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Citrix and MS Remote Desktop Client

Last updated April 30, 2009

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Have you found a Mac client tip or problem with the Citrix servers? Let us know.

NOTE: There are other Terminal Server clients and other remote control solutions listed on our Operating Systems Solutions page.

NOTE: Reports about Microsoft Remote Desktop Client have been moved to a new page.


The Citrix WinFrame and MetaFrame application server software runs on Windows NT/2000. They enable clients to run Win 32-bit applications over the network. Clients are free. Clients are available for Windows, Macintosh, DOS, and UNIX. A JAVA client is also available to run on any JAVA virtual machine. (The Mac client is based on Insignia Solutions NTrigue, which Citrix purchased from Insignia in January, 1998.)

Windows Terminal Server

Microsoft's Windows Terminal Server is similar to the Citrix products, but requires a different Mac client. A third-party product called HOBLink JWT is one way for Macs to connect. On July 17, 2002, Microsoft released the free Remote Desktop Connection (RDC) client for Mac, which readers generally like. We have reader reports below.

Version History for Citrix OS X client

Version 7.10.500: first universal binary version. January 8, 2007 -- Citrix has released version 7.10.500 of its ICA Client for Mac OS X, the first Universal Binary build (Intel- and PowerPC-native). Citrix is still offering the older PowerPC-only version 7.00.411 at the site. Of the new release, reader Brian Paquin said "Other than a new icon, I haven't noticed much different."

Version 7.00.402 January 14, 2005 -- Matt Richard has tried it and says it fixes a problem with Word and Excel copy/paste.

The new Citrix release, Version 7.00.402, appears to resolve the clipboard-related crash with the Citrix client and MS Office 2004, as reported at MacWindows.

I've been running it for two days and it's been stable, and I've been able to copy from Word 2004 and paste inside the Citrix window without a crash.

Version 7.0 December 1, 2004. Reader Chris Ericksond describes it:

This is a long awaited upgrade. While the new feature list is not very long, the amount of bug fixes are numerous. And once again, no announcement from Citrix that there even exists a new Mac client, but you will find it on their download page.

Version 6.30.314 October 15, 2002 -- Citrix posted Citrix ICA Client for Mac OS X 6.30.314. Among the features:

The Citrix readme notes an issue with file permissions:

The Macintosh Client uses the "Locked" flag on a file (which is set at Finder File menu > Show Info in Mac OS X 10.1 and at Finder File menu > Get Info in Mac OS X 10.2) rather than using the detailed (UNIX) file permissions. This means an unlocked file with read-only permissions can be overwritten, and a locked file with read-write permissions cannot be amended. We therefore recommend that users do not use the locked flag to create file permissions.

If you've tried the new version, we'd like to hear your opinion. (For more on Macs and Citrix serve

First Tech Preview On July 25, 2002, Citrix has posted Citrix ICA Client for Mac OS X Technology Preview, a prerelease version of a client for Citrix MetaFrame application servers for Windows servers. This tech preview includes an Aqua graphics user interface, some security enhancements, and simpler printer configuration through the use of he Citrix Universal Printer Driver. However, as prerelease software, this version does not implement all of the intended security features. Citrix also recommends the following procedure for preventing printer problems:

When you have made an ICA connection open the Windows Start menu and choose Settings > Printers. Double click the printer called Client\Macintosh ICA Client#\Mac Printer in the printer list, then choose Printer > Properties. Click the Advanced tab and in the Driver drop-down list choose either the Citrix PCL4 Universal Driver or the HP LaserJet Series II printer driver.

Reader Reports

Citrix reports

Tip: Printing to local Mac printers from Citrix clients.

October 26, 2000 --Jason Kahn sent us a how-to on printing to Mac printers from Citrix clients. Kahn describes the procedure this way:

This is especially handy if the clients are hitting the Citrix server over a WAN link, because the Citrix server can't see the printers. IP printing via NT is actually better in this situation, but if the route isn't there this method would be the obvious choice. Citrix has *very* poor documentation on this stuff.

This procedure describes printing to local Mac printers from Citrix clients. In this case, local means any printer on the LAN that is accessible via the LaserWriter driver. (Covers client installation too)

  1. Install Citrix ICA client V. 6.0. The installer can be downloaded free from Citrix.
  2. Open the "Citrix ICA client" program folder (in your hard drive). Open the Citrix ICA client editor.
  3. Enter the IP of your Citrix server in the server field.
  4. Enter your NT domain in the domain field.
  5. Set window settings as desired.
  6. Choose "Default Settings" from the Options menu.
  7. Choose "Printer Setup" from the top menu.
  8. Choose "PostScript Printer" from the bottom menu.
  9. Choose "Generic PostScript Printer" from the list of printers.
  10. Click "Save". Name the file "Citrix" (or whatever) and save it to the desktop. This will create a Citrix connection document that you can double-click to connect to Citrix.
  11. Go to the Chooser. Click on the "LaserWriter 8" icon. Click the "Setup" button. Click "Select PPD". Click the "Generic" button. Click "OK".
  12. Double-click the "Citrix" icon that you created earlier and log in to Citrix.
  13. (In Citrix) Go to Start=>Settings=>Printers.
  14. Double-click "Add Printer".
  15. Choose "Network Printer Server". Click the "Next" button.
  16. Double-click "Client" under "Client Network", and select the resulting printer (it has the words "Mac Printer" in the title). Click "OK".
  17. Click "Yes" to make the printer your default. Click the "Next" button.

To use the correct NT driver, enabling access to all paper trays etc.:

Tip: Citrix printing to non-Postscript printers

October 27, 2000 -- Peter Figaroa send in a recommendation for printing to non-Postscript printers. He recommends IP printing, rather than using PowerPrint. He says its less expensive and more flexible:

In my case I've six iMacs and one PowerMac G4 each one has a local attach HP deskjet printer connected to the USB port. They all running the freeware LPD daemon Print66 from barijaona, which can accept print jobs from our Citrix server, Windows NT server, IBM AS/400 system, Unix server and Windows PCs.

Mac OS 9.1 conflict with Citrix Client for Macintosh

NOTE: A fix and some JAVA-based workarounds are described below, as is a Server fix.

January 16, 2001 --Leland Jory reports a problem with Mac OS 9.1 and the Citrix client:

I recently updated to OS 9.1 and now, when I run the Citrix ICA Client (V6.00.066) the colors are screwy. There is no new client from Citrix yet, and I have yet to find a fix.

January 17, 2001
Tim Fisher

I installed Mac OS 9.1 today, and found the same problem with the Citrix client that was mentioned on MacWindows. However, saying it is a "color problem" makes it sound less critical than it is. The color problem includes lots of black-on-black text, which means it is unreadable, and therefore unusable, depending on the application that is used. You can't see any filenames unless you change the background color to other than white, (I tried off-white and that worked.) However, some applications are not so configurable as Windows Explorer is, and that makes this problem a critical one.

I am now looking at other alternatives, such as the Java Citrix client.

Anyone know how to uninstall Mac OS 9.1?

January 17, 2001
Peter Figaroa

I also got the same problem after upgrading to Mac OS 9.1, downgrading the Citrix client to v4.1 solved the problem.

January 17, 2001
Steve Lundgren

I too have this problem with Citrix client 6.00.066 Reverting back to Citrix client 4.1 (build 36) solves the problem for me. Others have noticed gif drawing problems in Dreamweaver.

January 17, 2001
DJ Murry

I just tried to reproduce the problem with Citrix and mine works fine. Running OS 9.1, Citrix client 4.1 (build 41)

January 17, 2001
Philip Saunders

Confirm Leland Jory's report. The Windows desktop is not drawn at all. Icons on the desktop do not show their titles unless selected. Colors are good within Internet Explorer, but not within Outlook.

Flip side, v.6 was noticeably faster than 4.1 under OS 9.04, and it's faster yet, practically native speed, under 9.1, so I'm really anxious for the fix. I want to roll both 9.1 and Citrix 6 out as soon as I can.

