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WEM Folder Redirection - Windows 2019


constantinos efthymiades

Question

Hello fellow citrix admins, I have the following issue:

WEM folder redirection does not work on specific folders for Windows Server 2019 image, even though we apply the WEM policies as follows: "Policies and Profiles" --> "Folder Redirection" image.thumb.png.d67dcb3ff82079a86cce9e5c7e33eda1.pngimage.thumb.png.4a6dc2f7e2b0a6bff1846b5b41ecbc7c.png

*Checked boxes, should redirects folders to the "data folder" of the user. but as per my screenshot above, AppData and Downloads are not redirected correctly BUT "WEM Resultant Actions Viewer" shows it redirects (AppData) & Downloads folder correctly. User if save something in Download folders, it stores in "C:/" which in our case is wrong.

 

Infrastructure:

  1. Citrix Components 1912 CU4
  2. VDA 1912 CU6
  3. WEM 2305
  4. PVS 1912 CU4

 

Troubleshooting done so far:

  1. Upgrade to the latest WEM version 2305
  2. Disable AV
  3. Insert VDA to an OU where no GPOs were applied
  4. Tried SingleSessionOS and MultiSessionOS 
  5. Tried with different machine catalog 
  6. Tried with new WEM configuration Set
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9 answers to this question

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9 hours ago, Konstantinos Efthymiadi said:

What is your though on the below screenshot? (If you don't redirect AppData, roaming Teams folder will keep increase uncontrollably with the end result of VM disruption)

If you have a look at the articles above, it will show you what you need to include/exclude in your profiles to keep them nice and lean. A lot of it is log crud so you can streamline it. You will find it's the same as anything else you bring into the environment, just need to tweak it as you go

 

You can also support teams without the need for containers. Containers come with their own considerations and impacts so you don't have to run towards them unless you have a firm need. Here is a bit of a read from a while back https://jkindon.com/the-user-environment-management-puzzle/

 

You can track changes to UPM capabilities here, both file and container based https://jkindon.com/the-evolution-of-citrix-profile-management/

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Firstly, WEM is probably doing you a favor by not redirecting that amount of folders - noone should be redirecting things like AppData etc anymore, that's asking for problems. So if we focus on desktop and documents and pretend the rest isn't happening... ? 

 

What path are you using for the redirection, we will need to understand what WEM is being asked to do

 

Additionally, is anything else in the environment doing folder redirection, or has it done so previously?

 

What do your shell folder keys show you in the registry as it relates to folder redirection?

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12 minutes ago, James Kindon said:

Firstly, WEM is probably doing you a favor by not redirecting that amount of folders - noone should be redirecting things like AppData etc anymore, that's asking for problems. So if we focus on desktop and documents and pretend the rest isn't happening... ? 

 

What path are you using for the redirection, we will need to understand what WEM is being asked to do

 

Additionally, is anything else in the environment doing folder redirection, or has it done so previously?

 

What do your shell folder keys show you in the registry as it relates to folder redirection?

Thanks James for your prompt reply. If there is a "Redirection Option" in WEM, it shouldn't make us "a favor" since its given (talking about AppData). 

To your though of "what WEM is being asked to do" simple when I open user`s wem.log file, it show an exception with no further detail.

Nothing else does folder redirection since we have already have a Win2012R2 image that works fine for us but since 2012 going EOL we need to upgrade it to 2019.

image.thumb.png.e0881d185da83b4bf6bf64498bd6410f.png

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14 hours ago, constantinos efthymiades said:

Thanks James for your prompt reply. If there is a "Redirection Option" in WEM, it shouldn't make us "a favor" since its given (talking about AppData).

Microsoft have a policy, Citrix have a policy, WEM has the same setting -> doesn't mean it should be used. Microsoft also has policies for roaming profiles, UPD etc. All sorts of legacy tech and config items. Just because they are there, doesn't mean they should be used in modern deployments.

Folder redirection for AppData is a relic and should never be used in modern environments. Half of the other things don't even come into play in a modern world (Links, Favorites, Contacts etc). Searches should never be redirected (not even relevant for a modern OS). I'd suggest you don't take what you did in 2012 R2 and just carry it over to 2019, so much has changed.

 

But getting back to your issue of things not working...

 

14 hours ago, constantinos efthymiades said:

o your though of "what WEM is being asked to do" simple when I open user`s wem.log file, it show an exception with no further detail

I am asking what you have configured your paths as for desktop and document redirection in WEM? What variables/hashtags are you using? And does the user have access to the appropriate paths? (WEM Actions in the user context)

 

Can you share any logs?

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On 8/26/2023 at 1:43 AM, James Kindon said:

Microsoft have a policy, Citrix have a policy, WEM has the same setting -> doesn't mean it should be used. Microsoft also has policies for roaming profiles, UPD etc. All sorts of legacy tech and config items. Just because they are there, doesn't mean they should be used in modern deployments.

