ica
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Access for today, flexibility for tomorrow
Windows
Application
Access
(ICA)
November 5, 1999
Windows Application Access
ICA - Independent Computing Architecture
Allows any standard DOS or Microsoft Windows application to be run
remotely
Similar in concept to X11 Windows
ICA slices user interface calls
during application execution
Application's user
interface executes at client
Application's logic
executes at server
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Windows Application Access
TSE
Lots of terms . . .
NT
ICA
RDP
clients
WinFrame
MetaFrame
TSE
MetaFrame
NT
WinFrame
CDS
NT
UIS
RDP
TSE
X11
WinCenter
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
UIS
MetaFrame
TSE
WinCenter
WinFrame
NT
NT
X11
clients
ICA
clients
Windows Application Access
Definitions
What is ICA ?
ICA is the Independent Computing Architecture developed by Citrix. It is a general
purpose presentation services protocol. (IBM licensed the ICA protocol on 1/14/98).
Conceptually similar to the Unix X11 Windows protocol, ICA allows a Windows NT
application's user interface to execute on a client machine, such as the IBM
Network Station.
The application's logic executes on WinFrame and MetaFrame application servers.
What is WinFrame ?
WinFrame is a Citrix multi-user Windows application server based on Microsoft NT
Server Version 3.51 under license from Microsoft to Citrix.
Microsoft NT Server Version 3.51 is bundled with WinFrame.
It provides for Windows application serving to ICA clients.
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Windows Application Access
Definitions
What is MetaFrame ?
The successor to WinFrame.
Software from Citrix that extends Windows NT Terminal Server Edition function to
non-RDP clients by enabling the Citrix ICA protocol.
Ability to load balance multiple Terminal Servers into a server farm.
Ability to publish and manage applications from a single server in a server farm.
Ability to connect any ICA client (DOS, 16 bit and 32 bit Windows, Java-based
devices, Macintosh, Unix-based devices, Windows Based Terminals) to a Windows
NT Terminal Server.
What is CDS ?
CDS (Citrix Device Services) is a subset of MetaFrame that runs on Windows NT
Terminal Server Edition.
IBM distributes CDS for free.
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Windows Application Access
Definitions
What is RDP ?
RDP (Remote Display Protocol) is yet another client/server presentation protocol.
Developed by Microsoft for exclusive use by Microsoft products.
(Currently) considered to be less functional than the ICA protocol, and poorer
performer.
http://www.thinplanet.com/opinion/protocols.asp.
What is TSE ?
TSE (Terminal Server Edition) is a multi-user Windows application server from
Microsoft. It is based on Windows NT Server Version 4.0.
Uses a proprietary protocol called RDP to communicate exclusively with Microsoft
clients.
MetaFrame and TSE are not bundled. Each must be separately purchased.
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Windows Application Access
Definitions
What is X11 ?
X11 is a presentation client/server protocol developed at M.I.T. by an industry
consortium. (IBM was a founding member).
Used for windowing systems on Unix based machines, including IBM Network
Stations and AIX.
What is WinCenter ?
WinCenter is an NCDi product that extends WinFrame's multi-user capabilities to
support Unix clients via the X11 protocol or the ICA protocol.
When using the ICA protocol, WinCenter is simply a front door to WinFrame.
What is UIS ?
UIS (Unix Integration Services) is a Citrix product that provides Windows
application access to Unix-based desktops and terminals via the X11 protocol.
There is no relationship between UIS and ICA.
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Windows Application Access
What's new ?
Based on the Citrix ICA Client for Linux, version 3.0
ICA Remote Application Manager. This is the ICA user interface that Citrix
distributes with their Unix ICA Clients. This has also been called the "ICA Chooser"
and the "ICA Connection Manager"
RSA 40, 56 or 128 bit encryption
Cut and paste of graphic data between ICA windows
Audio mapping, including configurable quality levels
Drive mapping from Network Station directory paths to NT server drive letters
Persistent caching for saving icons and bitmaps
Key stroke remapping (HotKeys) for key stroke sequences that conflict with the
Network Station Window Manager
Kiosk mode. The ICA Remote Application Manager or the ICA Client cam be
configured to run as the Network Station desktop, i.e., full screen with no window
manager borders. (It looks just like a PC running Windows)
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Windows Application Access
What's new ?
