Installing a MetaFrame Server

Installing a MetaFrame Server

This section describes the installation of Citrix MetaFrame XP Presentation Server. This includes the establishment of the components described earlier in this chapter and the initial configuration steps.

Installation Prerequisites

The installation of Citrix MetaFrame XP Presentation Server and the associated communication protocol ICA requires the logon of a user with local administrator permissions on an existing terminal server. If the use of Novell NDS is required, the Novell client must be installed and configured on the target server first.

To install Citrix MetaFrame XP Presentation Server on Windows Server 2003, the Terminal Services must be configured in application server mode. Depending on the configuration type, the additional system files of a MetaFrame server consume up to 250 megabytes (MB) of disk space. The Management Console for MetaFrame XP requires additional 50 MB, and the complete set of all ICA client software modules consumes another 150 MB.


If the drive letters have to be changed on the server, this can be done from the autorun screen of the installation routine or from the separate program DriveRemap.exe. Changing server drive letters will be described later in this chapter.

If you wish to use Microsoft Access (Microsoft Jet Engine) as the IMA database, during the installation of the first MetaFrame server of a farm, the installation process is able to create the Access database automatically. Otherwise, if one of the other supported database engines is desired, the IMA database has to be generated manually. For all other supported database platforms, a fully operable installation must be provided on a dedicated server. Creating the new database for the server farm requires appropriate permissions. This is why the login credentials of the database owner must be available during the installation of the first MetaFrame server of a farm. Depending on the database platform, some additional requirements must be met.

  • Microsoft SQL Server 2000 Desktop Engine (MSDE) MSDE must be present on the same server where Citrix MetaFrame XP Presentation Server is installed. It is very important to follow the installation instruction very carefully to comply with requirements concerning instance name and password of the MSDE service. If the instructions are followed, the database will be created properly during the installation of the MetaFrame server.

  • Microsoft SQL Server 2000 or Microsoft SQL Server 7 SP2 or later The Microsoft Data Access Components (MDAC) 2.61 SP1 or later and the ODBC driver version or later must be present on the target server where Citrix MetaFrame XP Presentation Server is installed.

  • Oracle 7.3.4 or later The Oracle client must be present on the target server where Citrix MetaFrame XP Presentation Server is installed.

  • IBM DB2 7.2 FixPak 5 or later On the target server where Citrix MetaFrame XP Presentation Server will be installed, the DB2 run-time client must be present and FixPak 5 must be applied. In addition, FixPak 5 must also be applied on the database server.


    If one of the components mentioned in the preceding list was installed during the target platform preparation, a system reboot is recommended before installing Citrix MetaFrame XP Presentation Server.

The exact description for the generation of the IMA database on different platforms will not be given in the context of this book. The installation manual that comes with the product Citrix MetaFrame XP Presentation Server highlights this topic in great detail.

During the installation of a MetaFrame server that is supposed to join an existing farm, the following information is needed:

  • To establish an indirect connection to the IMA database, the administrator needs to know the name of the MetaFrame server that serves as a gateway.

  • The logon information for read and write permissions on the IMA database is required.

  • The logon information of a fully privileged MetaFrame administrator is needed to be able to join the existing farm.


    It is definitely not recommended to install Citrix MetaFrame XP Presentation Server on a dedicated database server or on a Windows Domain Controller. A user without administrator permissions should never be able to log on interactively on any of these platforms. With the standard setting, the security policies on servers prevent users from performing such a logon. If, however, a database server or a Windows Domain Controller takes on an additional role as a MetaFrame server, the security settings have to be modified massively. This modification will result in substantially reduced stability of the system.

Going Through the Installation

If all prerequisites described earlier are met and all needed information is available, the installation process can start. After inserting the MetaFrame installation CD, the start screen is loaded automatically, or it must be initialized manually by the starting the Autorun.exe program. As an alternative, you can also install the Microsoft Installer package of Citrix MetaFrame XP Presentation Server (MFXP001.msi) by using the Msiexec.exe command. The MSI file for 32-bit Windows platforms is located in the \MetaFrame\NET32 folder on the MetaFrame CD.