January 17, 2001
Arsenio (Nak) Tsounis

I have the same problem with Citrix 6.0 Client running 9.1. No fix is currently available and no word from Citrix.

January 17, 2001
Jeremy Rojas

I too have see the problem where the Citrix client highlights all text as black and therefore unreadable. Reverting to Client 4.1 solves the problem with minimal impact to my daily work - your mileage may vary and the 4.1 client may have bugs that the 6.x resolved. Alternatively, you could use the Java Client which needs to be enabled from the server side and will also require MRJ 2.2.x

January 17, 2001
Darren Montjar

I've had the same problem as Leland Jory with the Citrix client not properly redrawing the screen. Menus seem to act like a big eraser. The problem isn't quite as bad if you set your Mac desktop to match the Citrix desktop (usually 256 colors) but it's still bad enough to make it unusable, especially if you're using Word or something. A search of Citrix' knowledgebase site reveals a posting from Citrix that it is not Mac OS 9 compatible, but their server seemed to be down more than it was up so I never could read the post. Considering Citrix probably has one guy in the broom closet with a Mac IIci who's writing the client, the likelihood of this getting fixed soon is pretty slim. They must've just gotten him a 6100, though, since the new client allows for multiple apps to run at once. Look at their manuals. They show System 7 screen shots. Ugh.

Fixes and workarounds

January 23, 2001
Jason Froikin offered a promising fix:

I have found that the problem with screen redraws on the Citrix ICA Client 6.0 for MacOS and MacOS 9.1 seems to be caused by the Mac's screen resolution being greater then the ICA client's screen bit depth.

For instance, if you have your Mac set to Millions Of Colors, and the ICAClient to 256 colors, it will have redraw problems. The solution: Either set the ICA client to a better bit depth, or change your Mac's bit depth.

These readers have found JAVA clients to work:

January 17, 2001
Tim Fisher

After further investigation, I will be switching over to the HOBLink JWT program for awhile, for connecting to my Microsoft Terminal Servers, at least until Citrix comes out with a fix for their client. The HOBLink JWT program works fine in Mac OS 9.1, whereas the Citrix client does not.

Hopefully there will be an update soon, because I like PowerPC apps better than Java apps.

January 23, 2001
Stephen Rector described another JAVA work-around that works:

I found that both versions 4.1 and V6 of the Mac Citrix client caused me to have redraw problems with OS9.1. The solution that worked for me was to download the Java version of the Client. I built the Java classes into a standalone app using JBindery from the MRJ SDK V2.2 downloaded from the Apple Developer site. The procedure is actually well documented in the Citrix Java admin guide, and running the Citrix Java code in JBindery invokes a "wizard" which takes you through the steps for building the app.

What was surprising was that the Java version of the Client ran faster than the compiled versions - you can draw your own conclusions about the quality of the code that must imply. And the redraw issue went away.

January 24, 2001 Citrix acknowledges the problem
Steve Maser

I got this from Citrix tech support when I e-mailed them about this:
Our development team is at work on this problem, which is apparently due to more stringent palette guidelines being enforced in the 9.1 version. This will take some coding modification and testing, so an ETA is not available. I will make a reference to your organization within the problem log, and as soon as a solution is available, we'll notify you of its availability.

The only workaround that works for me is to kick my Macs colors down to 256 (which makes everything else look bad.)

January 24, 2001
Tim Fisher

I have no doubt that Jason Froikin's workaround would work. However, I think I prefer the "revert to older Citrix client version" workaround. Enabling 32-bit color requires an expensive server upgrade, (available from Citrix). Reverting to 256-color mode on my Mac is too much of a hassle, as I frequently do web development work, and working in Photoshop is a big part of that. Switching between 256-color mode and 32-bit color mode would be rather annoying.

Switching back to the old (Citrix client 4.1) is a much better proposition for us. The 6.0 client doesn't offer any significant functionality over the 4.1 version. Everything new in 6.0 requires that expensive server upgrade in order to work, and those few features just aren't worth the price they're asking.

January 24, 2001
Philip Saunders

Jason Froikin reported fixing the screen redraw problem in Citrix v.6 under Mac OS 9.1 by having the client set to the same color depth as the Mac's screen. This did not work for me. Problem persists. Haven't tried the JBindery solution yet.

A server role in the OS 9.1 video conflict?

January 30, 2001
Michael Martel:

The problem seems to be with Color Depth on the Citrix Server, and something Citrix Changed in the client. I have a Citrix Server (MetaFrame 1.8 Feature Release 2) that I connect to with my Mac's (all OS 9.1, Client 6.0b66) and never have any problems. I can set my color depth to anything I want and it works fine.

If I connect back to a Citrix MF 1.8 Server, NOT FEATURE RELEASE 2, then I have all sorts of Color Issues, UNTIL, I match my Mac's Color Dept to the Color Depth on the Server. Even then there are some oddities.

When I connect to the Server I get a message about :

The Following requested Video Mode was not available :
640x480x16 BPP
The Video Mode has been set to the Following :
640x480x8 BPP
License Not Installed for Requested Video Mode.

Mac OS 9.1 isn't completely at fault I don't think. I think Citrix does something slightly odd.

A server-based fix for the OS 9.1 video conflict

February 1, 2001 --
Ty Stein

I just tonight finally got around to installing Citrix Feature release 1, SP2 on my Metaframe Server (WIN TSE 4.0, SP6). The problem with the Mac client has vanished. The FAQ on their update talks about new support for 32 bit video, etc. It looks like the issue with Mac OS 9.1 is that the Metaframe Server Service Pack needs applied, and all is then well.

Citrix 6.0.94 has problems with Siebel

May 26, 2001
Robin Jackson

I upgraded my Citrix config with the latest version 6.0.94 as per your website. The install went well and seemed okay as I logged in to my Citrix Server and started Siebel for me. However, if I clicked on any of the Siebel main options my Mac froze totally.

I went back to 6.0.66 and had no problems at all.

If you've seen this problem, please let us know.

Citrix Java client on MacOS X setup

April 27, 2001
Jonathan Mergy describes how to get the Citrix Java client running on Mac OS X:

I got the Java client running on Mac OS X just a minute ago. here is what you need to do -

1. Get the setup.class from Citrix (the Java Client Setup Class)
2. Choose a place on your X machine you want to put it. (I made a folder under Applications named Citrix - /Applications/Citrix)
3. Run the setup.class from terminal and when it prompts where to put the files, don't browse, just enter the directory path you want - in my case it was /Applications/Citrix
4. The installer will not put the two important batch files in the directory - jicasession and pnsession because it doesn't really know what the hell is going on with the Mac OS X JVM. You need these files/scripts to run the Java client. I installed the Java client on an intel Linux box and snagged the scripts and modified them to handle the X config and put them in the same directory and chmod the jicasession file to make it executable and bang! it worked!

Email me if you want my script and I will send it to you ASAP for free (of course!)

Mergy also told ut this:

This was the key to get me using X full time (and native BBEdit when I get it delivered). When I figured it out, I was so relieved. It isn't perfect, but it works. Of course, it is faster than the 'native' Citrix Mac client (as the Java client was under classic).

I created a folder for Citrix under Applications (/Applications/Citrix) the attached script works for that path. You might need to chmod 777 on it when you get it. Doing a ./jicasession will bring up a command-line Java client window that you can then do your stuff with (i.e. -address:'server ip' -width:1024 -height:768, etc.) 

Mergy has further info at MacOSX Hints.

March 7, 2002

I've had this running for a while now with no problems.

1 If you download the setup.jar file from Citrix and run it you will be asked to create 2 shell scripts. One is called PNSESSION and the other JICASESSION. Activating JICAsession will give you a more Mac like single Citrix connection.JICASESSION will present the more typical Program Neighborhood that PC users see.

2 These files give quick reference to the class names that you need to create the .app double clickable application. So you can create a double clickable Program Neighborhood AND a double clickable single connection document. The advantage of the single doc is that you can compile in different parameters for each different server. You might want one at 640 x 480 and another at 1024 x 768.