Protocol compression
Shared color map support eliminates color flashing (potentially at the cost of color
fidelity)
True color support. (16 or 256 color Windows applications are mapped to true color
on the IBM Network Station)
HTML help text that can be invoked from the ICA Remote Application Manager
Multiple ICA browser support in the ICA Remote Application Manager and the ICA
Client command line
Enhanced flash support. Unused boot monitor fields can be used to pass the ICA
Client additional command line parameters
The ICA Client can be configured to
prompt the user for a Windows NT server to connect to
use the current NSM user id and/or user password to connect to a Windows NT server
Network Station Manager configuration of ICA connection entries
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Windows Application Access
Network Station Manager
Use the Network Station Manager to create and/or edit ICA connection entries
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Windows Application Access
ICA Remote Application Manager
Display ICA connection entries. The user can choose an ICA connection and
connect to an ICA application server
Connection entries created by Network Station Manager can not be edited or
deleted
Connection entries created by the ICA Remote Application Manager can be
edited and /or deleted. (This method of creating connection entries can be
disabled)
Create new connection entry
Copy connection entry
Delete connection entry
Edit connection entry
Connect to server
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Windows Application Access
ICA Connection Properties
Network
Connection
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Window
Application
Windows Application Access
ICA Connection Properties
Network
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Connection
Windows Application Access
ICA Connection Properties
Window
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Application
Windows Application Access
ICA Client Options
Preferences
Window
Servers
Hot Keys
Drive Mapping
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Windows Application Access
ICA Client Options
Preferences
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Window Defaults
Windows Application Access
ICA Client Options
Server Locations
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Hot Keys
Windows Application Access
ICA Client Options
Drive Mapping
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Windows Application Access
Audio Support
Configurable quality levels
Low
Medium
High
Windows NT Server Audio
Wave sounds only. (Server may convert other formats to wave format)
Midi music is not supported
CD audio is not supported
no sound card is required on the Windows NT server
Supported audio characteristics
linear PCM
8 and 16 bit
8, 11, 22 and 44 Khz
mono and stereo
Device controls (e.g. volume, balance) are not supported
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Windows Application Access
ICA National Language Support
The following keyboards and languages are currently supported by both the ICA
Remote Application Manager and the ICA Client:
Danish
Dutch
Dutch (Belgian)
French
French (Belgian)
French (Canadian 1988)
Italian
Norwegian
Portuguese
English (UK)
English (US)
English (US ISO)
Finnish
French (Canadian 1992)
French (Swiss)
German
German (Swiss)
Portuguese (Brazilian)
Spanish
Spanish (Latin America)
Swedish
At connect time, ICA Client passes the Windows NT server a Microsoft Windows
defined code that specifies the keyboard, locale and input method. Once connected,
the ICA client becomes "NLS stupid". It simply sends keyboard hardware
make/break scan codes and receives bitmaps.
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Windows Application Access
Device Support
Virtual Com
Applications running on the Windows NT can access serial devices attached to the
COM port of an IBM Network Station
The application must provide the serial driver
Virtual Com is bi-directional
Virtual Print
Redirect print jobs from applications running on the Windows NT server to a printer
connected to the IBM Network Station
Any spooled printer supported by the NC operating system can be used as long as the
relevant printer driver is installed on the Windows NT server.
Virtual print is uni-direction only
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Windows Application Access
wfcmgr - ICA Remote Application Manager Command
There is a small set of command line parameters for the ICA Remote Application Manager. The
-noupdate parameter is the only parameter that is anticipated to be used by the IBM Network Station
product. The other parameters came with the Citrix ICA Remote Application Manager.
-help
the usage text for the wfcmgr command is sent to the console.
-noupdate
when this option is specified, updates to the connection file and/or the
configuration file are not allowed.
-description <text>
the full text from the Description field of the connection definition dialog. If this
argument is not specified, then the first description in the [ApplicationServers]
section of the appsrv.ini file will be used.
-file <name>
the fully qualified file name of the file that contains the connection description
to be used. If the HOME environment variable is defined then the default file
name is $HOME/.ICAClient/appsrv.ini. Otherwise, the default file name is
/usr/lib/ICAClient/config/appsrv.ini.
-icaroot <directory>
the fully qualified directory where the ICA client package was installed. If not
specified then the ICAROOT environment variable is accessed to get the
directory. If neither the -icaroot argument nor the ICAROOT environment
variable are used to define the install directory, then by default, it is
/usr/lib/ICAClient.
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Windows Application Access
wfica - ICA Client Command (1 of 3)
-help
the usage text for the wfica command is sent to the console.
