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Is Login PI ready for Nutanix AHV? Yes.

Nutanix AHV

Over the last week I’ve had the opportunity to install Login PI within the Nutanix Ready lab. Let’s dig into the configuration, and some points I observed. The purpose of Nutanix Ready is to confirm that a software solution is capable of being operated on their platforms. This demonstrates compatibility and capacity.

The whole process of certification was interesting, and I walked away with some cool data points as well. To get everyone up to speed Nutanix has a hypervisor called AHV. Nutanix describes this as:

“Nutanix Acropolis hyperconverged infrastructure includes a license-free hypervisor, AHV, with a powerful open runtime environment that delivers invisible virtualization capabilities for a cloud focused world. In Acropolis, virtualization is an integral part of the infrastructure stack rather than a standalone product that needs to be bought, deployed and managed separately.”

The management of Nutanix based solutions are performed through Prism.

Nutanix AHV

View from Prism

For our purposes, we wanted to install Login PI within their development lab and demonstrate an operational Login PI over a 24hr period. During that we would not only demonstrate the functionality of our software, but also the baseline user experience for delivery of Citrix Desktops on their hypervisor with their management platform. I wanted to keep my Citrix deployment simple.

My configuration of my Citrix and Login PI environment was as follows:

VSI-CTXDCDBSFMGMT01
1 x Server 2012 R2 – Delivery
Controller / Database Server
SQL Server 2016 / StoreFront /
Management
( 8vCPU / 16 GB )
VSI-CTXSRV01
1 x Server 2012 R2 – VDA
(2vCPU / 4 GB )
VSI-PIMGMT
1 x PI Management Console –
SQL Server
(8vCPU / 16 GB )
Description:
Citrix deployment of XenApp /
XenDesktop
Description:
Server based OS with VDA
deployed. Untuned.
Description:
VSI Management server,
and launcher

My deployment was split between two physical hypervisors. In one cluster.

Nutanix AHV

 

Nutanix AHV
Filtered to my VSI machines, for resource utilization, during operation.

So what do things look like from the user session perspective?

Let's start PI up.

Login PI
Hover over the Latency average for the configuration, 30MS ICA protocol latency.

We found it a bit unusual that the protocol latency was 30ms. This was on the same host, in the same data center. There would obviously be network to traverse, but the 30ms surprised me. I’m not sure this was actually negatively impact the users perception of the session because it’s still well under the 150ms recommended by the vendors. I do wonder what the responsiveness would be of this system under any type of user load.

Login PI

 

Login PI
Average user latency experience, trending.

Login PI
Login times. Escalation after running for a few hours. Will the trend continue?

One of the interesting findings was that Login time normally almost cyclically was a few MS faster sometimes. I wonder what the cause on this could be? Trending upward will this continue?

Login PI
Zoomed in. Downward spikes @ an interval.

Login PI
Our workload was very simple. Remote into the system through StoreFront,
and launch a bunch of Windows OS based applications, and monitor their start times.

Login PI is also capable of monitoring the user experience with applications as well. One of our default application workloads included Windows OS applications. We were monitoring only a short period and we were already seeing interesting results, but it’s just a demonstration. We could customize this to include applications which the deployment finds interesting. EMR solutions, CRMs, Trading platforms, etc. We can then also wrap these application actions in custom timers, and create a baseline for the user experience with the apps at a transaction level.

Conclusion

Assuming this deployment was rolled into production after vetting maximum user density we could continue to monitor these elements or additional application actions. As major changes to underlying infrastructure, Windows update, AV, applications are performed if we are continuing to execute the workload we can directly correlate the impact on the user. We could also again adapt the workload to include looking up a patient record within an EMR, and monitor the user experience with this transaction and alert when this isn’t functional due to unplanned changes.

More information about the Login VSI ready for Nutanix status can be found here

P.S - Also, anyone at Citrix want to comment on expected ICA protocol latency?

 

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About the author

Brian is a Senior Support Engineer at Login VSI, where he supports customers and partners globally with their technical issues while also providing consultation and product insight. He resides in Baltimore with his wife and 90lb pit, and enjoys playing/yelling at competitive video games, working on cars, reading up on the latest technologies, and listening to rap music.


Tags: How-to, Login PI, Nutanix

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