3 If you read the .pdf supplied with the setup.jar file you will see that there are a number of parameters you can pass to the Java application. The most obvious is the server address ie "server:".You can also pass the resolution that you would like to be the default. At command line using the shell script you might type "jicasession -address: -height:1024 -width:768

4. These parameters can be compiled into the MRJ application that you build by clicking on the "Java Properties" tab within AppBuilder and editing the "parameters" property. You will need to type in the parameters exactly as you would at the command line.

5. I included all the .jar files created by the installer except the setup.jar. This gives an executable of approx 4-5 Meg instead of the entire folder which is about 16 Meg

6 Apple has released an update to Java in the last few days which seems (subjectively) to give a performance improvement and correct some errors.

Please note also (maybe obvious) that this procedure should work with most if not all Java based apps as long as you know the name of the class to invoke.

TIP: Citrix client on Mac OS X: Java client runs best

May 26, 2001
Charles Soto sent us a report on how to get the Citrix thin/client Mac client to run under Mac OS X. (The Citrix applications server runs on Windows servers.) Soto said version 6.0, build 66 runs fine in Mac OS 9.1, but is slow in OS X Classic. He also tried the Java ICA client in OS X, which is still slower than the Mac client in OS 9.1, but faster than the Mac client running in OS X Classic.

Soto sent us the details of how to get the Java ICA Client running in OS X. He had to use Terminal application to create to shell scripts with Unix commands.

We're working on supplying a Windows-only radio/TV news production application in an all-Mac lab. I've tried the 6.0 (build 66) Mac client on both Mac OS 9.1 and OS X. It works great in 9.1, but in OS X Classic it slows down considerably. Identical settings. It just gets "jittery," as if the connection were slow. It doesn't matter the screen resolution, color depth, etc.

Next, since Mac OS X has a native Java 2 VM, I tried the Java ICA client. These are the installation steps:

Download setup.class (from the Java ICA Client download section of

In Terminal, type "/usr/bin/java -hotspot setup" (while cd'ed to the directory where setup.class lives)

Follow directions in the installer. For the installation path, I picked /Applications/ICA Java Client/

You have to then create two shell scripts in this directory:




/usr/bin/java -hotspot $@





/usr/bin/java -hotspot com.citrix.JICA $@

You start up the client using the methods described in the manual, such as:

/Applications/ICA\ Java\ Client/jicasession -address: -desiredcolor:4 -height:768 -width:1024

To launch a published app, use:

  • /Applications/ICA\ Java\ Client/jicasession -address:PowerPoint
  • initialprogram:#PowerPoint

So far, it works fairly well. Speed is not as good as the Mac client under 9.1, but it *appears* better than the "Classic" Mac client under X. I'll have to play with it more. It may also be that I have a lot of stuff in the background under X, and only had the client running under 9.1. We shall see.

A Citrix Java client for Mac OS X

September 14, 2001 -- Josef Kolbitsch has created Citrix client for Mac OS X, and was wondering if MacWindows readers would be interested in trying it out:

I am working in Macintosh-support for Graz, University of Technology (Austria/Europe), and currently I am testing the Citrix Java-client. I found out that it was rather annoying for the users to start the Java-client from the command-line, so I created a Mac OS X package containing all files from an installed version of the ICA Java client. The package only contains a custom icon, a JavaApplicationStub, the Java-files and a description-file of the package. I put the OS X package together with the documentation into a udif-disk-image for the user's convenience.

Maybe there are some OS X users who want to try it out and let me know if there are any problems or there is something to do better! (

Of course, if you do try out Kolbitsch's client, we'd like to hear your impressions as well.

[Note: Kolbitsch upgraded the client on March 1, 2002.]

September 18, 2001
Rich Shone had good luck with it, and sent us some suggestions:

Downloaded from the link on your site. I had previously used the Java client launched from the terminal and this is much nicer. Now all I need to remember is the command line to enter once the window is opened (e.g. -address -width=1024 -height=768) I get around this by keeping the information on a sticky and copy paste it to the applet window. From there it works great. It would be nice to be able to save multiple configs as in the Mac, Windows, or Linux Clients. I keep hoping that the whole metaFrame product could come to OS X Server and we could run OS X Desktops via a DOS client on an Intel Machine.

September 18, 2001
Nik Sands found the same problems in this client and in a client he built himself:

I've been attempting to use the Citrix Java package for Mac OS X you posted on Mac Windows. I actually created a similar package myself, from the Java source but had serious problems using it. It looks as though the same problems exist with the package I downloaded from the link on MacWindows.

There are 3 main problems I've been having:

1. Occasionally, the client actually connects successfully, but then the (windows) login screen is erratic and I cannot log in successfully. It does not appear to respond at first to anything I do, but then disappears, and bits of it reappear and disappear again and then nothing happens at all.

2. Usually, the client crashes ("unexpectedly quit" error) on connection to the server.

3. There appears to be some incompatibility with the client and the OSXvnc server when I have an X2vnc client connected to the Mac OS X vnc server. It's as though the vnc server is receiving spurious characters and I get a lot of beepings as this "typing" is not into any particular field or window that can accept it. Once I discovered this problems, my subsequent attempts to use the Citrix client have been without any X2vnc client connected. This is a pain, as it means I cannot share the same keyboard and mouse between the three machines (OS X, Solaris 8, Win NT 4) on my desk that I usually do, if I want to use Citrix on the Mac.

September 18, 2001
Darin Duphorne

I have tried the Java Citrix client for OS X. Although I couldn't test it fully because my company's Citrix server is behind our firewall and there is no fw-1 client yet for OS X, I noticed that the alert windows were only a tad bigger than the OK button and were not resizable.

Citrix and MacOS 9.2.2 problem

December 13, 2001 -- Chris DeMorell notes a problem with the Citrix Mac client running on Mac OS 9.2.2:

We are running version 4.1 of the Citrix client for Macintosh which has been running well in our Mac environment of about 100 users. One of our techs installed 9.2.2 and tried to access the C: drive through Citrix which points to the local hard drive on the Mac. Upon doing this, the Citrix server crashed and needed to be rebooted. Doing this on any earlier version of the Mac OS works fine. We also noticed this same issue when using version 6 of the Citrix client with any version of MacOS 9.

TIP: How to create a double-clickable app for Citrix Java Client for OS X.

December 27, 2001
Glyn Seal

I have been fiddling with the Citrix Client for Java for OS X, since I wanted a double clickable app that I didn't have to launch from the Terminal. I know that there is something similar on your web page, but I thought people might like the procedure for creating the Java app themselves. Note that you need the Developer Tools for OS X. [Note: this CD is included in the OS X retail package --Ed.]

1. Download the setup.class file from

2. Launch the terminal, navigate to the directory, and type 'Java setup' (without quotes) This will launch the Java installation program, which you run through, and it expands the setup.class file to where you specify. There are some errors (the same ones listed under the OS 9 installation in the Java Guide from but just ignore them.

3. Open up MRJAppBuilder from the Developer Tools.

4. Click the 'Choose' button and select the file JICAEngJ.jar file.

5. In the Main Classname field type ''

6. Click set, navigate to where you want the application, and name it what you want with .app afterwards. Click 'OK'.

7. Click 'Build'

You now will have a Java application that you can launch. In my testing so far it has been pretty successful. You still need to set up the servers etc within the app, like using the Client Editor in OS 9, but within the app itself.

Sometimes MRJAppBuilder does not properly locate the unexpanded Setup.class file. When building the application, check under the Merge Files tab. There should be JICAEngJ.jar _and_ setup.class. If setup.class is not there then it needs to be added manually.

Then everything works fine! (The first build I did located the file properly, but then I moved it, and the next time I tried to do a build the app builder didn't find it-and it is sort of necessary!)

Additionally, MacSlash has a tutorial describing how to get the Citrix Java client running OS X. (Thanks to Roy Long this tip.)

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Another Citrix Java client for OS X: "Mystery Machine"

February 15, 2002 -- Darren Montjar has created another Citrix Java client for OS X, called "Mystery Machine":

I've posted a double-clickable version of the Java client for Mac OS X. It works pretty well.