-version
the following message is sent to the console:
IBM Network Station ICA Client
Version 2.0 (Build dd/mm/yyyy - hh:mm:ss)
Copyright International Business Machines Corp. 1999
All rights reserved
-quiet
connection dialogs will not be presented to the user. By default, the ICA client will
present a "connecting to" dialog followed by a "connected to" dialog. Both of these
dialogs are informational and require no response by the user.
-description <text>
the full text from the Description field of the connection definition dialog. Either
-description or -server or -- <application> must be specified.
-file <name>
the fully qualified file name of the file that contains the connection description to be
used. If the HOME environment variable is defined then the default file name is
$HOME/.ICAClient/appsrv.ini. Otherwise, the default file name is
/usr/lib/ICAClient/config/appsrv.ini.
-icaroot <directory>
the fully qualified directory where the ICA client package was installed. If not
specified then the ICAROOT environment variable is accessed to get the directory.
If neither the -icaroot argument nor the ICAROOT environment variable are used to
define the install directory, then by default, it is /usr/lib/ICAClient.
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Windows Application Access
wfica - ICA Client Command (2 of 3)
( The following parameters can not be combined with the -description parameter )
-server <name>
specifies the ICA application server to connect to. The name can be a fully qualified
network host name, an abbreviated network host name or a dotted decimal network
address.
Either -description or -server or -- <application> must be specified. -server and
-browser are mutually exclusive.
-browser <namelist>
specifies the name of an ICA master browser. The master browser is an ICA server
that tells the ICA client which ICA application server to connect to and which
application to run on that server.
A colon ":" separated list of master browsers can be specified. Each name can be a
fully qualified network host name, an abbreviated network host name or a dotted
decimal network address.
-username <name>
Windows NT server login user name.
-password <password> Windows NT server login password.
Windows NT may prompt for login information
if username, password and/or domain are
incorrect or not specified
-domain <name>
Windows NT server domain name.
-name <clientname>
specifies the client name to be used by the ICA application server.
-color <number>
specifies the number of colors that the ICA application server should use to generate
application graphics. Allowable values are 16 and 256.
-title <text>
puts the specified text into the X11 window title bar.
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Windows Application Access
wfica - ICA Client Command (3 of 3)
( The following parameters can not be combined with the -description parameter )
-encryption <level>
specifies the level of encryption to be used between the ICA client and the ICA
application server. Supported encryption levels are:
basic
login
40
56
128
simple encryption (this is the default)
128-bit RSA encryption for login only
40-bit RSA encryption
56-bit RSA encryption (North America only)
128-bit RSA encryption (North America only)
If any level of encryption is specified other than basic, then the Windows NT login
dialog will appear.
-geometry <WxH±X±Y> the X11 window Width, Height, X offset and Y offset. All values are in pixels. Positive
X offsets are from the top of the screen, negative from the bottom. Positive Y offsets
are from the left side of the screen, negative from the right. Variations of this
specification include <WxH> and <±X±Y>.
-geometry fullscreen
same as < maximun_screen_width x maximum_screen_height + 0 + 0 >
-cache <size>
size in kilobytes of the internal ICA Client transient cache.
-- <application>
specifies the program that the ICA application server should run if the -server
argument is also specified. Otherwise it specifies a published application and a
master browser will be contacted to get both the program to run and the ICA
application server to run it on. This parameter must be last.
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Windows Application Access
ICA Flash Support
The ICA Client command (wfica) provides the following command line parameters to
support flash card operation:
-server<n>
indirectly specifies the -server parameter where the server <name> comes from the
First Boot Host parameter in NVRAM if -server1 is specified
Second Boot Host parameter in NVRAM if -server2 is specified
Third Boot Host parameter in NVRAM if -server3 is specified
-browser<n>
indirectly specifies the -browser parameter where the browser <namelist> comes
from the
First Boot Host parameter in NVRAM if -browser1 is specified
Second Boot Host parameter in NVRAM if -browser2 is specified
Third Boot Host parameter in NVRAM if -browser3 is specified
-nvram <fieldname>
specifies the name of a text field in nvram. The text field will be analyzed and, if the
first non-blank character is a dash (-), then the text will be used to replace the -nvram
<fieldname> specification. Some nvram field names that may be available include
second-boot-path, third-boot-path and alternate-config-file.