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Figure 9-4: The start screen for the installation of Citrix MetaFrame XP Presentation Server.

Following is a list of all installation steps when the Install or update MetaFrame XP Server option is selected from the start screen. Choosing this option opens a new window where you can select to the option of installing Service Pack 3 or Feature Release 3. Only the selection of Feature Release 3 leads to a reasonable result for Windows Server 2003 because there was no predecessor of the Citrix product that could be installed on this platform.

  1. The first window of the installation wizard for Feature Release 3 contains a welcome message, a recommendation to stop all other programs, and a copyright message.

  2. The next step shows a license agreement. To continue the installation, you have to confirm that you agree with the stated conditions.

  3. The following window allows the selection of the product family levels: XPe (Enterprise Edition), XPa (Advanced Edition), or XPs (Standard Edition).

  4. According to the available license, a product type can be selected. Besides regular licenses, this can also be an evaluation license.

  5. At this point, the list of components is shown, which depends on the product family level selected previously. If you want to, you can prevent individual components from being installed, as shown in Figure 9-5.

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    Figure 9-5: Selection of components during the installation of Citrix MetaFrame XP Presentation Server, Enterprise Edition.

  6. If the ICA Win32 pass-through client is to be installed on the MetaFrame server, that option can be selected here. This client allows the pass-through of logon credentials to another MetaFrame server and is mandatory for shadowing functionality used in user sessions. These settings may also be modified after installation. This will be described later in this chapter in the section “ICA Clients and Program Neighborhood.”

  7. The next window offers the choice of creating a new server farm or of having this server join an existing farm.

  8. Depending on the selection in the last window, all required information to create a new farm or to join an existing farm is now collected. This also includes the configuration of zones.

  9. The next window asks for the logon information of the first farm administrator. In most cases, this will be an existing user with administrator permissions.

  10. At this point, a window appears that contains the basic configuration options for shadowing functionalities. If shadowing is prohibited in this window, you won’t be able to change this setting later. Additionally, remote control can be prohibited, notification of a user before his or her session is shadowed can be enforced, and logging can be activated here.

  11. With standard settings, the Citrix XML service uses port 80 to communicate with clients. At this point of the installation, the standard port number can be changed. Changing this setting will also affect other settings in a MetaFrame environment, which also will need to be changed.

  12. A final configuration window summarizes all selected settings and allows the final initialization of the installation process.

  13. After the installation completes successfully, a message window shows the final status.

  14. Now the former terminal server needs to be rebooted to become the new MetaFrame server.


    It is possible to completely install Citrix MetaFrame XP Presentation Server without a valid user license. However, in this case it might be impossible to connect to the MetaFrame server from an ICA client. The behavior depends on whether the newly installed MetaFrame server joined a farm with valid pooled licenses or if it is the first server of a farm. A more accurate description of Citrix licensing will follow in Chapter 10, in which the Management Console for MetaFrame XP will be introduced.

System and Start Menu Modifications

If the installation of a MetaFrame server was successfully accomplished, no obvious changes are apparent after restart except for the existence of some new tools in the Start menu. Only a more exacting analysis evidences additional MetaFrame components.

The new MetaFrame processes are found in the Task Manager, as either system or a user context. Some of the processes that run in the system context represent Windows services. Here’s a closer look at the MetaFrame system services.

  • Independent Management Architecture (ImaSrv.exe) The IMA service controls all communication that uses the IMA protocol.

  • MetaFrame COM Server (Mfcom.exe) The COM Server service offers access to a MetaFrame farm by providing a standardized programming interface. On the basis of this interface, and with the help of a Software Development Kit (SDK) provided by Citrix, new tools to control MetaFrame server can be developed.

  • Citrix WMI Service (Ctxwmisvc.exe) This Windows service provides the Citrix WMI classes. Accordingly, WMI calls allow the control of MetaFrame servers from command-line scripts.