Darren Montjar released Mystery Machine 1.2 on May 20, 2002 version 1.2.3 on June 14. He writes:

I've released Mystery Machine 1.2.3 on the world. This one fixes the inability to connect with encryption &endash; RC5 128-bit (Login Only), RC5 40-bit, RC5 56-bit, and RC5 128-bit have returned. SSL should work now, too, though I have no way of testing it. Hopefully this works for everyone.

February 25, 2002
Adam Getliff

I downloaded the Citrix Java client for OS X created by Darren Montjar - posted 15th Feb 2002 and it works fine. It seems to be about the same speed as the ICA client that runs in Classic mode. Seems fine to me. Many thanks for Darren - I have tried the manual route to install the JAVA client downloaded from Citrix, but couldn't make it work - but then I'm no expert when it comes to Unix.

February 27, 2002
Michael Wilmar

I have also tried Montjar's Citrix Java Client with System X and can confirm that it works well, at least on a LAN. It is, however, slower on a 266 MHz G3 than the System 9 Citrix client. Still, it's nice that it's there.

February 27, 2002
Paul Drisgula

I have been using the Citrix Java Client, MysteryMachine, for a few days now and it seems to work just fine. This was one of the last programs I needed to complete my transition to System X. Nice job Darren.

If you tried it, please let us know how it works (and let us know which of the several Java clients you're talking about.)

March 7, 2001
Robin Jackson

I have tried 2 or 3 Java Citrix clients and all have been difficult for a non Unix user (me) to use.

However the Mysterymachine version has been a real eye opener. It has worked perfectly in the short time I have used it but the important thing is that it has been very easy to configure as it is just like a Windows client. This means I could just copy the Citrix neighborhood information off a Windows PC put the details into the Mysterymachine version and 'hey presto' I could see all my companies published applications.

An excellent implementation.

March 20, 2002
Kerry Grigg

I just began using Darren Montjar's "Mystery Machine" Java Citrix client under OS X 10.1.3. So far, the performance is impressive. I am the only Mac user on our firm's Win NT network of 100 plus users. The IT guys were able to set up the client without a hitch. It seems as responsive on my PowerBook G4 400 MHz as the Windows 2000 client used on 700 MHz ThinkPads. It's a bonus to have the "Mystery Machine" van bouncing on my Dock. Thank you, Darren.

TIP: Drive Mapping the MysteryMachine Citrix client for OS X. April 8, 2002 -- A reader asked how to map a local drive using the Mystery Machine Citrix client for OS X. We received a number of responses, including directions from Darren Montjar, the creator of MysteryMachine. The key is to use Unix paths. Montjar says:

Mapping a drive in MysteryMachine isn't rocket science. It uses Unix paths. I wouldn't advise mapping your entire drive. Not only does that open you up to all sorts of potential security disasters, but can crash the Citrix server in some instances (as posted on today's edition of MacWindows). So I would recommend mapping to a folder in your Documents folder (for this example I'll call it "stuff"), just to make it safest, and use that as a "drop box" between Citrix and OS X.

The path to type in would be "/Users/username/Documents/stuff/" (no quotes).

If there are spaces in the user's name or path they specify, then they will have to use the \ character, as follows in this example reaching "Citrix Stuff":

/Users/username/Documents/Citrix\ Stuff/

I'll have some pretty pictures up on the main MM site today

Reader Pearse Ward adds this procedural tidbit:

Go to the "Tools" menu, select "ICA Options", the "Drive Mapping". Check the drive letter you want to use.

The tricky is that you need to specify a full UNIX path (e.g. /Users/yourname/Documents) to map a given folder as the drive.

Ward also has a query:

The one thing I have not been able to do is to get the client to stop asking for permission to read/write to the mapped drive (permanent 'prompt' mode) every time you want to access it (regardless as to how you set access level in the 'Drive Mapping' dialog box).

Thanks to all the other readers who responded as well.

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Citrix 6.20.139 client for classic Mac OS now available

April 15, 2002 -- Citrix has posted build 6.20.139 of its ICA Client for "classic" Macintosh (pre-OS X). The web page doesn't list the changes, but Steve Maser has tried the new client and sent a report:

This version seems to have fixed the problems of the previous 6.20 version whereby it would rewrite the preference files after each use. (something that was pointed out in October 2001--A fix only 6 months later.)

Apart from that, I don't see a lot of differences between this and the 6.0 version -- it's still works in "classic" mode in OS X, but it's no faster or anything exciting.

However, the article directly below (Invisible folder cause crash) describes a bug that causes the server to crash, as well as a server patch to fix it.

April 23, 2002 -- Jon Luberth reports having the problem with the Citrix "classic" ICA client that would rewrite the preference files. Previously, another reader reported upgrading to the Citrix ICA-client 6.20.139 fixed the problem. Luberth says that a reinstallation of a previous version also fixed the problem.

We also had a problem with the prefs file, and this was something mystic with the automatically updated client (updated from the server). When we installed the client (6.20.127) from the installer everything works great.

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Mac OS X invisible folder causes Citrix servers to crash

A folder called "<nul><nul><nul><nul>HFS+ Private Data" which is installed by Mac OS X, causes the Mac OS 9 Citrix client to crash Citrix servers.

On April 13, 2002, Citrix posted a hot fix for MetaServer that corrects the problem of the MetaFrame server crashing when Macs access a mapped drive.You can download the hotfix here, and is described in Citrix Knowledge Base article CTX184080 (type in CTX184080 in the search field). The article describes the problem:

Fatal system errors (Stop 50 and Stop C2) occurred when sending large amounts of data from the server to mapped drives on an ICA Macintosh or UNIX client device.

(Thanks to Dalton Bly tipping us off about this fix.)

Descriptions of the problem:

April 5, 2002
Dave Heap

This is a HUGE problem. It has just stated appearing on our site, with devastating results. The MetaFrame Servers crash when a Macintosh client attempts to access C:\ (the mapped local client root drive). The problem occurs only on any system which also has OS X installed.

The trigger for the server crash is a hidden directory created at the the root level of the Mac HD by the OS X install. This folder is named "<nul><nul><nul><nul>HFS+ Private Data"

It seems to be the presence of the <nul> characters at the beginning of the file which cause a server crash as soon as an attempt is made to read the directory containing this name. By making the Folder visible and moving it to another folder, the problem moves to the directory with the bad name. I have even copied the name (Using ResEdit) to an simple text file in another directory, and this too creates the crash for that directory.

I assume fiddling with the folder name will render OS X unusable.

The crash happens with both NT 4(SP6) MetaFrame 1.8(SP3) servers and Win 2000 servers with MetaFrame 1.8(SP3). Also various versions of Macintosh Client.

April 8, 2002
Dave Heap adds:

It's not an OS X problem, it's an OS 9 problem. It is caused by the presence of an OS X installation, but doesn't occur under OS X.

This is Citrix ICA Client 6.x (I've tried several versions) running under an OS 9 boot on any partition on a machine which also has OS X installed.

It doesn't happen under Classic, only if the user starts up from OS 9. This is the case for many of our new machine purchasers, who choose to still start up OS 9 at this stage.

It's an OS 9 issue, caused by the presence of a folder created on every partition by an OS X boot. Removing or renaming the offending folder temporarily gets rid of the problem, until the next OS X boot. I don't know what the consequences are (to OS X) of removing this folder and its contents!

April 8, 2002
Arsenio Tsounis

I have had the same problems. We don't access the files that way anymore. A little bit of a pain.

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Citrix web launch in OS X

April 17, 2002 -- Jared Carlson wants to know how to access a Citrix server from Mac OS X:

Perhaps I'm betraying my X-newbiebness, but I wondered if anyone had figured out how to do a web launch of Citrix [in Mac OS X]. I've been able to make a double-clickable Citrix using the tips on your website, but haven't been able to figure out how to launch Citrix from a web site. The only way to access the Citrix server I'm interested in is through the web. Under OS 9, this was no problem given the native-version of the Citrix client.

