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PoC Guide: Remote PC Access with Citrix DaaS

  • Contributed By: Steve Beals


This Proof of Concept guide is designed to help you quickly configure Citrix DaaS to include Remote PC Access in your environment. At the end of this Proof of Concept guide you are able to give users who are working remotely access to the on-premises physical desktops using Citrix DaaS. You are able to let your users access their on-premises workstations on any device of their choice without having to connect over a VPN.

Conceptual Architecture



In this Proof of Concept guide, you experience the role of a Citrix administrator and you create a connection between your organization’s on-premises deployment of physical desktops and Citrix DaaS. You provide access to those on-premises workstations to an end user with Citrix DaaS using Citrix Workspace.

This guide showcases how to perform the following actions:

  1. Create a Citrix Cloud account (if you don’t have one already)
  2. Obtain a Citrix DaaS account
  3. Create a new Resource Location (your office) and install the Citrix Cloud Connectors in it
  4. Install Citrix Virtual Delivery Agent on the Remote PC Access hosts
  5. Create a Machine Catalog in Citrix DaaS
  6. Create a Delivery Group
  7. Launch a session from Citrix Workspace


Host machine requirements

The in-office workstations that your users must connect to are Windows single-session operating system machines, and are joined to a Windows Active Directory (AD) domain.

Citrix Cloud Connector

To install the Citrix Cloud Connectors in your environment, you require (at least two) Windows Server 2012 R2 or later server machines/VMs. You require static IPs for these two machines. Windows installation and domain join of these machines must have been done in advance. The system requirements for the Cloud Connectors are here. Review the guidance on the cloud connector installation here. The machine the Citrix Cloud Connector runs on must have network access to all the physical machines that are to be made available on the internet via the Citrix Workspace.

Some requirements for Citrix Cloud Connector installation (installer performs checks for these) are:

The Citrix Cloud Connector machine must have outbound Internet access on port 443, and port 80 to only *.digicert.com. The port 80 requirement is for X.509 certificate validation. See more info here

Microsoft .NET Framework 4.7.2 or later must be pre-installed on the machine

Time on the machine must be synced with UTC

This guide provides detailed instructions on how to configure your environment including office workstations, connecting your on-premises setup up to Citrix Cloud. As a Citrix Cloud administrator, you enable your users to connect to their office workstations remotely with Citrix DaaS.

Create a Citrix Cloud Account

If you are an existing Citrix Cloud customer, skip to the next section: Request Citrix DaaS Trial. Ensure that you have an active Citrix Cloud account. If your account has expired, contact your account manager to enable it.

If you need to sign up for a new Citrix Cloud account please follow the step by step instructions here: Signing up for Citrix Cloud

Request a Citrix DaaS Trial

  1. Sign in to your Citrix Cloud account
  2. From the management console, select Request Trial for the service you want to trial, in this case Citrix DaaS.

Note For some services you must request a demo from a Citrix sales representative before you can try out the service. Requesting a demo allows you to discuss your organization’s cloud service needs with a Citrix sales representative. Also, the sales representative ensures you have all the information needed to use the service successfully.

When your trial is approved and ready to use, Citrix sends you an email notification.

Create a new Resource Location

  1. While the service is being provisioned, we can keep going. Return to the Citrix Cloud administration page. Scroll up, under Resource Locations Click Edit or Add New


  2. Click Add a Resource Location or + Resource Location (if there is already a resource location)


  3. Click the ellipses on the top right of the new resource location. Click Manage Resource Location.


  4. Enter a new name of the New Resource Location. Click Confirm.


  5. Under the newly created resource location click + Cloud Connectors


  6. Click Download. Click Run once the download completes.


  7. Citrix Cloud connectivity test successful message is displayed. Click Close. Note: If the test fails, check the following link to resolve the issue


  8. Click Sign In and sign in to Citrix Cloud to authenticate the Citrix Cloud Connector.


  9. From the drop-down lists select the appropriate Customer and Resource Location (Resource location drop-down list is not displayed if there is only one resource location). Click Install


  10. Once the installation completes, a service connectivity test runs. Let it complete and you will again see a successful result. Click Close


  11. Click Refresh all to refresh the Resource Location page in Citrix Cloud


  12. Click Cloud Connectors


  13. The newly added Cloud Connector is listed. Repeat the last 8 steps to install another Cloud Connector in the Resource Location on the second Windows server machine that you had prepared.


Install Citrix Virtual Delivery Agent on the Remote PC Access hosts

We now install the Citrix Virtual Desktops, Virtual Delivery Agent on the physical machines that we are going to give users access to. If you want to install the Citrix Virtual Delivery Agent using scripts or a deployment tool like SCCM follow the appropriate links. Ensure to use the install command line parameters as shown in the following instructions.

  1. Connect to the physical machine via RDP as the a local admin.


  2. Open Citrix.com in your browser. Hover over Sign In and click My Citrix account


  3. Sign in with your username and password. Click Downloads.


  4. From the Select a product... drop-down list, select Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops


  5. In the page that opens, select the latest version of Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops 7 (without the .x at the end)


  6. Scroll down to Components that are on the product ISO but also packaged separately. Click chevron to expand the section. Click Download File under the Single-session OS Virtual Delivery Agent version


  7. Check “I have read and certify that I comply with the above Export Control Laws” checkbox, if you agree. Click Accept. The download begins.