  • Citrix XML Service (Ctxxmlss.exe) This Windows service handles all XML data requests originating from Citrix components. This service is used by all clients that need information about the current settings of MetaFrame servers, such as published applications for certain users or user groups.

  • ADF Installer Service (AgentSVC.exe) This Windows service provides support for the installation of ADF packages, which can be created by using the Citrix Packager.

  • Encryption Service (Encsvc.exe) This Windows service ensures a secure communication between ICA clients and a MetaFrame server by applying an RC5 128-bit encryption.

  • Resource Manager Mail (MailService.exe) This Windows service provides e-mail support for the Citrix Resource Manager. If configured accordingly, it can send out administrator messages, which are created automatically after predefined system events.

Depending on product family and configuration, not all of these Windows services are present on a MetaFrame server. Even if they are installed on the server, not all Windows services will be started automatically during the system initialization.

Besides the Windows services, drivers responsible for client drive mapping, session administration, compression, encryption, and keyboard support are also copied into the %SystemRoot%\system32 folder. Additionally, the appropriate files are copied onto the system for the specific treatment of printers and the required modification of the Microsoft Graphical Identification and Notification (GINA) DLL.


The Wfshell.exe process is executed for each user in its own security context. It affects the behavior of the desktops or the behavior of individual desktop elements (named Shell). Moreover, the process is responsible for control of the virtual channels of the ICA protocol. In this context, an adaptation of the associated desktop elements in the background is necessary to allow published applications in seamless windows. Even if not visible, the Windows Manager of the MetaFrame server still controls each of the published applications. If the user changes the size of the published application window, this results in a modification of the size of the desktop behind it.

Apart from the system environment changes on a terminal server, the installation of Citrix MetaFrame XP Presentation Server also creates several new items in the Start menu. These new items refer to the necessary administrative tools.

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Figure 9-6: The Start menu of a terminal server with Citrix MetaFrame XP Presentation Server installed.

Items in the Citrix menu group will be listed here briefly. A more detailed description of all important tools from this list will be provided in Chapter 10.

  • Management Console The Management Console for MetaFrame XP is the central management tool for MetaFrame environments.

  • Installation Manager\Packager Packaging utility for the installation management.

  • MetaFrame XP\Citrix SSL Relay Configuration Tool Utility to create and configure a Secure Socket Layer (SSL)) or Transport Layer Security (TLS) relay for the ICA protocol.

  • MetaFrame XP\Citrix Connection Configuration Modified version of the Terminal Services Configuration administration tool, which provides additional options for the characteristic MetaFrame features.

  • MetaFrame XP\Citrix Server Administration This tool is not suitable for the administration of the Citrix MetaFrame XP Presentation Server. It is here only to ensure compatibility with preceding versions (such as MetaFrame 1.8). All functionalities of the Citrix Server Administration are also contained in the Management Console for MetaFrame XP.

  • MetaFrame XP\ICA Administrator Toolbar Launches a toolbar with the frequently used MetaFrame administration tools. With standard settings, the toolbar is launched automatically if you log on with an administrator account. This, however, can be changed by using the Exit option in the context menu.

  • MetaFrame XP\ICA Client Distribution Wizard This wizard allows the installation and the update of ICA client images, the ICA client update database, and the ICA pass-through client.

  • MetaFrame XP\ICA Client Printer Configuration Administration of ICA printers with respect to their creation and connection process.

  • MetaFrame XP\ICA Client Update Configuration Control of the automatic distribution of ICA client software to the individual client devices. This includes the use of the ICA client update database.

  • MetaFrame XP\Published Application Manager This program cannot be used any longer under the Citrix MetaFrame XP Presentation Server. All associated functionalities are now contained in the Management Console for MetaFrame XP.

  • MetaFrame XP\Shadow Taskbar Controls the shadowing of a user session to other user sessions.