April 19, 2002
Kyle Crawford

There are a couple of issues with trying to do a Citrix web launch in Mac OS X.

First is that a Java application doesn't seem to be able to handle the 'on open' type of apple event that a standard application can. Or perhaps a Java application can handle it, but the Citrix Java client doesn't. Maybe the Mystery Machine author can make this happen.

The second problem is with Internet Explorer 5 for Mac OS X and metadata handling. In my experience, even though I set the helper application for .ica files, and IE did understand when it encountered one (since it downloaded to the place I specified for .ica type files), it did not include file type information, and it relied on the Finder to actually open the file based on file extension. So you could set all files with a .ica file extension to open with a Citrix app, however since the ica files are generated by server generated asp code, they download with a .asp extension. So you must set the Finder to open every .asp file with your Citrix app. Hopefully this illustrates just one of the many weaknesses of relying on file extensions. The Mac OS X finder still does observe file types if they are present, but IE does not include them. And if what I have found is true, then IE preferences should not even have on option to set a helper application since it is ignored anyway and simply relies on the Finder to open the file. Also of note is that Mozilla and Netscape for Mac OS X do not have this problem, since they DO still set file type information and the Finder opens the correct helper application. However, IE is the preferred browser for Citrix access through the web because it is the only Mac browser that allows you to set the invisible Temporary Items Folder for your downloads--and being able to do this means that your desktop or download folder is not overrun with temporary .asp files.

So after figuring out all of this, I did create a hacked together workaround. I wrote an AppleScript and set the finder to open all .asp files with it. A script does understand the 'on open' event and so I passed the Unix path of the file to the command line Citrix Java client using a "do shell script" AppleScript command. It worked, but wasn't pretty, so I won't even post it.

April 19, 2002
David Tom

My only access was from a website as well and my IT department wouldn't give me the IP address of the Citrix server so I could use MysteryMachine (I love that icon). Anyway, I tried installing Citrix for 9.x and made all of the mime type changes for IE.

I discovered that I did not set it up properly, but the file the Citrix sends back to the browser to open Citrix has the all of the IP address and domain information you need to set up MysterMachine to access the server.

April 19, 2002
Paul Drisgula

I am not an expert on Citrix but know how I access our server at work via the web.

First, our IT people supplied me with an address that I simply plug into a browser. This takes me to an authentication page where I am asked for my username and password.

One significant oddity that arises at this point is that only one web browser allows me to get past the authentication page &emdash; OmniWeb. I have tried nearly every other browser out there and they all return the same error message. Only OmniWeb works for me. I have no idea why. My non-Mac friends at work -- I have a few -- tell me this step is a bit finicky for them as well -- though they seem to be able to get by using IE.

Anyway, once past the authentication page, I use Mystery Machine to access the Citrix Server. Using the same address as the one the browser uses to get to the authentication page, Mystery Machine takes me right into the Citrix Server at work. Once everything is set up, the entire process takes only a minute or so.

Jared should ask the IT people what security measures they use to access the Citrix server. Perhaps Mystery Machine will take him directly there without the intervention of his browser. In any event, OmniWeb and Mystery Machine represent a magical combination for me.

If anyone has an idea why OmniWeb works where all others fail, I would love to hear it. Some Mac users at work who are not yet on System X are blocked from accessing the Citrix Server because their browser cannot get them past the authentication page.

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Problem with Citrix clients and AppleShare IP

May 29, 2002
Marcus Rowell

We have run across an interesting problem with a Windows 2000 server running Citrix accessing shares on an AppleShare IP 6.3.3 server. If, from within a Citrix client session, a user connects to a normal Windows share with their own username and password they receive access based on that username and password entered. If multiple users on the same Citrix server connect to the same Windows share they all receive a unique connection to the Windows share, and as such unique permission based on the username and password given.

If the share is not running Windows and instead is running AppleShare IP the connections are combined into one. The first user is asked for username and password. Any subsequent users gain access to the AppleShare IP share based on the first users username and password.

May 30, 2002
Darren Montjar
(creator of the Mystery Machine Citrix client for Mac OS X)

Regarding "Reader problem with Citrix and AppleShare IP," it sounds like AppleShare is assuming that there is only one client trying to connect at a time, since the originating address is going to be just one: the Citrix server.

One possible way around this is to have the user mount the AppleShare volume on their Mac's desktop, then configure their Citrix client to auto-map that volume as a client drive. I just tried it on Mystery Machine under OS X and it worked just fine. Don't know about OS 9's client, I gave up on that OS long before The Steve buried it ;)

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Reader review: HOBLink JWT, Mac client for Win Terminal Server

HOBLink JWT for Macintosh is a Java based Mac client for Windows Terminal Server.

July 17, 2002
Fred Tsui

I've been using HOBLink JWT v2.3 for the last few months now. I am a network admin in a city school. The district has recently converted over to Win2K as the backbone for the district. So all most all of my work is on Win 2K servers. But I use a Mac. When someone told me about HOBLink JWT it was a life saver. Now I can terminal into any server and troubleshoot it from my Mac. Awesome. Now the Mac is the ultimate Network/Desktop Admin tool. With the ability to run OS 9, OS X, Linux (Yellow Dog or VPC), Windows (VPC), and now terminal ability you can do and connect to any computer on the planet with one machine.


  • It works great
  • Faster than Virtual PC


  • Program crashes if you launch the program and then decide you don't want to terminal in to a server (not a big deal since I'm running Mac OS X)
  • Program can't pass characters like @, so make sure your password doesn't contain special characters
  • Un-user-friendly interface when you connect to multiple servers at once

If you'd like to send us you're experience with HobLink JWT, or know how to fix the problems Tsui encountered, please let us know.

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Citrix Client for Mac OS X Technology Preview

Note: the release version is now available. See the info on Version history, v6.30, above.

July 25, 2002 -- Citrix has posted Citrix ICA Client for Mac OS X Technology Preview, a prerelease version of a client for Citrix MetaFrame application servers for Windows servers. This tech preview includes an Aqua graphics user interface, some security enhancements, and simpler printer configuration through the use of he Citrix Universal Printer Driver. However, as prerelease software, this version does not implement all of the intended security features. Citrix also recommends the following procedure for preventing printer problems:

When you have made an ICA connection open the Windows Start menu and choose Settings > Printers. Double click the printer called Client\Macintosh ICA Client#\Mac Printer in the printer list, then choose Printer > Properties. Click the Advanced tab and in the Driver drop-down list choose either the Citrix PCL4 Universal Driver or the HP LaserJet Series II printer driver.

After some initial negative readers reports, a number of readers have written with positive experiences. Several readers reported that this prerelease software compares favorably with the Microsoft Remote Desktop Connection client in terms of performance and features, including the ability to connect to multiple servers.

As always, we're interested in your experiences with this new Cirtix client.

July 26, 2002
Ty Stein

Tried Citrix OSX client today, with direct LAN connection and from home via PPP dialup. Neither worked. Got either 51 error or "broken connection". Without hanging up, I immediately tried to connect with Microsoft's free (RDC) client, and, not a problem (no problem on LAN either).

So, my 2 cents, Citrix needs to work on it a bit.

July 26, 2002
Steve Maser's problem is that this version doesn't implement the security features:

I'd been waiting for this. I downloaded it, configured it, but can't get a login window.

The reason is right in the "read me" about this release:

Limitations and Known Issues
The following features are not implemented in this Technology Preview release:
1. The Secure Proxy feature.
2. Proxy server auto-detection.
3. SecureICA.

I need a "Secure ICA" client to connect to our servers. So close, yet so far!

July 26, 2002
Brett Pearce

Tried it out rather quickly (just created a connection file like the OS 9 one that works) and I get an "error 51" on connection.

July 29, 2002
David Dickinson has a fix for the error 51 problem we reported:

I also had the error 51 when using the new Citrix ICA client. I was able to fix it by choosing 'Custom' under Network Protocol on the Network Connection tab in the client editor window. Choose TCP/IP instead of the default of TCP/IP + HTTP.