  8. Save the file. When the download completes move to the next step.

  9. Search for PowerShell from the Start menu search bar and Click Run as administrator


  10. Traverse to the directory that you downloaded the installer in.


  11. Run the following command. (Replace the name of the executable with the one you downloaded and the cloud connector FQDN). Note: The Citrix Profile Management and the Citrix Profile Management WMI plug-in are essential for monitoring and Citrix Analytics to collect data from the endpoint, so that logon duration, session resiliency and UX score can be reported. VDAWorkstationSetup_version.exe /quiet /remotepc /includeadditional “Citrix User Profile Manager”,“Citrix User Profile Manager WMI Plugin” /controllers “cloudconnecotrFQDN” /enable_hdx_ports /noresume /noreboot


  12. Wait for the installation to complete. Reboot the physical machine.


Repeat the procedure for all the physical hosts that you want to make available remotely.

Create a machine catalog in Citrix DaaS

Use Citrix DaaS to create a catalog of the physical machines

  1. Once the trial is approved, Log in to Citrix Cloud from your local machine. Scroll to My Services, and locate DaaS service tile, click Manage


  2. The service overview page is displayed.


  3. In the left menu, Click Machine Catalogs


  4. Click Create Machine Catalog.


  5. Select Remote PC Access. Click Next


  6. Select I want users to connect to same(static) desktop each time they login. Click Next


  7. Click Add Machine Accounts or click Add OUs based on whether you want to add machines or OUs (all the physical machines in the OU). In our example we are adding a machine.


  8. In the Select Computers pop up, enter the first few characters of the machine hostname you want to add. Click Check Names


  9. If the search returns more than one machine name, choose the ones you want to add (hold down the CTRL key to choose more than one). Once you have selected all the machines. Click OK


  10. Repeat the last 2 steps to add all the machines you want to add to the catalog. Then click Save in the Select Computers dialog


  11. From the Select the Zone and minimum functional level for this catalog drop-down list, select 1811 (or newer). Click Next


  12. Leave the default select on Scopes selection, Click Next


  13. Leave the default select on WEM selection, Click Next


  14. Do not select Enable VDA upgrade selection, Click Next


  15. Enter a name for the machine catalog. Click Finish. You are returned to the Machine Catalogs page.


Create a Delivery group

  1. From the left side menu click Delivery Groups to start creating your delivery group.


  2. From the Actions menu(right side), click Create Delivery Group.


  3. Select the catalog you created earlier. Click Next


  4. Specify which users can access these desktops. For our example we assign the desktops to a group of users, that have a 1:1 mapping for each of the machines in the delivery group for enhanced security. Click the Restrict use to this Delivery Group to the following users’ radio button. Click Add


  5. Add domain users / groups that you want to have access to the delivery group. You can check their names by clicking Check Names. Once you are done click OK


  6. If the search returns more than one user name, choose the ones you want to add (hold down the CTRL key to choose more than one). Once you have selected all the users that you want to add. Click OK


  7. Repeat the last 2 steps for all the users that you want to add to the delivery group. Then click Save in the Select Users or Groups dialog. Click Next in the Create Delivery group dialog


  8. Click Add


  9. In the Add Desktops Assignment Rule dialog. Enter Display Name for the delivery group. Click Add and add the same or a subset of the users you chose earlier again. Ensure Enable desktop assignment rule checkbox is checked. Click OK


  10. Click Next


  11. Click Next


  12. Select the appropriate License Type. Click Next


  13. Enter a Delivery Group name. Click Finish


  14. Once the delivery group is created, the Delivery Group Manage link looks like this. Click the Desktops tab in the Details section. Click x machine(s) is/are not assigned to a user.


  15. Select the machine you want to assign to a user. Click Change User from the Action menu


  16. Click Add


  17. Search for the user you want to assign to the machine using the Check Names button. Once found, click OK. Click Save.


Repeat the steps for the rest of the machines to assign each user to their physical machine.

Note: The last 4 steps are needed, if you want to assign specific users to specific desktops, else the users are auto assigned to the next available desktop in the delivery group or you can use PowerShell scripts to perform the assignment.

Launch the session from Citrix Workspace

  1. Open the Workspace URL you had saved earlier (from Citrix Cloud) to gain access to the Citrix Workspace. Log in as a domain user you have assigned the remote desktop to.


  2. If this is the first time you are launching a session from the browser, you may get the following pop-up. Ensure Citrix Workspace App is installed and click Detect Workspace


  3. Click View All Desktops. Click the Remote PC Access delivery group


  4. The session launches giving the user access to the remote physical PC



The guide walked you through connecting your physical desktops in your office to the Citrix DaaS, so users access them remotely. You learned how use Citrix DaaS to allow users to access their desktops on any device from any location. The process included how to install a Citrix Cloud Connector in your on-premises office location, installing Citrix Virtual Delivery Agents on the desktop machines. Creating a machine catalog from those machines and then a delivery group. Assigning users to their machines and then allowing them to connect to those desktops using Citrix Workspace app.

To learn more about Citrix solutions for Business Continuity, read the Tech Brief

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