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How Microsoft APP-V 4.6 works before you use it with SCVMM2012 “Software as a Service”

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Configuration Manager and App-V Infrastructure Overview

Configuration Manager and App-V can be integrated to provide a comprehensive deployment and update service for virtual applications.  With Configuration Manager, the typical App-V infrastructure is reduced to the App-V Sequencer and Client.  Configuration Manager takes the place of the publishing and streaming components in a typical App-V full infrastructure.  The following figure illustrates the minimal Configuration Manager and App-V processes and components required to manage virtual applications with Configuration Manager.  The App-V Sequencer produces packages that can be distributed via a Configuration Manager infrastructure to the App-V Clients.  This eliminates the need for two separate infrastructures to support application deployment.  Configuration Manger can be used to deploy both traditional and virtual applications.

Publishing virtual applications using Configuration Manager requires a simple process to be followed. The following section describes the virtualization (using App-V) and distribution (using Configuration Manager) process.

Process

At a high level, managing virtual applications with Configuration Manager requires applications to be sequenced, published using Configuration Manager Advertisements, and delivered to the end clients.  The following minimum process is required to support App-V in a Configuration Manager infrastructure.

Sequencing – The process of taking a physical application and turning it into a virtual application.  Configuration Manager requires sequencing applications with an App-V 4.5 or newer Sequencer to create the necessary files for publishing and delivery (Manifest.xml file).

Publishing – The process of provisioning virtual applications to users or computers in Configuration Manager.  Configuration Manager utilizes the Site Server components for publishing applications.  This process will present the application to the computer before the application assets have been delivered.

Delivery – The process of moving the virtual application assets to the client computers.  This is normally referred to as “streaming” in an App-V full infrastructure.  Configuration Manager provides two options for delivery of virtual applications (“Streaming” and “Download and Execute”).

Components

Managing virtual applications with Configuration Manger will require an App-V Sequencer for creating packages, a Configuration Manager Site Server, Configuration Manager Distribution Point(s) for delivery of the packages, and Configuration Manager client computers with the App-V Client installed.  The following minimum components are required to support App-V in a Configuration Manager Infrastructure.

Microsoft App-V Sequencer – The App-V Sequencer ‘program’ is used to package virtual applications for deployment with Configuration Manager.

Configuration Manager Site Server – A part of the Configuration Manager Site hierarchy, the Configuration Manager Site Server manages virtual application distribution through Configuration Manager Distribution Points to target systems, either as a streaming service, or as a locally delivered package.

Configuration Manager Distribution Point (Distribution Point) – Configuration Manager Distribution Point site roles provide management services such as hardware and software inventory, operating system deployment, and software updates, as well as software distribution of both physical and virtual applications, to Configuration Manager target systems (often referred to as ‘clients’).

Configuration Manager / App-V Clients – Client devices include desktop/laptop PCs, terminal servers and Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) clients.  Configuration Manager Clients that receive delivery of virtual applications from a Configuration Manager infrastructure require both the Configuration Manager Advanced Client and App-V Client software to be installed and configured.  The Configuration Manager and App-V Client software work together to deliver interpret and launch virtual application packages.  The Configuration Manager Client manages the delivery of virtual application packages to the App-V Client.  The App-V Client executes the virtual application on the client PC.

Install Process

Launch Process

 

App-V Client-Side Architecture

 

The Configuration Manager Advanced Client uses the functions provided by the App-V Client to provide virtual application publishing, intelligent delivery, and inventory management.  The following figure shows a high-level overview of the App-V client-side architecture and illustrates communication paths between the Configuration Manager Client and the App-V Client.

The App-V Desktop Client has been enhanced with the following new features to support integration with Configuration Manager and third-party solutions:

  • New App-V Client SFTMIME command line interface options provide greater external control of the operation of the App-V Client.
  • A new OverrideURL App-V Client registry value has been added to direct it to retrieve application packages from an alternate server location, regardless of the source path information contained within virtual application packages or the ASR (Application Source Root) registry setting.
  • A new App-V Client WMI provider has been added to enable any WMI-enabled application to perform WMI queries to retrieve information about the status of virtual applications residing in the App-V Client cache.
  • The App-V Client now includes support for streaming application packages via HTTP, HTTPS and Server Messages Block (SMB) network protocols. 

The Configuration Manager Advanced Client has been enhanced with the addition of new client agents and a new virtual application launcher process to support virtual application management. 

Here are video’s about Microsoft APP-V 4.6 Sequencing :

 

Updating APP-V 4.6 SP1 application video :

Enable and Use the App-V Read-Only Shared Cache :

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/gg699513

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Author: James van den Berg

I'm Microsoft Architect and ICT Specialist and Microsoft MVP System Center Cloud and Datacenter Management

2 thoughts on “How Microsoft APP-V 4.6 works before you use it with SCVMM2012 “Software as a Service”

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