July 29, 2002
Paul Crawford verified the fix, but found some other shortcomings:

I tried this new client yesterday and had the same problem (error 51) as two of your readers. But I also found the solution. Simply change the Network Protocol from "TCP/IP + HTTP" to "TCP/IP" on the Network Connection tab (you need to click on the "Custom" checkbox first). Then it works perfectly.

My only complaint was that the mouse image on the screen is not very good (about the same as on OS 9) and the scroll wheel on my MS mouse did not work (although right click worked fine). I was connected directly to our company's internal network, not remotely, but it should not make a difference if you have a VPN client as well. It is too bad that the default that Citrix chose was the wrong one for some people.

July 29, 2002
Luk Dhondt likes the Citrix client betterthan Microsoft RDC and Mystery Machine:

I'm surprised at the negative feedback you've been getting for the new Citrix OS X client. After having used both Mystery Machine and Microsoft RDC over the last couple of months, I had no problems at all using the new Citrix client, both on a LAN and a remote connection. I also found it to be quite a bit faster than RDC. Even printing to a local printer worked fine first time around, something that wasn't possible with Mystery Machine.

July 29, 2002
Jimmy Jones had an easy time setting it up, but had a problem with a window:

It took me all of 20 minutes to get the Citrix Client for Mac OS X connected, change windows resolution, and even create and start up an application only session. The only problem I have is I haven't figured out how to move the screen from the upper left corner of my display. It is stuck there and the top of the Windows Client display looks cut off.

July 29, 2002
Guy Masson

I for one am relatively pleased with the Citrix Preview for OS-X. After some entail issues with the setup, I was able to connect to our Citrix boxes over our WAN with little issue.

The native speed of the client is an improvement over the OS-9 flavor and since we are running and older version of WinFrame this suits our needs. The Mystery Machine and other Java clients never worked properly.

Also having the ability to connect to multiple servers is a plus for Admin purposes.

Cudos to Citrix for this BETA product. They need to fix some bugs, but then perhaps that is why it is a preview product.

System: Pismo Laptop, 500 MHz G3, 1 GByte RAM, 30 GByte HDD, AirPort network

July 29, 2002
Paul Drisgula

I have been using the Citrix ICA Client for System X for a few days now and, after a bit of confusion at the very beginning, it seems to be working OK. Configuration using the Citrix ICA Client Editor was similar to my other experiences with the System 9 version. I did encounter one major problem on both my iBook and home G4 -- clicking on my new Citrix Client file for the first time caused both machines to try to open up Classic. After trashing my Citrix files on my System 9 partition and after helping the confused file find the Citrix ICA Client program on my System X partition, it worked fine on both machines.

Login is automatic if you fill in the appropriate data in the client editor. Also, my entire System X partition was available automatically to me as my C Drive without any configuration (you are given the option at login to have this happen or not).

Speed was fine. At least for my purposes, this is already a useful program.

Citrix Client vs. Remote Desktop Client

July 29, 2002
GRANT GRAHAM says that the Citrix client can do some things that the Microsoft Remote Desktop Client cannot:

I downloaded the new native Citrix client last Friday and have installed it and have run it successfully on an dual USB iBook Mac OS X 10.1.5 and on a Mac OS X Server 10.1.4 without any problems so far. My clients connect to a remote Windows NT Terminal Server running MetaFrame 1.8 via a dual channel ISDN line, my clients connect directly to some published applications and performance for me is much faster than the new Microsoft RDP client which I was testing the day before, things like scrolling are much faster and you can copy and paste which you can't do with the Microsoft client and an NT 4 WTS. We don't have any proxies set up like the others who are having some troubles. Printing is working fine as we have it set up - which is a little nonstandard. (we are not using auto created printers). I will let you know if we have any glitches with it as the users get in start using it more heavily.

No printing from Citrix ICA Client Tech Preview for OS X.

Note: the release version is now available. It does print, but so far, only at 300 dpi and not color. See the info on Version history, v6.30, above.

September 17, 2002 -- A reader named Lorraine reports a problem printing with the Citrix ICA Client for Mac OS X technology preview:

I've been testing the Citrix ICA Client v6.30.304, technology preview for OS X, from a G4 tower running OS X v10.1.5. It's working pretty well but for one thing -- I can't find any way to print.

The problem is that a client printer is not auto-generated upon login to the server. Then when I try to create one manually, it always fails, can't connect to port.

I am able to print from the same server using the OS 9 client -- the client printer always auto-generates no problem, from OS 9 and from the classic environment.

There's nothing within the X client itself to configure for printing, unlike the OS 9 client where I enter the list of postscript drivers, so I'm wondering if the network administrator might need to install something on the server for printing for the OS X client?

The short readme file that comes with the download from Citrix has almost no information on setting up printing -- what little printing information that is there doesn't apply if your client printer is not being auto-generated. Then I searched the Citrix section on the MacWindows site, but found no info on how to establish printing using the OS X client. Any clues?

By the way, I can still work and print from the OS 9 client within the classic environment, but each jobs takes about 4 times as long to print. With some color image print jobs clocking in at 30 minutes under OS 9, that comes to 2 hours within Classic, which is unworkable.


September 19, 2002
Darren Montjar

Lorraine isn't able to print from the Citrix OS X client preview because printing is one of the things missing from the technology preview. I believe it actually says that in the release notes. It isn't quite ready for prime-time.

What we've had to do, now that we're finally deploying OS X, is to log in once as each user to a real NT workstation desktop and set up the printer for them. Pain in the rear but it's the only way, especially in applications who do not give you that lovely "Network" button in the print dialog box.

September 19, 2002
Jon Miller

We've have been manually creating the printers on the server to get around this issue. Tedious, especially for a large Citrix farm, but it does work.

September 26, 2002
Matt Richard

You should still be able to manually add a client printer. Whereas we used generic postscript printing in the past, the new client wants to use "The Citrix PCL4 Universal Driver " which comes with MetaFrame XP FR1 or a "HP LaserJet Series II" driver. This is independent of the actual printer installed on your Mac.

This does work with network printers (HP LaserJet 5000 here) and also local printers (or so I've heard -- I don't have one to test).

Printer problem with Citrix OS X client 6.30.x.

October 16, 2002
Steve Maser

I'm just at the "desktop support" level here, so I have no access to the actual Servers we use, but we've come across a problem with the OS X Citrix client. The "classic" Citrix client would use the "Apple LaserWriter v23" printer driver. This would allow us to set properties for the printer when printing "reports" within the terminal session to use the "scaling" feature, to move the size of the report from 100 percent to 60 percent.

The OS X version uses "HP LaserJet II" -- which has no scaling option in it's "Properties".

So many of the preconfigured reports will not print properly. Attempting to scale within "Page Setup" only shrinks what doesn't print properly. And we can't figure out if there's a way to set the "Apple LaserWriter v23" back to this (it seems not). So were stuck here because our users have no way to access the printer descriptions via the Terminal settings based on the way things are set.

If anybody knows a way to revert the OS X client to "Apple LaserWriter v23", we're all ears...

If you've seen any of this problem please let us know.

October 24, 2002 -- A reader named Lorraine send in this report of observations of the new Citrix client for OS X.

I've upgraded from the technology preview to the new v6.30.314 of Citrix's ICA Client for Mac OS X. Since it doesn't support color printing, I tried changing the printer driver within the properties of the auto-generated printer from HP LaserJet II to the correct driver for the color printer -- but that resulted in a short stack of garbage printout...

I've noticed a difference in the way the auto-generated printers are named -- instead of being based on the AppleTalk name as under OS 9, they are based on the User ID with which the person is logged-in to OS X. Not a big deal, but we use uniquely-identifying AppleTalk names for each Mac, but some of our accounts are named the same on each Mac. I'll need to test if that might potentially cause a conflict in generating multiple printers with the same names.

The only real discrepancy I've noticed is that when requesting full screen mode, the client doesn't go straight into it upon connection -- it's just a large window on the Mac desktop. When I then select "Best Window Position" from the pulldown "Citrix ICA Client File" menu, the display goes into true full screen mode. This is mentioned in the PDF documentation, but does not occur under the OS 9 client, which goes directly into full-screen mode, on the same hardware, without intervention.

