -source:wim:d:sourcesinstall.wim:4 –restart

If you look at the last command there you see that I needed to specify the source (Because when I install with Server Core it removes all the unnecessary binaries from the install so you need to insert the installation media and in my case it was ISO file on the D: drive.  And I also needed to specify the install WIM file and the WIM file contains the images for Datacenter and Standard Core and with GUI so the number 4 states Datacenter with GUI.

When the server is up and running we have to configure the network, domain name and such.

New-Netipaddress –ipaddress –interfacealias «Ethernet» –Prefixlenght 24
Set-DnsClientServerAddress -InterfaceAlias “Ethernet” -ServerAddresses
Rename-computer adds

This will add the IP address of on the interface Ethernet with a subnet mask of /24
And set the DNSclient to itself (since the ADDS installs DNS as well)
Renames the computer ADDS and does a restart.

After that we install ADDS. This is the simplest setup and uses most of the default values.

Install-WindowsFeature AD-Domain-Services -IncludeManagementTools
Install-ADDSForest –DomainName test.local

This will install a ADDS domain service on this server (as well including DNS server) with the domain name of test.local
after that you have to restart the computer. When the server is finished booting, you have a fully functional domain server so now its time to install the RDS server.

New-VM -NewVHDPath e:vmrds.vhdx -NewVHDSizeBytes 20GB -BootDevice CD -MemoryStartupBytes 2GB -Name RDS
Remove-Vmnetworkadapter –Vmware RDS –name “network adapter”
Add-VMNetworkAdapter -VMName AD -Name “Network Adapter” -SwitchName vm-switch

So now we run the same create vm command as we ran before just change the name and file name.
We install a full server with GUI this time since we want the remote desktop users to get a full desktop Smile
After the server is finished installing we need to setup the basic stuff as we did before.

New-Netipaddress –ipaddress –interfacealias «Ethernet» –Prefixlenght 24
Set-DnsClientServerAddress -InterfaceAlias “Ethernet” -ServerAddresses
Rename-computer rds
Add-Computer -Domainname test.local –Credential

This time we set the DNS client to point to the AD server. And change its name and join it to the domain. After the restart we have to install the RDS server role.
As we are going to host all the server roles on the same server (not very secure or recommended but simple Smile 

New-RDSessionDeployment -ConnectionBroker test02.test.local -WebAccessServer test02.test.local -SessionHost test02.test.local



Remove-RDSessionCollection QuickSessionCollection

New-RDSessionCollection -Collectionname Statistikk -sessionhost test02.test.local -connectionbroker test02.test.local

New-RDremoteApp -Collectionname Statistikk -Alias Notepad -Filepath C:windowssystem32notepad.exe -ShowInWebAccess 1 -ConnectionBroker test02.test.local -Displayname skriveskrive

Now what this does is to 1: Install the RDS server roles and point to where each server role is located, and then restart the computer.
After that is done it removes the QuickSessionCollection as is created by default when using Quick Deployment.

Creates a new collection and points to which sessionshost and connection broker is included in this collection.
Then it publishes the application Notepad and makes in available to users via the RDweb portal.  And note I didn’t set up user profile disk on the RDS server yet since we need to set up the file server before we do that.

Now we have to create the file server, now this server needs to have multiple network cards and multiple disks in order to have High-availability.
So we start by creating the VM with multiple nics and hdds.

New-VM -NewVHDPath e:vmrds.vhdx -NewVHDSizeBytes 20GB -BootDevice CD -MemoryStartupBytes 2GB -Name FS

New-Netipaddress –ipaddress –interfacealias «Ethernet» –Prefixlenght 24
Set-DnsClientServerAddress -InterfaceAlias “Ethernet” -ServerAddresses
Rename-computer fs
Add-Computer -Domainname test.local –Credential

So here we create a fileserver virtual machine with 2 NICs and 3 virtual harddrives.
Drive 2 and 3 will be used for a storage pool with mirrored setup. Now setting up two virtual drives in a mirrored setup doesn’t make much sense but this is just to show how easy and flexible the deployment is.
Now after the server is finished installign and has joined the domain we can start by setting up the NIC teaming.

New-lbfoteam –name Test –Teammembers «ethernet 2», «ethernet» -loadbalancingalgorithm Ipaddresses –teamingmode switchindependent –teamnicname SuperPowah

You can run the command

get-lbfoteam and get-lbfoteamnic

To see the status of the team and the NIC (If its up and down or not )
Now what this does is to create a new load balance and failover team called Test, and it includes the two interfaces ethernet 2 and ethernet and the load balancing algorithm is based on IP addresses, and I choose the teaming mode switch independent and the team nice is called SuperPowah. Now that we have done that the first NIC loses it’s IP address settings so now we have to setup an IP setting for the new NIC name SuperPowah

New-Netipaddress –ipaddress –interfacealias «SuperPowah» –Prefixlenght 24
Set-DnsClientServerAddress -InterfaceAlias “SuperPowah” -ServerAddresses

Next we have to install the dedup features (Which is not installed by default. )

Install-windowsfeature FS-data-deduplication

By default the schedule for a dedup job is set to default 5 days, but that can be changed. You can also run it manually by running the command.

