AppSense Dynamic Start Menu and App-V 5 Integration


I am in the process of setting up a XenDesktop 7 App Edition environment with AppSense 8 FR 4 and App-V 5.

I wanted to redirect the Start Menu to the Temp variable and then copy in application shortcuts from a share (or local folder), but I also did not want to have to manage App-V shortcuts in this way, seeing as the App-V client will do that itself.

Remote Desktop Services has a feature called per session temporary folders, which creates a temporary folder per RDS session in a subfolder (given a number equal to the session ID) of %USERPROFILE%AppDataLocalTemp

When redirecting the Start Menu to %TEMP% App-V, much later in the logon process, creates another subfolder below %USERPROFILE%AppDataLocalTemp and puts its application shortcuts in there.

So what you end up with is, as an example, %USERPROFILE%AppDataLocalTemp14 (containing all the AppSense copied Start Menu shortcuts) and %USERPROFILE%AppDataLocalTemp8 (containing all the App-V Start Menu shortcuts).

Because %TEMP% is equal to %USERPROFILE%AppDataLocalTemp14 and this is where the Start Menu is redirected to, the App-V shortcuts never appear in the user's Start Menu.

If we take a look at Process Monitor during the logon process we can see really early on the 14 folder being created.

Windows Temp Location

And much later on the App-V client creates the 8 folder

App-V_Temp_Location_082013_104017_PM

If we run Set at command prompt after logon we can see where the TEMP variable is pointing to.

Temp variable

To be honest I don't know why App-V is creating its own temp location and putting its shortcuts there. Maybe someone who know more about App-V has the answer.

The resolution is to disable RDS per session temp folders in group policy.

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc755098.aspx

Obviously, turning off per session temp folders may have a detrimental affect on your applications so you should test this thoroughly.