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Windows Application Access
ICA Configuration Files
One set of ICA configuration files are the .ini files:
appsrv.ini
connection records (host, userid, password, encryption, window
properties, ...). These records can be created, modified and deleted by
the ICA Remote Application Manager. This file is in the
$HOME/.ICAClient directory.
wfclient.ini
default properties (browser host list, geometry, number of colors,
keyboard definition, hot key definition, comm port definition,
compression options, ...). Can be modified by the ICA Remote
Application Manager. This file is in the $HOME/.ICAClient directory.
module.ini
virtual drivers, protocols and transports. Cannot be modified by the ICA
Remote Application Manager. This file is in the
/usr/lib/ICAClient/config directory.
keyboard.ini
keyboard types. References keyboard optional keyboard definition
files. Cannot be modified by the ICA Remote Application Manager.
This file is in the /usr/lib/ICAClient/keyboard directory.
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Windows Application Access
ICA Configuration Files
Another set of ICA configuration files are the application default files:
Wfcmgr
application default file for the ICA Remote Application Manager. This
file is in the /nls/*/ICAClient directory. If not found, an untranslated
backup copy in the /usr/lib/ICAClient/config directory is used.
Wfica
application default file for the ICA Client. This file is in the
/nls/*/ICAClient directory. If not found, an untranslated backup copy
in the /usr/lib/ICAClient/config directory is used.
Xtra
an extra application default file used by both the ICA Remote
Application Manager and the ICA Client. Late (untranslated) fixes to
the user interface are put into this file. This file is in the
/usr/lib/ICAClient/config directory.
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Windows Application Access
ICA Configuration Files
The following configuration files must be present for ICA operations:
Wfcmgr
Wfica
Xtra
appsrv.ini
wfclient.ini
module.ini
keyboard.ini
The first time the ICA Remote Application Manager or the ICA Client accesses a
connection record, the appsrv.ini and wfclient.ini "template" files are copied from
the read-only /usr/lib/ICAClient/config directory to the read-write
$HOME/.ICAClient directory.
DO NOT EDIT THE CONFIGURATION FILES.
IBM does not support modifications to the IBM Network Station ICA configuration
files other than through the IBM Network Station ICA Remote Application Manager.
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Windows Application Access
ICA Technical Notes
When The ICA client starts, it negotiates with the configured server what features
will be supported. Only features supported by both client and server will work. This
allows the ICA client to connect to both WinFrame/WinCenter which is Windows NT
3.51 based and MetaFrame which is Windows NT 4.0 TSE based.
If connecting to a WinCenter server, users may see the WinCenter logo - even
though they are using the ICA client.
Logging out from the Windows NT session will close the ICA session. Disconnecting
from the Windows NT session detaches the ICA session. A disconnected ICA
session continues to run on the Windows NT server. When reconnecting, the
disconnected ICA session will be reattached using the original options and settings.
The ICA command line parameters from the previous release are supported.
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Windows Application Access
ICA Technical Notes
Color
8-bit pseudo color provides 256 colors. Each 8-bit color quantity is used to look up an
RGB value in a color lookup table. This color mode is supported by the IBM Network
Station.
16-bit true color provides 65536 colors. Each 16-bit color quantity is decoded directly
into a unique RGB value. This color mode is supported by the IBM Network Station.
The ICA protocol supports 8-bit color bitmaps. It does not support true color.
The ICA Client takes the 8-bit color bitmaps it receives from a Windows application
running on the NT server and maps them into the current IBM Network Station color
mode.
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Windows Application Access
The Battle of the Window Managers
Running the Windows NT desktop as an ICA client within an X11 window controlled
by the NC Window Manager is fraught with conflicts. For example:
When Alt-F4 is pressed, the Windows NT desktop wants to close one of its Window NT
windows but the NC Window Manager wants to close the ICA client.
When Alt-Tab is pressed, the Windows NT desktop wants to cycle through its Window
NT windows but the NC Window Manager wants to cycle through its X11 windows.
Three workarounds:
toggle (Alt-Shift-Ctrl-F11) the NC Window Manager to "process" or "pass through"
special keystroke sequences
use the ICA Remote Application Manager's HotKey dialog to set non-conflicting,
alternate keystroke sequences
modify the NC Registry to redefine conflicting NC Window Manager keystroke
sequences
Depending on a customer's environment, attempt to runWindows NT applications in
separate ICA sessions rather than running the Windows NT desktop in a single ICA
session. This puts each Windows NT application within its own X11 window.