Start-dedupjob –volume e: –type optimization

You can view the status by running the command


If you wish to remove dedup from a disk you can run the command

Start-dedupjob –volume e: –type unoptimization

Next we create a new folder on the new share then we share the folder.

mkdir userdata on C:
new-smbshare –path c:userdata –name userdata

Now after that share is created. We have to update the RDS collection configuration

Set-RDSessionCollectionConfiguration –Collectionname statistikk –EnableUserProfileDisk –diskpath \fsuserdata –MaxProfileDiskSizeGB 40

So there you go, I will try to update this with some other scenarios as well.

GSM monitoring with SCOM 2012 SP1

As a part of Service pack 1 for SCOM 2012, Microsoft has added a new feature called GSM (Global Service Monitoring) It allows you to monitor your services from Microsoft’s datacenters.
Lets say for instance that you have a large web-shop in Europe. You can use GSM to monitor your web-shop from various location in Europe, for instance London or Paris.
This would also pinpoint for instance if you have customers in France that have trouble accessing the web-shop but not in England you can view the GSM status to see if it has trouble accessing the service as well, or it is experiencing latency issues.
This type of feature requires that you have an subscription with Microsoft (Right now this service is a beta, if you wish to try it you can sign up here –> )

The installation is pretty much next, next finish. But after that you need to go into administration –> management packs and import the management packs.
After the installation is complete, you can go into the administration tab can you can see (Global Service Monitoring) there. It might appear a bit to the far right if you have low resolution on the server, in my case I had an VM where I forgot to adjust the resolution on the screen so I didn’t see all the settings on the right. Now for the purpose of this demo I’m going to setup a regular http monitoring request to and
This just does a regular HTTP GET request to the webserver and if the service is available as it should it should respond with at 200 OK.

First of I forgot to install the Identity Provider (If you haven’t installed it, it will say so in the console.
4 This is found via Roles and Features in Server Manager
After that is done we can setup a subscription
So from here you just enter the subscriptiob ID you got from MIcrosoft.

Next you need to state if the monitor requires to go trough an Proxy Server and which of the management servers have internet access.


Then click next and choose “Start Subscription”
Now I can choose to add a monitor
In my case Im going to choose Web Application –>


Give this monitor a name and place it into a management pack.

Next we add values to what websites we want to monitor.
And im going to monitor and


Now I have to choose a location to setup this monitoring, since I’ve used London and Paris earlier in this post I’m going to continue using them Smile
So I choose Paris and add both sites, and the same for London as well.


If I choose “Change Configuration” I can change what kind of reponse code from the HTTP server  I wish to have and how often to poll it.
Click then Next –> Finish.

Now after the services are set up I can go back the the GSM pane and on the right side I can press View GSM tasks.
Here I can now see that my monitoring for and are responding as they should on regular http get requests.


You can as well setup more complex monitoring such as TCP, services etc. if you wish.

What was new at Citrix Synergy Barcelona

Wow! The last couple of days there has been a storm of Twitter activity around the Synergy conference in Barcelona (and for those that weren’t able to attend, including myself) There is a lot of new stuff happening around Citrix these days, so therefore I thought it would be a good idea to try to summarize what’s new on the Citrix front (Note that I can’t cover everything so if someone has more info regarding certain subjects or news that flew straight passed me, please send me some feedback either by adding a comment on the post or sending me an e-mail or pref twitter https//

Now I want to start first with (what I think is a huge deal)
Citrix and Cisco have now made an “alliance” what that means is still yet to come,  but you can read more about it at this news article here –>
But there will be focused on integrating Netscaler and ASA appliances, V1000 coming to XenServer, integrating Cisco Jabber client with Receiver 
And since Cisco has stopped down further production of their load-balancing module ACE (Which will be EoL in 2015)Citrix has now announced a campaign to convert from ACE to Netscaler and get 20% of regular MPX prices –> So this is indeed going to be interesting to see what happens further into the future.

Second thing is the Citrix and NetApp alliance, where NetApp is coming with own components which integrates with for instance XenServer.
You can read more about it here –>

And a couple of days before that, Citrix also announced a partnership with Palo Alto (Which is firewall provider) You can read more about it here –>

So what is Citrix doing with all these partnerships?
Well what is Citrix good at? on the networking front they have one of the best load-balancing solution (Of course Netscaler can do more then just that) but by joining forces with Cisco and Palo Alto they can get the best of three worlds within Networking. And with the alliance with NetApp they have more storage integration. So with this they will cover all of the components within an infrastructure. 
Now with partners like Windows, Cisco, NetApp, Palo Alto it is indeed going to be interesting.

Windows 8 Welcome!
Citrix has embraced Windows 8 and will therefore come with support Windows 8 very soon.

