Product Documentation

Improving the user experience in Citrix Receiver for Mac

Sep 30, 2016

Customer Experience Improvement Program (CEIP)

The Citrix Customer Experience Improvement Program (CEIP) gathers anonymous configuration and usage data from Citrix Receiver for Mac and automatically sends the data to Citrix. This data helps Citrix improve the quality, reliability, and performance of Citrix Receiver for Mac. For more information, see Configuring CEIP.

ClearType font smoothing

ClearType font smoothing (also known as Sub-pixel font rendering) improves the quality of displayed fonts beyond that available through traditional font smoothing or anti-aliasing.

If you enable ClearType font smoothing on the server, you are not forcing user devices to use ClearType font smoothing. You are enabling the server to support ClearType font smoothing on user devices that have it enabled locally and are using Citrix Receiver for Mac.

Citrix Receiver for Mac automatically detects the user device's font smoothing setting and sends it to the server. The session connects using this setting. When the session is disconnected or terminated, the server's setting reverts to its original setting.

Client-side microphone input

Citrix Receiver for Mac supports multiple client-side microphone input. Locally installed microphones can be used for:

  • Real-time activities, such as softphone calls and Web conferences.
  • Hosted recording applications, such as dictation programs.
  • Video and audio recordings.

Digital dictation support is available with Citrix Receiver for Mac. For information about configuring this feature, see Audio features information on the Product Documentation site.

You can select whether or not to use microphones attached to your user device in sessions by choosing one of the following options from the Mic & Webcam tab in Citrix Receiver for Mac > Preferences:

  • Use my microphone and webcam
  • Don't use my microphone and webcam
  • Ask me each time

If you select Ask me each time, a dialog box appears each time you connect to a hosted application or desktop asking whether or not you want to use your microphone in that session.

Windows special keys

Citrix Receiver for Mac provides a number of extra options and easier ways to substitute special keys such as function keys in Windows applications with Mac keys. Use the Keyboard tab to configure the options you want to use, as follows:

  • “Send Control character using” lets you choose whether or not to send Command-character keystroke combinations as Ctrl+character key combinations in a session. If you select “Command or Control” from the pop-up menu, you can send familiar Command-character or Ctrl-character keystroke combinations on the Mac as Ctrl+character key combinations to the PC. If you select Control, you must use Ctrl-character keystroke combinations.
  • “Send Alt character using” lets you choose how to replicate the Alt key within a session. If you select Command-Option, you can send Command-Option- keystroke combinations as Alt+ key combinations within a session. Alternatively, if you select Command, you can use the Command key as the Alt key.
  • “Send Windows logo key using Command (right)” lets you send the Windows logo key to your remote desktops and applications by pressing the Command key situated on the right side of the keyboard. If this option is disabled, the right Command key has the same behavior as the left Command key according to the above two settings in the preferences panel, but you can still send the Windows logo key using the Keyboard menu; choose Keyboard > Send Windows Shortcut > Start.
  • “Send special keys unchanged” lets you disable the conversion of special keys. For example, the combination Option-1 (on the numeric keypad) is equivalent to the special key F1. You can change this behavior and set this special key to represent 1 (the number one on the keypad) in the session by selecting the "Send special keys unchanged" checkbox. By default, this checkbox is not selected so Option-1 is sent to the session as F1.

You send function and other special keys to a session using the Keyboard menu.

If your keyboard includes a numeric keypad, you can also use the following keystrokes:
PC key or action Mac options

0 (the number zero) on the numeric keypad. Num Lock must be off; you can turn this on and off using the Clear key.



Decimal point on the numeric keypad. Num Lock must be off; you can turn this on and off using the Clear key.


F1 to F9

Option-1 to -9 (the numbers one to nine) on the numeric keypad


Option-0 (the number zero) on the numeric keypad


Option-Minus Sign on the numeric keypad


Option-Plus Sign on the numeric keypad

Windows shortcuts and key combinations

Remote sessions recognize most Mac keyboard combinations for text input, such as Option-G to input the copyright symbol ©. Some keystrokes you make during a session, however, do not appear on the remote application or desktop and instead are interpreted by the Mac operating system. This can result in keys triggering Mac responses instead.

You might also want to use certain Windows keys, such as Insert, that many Mac keyboards do not have. Similarly, some Windows 8 keyboard shortcuts display charms and app commands, and snap and switch apps. These shortcuts are not mimicked natively by Mac keyboards but can be sent to the remote desktop or application using the Keyboard menu.

Keyboards and the ways keys are configured can differ widely between machines. Citrix Receiver for Mac therefore offers several choices to ensure that keystrokes can be forwarded correctly to hosted applications and desktops. These are listed in the table. The default behavior is described. If you adjust the defaults (using Citrix Receiver for Mac or other preferences), different keystroke combinations may be forwarded and other behavior may be observed on the remote PC.


Certain key combinations listed in the table are not available when using newer Mac keyboards. In most of these cases, keyboard input can be sent to the session using the Keyboard menu.