This is from a first round of preliminary testing.

Error 51 problem with Citrix ICA Client 6.30 and NFuse Server

NOTE: A reader has provided us a script to fix the problem. You can see it below.

October 16, 2002
Steve Meredith has a problem with the NFuse server:

We just loaded the latest client for OS X. One problem we encountered was that when clicking on an application icon generated from the NFuse 1.6 server, it would return an Error Number: 51 and would not allow the client to connect.

The NFuse server sends a Launch.ASP file that works great on OS 9 and Windows but fails with error 51 on Mac OS.

If you create or edit an ICA file, things work fine. But we need to work with NFuse.

October 18, 2002
Paul Spack says:

I just installed the latest version of ICA client for Mac OS X and when I attempt to log into my corporate website using NFuse, I get an error saying:
connection to server xxxxx failed
error 51

October 18, 2002
John Gettler

I am getting the error 51 upon connection, using the default Network Protocol "TCP/IP +HTTP" which used to work under OS 9. Now error 51 goes away if I use "TCP/IP" instead of "TCP/IP +HTTP" as my Network Protocol.

October 21, 2002
Ernie Beal

I, too, have the Error 51 problem using the new OS X client while attempting to log into an NFuse server.

February 24, 2003
Rich Frueh reports that suggestions below aren't working for him:

This is not working for me as well, and it appears for a different reason than other people are having. Instead of just the NetworkProtocol/TransportDriver problem, we're also getting an error where the server address is being replaced with

And of course the client barfs on that address. <sigh> Like others, I've spent a bunch of time with the Citrix knowledgebase and gotten no where. Citrix still doesn't admit that the .asp files are incorrect, and definitely don't mention this problem.

Suggestions and workarounds

This is a problem first reported with the beta, above. One reader proposed a solution (above).

October 18, 2002
Darren Montjar

I guess I need more information. Saying "it would generate Error Number: 51" doesn't tell me much. Was the Nfuse page generating it? Was IE generating it? Was the Citrix client generating it? 

There is a section in the readme that comes with the OS X client regarding Nfuse documents not opening correctly. It relates to the fact that Apple System Profiler is trying to open the downloaded .ASP file (since that would correspond to an Apple System Profiler saved report extension, .asp), and maybe Profiler is generating that error. I would suggest Steve offer us more details on exactly what is generating that error, and perhaps RTFM or hit up Citrix' self-support forums too.

October 21, 2002
Brian Jackson

I also experienced the "Error 51" problem with the new Citrix client. However, I was able to fix it by opening the Citrix client editor, clicking on default settings, and manually entering the IP addresses of my two Citrix servers. Save these settings, and it will work perfectly. I have been extremely impressed with the new client, especially as far as printing goes. It has solved an enormous amount of problems we were having, especially printing from our ERP system. It has actually prompted my boss to hasten our migration of all our Macs to Jaguar, despite the lack of a native Exchange client. So I say, kudos to the Citrix people!

October 21, 2002
Jared Carlson

I just downloaded Citrix for OS X and got the same error 51 errors that seem to plague lots of people. The error definitely seems to be linked to the Network Protocol. If I use TCP/IP only (rather than TCP/IP+HTTP), it works just fine. The problem for me is that when I do a web launch, the script that comes down from the server specifies "TransportDriver=TCP/IP," which looks like it would work, but it doesn't. Just to experiment, I tried with replacing the word "TransportDriver" with "NetworkProtocol" - works like a charm. I guess there's been some minor change to the scripting language? I wish I could do a plain old web launch, but at least this works (that is, doing the web launch, having it fail, using Word to edit the .asp file, and then re-launching).

October 21, 2002
Paul Spack

I read the entry under mine and it gave me an idea. I was trying to log into my corporate website through my browser like I do on my "windows" machine when I am at clients. This time I opened the Citrix Client editor and created a "new" file using the "address" of my server, connecting using TCP/IP (only), indicating my user name & password, set window size and then saved the whole thing. Now when I want to access my website, I open Citrix Client Editor, open my "file" and choose "connect" and I can do what ever I want.

October 23, 2002
Steve Mitchell

We use Citrix NFuse 1.7. I too found the TCP workaround for "Error 51" (we actually use the "TCP/IP only" setting anyway) but it was only when I read Jared Carlson's tip on MacWindows (replace "TransportDriver" with "NetworkProtocol") that I was able to connect (with my PBG4 on the network inside the company firewall). While I was editing the Connection file I set the window size big and set the Domain= and ClearPassword=<password> and they both worked. I set the file name suffix to '.ica'. Editing in TextEdit wiped out the File Type and Creator so I used Super Get Info to set them to TEXT/IICA and now I can start a Citrix Session by double-clicking the file and do not need to use the web browser.

I was able to use both Netscape 7.0 and MSIE 5.2.2 to capture the launch.asp files.

Brian Jackson's tip (opening the Citrix client editor, clicking on default settings, and manually entering the IP addresses of the Citrix servers) may have played a role also. I also wiped out any Default File Type Associations because they weren't helping.

Drive mapping works - I can read and write both PC network drives and my PBG4's internal drive and print to the networked printer (presumably via LP Printing as I would if I was using Word for Mac instead of Word for PC in a Citrix session).

I too am very impressed because I work for one of the world's largestbanks and our systems are very restrictive, although our Security Officer is aiding me in the Citrix connection.

I was also able to connect with something like Paul Spack's idea, but the Connection file is version 1 (vs version 2) and the results were inferior.

I have verified that this works exactly the same from outside the company firewall: the only difference is that the IP addy in the ".ica" file must be changed to the NAT'd IP. Of course I first have the extra step of logging in to the firewall with my SecurID card, but after that there's no difference.

If I can figure out how to specify all the IP addys in the configuration instead of the ".ica" files then I won't need two sets of .ica files (one set for internal IP server addys and one set for external addys)

Because our Citrix servers will be upgraded "soon" I can't get any change at all made to them. However, I am confident that if I was able to tweak them that I could readily get the web browser interface working with Citrix and would not need to have created all the double-clickable ".ica" files. The server upgrade will support the new Citrix 6.30 Java Applet Client.

December 31, 2002
Jonathan Goldman

We just deployed Citrix in our office and are trying to overcome the Error 51 using the NFuse web interface with OS X. The installer tried the following:
I just downloaded Citrix for OS X and got the same error 51 errors that seem to plague lots of people. The error definitely seems to be linked to the Network Protocol. If I use TCP/IP only (rather than TCP/IP+HTTP), it works just fine. The problem for me is that when I do a web launch, the script that comes down from the server specifies "TransportDriver=TCP/IP," which looks like it would work, but it doesn't. Just to experiment, I tried with replacing the word "TransportDriver" with "NetworkProtocol" - works like a charm. I guess there's been some minor change to the scripting language? I wish I could do a plain old web launch, but at least this works (that is, doing the web launch, having it fail, using Word to edit the .asp file, and then re-launching)."

The good news is changing the word to "NetworkProtocol" worked for OS X, but then the OS 9 clients couldn't get in.

December 31, 2002
Steve Meredith

At first, I thought that this error was a local issue, with a port closed, etc. But, when connecting through an NFuse server, every OS X client will get an "Error number: 51." After searching the Citrix Knowledge Database for days, I reached out to the net and found many users are experiencing the same thing. Yet we hear nothing about it from Citrix.

We have developed a's like everyone else's work around, download the Launch.asp, plugin IP addresses, prefs and use TCP/IP rather than TCP/IP + HTTP.

Might as well not have NFuse, just create client files and distribute. Very frustrating that Citrix does not acknowledge the problem.

A script to fix the problem

January 20, 2003
Tom Allen

My wife's business just switched Citrix over to the web launching NFuse system and our OS X Citrix client now pops the dreaded Error 51 instead of connecting. The observation that changing "TransportDriver" to "NetworkProtocol" inspired me to write a little script to change the launch.asp file and kick off Citrix. So the connection procedure is to click on the browser link, wait for Citrix to fail, launch the script file and bingo! you're in. (This is working over a Cisco VPN connection via Airport and a Linksys router through a cable modem.)

