App-V 5, SCCM 2012 SP1 and Connection Groups

Since we have so many new releases coming up – it was time to set how well they co-exist. App-V 5 Beta 2 is out and inorder to support that in a SCCM 2012 environment – we need SCCM 2012 SP1 deployed into the environment. Once that happens – some new options are available that we will browse through.

When creating a new application  – we have the option of two different Application Virtualization applications. One is the legacy-format of App-V 4.6, and now App-V 5 is also available as a choice.

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The wizard is pretty easy – you select the .appv-file created during your packaging efforts and the application will be imported into the environment. If you verify the properties of the deployment type – you can see a new tab;

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Virtual Environments can be setup within the newly available node App-V Virtual Environments just below the rest of the nodes in Application Management.

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Creating a new Virtual Environment might seem scary, however it simply is the new version of what was previously called Dynamic Suite Composition. From an App-V perspective – its called Connection Groups. Where the name Virtual Environment comes from seems odd – but we are just creating Connection Groups in the end.

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Each connection-group needs a name, a name that only seems to be visible through SCCM-console. Reviewing later on whats deployed on the client – the name does not appear anywhere. Next step is to start adding applications to the Connection Group.

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You can only see App-V 5 applications listed, keeping adding them one at a time…

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It does matter in which order you add them – however only from the usage of the application. SCCM will not deploy any applications automatically part of a Connection Group, you need to make any virtual applications deployed on their own or as part of a dependency. Once a Virtual Environment (aka Connection Group) is created – if all the applications are available on a client – the Connection Group will be created through a series of Powershell commands.

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The client actually executes the following commands to ensure that the Connection Group is created;

powershell.exe -ExecutionPolicy Bypass import-module 'C:\Program Files\Microsoft Application Virtualization\Client\AppvClient\AppvClient.psd1'; Add-AppvClientConnectionGroup -Path 'C:\Windows\CCM\SystemTemp\AppVTempData\ConnectionGroup_609C8E91-7A45-49D8-85EF-6F97393F6AD7.xml'
powershell.exe -ExecutionPolicy Bypass import-module 'C:\Program Files\Microsoft Application Virtualization\Client\AppvClient\AppvClient.psd1'; Enable-AppvClientConnectionGroup -GroupId 609C8E91-7A45-49D8-85EF-6F97393F6AD7 -VersionId 11998038-9881-4E71-AE3F-05B8CC736CF8  -Global

As you can see – there is a XML-file referenced. This file contains the configuration of the group;

<appv:AppConnectionGroup xmlns:appv="http://schemas.microsoft.com/appv/2010/virtualapplicationconnectiongroup" AppConnectionGroupId="609C8E91-7A45-49D8-85EF-6F97393F6AD7"
VersionId="11998038-9881-4E71-AE3F-05B8CC736CF8" IgnorableNamespaces="" DisplayName="ScopeId_2C452F22-4D7F-4190-B8A7-296878D46822/VirtualEnvironment_377202b9-16f7-465a-831d-60e20961c0a1">
<appv:Packages>
<appv:Package PackageId="52493623-312b-4187-9d0f-505d4b8cb791" VersionId="d23059ee-91ec-466b-a115-9157b4be0604"/>
<appv:Package PackageId="6d099036-5110-49bc-a2b9-c6d954bad70e" VersionId="af0d1d10-e5cc-47b4-8659-920a70acefab"/>
</appv:Packages>
</appv:AppConnectionGroup>

11 Comments

  1. Ed Merchant said:

    Thank you very much for this Nikke,

    Very detailed and easy to follow.

    Ed

    September 10, 2013
    Reply
  2. Vinod said:

    Thanks a lot Nicke. There is no need to look somewhere else about the information on Connection Groups.

    February 12, 2014
    Reply
  3. Ram said:

    Hi – Any chance you can share how to configure App-v Virtual Environment within SCCM 2012 R2. For some reason, none of my app-v packages are showing up on the client machine.

    The update and download button from App-v client ICON are grayed out.

    Ram

    May 12, 2014
    Reply
  4. Tiber said:

    Great article, but how can you configure, for instance different user configs for specific collections/usergroups (as you can configure with appv5 full infra)?
    Should you create multiple deployment type scripts with it’s specific dependency?

    June 26, 2014
    Reply
    • nickekallen said:

      Virtual Environments can not be deployed to anything specific, they are tied to the App-V Deployment Type.
      If you really want to separat them, yes – a unique DT would be the way togo.

      Scripting is of course an option…

      June 26, 2014
      Reply
  5. Gretchen Balfour said:

    Can an SCCM 2012 SP1 Virtual Environment reference both APP-V 4.6 and APP-V 5.0 applications, or only apps virtualized using APP-V 5.0? Any references would be helpful. We’re trying to understand if we need to migrate all the dynamically suited apps together into APP-V 5.0, or if the virtual bubble can access both 4.6 and 5.0 apps until we have time to get everything over to 5.0. Thanks!

    February 6, 2015
    Reply
    • nickekallen said:

      App-V 4 and App-V 5 are completely seperated and can not have a joint virtual environment. Virtual Environments is only for App-V 5

      February 7, 2015
      Reply
  6. vigneshwaran said:

    Clear and crisp info nicke.

    July 13, 2015
    Reply
  7. Christian Leber said:

    Thanks for the great help!
    There is a thing that I don’t understand though:
    Why is there more than one group depth?

    March 21, 2017
    Reply
    • nickekallen said:

      Each Group is a hard-requirement for any applications part of that Group to be installed Before creating the Connection Group

      March 21, 2017
      Reply

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