Conventions used in the table:

  • Letter keys are capitalized and do not imply that the Shift key should be pressed simultaneously.
  • Hyphens between keystrokes indicate that keys should be pressed together (for example, Control-C).
  • Character keys are those that create text input and include all letters, numbers, and punctuation marks; special keys are those that do not create input by themselves but act as modifiers or controllers. Special keys include Control, Alt, Shift, Command, Option, arrow keys, and function keys.
  • Menu instructions relate to the menus in the session.
  • Depending on the configuration of the user device, some key combinations might not work as expected, and alternative combinations are listed.
  • Fn refers to the Fn (Function) key on a Mac keyboard; function key refers to F1 to F12 on either a PC or Mac keyboard.

Windows key or key combination Mac equivalents
Alt+character key

Command–Option–character key (for example, to send Alt-C, use Command-Option-C)

Alt+special key

Option–special key (for example, Option-Tab)

Command–Option–special key (for example, Command-Option-Tab)

Ctrl+character key

Command–character key (for example, Command-C)

Control–character key (for example, Control-C)

Ctrl+special key

Control–special key (for example, Control-F4)

Command–special key (for example, Command-F4)

Ctrl/Alt/Shift/Windows logo + function key

Choose Keyboard > Send Function key > Control/Alt/Shift/Command-Function key




Control–Option–Forward Delete

Control-Option-Fn-Delete (on MacBook keyboards)

Choose Keyboard >Send Ctrl-Alt-Del



Choose Keyboard > Send Key > Delete

Fn-Backspace (Fn-Delete on some US keyboards)



Fn-Right Arrow



Choose Keyboard > Send Key > Escape

F1 to F12

F1 to F12

Choose Keyboard > Send Function Key > F1 to F12



Fn–Left Arrow


Choose Keyboard > Send Key > Insert

Num Lock


Page Down

Page Down

Fn–Down Arrow

Page Up

Page Up

Fn–Up Arrow


Choose Keyboard > Send Key > Space


Choose Keyboard > Send Key > Tab

Windows logo Right Command key (a keyboard preference, enabled by default)

Choose Keyboard > Send Windows Shortcut > Start

Key combination to display charms Choose Keyboard > Send Windows Shortcut > Charms
Key combination to display app commands Choose Keyboard > Send Windows Shortcut > App Commands
Key combination to snap apps Choose Keyboard > Send Windows Shortcut > Snap
Key combination to switch apps Choose Keyboard > Send Windows Shortcut > Switch Apps

Use Input Method Editors (IME) and international keyboard layouts

Citrix Receiver for Mac allows you to use an Input Method Editor (IME) on either the user device or on the server.

When client-side IME is enabled, users can compose text at the insertion point rather than in a separate window.

Citrix Receiver for Mac also allows users to specify the keyboard layout they wish to use.

To enable client-side IME

  1. From the Citrix Viewer menu bar, choose Keyboard > International > Use Client IME.
  2. Ensure the server-side IME is set to direct input or alphanumeric mode.
  3. Use the Mac IME to compose text.
To indicate explicitly the starting point when composing text
  • From the Citrix Viewer menu bar, choose Keyboard > International > Use Composing Mark.
To use server-side IME
  • Ensure the client-side IME is set to alphanumeric mode.
Mapped server-side IME input mode keys
Citrix Receiver for Mac provides keyboard mappings for server-side Windows IME input mode keys that are not available on Mac keyboards. On Mac keyboards, the Option key is mapped to the following server-side IME input mode keys, depending on the server-side locale:

Server-side system locale

Server-side IME input mode key


Kanji key (Alt + Hankaku/Zenkaku in Japanese keyboard)


Right-Alt key (Hangul/English toggle on Korean keyboard)

To use international keyboard layouts

  • Ensure both client-side and server-side keyboard layouts are set to the same locale as the default server-side input language.

Using multiple monitors

Users can set Citrix Receiver for Mac to work in full-screen mode across multiple monitors through the menu option, Use All Displays In Full Screen.

Known Limitations

Full-screen mode is only supported on one monitor or all monitors, which is configurable through a menu item.

Using the Desktop toolbar

Users can now access the Desktop Toolbar in both windowed and full-screen mode. Previously, the toolbar was only visible in full-screen mode. Additional toolbar changes include:

  • The Home button has been removed from the toolbar. This function can be executed by using the following commands:
    • Cmd-Tab to switch to the previous active application.
    • Ctrl-Left Arrow to switch to the previous Space.
    • Using the built-in trackpad or Magic Mouse gestures to switch to a different Space.
    • Moving the cursor to the edge of screen while in full-screen mode will display a Dock where you can choose which applications to make active.
  • The Windowed button has been removed from the toolbar. Leaving full-screen mode for windowed mode can be executed by the following methods:
    • For OS X 10.10, clicking the green window button on the drop-down menu bar. or
    • For OS X 10.9, clicking the blue menu button on the drop-down menu bar.
    • For all versions of OS X, selecting Exit Full Screen from the View menu of the drop-down menu bar.
  • The toolbar drag behavior is updated to support dragging between windows in full screen with multiple monitors.