Category Archives: XenServer

Discovering Citrix XenServer Web Self Service

Have you ever thought about an easy way to share and provide access to your Virtual Machines??? Well, XenServer Web Self Service is a great tool that let’s you share, via web browser, your Virtual Machines with Active Directory users or custom local users. Web Self Service is a new feature included in XenServer 5.6 fp1. In this post I’ll show the key benefits and weaknesses of the new Citrix product.

Web Self Service is a tool that gives you the ability to “publish your XenServer VMs on a website”, it can be downloaded from Citrix.com as a .xva Virtual Appliance. One thing that really impressed me is the easiness and quickness with which the appliance can be installed and configured, in less than two minutes you can get the tool up and running. You just have to download the appliance, import it on XenServer and start it. Once it has been started, you can see, from the XenCenter console, the IP that it has acquired or, if you don’t have a dhcp server, you can quickly set one. You can now connect to the web site through https and easily configure the admin password and choose whether you’ll provide access to Active Directory users or local users. Now, you just need to connect to your pool and set sharing permissions on virtual machines. You can find a good installation and configuration guide here! The admin guide can be downloaded here!

Web Self Service can be only used to start, shutdown, reboot and connect to VMs through the web, if you need to perform other operations… well… this tool is not for you. You can’t operate with Storage Repositories, add or remove RAM to VMs, configure dynamic memory control and other VMs properties. It is worth remanding that this tool is only intended to provide web access to VMs and, frankly, I think that it’s well made and very useful.