A few tips for moving your Citrix Xenapp 6.5 Database

I dont intend on reinventing the wheel here as there is already a great blog post detailing this process which you can find here My thanks to Terrance for his work on this blog. I just wanted to add a couple of findings based on my experience of the process.

I do agree with Terrance that the Citrix docs are not great and that is why you should follow his post, much as I did.

Lets start with a little bit of background on my setup. I have 9 Xenapp servers in my single farm, with one data collector. I had to try to do this move during the day as my DBA was not available out of hours for the usual maintenance window, and we could not wait or defer the move until he was. Catch 22 then! Typical….

So here was my plan.

  1. Disable logons the day before the move to the data collector
  2. The following day I will stop the IMA on that server
  3. The IMA services and 8 other XA servers will all be left with logons enabled serving users
  4. The DBA will back up and restored the DB to the new server
  5. We will then take the original DB on the old server offline, cutting off the 8 live XA servers
  6. At this point I would test that I could access a few applications – This would test that the local cache was working
  7. I will then repoint the data collector to the new DB server using Terrances steps
  8. After the IMA service restart I will test an application launch and change from the data collector server
  9. I will then have a maintenance window in the evening to perform the process on the other 8 XA servers

First question to answer is. Did I follow this plan and the answer is yes. And for the most part it all went well, there are just a couple of gotcha’s that I didn’t fully think through, so I will list them out for your consideration. They all make perfect sense when you consider that they have no real-time access to the DB anymore.

  1. I found that Citrix shadowing didn’t work whilst the live XA servers were running in cached mode. Support staff were unable to enumerate users.
  2. Opening the App Centre on a cahced server would prompt a discovery to run, which would fail. You could only run App centre on the server that was migrated
  3. You could not control the logons to the servers running in cached mode
  4. My last point is just for clarity, you can move the DB without stopping all of the IMA services on your XA servers

As per usual I hope this helps someone else out there. None of this is rocket science but sometimes it just helps to read about someone elses experience!

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