  • MetaFrame XP\SpeedScreen Latency Reduction Manager Tool for the reduction of user session latencies by configuring local event handling.

Drive Mapping

During a user’s connection initialization, a MetaFrame server can automatically map the logical names of client drives into the user session. However, in principle, a naming conflict exists between the logical names of the client drives and the names of the server drives. To avoid this conflict, the mapping of logical drive names must be adapted accordingly; specifically, each drive receives its own drive letter. For this reason, the DriveRemap.exe program allows the configuration of the mapping of a logical drive letter either before or directly after the installation of Citrix MetaFrame XP Presentation Server.

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Figure 9-7: The options of mapping drive letters with Citrix MetaFrame XP Presentation Server.

Unmodified terminal servers also provide the RDP feature of automatically connecting to the local client drives. But the RDP functionality does not use letters for the logical drive names. This is, however, less intuitive for the user of a terminal server session if he or she has to access data on the local client drive C over the logical drive name \\TSCLIENT\C. Conversely, no conflicts in the name assignment arise when the Microsoft concept is applied. Here the concepts of Microsoft and Citrix behind drive-naming conventions are clearly different, although they provide the same functionality.


Logical drive letter mapping assignment decisions require planning. In most cases, a decision to change the logical naming convention cannot be changed without problems because it affects many configurations’ path settings. This is why all applications should be installed only after DriveRemap.exe is executed and after Citrix MetaFrame XP Presentation Server is installed on the target server platform. If DriveRemap.exe is executed after the installation of applications, it is likely the applications will not function properly.

Remapping Client Drives

The unmodified standard settings of a MetaFrame server change the assignment of the client drive letters within the user session. The server uses the logical name sequence C:, D:, E:, and so on, for its own drive resources. This is very important for applications that require the availability of drive letter C: for their installation.

The client drives are mapped into the user session using the logical names V:, U:, T:, and so on—that is, backwards in the alphabet, starting with the letter V. The drive letters of the client floppy disk drives (that is, A: and B:) are not included; client drive mapping applies only to non-removable disks and CD drives.

The mapping of the client drive letters described is defined in the standard settings of the MetaFrame installation. The appropriate mapping is shown in Table 9.3.

Table 9.3: Standard Settings of Drive Mapping, Where the Associated Client Drive Letters Are Changed

Local Drive Letters

Mapping of Drive Letters Within an ICA Session

Client Drive










Server Drive








Remapping Server Drives

The reassignment of the server drive names makes it possible for the ICA client users, on certain hardware platforms, to continue using the standard logical client drive names (C:, D:, E: and so forth). This requires the execution of the Citrix utility program DriveRemap.exe, which allows the creation of new drive letter assignments on the Citrix server and is shown in Figure 9-8. The standard setting of this utility program suggests the use of drive letter M: for the first server drive (formerly driver letter C:). The next server drives are assigned the subsequent letters of the alphabet.

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Figure 9-8: Reassignment of server drives using DriveRemap.exe.

The reassignment algorithm of the utility program Drive- Remap.exe does not work properly if the server drive letters are not in a correct alphabetical sequence, such as C:, D:, V:.

To prevent a possible collision between MetaFrame server drive letters, ICA client drive letters, and predefined network shares, the beginning of the enumeration of the new server drive letters can be set to another letter.

The new mapping of the drive letters might be configured as shown in Table 9.4.

Table 9.4: Setting of Drive Mapping After a Reassignment

Local Drive Mapping Before the Reassignment Was Established

Drive Mapping Within the ICA Session After a Reassignment of Drive Letters

Client Drives










Server Drives








The decision to reassign drive letters has visible and lasting effects on the server organization. During the reassignment process, appropriate changes at the registry database are made and some environment variables are modified. Such modifications cannot be rolled back very easily, not even by uninstalling Citrix MetaFrame XP Presentation Server.


If the drive letter reassignment on a MetaFrame server was done according to Table 9.4, all applications should be installed only after this change. Otherwise, problems will occur during the resolution of application paths.