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Problem with Windows file associations (ftype) after update from VDA 1811 Server to VDA 2003 Server

Simon Lichtlein




in my company we needed to upgrade from an "older" Citrix client and server components to the mostly newest ones.


In advance: The "update" is not a real update, like installing over/overwriting the installed application. When we create an update in our Software-Management-System (Ivanti DSM) the old application will first be uninstalled and then the new version gets a clean install.


Update from VDA 1811 Server to VDA 2003 Server on a Windows Server 2016

"C:\Program Files\Citrix\XenDesktopVdaSetup\XenDesktopVdaSetup.exe" /removeall /quiet /noreboot
VDAServerSetup_2003.exe /NOREBOOT /QUIET (and more parameters like /ENABLE_HDX_PORTS or /DISABLEEXPERIENCEMETRICS)


We had many problems with the update. The new version updates the VCRedist to a newer version than described in the documentation, it installs the Citrix Workspace even if you do not "allow" it directly and then installs it in an other location than the default Citrix Workspace location.. 

But the largest problem are the Windows file associations.


The VDA 2003 changed the path of its own "system32" folder
1811: C:\Program Files (x86)\Citrix\System32
2003: C:\Program Files (x86)\Citrix\HDX\bin


This alone is not a problem if Citrix would have changed all dependencies on this path. The file association for htmlfile, http, https, MMS, pnm, rtsp, rtspi are all linked to the old path!
cmd.exe ftype htmlfile
htmlfile="C:\Program Files (x86)\Citrix\system32\iexplore.exe" "%1"


For some other file associations Citrix managed to change it from the old path:
Citrix.AssocFile.ASX, Citrix.AssocProtocol.MMS, Citrix.Protocol.RTSP
(see the attached textfiles)


If we use a "clean" Windows Server and install the VDA 2003 directly, the file associations get changed correctly from
"C:\Program Files\Internet Explorer\iexplore.exe" %1
"C:\Program Files (x86)\Citrix\HDX\bin\iexplorer.exe" "%1"


Our workaround is to change the file association in the installation script.


We've been working for months on updating all our Citrix apps to the "newest" version, because we need the Microsoft Teams optimization.
Now i know why we kept running on the older versions for years..


I will also create an overview of all the problems we ran into because for many oft hem i didn't find a solution.

Has anyone of you run into such problems?

ftype_VDA1811.txt ftype_VDA2003.txt

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