App-V 5.1 Full Infrastructure Setup – Part 1

By Rory Monaghan

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In the past, I have covered a single server setup of the App-V Full Infrastructure. This post contains a setup for App-V 5.1 Full Infrastructure in distributed server setup with an Always On Group SQL Database, load balanced Publishing Servers and a secondary Management Server. I had this post sitting in drafts for quite some time and posed the question on Twitter on whether I should post this or not.  Why?

This post contains a setup for App-V 5.1 Full Infrastructure in a distributed server setup with an Always On Group SQL Database, load balanced App-V Publishing Servers and a secondary App-V Management Server for a robust highly available enterprise solution. I had this post sitting in drafts for quite some time and posed the question on Twitter on whether I should post this or not.  Why?

There are a couple of other good resources for this:

Mainly, Hal Lange’s guide: HERE

and Microsoft’s guideline: HERE

In Microsoft’s guide they go through load balancing IIS. The first time I setup App-V 5.0 with load balancing I did it that way and it was a nightmare. I don’t suggest going that route. The only real difference between the steps I have taken and what’s in Hal’s post is that I didn’t do anything for the kerberos peice. I didn’t need to change anything with the config files or set spns and it worked fine in my environment. This post is for 5.1 and there were likely other differences in our environments.

By all means, if you encounter issues with the Publishing and Management servers not communicating, do try those steps.

Also, I setup with two App-V management servers in each data center.

Read This First

In previous posts, I have explained my opinion that the App-V Full Infrastructure is not suitable for any environment of scale. The features are very limited outside of the basics of publishing, assigning and removing App-V applications. My preference for deploying App-V applications is the App-V Scheduler tool. I highly recommend this!

This post has been divided into multiple parts:

1.) Overview and Requirements

2.) Database Configuration

3.) Management Servers Setup

4.) Publishing Servers Setup

5.) Validate Management and Publishing Servers

6.) Configure Load Balancing

Architecture Overview

  • An AD Group for all App-V Admins (AppVAdmins) and another group for App-V Servers (AppVServers). Servers require a group for database permissions.
  • Two management server in each Data Center
  • Four publishing servers in each DC
  • Three files shares with DFS replication for the App-V content share
  • SQL DB Cluster for Management Database
  • Load balance web services by placing in front of VIP with Netscaler or alternative solution
  • In this setup, I have chosen to not setup the App-V Reporting DB and web service.

Server Spec Requirements

App-V Management Server System Requirements

  • Processor 1.4 GHz or faster, 64-bit processor
  • 1GB RAM (64-bit)
  • 200MB available disk space

App-V Publishing Server System Requirements

  • Processor 1.4 GHz or faster, 64-bit processor
  • 2GB RAM (64-bit)
  • 200MB available disk space

Typically, I setup servers for the management servers with at least 4GB of memory and 4 CPU. Publishing servers with 8GB of memory with 8 CPU.

Prerequisites

App-V Management Server Prerequisites

Common HTTP Features (static content and default document)

Application Development (ASP.NET, .NET Extensibility, ISAPI Extensions and ISAPI Filters)

Security (Windows Authentication, Request Filtering)

Management Tools (IIS Management Console)

  • Visual C++ Redistributable Packages for Visual Studio 2013
  • 64-bit ASP.NET registration
  • Unique port for the publishing web service (firewall exception for incoming requests)
  • Appv-V Management web server URL from that setup
  • Silverlight (Optional, a shortcut to the App-V Management console is created on the server but Silverlight is required by the site)
  • SQL Database configured with App-V SQL scripts

Note: Server 2012 R2 and laters contain PowerShell 3.0 already but feel free to upgrade to a newer version if you’d like e.g. 5.0.

App-V Publishing Server Prerequisites

Common HTTP Features (static content and default document)

Application Development (ASP.NET, .NET Extensibility, ISAPI Extensions and ISAPI Filters)

Security (Windows Authentication, Request Filtering)

Management Tools (IIS Management Console)

IIS Scripts and Tools

 

App-V Database Requirements

  • SQL Server 2008 R2, SQL Server 2012 or SQL Server 2014 (2016 not officially supported at time of this post)
  • Microsoft .NET Framework 4.5.2 (Full Package)
  • Visual C++ Redistributable Packages for Visual Studio 2013
  • SQL Server Agent service must be set to Automatic
  • Either a default instance or custom named instance
  • SQL Script contains SIDs for groups that require access to DB. One group is those who require access to the console and the other contains the servers and the account performing the install.
  • Initialize size requirement for the DB should  be about 3GB.

Prerequisites sourced from: https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/itpro/mdop/appv-v5/app-v-51-prerequisites

SQL Server Mirroring, SQL Clustering and Alway On Groups are supported: https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/itpro/mdop/appv-v5/planning-for-high-availability-with-app-v-51

Continue to Part 2

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