Product Documentation

Enabling HDX Insight Data Collection

May 20, 2015

HDX Insight collects data about virtual desktop connections. The NetScaler ADCs from which HDX Insight collects data can be deployed in either single-hop mode or transparent mode.

Data collection for single-hop mode is configured through the NetScaler Insight Center interface. For transparent mode, you configure data collection on the NetScaler ADC, by using the command line interface.

This release of NetScaler Insight Center is compatible with the following XenApp and XenDesktop version and builds.
Table 1. Software Versions and Builds






6682 with HRP01






This topic includes the following details:

Single-Hop Mode

In single-hop mode, users access the NetScaler appliances through a virtual private network (VPN).

To enable data collection in single-hop mode

  1. On the Configuration tab, click Inventory.
  2. From the inventory list, select the IP address of the appliance on which you want to enable data collection.
  3. On the NetScaler Insight Center Inventory Setup screen, in the Application List pane, from the View drop-down list, select VPN. A list of the SSL VPN virtual servers configured on the appliance populates a table with the following information about each virtual server:
    • IP Address—IP address of the virtual server
    • Name—Name of the virtual server
    • State—Current operational state of the virtual server. Can be UP or DOWN.
    • Type—Service type of the virtual server.
    • Insight—Data-collection status of the virtual server (ENABLED or DISABLED).
  4. Select the SSL VPN virtual server for which you want to enable data collection.
    Note: You can enable data collection on a virtual server only if the operational state of the virtual server is UP.
  5. From the Action drop-down list, select Enable Appflow.
  6. In the Enable AppFlow dialog box, from the Select Expression drop-down list, specify the traffic to be filtered.
    Note: Currently, the only expression supported is true.

    For more information on expressions, see Policies and Expressions.

  7. Click OK to save the configuration. If data collection is enabled, the Insight column in the Application List table displays as enabled.
    Note: If AppFlow logging is not enabled for the respective services or service groups on the NetScaler appliance, the NetScaler Insight Center dashboard does not display the records, even if the Insight column shows Enabled.
  8. To return to the inventory list, from the Action drop-down, select Return to Inventory list.
Note: The following commands are executed in the background when you enable AppFlow in single-hop mode. These commands are explicitly specified here for troubleshooting purposes.
  • add appflow collector <name> -IPAddress <ip_addr>
  • add appflow action <name> -collectors <string>
  • set appflow param -flowRecordInterval <secs>
  • disable ns feature AppFlow
  • enable ns feature AppFlow
  • add appflow policy <name> <rule> <expression>
  • set appflow policy <name> -rule <expression>
  • bind vpn vserver <vsname> -policy <string> -type <type> -priority <positive_integer>
  • set vpn vserver <name> -appflowLog ENABLED
  • save ns config

Transparent Mode

If a NetScaler appliance is deployed in transparent mode in a XenApp/XenDesktop environment, the ICA traffic is not transmitted over a VPN. In that case, you have to add NetScaler Insight Center as an AppFlow collector on each NetScaler appliance, and you must configure an Appflow policy to collect all or specific ICA traffic that flows through the appliance.

  • Use the NetScaler command line interface to configure transparent-mode data collection manually on a NetScaler appliance. You cannot configure it in the NetScaler Insight Center Graphical User Interface (GUI).
  • For detailed information about the commands and their usage, see Command Reference.
  • For information on policy expressions, see Policies and Expressions.

To configure data collection on a NetScaler appliance by using the command line interface

At the command prompt, do the following:

  1. Log on to an appliance.
  2. Specify the ICA ports at which the NetScaler appliance listens for traffic.

    set ns param --icaPorts <port>...

    set ns param -icaPorts 2598 1494
    • You can specify up to 10 ports with this command.
    • The default port number is 2598. You can modify the port number as required.
  3. Add NetScaler Insight Center as an appflow collector on the NetScaler appliance.

    add appflow collector <name> -IPAddress <ip_addr>

    add appflow collector MyInsight -IPAddress
    Note: A NetScaler appliance supports a maximum four Appflow collectors. If there are already four Appflow collectors configured, you cannot add another AppFlow collector (in this case, NetScaler Insight Center) to the NetScaler appliance. Delete an existing Appflow collector to add a new collector. To view the appflow collectors configured on the NetScaler appliance, use the show appflow collector command.
  4. Create an appflow action and associate the collector with the action.

    add appflow action <name> -collectors <string> ...

    add appflow action act -collectors MyInsight
  5. Create an appflow policy to specify the rule for generating the traffic.

    add appflow policy <policyname> <rule> <action>

    add appflow policy pol true act
  6. Bind the appflow policy to a global bind point.

    bind appflow global <policyname> <priority> -type <type>

    bind appflow global pol 1 -type ICA_REQ_DEFAULT
    Note: The value of type should be ICA_REQ_OVERRIDE or ICA_REQ_DEFAULT in order to apply to ICA traffic.
  7. Set the value of the flowRecordInterval parameter for Appflow to 60 seconds.

    set appflow param -flowRecordInterval 60

    set appflow param -flowRecordInterval 60
  8. Save the configuration. save ns config