And there is already a Citrix Receiver client out in the Windows Store for Windows 8. But more will come later.and

New version of HDX Optimization pack for Microsoft Lync 1.1
This new feature includes featuring PBX/PSTN integration (Enterprise Voice), conformance to Microsoft Call Admission Control specifications, Enhanced Emergency Services support, and other valuable enhancements that truly round out this important new capability for customers planning to embrace Lync video chat at scale.

Desktop Virtualization
New VDI-IN-A-BOX 5.2 review will demonstrate optimizations for Microsoft Lync, support for the latest hypervisor technologies including Microsoft Windows 2012 HyperV, Citrix XenServer® 6.1 and VMware vSphere 5.1. The tech preview will support the Citrix Storefront for unified access to any Citrix CloudGateway delivered service.

Mobile Desktop Virtualization
Xenclient Enterprise 4.5 XenClient extends Citrix XenDesktop® FlexCast to include the management of physical PCs and secures mobile laptops for disconnected operation. The tech preview includes support for third-generation Intel® Core™ processors, Microsoft Windows 8, and ultrabooks. You can read more about it here –>

Speeding Migration to Windows 7 and Beyond – Supporting the upcoming general availability of new Microsoft technologies, the next release of Citrix AppDNA application lifecycle management software includes early access features for application testing on Windows 8, Internet Explorer 10 and Windows Server 2012.

GotoAssist to deliver “one-stop” shop for IT Support
This will provide the tools to monitor servers, and with helpdesk support tools that follows ITIL. (Much like SCOM and SCSM from MIcrosoft)

On-premise storage available! It allows you to make existing folders available for the users so you don’t have to create new folders for the users. There are also loads of more features available

  • ShareFile with StorageZones – Organizations now have the flexibility to manage their data on-premises in customer-managed StorageZones or choose Citrix-managed StorageZones (secure cloud options available in seven locations around the world) or a mix of both. With customer-managed StorageZones, IT can place data in their organization’s own datacenter to help meet unique data sovereignty and compliance requirements while optimizing performance by storing data in close proximity to the user. By defining where data should be stored, IT is able to build the most cost-effective and customized solution for their organization. Customer-managed StorageZones can be easily integrated with an organization’s existing infrastructure as it is designed to support any Common Internet File System (CIFS)-based network share.
  • ShareFile StorageZones MPX Appliance – To further simplify deployment of customer-managed StorageZones in a customer’s private datacenter, Citrix will deliver a new purpose-built StorageZones MPX appliance powered by Citrix NetScaler®. The device will add value to customer-managed StorageZones deployments by offering integrated security and optimizing networks and will work effortlessly with existing storage environments.
  • StorageZone Connectors – The company’s follow-me data strategy now extends beyond the data stored in ShareFile. Working in conjunction with customer-managed StorageZones, StorageZone Connectors let IT create a secure connection between the ShareFile service and user data stored in existing network shares. This innovative capability makes it easy for end users to securely access their work documents on mobile devices through ShareFile apps for iPad and iPhone (support for other devices coming soon), regardless of where the data is actually stored. This approach extends all the simplicity and mobile access benefits of ShareFile to existing data storage platforms, without the need for data migration. Using the new ShareFile StorageZone Connectors, it is now possible to securely view and share documents from network file shares, which otherwise cannot be accessed outside of corporate networks or on mobile devices.
  • On-demand Sync – The new on-demand sync capability of ShareFile for Windows is designed for pooled and hosted shared virtual desktop environments, including those powered by Citrix XenDesktop® and Citrix XenApp®. Typically in such environments, users sync all their data every time they log into their virtual desktops, putting substantial load on the network, bandwidth and storage. With on-demand sync, users will continue to view all their files and folders within their virtual desktop just like they do today. However, files download and sync only when the user views, edits, saves or shares, resulting in huge reductions in Input/Output Operations Per Second (IOPS) and slashing storage requirements.
  • Windows 8 Compatibility – Citrix announced availability of compatible versions of ShareFile Sync for Windows and Microsoft Outlook Plug-in.
  • ShareFile for Microsoft Azure – To provide more cloud storage options to customers, Citrix announced plans to deliver Citrix-managed StorageZones onMicrosoft Azure in 2013. This integration will allow ShareFile customers to leverage all the reliable and powerful capabilities of Microsoft Azure by letting them designate data across a seamless global network of Microsoft-managed datacenters. These additional locations will also allow IT to place data close to users to enhance performance.

Present content from the IPad with Citrix GoToMeeting

  • Launch a meeting and invite attendees with just a few taps.
  • Change presenter so another person can show their screen.
  • Present your content by simply browsing to it or opening email attachments (iPad only).
  • Easily share content from ShareFile or Dropbox during a meeting (iPad only).
  • Brainstorm with the onscreen highlighter and whiteboard (iPad only).

Secure E-mail and Web on mobile with @WorkMail @WorkWeb apps
Which allows secure e-mail reading and surfing from iOS and Android.

Excalibur and Merlin releases, which is the next release of Avalon

New GoToMyPc
Access to remote PC from Kindle Fire and Android Phones or Tablets.