How to add/update your App-V shared content store on a Provisioning Services (PVS) vDisk using vDisk management Update Feature

In App-V 5.0 there comes a new feature or rather an iteration of a previous one (shared cache).Shared Content Store (simple to setup – see here for instructions in App-V 5.0 allows us to stream directly from a content source without having to stream the package to the local platform. The great thing is App-V 5.0 packages now use a flat file format and are no longer stored collectively in a single cache file, which means we no longer have the read only challenges we faced with the Shared Cache solution in App-V 4.6 when it comes to updating applications and replacing the cache.

Below illustrates the steps to update a Citrix Provisioning Services (PVS) vDisk using the vDisk update management feature (that comes with 6.x) with an updated shared content store.

i)                    Right click vDisk you wish to update and click Versions

 ii)                   Click New – this will create a maintenance access mode vDisk – effectively a read-write copy differencing disk

 iii)                 The creation of the new version vDisk should result in the creation of an .avhd and new .pvp file – verify by checking your vDisk store

 iv)                 Next edit the properties of a target device you plan to use the maintenance version vDisk on – typically an Early Adopter or UAT target device. To do double click on the target device in question and change

The type: field from Production to Maintenance

 v)                  Next we want to reboot the EA target device, will presented with a boot menu very similar to the below. Choose option option 1) ….. [maint]

 vi)                 Once target device is booted up verify machine is in read/write mode by clicking on the vDisk icon in the systray – should see something similar to below – notice the .avhd file listed for Virtual Disk and Mode set to Read/Write

 vii)               Now we are ready to update our App-V Shared content store in the image. To do logon to your “maintenance mode” target device (with a user ID with sufficient privileges to your shared content store area)

Start | run | powershell (run as administrator)

Get-ChildItem “<<location of Shared content store> ” -recurse -force -include *.appv | Add-AppvClientPackage | Publish-AppvClientPackage –global

 viii)              After the command completes and the additional applications are added lets verify the applications have been added, go to the c:\programdata directory and verify the size of the Appv folder – notice the size: field shows a much larger figure to the Size on disk: field

 Now let’s verify the application pointers appear, browse through one of the appv sub-folders, notice the X’s for icon’s on the files? This indicates they are pointer files going back to your folders

 ix)                 Next we need to carry out our usual resealing tasks eg use server role manager, flush DNS cache, remove profiles etc

x)                  Once complete power down VM

xi)                 Go back to the PVS Console > right click on the vDisk we were working on and choose versions, we want to promote the vDisk from Maintenance mode to Test (if planning to use for early adopters or to Production (if want to go straight to production) and click ok and done when complete

 xii)               Last thing we need to do is change the access mode for the VM’s we plan to test the image with – to do double-click on the target devices in question and switch to the mode specified in point xi) and click ok to complete

 xiii)              Lastly power up target devices changed on point xii) and on the boot menu choose option i)

And job done!

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