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Windows Application Access
Tips and Techniques
Flash support for multiple ICA browsers
To specify multiple ICA browsers, the following text could be entered in the Boot Monitor's
Alternate Configuration File field:
-b 9.8.7.201:9.8.7.104:server2 -- MyApplication
Then the command
wfica -nvram alternate-config-file
will actually be interpreted as
wfica -b 9.8.7.201:9.8.7.104:server2 -- MyApplication
How to enable persistent caching
The following instructions can be found in the /.profile file:
#
#
#
#
#
#
For enhanced ICA caching, uncomment the following
4 lines and adjust the mount_ifs -s SIZE accordingly
/bin/mkdir /tmp/.ICACache >/dev/null 2>&1
/bin/chmod 777 /tmp/.ICACache >/dev/null 2>&1
/sbin/mount_ifs -o rw -s 4096 none /tmp/.ICACache >/dev/null 2>&1
/bin/chmod 777 /tmp/.ICACache >/dev/null 2>&1
Each connection record must explicitly enable persistent caching in the Entry-->Connection
dialog
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Windows Application Access
Tips and Techniques
Read the README file in /usr/lib/ICAClient
Ensure the latest Citrix "hot fixes" for WinFrame, MetaFrame or CDS are installed on
the Windows NT server
http://www.citrix.com/support
To clean up a user's ICA configuration, simply remove (or rename) the user's
$HOME/.ICAClient directory
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Windows Application Access
Useful URLs
www.citrix.com/support/winfrm17/index.html
WinFrame 1.7 documentation
www.citrix.com/support
hot fixes for WinFrame and MetaFrame servers
searchable knowledge data base
www.ibm.com/nc
IBM Network Station information
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Windows Application Access
Restrictions and Limitations
The ICA Remote Application Manager and the ICA Client both support a list of ICA
master browser host names. A list of ICA application server host names is not
supported.
When run as an ICA Client, the Windows 95/98/NT DOS Command Prompt cannot
be made full screen by either pressing <Alt><Enter> nor by selecting full screen in
the DOS Command Prompt properties.
ICA Protocol limitations include:
no true color support
no bi-directional audio support
no audio device control
no parallel port device support (other than virtual printer support)
no bi-directional printer support
no USB virtual device support
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Windows Application Access
Problem Determination
A good test of the Windows NT configuration is to (1) set the Windows NT locale, (2)
specify and attach an applicable keyboard and (3) run both NotePad and WordPad
directly from the Windows NT. This usually identifies any problems that must be
corrected before an ICA client will work correctly.
Determine how a Citrix Windows 95/98/NT ICA Client behaves in a problem
environment. Frequently, the Citrix Windows ICA Client exhibits the same problem
as the IBM Network Station ICA Client. Our goal is to be compatible with the Citrix
Windows ICA Client.
Make sure the following files exist:
$MRIPATH/ICAClient/Wfcmgr
$MRIPATH/ICAClient/Wfica
/usr/lib/ICAClient/config/Xtra
/usr/lib/ICAClient/config/module.ini
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
$HOME/.ICAClient/appsrv.ini
$HOME/.ICAClient/wfclient.ini
/usr/lib/ICAClient/keyboard/keyboard.ini
Windows Application Access
What we need in a problem report ...
Run the wfreport command
this produces an ica_report.Z file which contains:
A list of environment variables
A list of $ICAROOT files
A list of /tmp/.ICACache files
The contents of $ICAROOT/config/module.ini
The contents of $ICAROOT/config/.server
The contents of $ICAROOT/config/Xtra
The contents of $ICAROOT/keyboard/keyboard.ini
The contents of $MRIPATH/ICAClient/Wfcmgr
The contents of $MRIPATH/ICAClient/Wfica
The contents of $HOME/.ICAClient/wfclient.ini
The contents of $HOME/.ICAClient/appsrv.ini
The contents of /.profile
NSM ICA connection entries from the Registry
Send the ica_report.Z file to IBM
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
Windows Application Access
What we need in a problem report ...
Provide a detailed description of the scenario that causes the problem
more than likely, we will need to reproduce the problem in our lab
Network information
Ethernet vs token ring
network speed
Windows NT application server configuration
version numbers (Windows NT, WinFrame or MetaFrame, applications, ...)
resources (free space on hard disk, free RAM available, ...)
number of concurrent users
Network Station configuration
what other activities were going on
For ICA Client problems, how was the ICA Client invoked ?
if invoked from the command line, send in the command line string
if invoked from the ICA Remote Application Manager, send in the description name
IBM Network Station Family of Thin Clients
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