Folder redirection for AppData is a relic and should never be used in modern environments. Half of the other things don't even come into play in a modern world (Links, Favorites, Contacts etc). Searches should never be redirected (not even relevant for a modern OS). I'd suggest you don't take what you did in 2012 R2 and just carry it over to 2019, so much has changed.

 

But getting back to your issue of things not working...

 

I am asking what you have configured your paths as for desktop and document redirection in WEM? What variables/hashtags are you using? And does the user have access to the appropriate paths? (WEM Actions in the user context)

 

Can you share any logs?

Thank James for your time replying to this conversation. User wem logs are only giving us an "exception" and nothing else. We have opened a Citrix Support Ticket and case have been raised to R&D department. 

Additionally, we have observed the following behavior:

  • If AppData are checked in WEM, AppData and Downloads folder are not redirected and are been stored to local disk C:/user/%username% (the rest folders are redirected correctly e.g.: Documents, Desktop, Picture, Music etc)
  • If AppData are NOT checked in WEM, Downloads folder is been redirected correctly and AppData folder is stored locally C:/user/%username% (the rest of the folders are redirected correctly)
  • If we redirect AppData folder through Citrix Studio Policies, AppData are redirected correctly but there is a duplication of the folders to it. This action cause several questions, 
    • Will these duplication be incremental time to time? (in other words, will this folder duplication add up on storage?)
    • Will these duplication keep multiplying when users keep logon/logoff?
    • Will they cause any other issue?

Duplication of the folder does not satisfy our customer since Teams application is store in it. Therefore, we are talking approx. about 500MB of space per user.

 

At your disposal and thank again for your time to respond.

 

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3 hours ago, Konstantinos Efthymiadi said:

If AppData are NOT checked in WEM, Downloads folder is been redirected correctly and AppData folder is stored locally C:/user/%username% (the rest of the folders are redirected correctly)

Sounds perfect. Again, AppData should not be redirected.

 

3 hours ago, Konstantinos Efthymiadi said:

Duplication of the folder does not satisfy our customer since Teams application is store in it.

One the key application examples of why AppData should not be redirected. Teams slams AppData in not just capacity, but in writes. Which is why it should live locally in the profile and controlled appropriately by either container, or file-based profiles (like anything else that writes that heavily into AppData):

3 hours ago, Konstantinos Efthymiadi said:

If we redirect AppData folder through Citrix Studio Policies, AppData are redirected correctly but there is a duplication of the folders to it

If you are determined to run forward, then I would suggest looking at permissions. Smells a little like both WEM and the Citrix policy engine is struggling with permissions. That would be my guess, but I've spent almost 10 years turning that crud off in badly performing customer environments (hell I even wrote a script to do it https://github.com/JamesKindon/Citrix/blob/master/SetShellFolderDefaults.ps1), so it could well be something else in the mix - fact that documents and desktop working is good.

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I agree with everything above here.  You shouldn't redirect AppData out of your profile.  This was an old hold over, and is just there for legacy support.

 

Instead utilize UPM containerization for that portion of the profile.  It will stay on the network, and all applications that utilize AppData will work properly.

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22 hours ago, James Kindon said:

Sounds perfect. Again, AppData should not be redirected.

 

One the key application examples of why AppData should not be redirected. Teams slams AppData in not just capacity, but in writes. Which is why it should live locally in the profile and controlled appropriately by either container, or file-based profiles (like anything else that writes that heavily into AppData):

If you are determined to run forward, then I would suggest looking at permissions. Smells a little like both WEM and the Citrix policy engine is struggling with permissions. That would be my guess, but I've spent almost 10 years turning that crud off in badly performing customer environments (hell I even wrote a script to do it https://github.com/JamesKindon/Citrix/blob/master/SetShellFolderDefaults.ps1), so it could well be something else in the mix - fact that documents and desktop working is good.

Thank you James again. 

What is your though on the below screenshot? (If you don't redirect AppData, roaming Teams folder will keep increase uncontrollably with the end result of VM disruption)

image.thumb.png.ee0c4147ee39aa71eb2771e5c01675e4.png

Thank again for taking the time to reply on this conversation.

image.png

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If you use containerization, it will just mount as a VHDX over the network.  It won't roam locally so you won't run into any performance lag as that gets copied locally with traditional UPM roaming.

 

Also, setup folder exclusions on the profile to select temporary data that you don't want to keep in the profile, and instead throw it away after the session ends.

 

See my article here about FSLogix and common exclusions that I utilize.  The same settings can apply for UPM as well.

 

Keeping FSLogix Profiles small – Jeff Riechers Technical Site

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