Citrix Framehawk Installing & Configuration

By 13 juli 2015 No Comments


As part of XenApp and XenDesktop 7.6 Feature Pack2, the first release of Framehawk technology is now generally available.  Framehawk introduces a new ICA virtual channel.


Mobile users of desktop virtualization often experience sluggish performance on wireless and Internet connections. People these days are very mobile. Moving around campus or within a building with the laptop, tablets. They need access to there workspace on XenApp or XenDesktop. Spectral interference is a common problem.

So Framehawk targets broadband etwork connections with packet loss, high latency, jitter and congestion. With there current HDX (High Definition Experience) Citrix is leader. With the Framehawk technology Citrix is raising the bar towards more and better UX (User Experience). In user perspective it is all about:

  • Fluidity /FPS
  • Click response
  • Visual response
  • Minimal mouse lag
  • Network tolerance

So what’s supported and needed.

  • New UDP based virtual channel
    • VDA add-on for XenDesktop 7.6 and XenApp 7.6
    • Citrix Receiver 4.3 for Windows
  • Interoperability with NetScaler Gateway 11 (UDP)
  • New Policies for Studio
  • Compatible with Director, CloudBridge and NetScaler HDX Insight


Thinwire will still be used as the primary display remoting channel in the ICA protocol. Framehawk is turned off by default. And should be turned on within Studio policies

In short, we can say that on the VDA side of the Framehawk implementation it is a way looking forward about interaction between user, client and server.Picture2

Citrix Receiver needs to be able to intemperate what a user is doing. For example, when a user is scrolling text or even webpages. For a user it is not so important that the text or images is not that perfect. But when scrolling stops, this text should perfect. So we can read.


 Framehawk is an added feature and interact with some components. We will look at upgrading the components step by step.

I am using my Home lab which consist of an Windows 2012 R2 Hyper-V environment with a Citrix Xen App/Desktop 7.6 in place. Machine Creation Services and Provisioning Services.

After the download of the package the following components are available.


Virtual Delivery Agent
ICAWS760WX64022.msp For x86 machines Desktop OS
ICAWS760WX86022.msp For x64 machines Desktop OS
ICATS760WX64022.msp Hosted Shared
WMIProxy_x86(x64).msi Citrix Director 7.6.300
HDXWMIPROV220WX64001.msi Citrix HDX WMI Provider hot fix
Delivery Controller
GPMx240WX86002.msi GPO update for x86 machines
GPMx240WX64002.msi GPO update for x64 machines
XDPoshModule760WX86002.msi Director 7.6.300 x86
XDPoshModule760WX64002.msi Director 7.6.300 x64



Citrix Director
DesktopDirector.msi Update for x32 machines
DesktopDirector_x64.msi Update for x64 machines



Citrix Receiver
CitrixReceiver.exe Citrix Receiver for Windows 4.3



First we are going to update the VDA in a master image


Log in to you’re master image and select the correct appropriate version of the VDA upgrade package Picture3
Choose for “Run”  Picture4
Choose Next to continue  Picture5
Click on “update”  6
Click Finish to continue  8
At this point restart the master image VM


After the Hotfix you should also install the WMIProxy for the right OS.

The Citrix HDX WMI Provider HDXWMIPROV220WX64001.msi is installed during the upgrade of the VDA. When a server operating system is used, this should be installed separately.

In my lab environment I am using Citrix Studio on the Citrix Desktop Delivery Controller..So here I am going to install the GPO update package on this machine.

Log in to the machine running Citrix Studio. In this example this is also de Citrix Delivery Controller. 

Select and install the correct update package, depending if it is 32- or 64-bits

Press Run to continue  10
Accept the License Agreement 

And click on Install to continue

Press Finish to end the installation/upgrade  12



Configuration of Citrix Policy

The Framehawk virtual channel is disabled by default. After completing the GPO installation update, you must configure the policies to enable Framehawk for appropriate users. When enabled, the server attempts to use the Framehawk channel for user’s graphics and input. Otherwise the server falls back to ThinWire


Start studio and create a new policy for the Framehawk Virtual ChannelSelect the options as presented in the example  13
Associate the policy with the correct delivery group  14
Name the created policyAnd click on Finish to continue




Updating the Machine Catalog

At this point my master image for Windows 8.1 is updated with latest VDA. And now I need to update other desktops in my lab envirioment.

I am using MCS (Machine Creation Services)


Log in to Studio and select Machine Catalogs. Right click and choose update machines for the correct catalog group  16
Select the master image with the latest version of VDA 17
Select Immediately  18
Click finish to continue  19
Upgrade will proceed.  20



Updating Citrix Director


At this point we need to upgrade the Citrix Director. Log in to the server running Citrix Director and select the appropriate version to be installed 22
Select Run  23
Accept the license agreement and continue with Install  24
Select OK to continue  25
Click on Finish to end.  26
Log in to Director Interface  27
After logging in, select the about option to check the version  28


Starting a desktop session and checking the configuration.


Log in to StoreFront with a testuser and start a desktop session  30
After login to Director, you can see that Framehawk is enabled.  32