Ubuntu and Citrix WinFrame

The main purpose of getting the old PIII-based Ubuntu machine into a fit state was so that MySignificantOther could use it to access her work server using Citrix.

Her work has gone over totally to thinclient systems using Citrix to access word, excel, outlook and the customer account management system. The citrix plugin works nicely on a WinXP machine, but with everyone in the house using the internet as a principal source of entertainment as well as for work we needed a machine that could be “hers”.

As a thin client the old Ubuntu machine seemed like a good choice, and Citrix offer a free ICA client for unix. Installation has taken a few hours spread over the Christmas period, but we got there in the end.

The key advice came from /bin/false –help Install Guide for Citrix ICA Client on Ubuntu Breezy. Be sure to read the comments as there are updates and alternative suggestions for later versions (in my case Edgy), but it is all there!

Following this advice we were able to use the old machine to access MSO’s work, but it was a bit clunky. While everything worked fine I could not get the links on the Citrix desktop webpage in firefox 2 to launch. The work around was to save the .ica file on the desktop and then drag it onto the ICA client. (as a veteran of linux desktops I am amazed that this worked).

The trick to solving the problem is telling firefox which application to use to launch the .ica file. It is quite possible that this information is already in the /bin/false guide, but I did not see it. Instead the solution is to be found in the last step of the Citrix ICA Client How-To for Linux at wass.homelinux.net. Of the various executables in the ICAClient folder the one you need to point firefox at is: /usr/lib/ICAClient/wfica.

So MSO is all set. And I am sure that she will be a bit more comfortable with Ubuntu now that it acts more like it ought to.

[addendum: it would probably have been better to use the script at codetech than these other instructions, but sometimes you only find these things later]