Here's the script I call CitrixHack.command:

sed s/TransportDriver/NetworkProtocol/ ~/Downloads/launch.asp > ~/Downloads/launch.ica
rm -f ~/Downloads/launch.asp
open ~/Downloads/launch.ica


1. My browser downloads to the Downloads folder in my home directory. If your browser downloads to a different place, change the path references in the script.
2. Name the script file with a .command suffix and give it execute permission. (chmod 755 CitrixHack.command)
3. You need to manually quit the terminal program at some point to clean up your screen.

If you've tried this, please let us know how it works for you.

Problems with Citrix ICA client over a VPN connection.

Note: Client Version 6.30.323, released in June 2003, is supposed to have fixed this problem.

November 1, 2002
Jeffrey Sheldon keeps loosing a connection to the Citrix server over a virtual private network link using Mac OS X :

We had the Java client version of ICA client working fine, then Citrix finally came out with the Mac OS X version. While trying to connect to our company's servers (via VPN connection in Internet connect), every time I try to get to the Citrix server we get: "Sorry, the connection to the 'CITRIX' server has been broken."

The settings for the Java client (which I uninstalled) are identical to the new GUI Mac OS X client.

November 19, 2002
Jimmy Jones

From my testing I don't think this is an accurate error message. Since it appears to come up before a connection is made I think it should say, "Could not connect to the Citrix host."

To correctly connect I had to select the Custom Server setting and enter the Server Name. So the server name was in both places, Connect To: Citrix_Server

and in Server Custom: Citrix_Server

And use Network Protocol Custom: TCP/IP I do not use the combined setting, it never worked for me.

Now if I could just get it to consistently open with a movable window instead of having the top of the window hidden under the Menu bar.

November 22, 2002
Peter McIlroy

I am getting exactly the same problem trying to connect over the Mac 10.2.2 VPN into my local hospital Win NT network. I can ping the IP address fine through the terminal application when the VPN is connected but get the same error message as Jeffrey Sheldon gets when trying to connect the ICA client. I tried to follow Jimmy Jones' suggestion about the "Server custom" setting, but can only find "server location" as well as "connect to" to type in the IP address. In any case, when I set both of these to the correct IP address I still get the same error message.

December 4, 2002
A reader named Pete is also having the problem of estabiling a Citrix connection over a virtual private network connection. He says the real problem is with the server:

I read your article with the reader who can't connect her Citrix ICA client over the corporate VPN (Jaguars built-in PPTP client). I too have seen this problem. The error message says that the connection was dropped, but the real error is that there is no response from the Citrix server. Here is the reason:

The Citrix ICA client for some unknown reason addresses its outgoing TCP packets as coming from the IP number of the Ethernet interface, not the PPP interface as it should do. See example output of tcpdump that follows ( "tcpdump -i ppp0 -n -w dump.bin") :

18:27:11.878511 > 54387+ A? ICA.
18:27:11.964551 > 59949+ A? ICA.
18:27:12.050225 > 22699+ A? ICA.
18:27:12.141868 > S 176626095:176626095(0) win 32768 <mss 1408,nop,wscale
0,nop,nop,timestamp 4120 0> (DF)
18:27:15.033874 > S
176626095:176626095(0) win 32768 <mss 1408,nop,wscale
0,nop,nop,timestamp 4125 0> (DF)
18:27:18.035160 > S
176626095:176626095(0) win 32768 <mss 1408,nop,wscale
0,nop,nop,timestamp 4131 0> (DF)

One can see that the packets are addressed as coming from which is my Ethernet IP address (en0). The Ethernet port is my main Internet connection. The PPP0 interface was assigned the IP address, and this is the address that the Citrix ICA client should stamping as "source IP" when addressing its packets.

As far as I can tell this is a bug in the Citrix ICA client, as if I use other programs (ping, Netscape telnet etc.) to connect to IP (my Citrix server IP), tcpdumps show that these programs correctly address their packets (and therefore receive their responses over the VPN).

I guess it'll be up to the Unix geeks to use Mac OS X's build in NAT engine to do nasty things on the outgoing packets on ppp0 to force them to come from the correct source IP.

A Suggested fix

I've come up with a fix!

The problem is in the way that the Citrix ICA client stamps the "source address" in its outgoing IP headers. It should be assigning the address of the PPP0 interface, but instead its using the en0 interface IP.

Well, my way of addressing the Citrix Bug was to pipe it through an ssh TCP-Redirector running on the well-known port for Citrix (TCP 1494) on the local host & then point the Citrix client at your localhost address and watch the packets get re-written properelly by SSH as they go out to the server :)

Use this command in the terminal application:

ssh -lyourusername -L1494:

Substitute "yourusername" for your Mac OS X short name. Also substitute for the IP of your Citrix server.

You will be prompted for your password, and will be returned to a shell prompt. Do NOT close the Terminal window, or you will break the ssh fowarding - the Terminal has to stay open while the ICA client is open. You will also have to have "remote login" enabled in your "Sharing" System Preference Pane.

If you've seen this problem or have suggestions, please let us know.

Citrix 6.30 and 6.20--problems over VPN with PPTP.

January 20, 2003 -- Laurence Banner is having opposite problems with running Citrix connections over VPNs with Mac OS X and Mac OS 9:

I've been trying to get Citrix ICA clients to work under OS X and 9.2.2 using two different VPN capabilities.

OS X built-in PPTP: Citrix 6.30 fails as has been described by others. After I set the default server to the correct address and change to TCP/IP, I can see the server and its applications but I cannot connect.

OS X with Contivity IPSEC VPN: Citrix works fine.

OS 9.2.2 with NTS TunnelBuilder PPTP: Citrix 6.20 works fine.

OS 9.2.2 with Contivity IPSEC VPN: Just as in OS X with PPTP, I can browse for servers and applications but I cannot connect.

Yes, they are the opposite way around on the two OS's.

If you've seen this problem, please let us know.

February 7, 2003
Jason Chapin

MacOS 9.x systems using the Mac ICA Client 6.20.142 which connect to a Citrix MetaFrame 1.8 server running on Windows 2000 Server report a minor annoyance - which is they have to press the num lock key every time they connect to use their keypad. I have not been able to find any information on how to get around this issue.

February 7, 2003
Brad Lachel

We are not using NFuse or Java. I have been unable to connect. I set my client up exactly the same way as with OS 9, the published Apps even show up. When I attempt to connect, the splash screen says I am connected, but it never goes away, and I never get a Windows screen. If I quit the Citrix Application, It asks me if I want to disconnect the current session.

February 21, 2003
Brad Stewart

I have been having this problem, too. I have been connecting to Citrix server at work from home for months, but when I tried to set up two different OS 10.2 machines at work on the LAN, I had the "connected to" message on the splash screen that never goes away, as described by Brad Lachel The Citrix server log shows that it was unable to authenticate. I thought maybe it had something to do with our Active Directory rollout, but my home machine connected just fine. However, this morning my home machine failed to authenticate and I can't get around it. Perhaps it's an Active Directory issue after all.

February 24, 2003
Tony Tingen

I have the same problem connecting to our Citrix server at work as previously described. The splash screen says I am connected, but never goes away. The problem comes and goes with no apparent rhyme or reason, so I never know when or if I'll be able to connect. I am also unable to print to a local home network printer when connected. The local printer does not show up in the "print" menu of the client. When I go to add a printer it does show a local network printer, but if I try to open it, the program refuses saying the printer does not exist. It won't let me create a new local network printer.


February 7, 2003
Paul Crawford

I have seen Brad Lachel's problem on occasion. But if I restart the client the client again, normally it will then connect.

BTW, I am normally directly connected to the network that the Citrix Server is on, but I have been able to overcome the problem that others have seen with a VPN connection by using SSH Tunnel Manager to reroute the IP traffic that Citrix sends and receives. It works beautifully. Sometimes again though I have seen the above problem but never more than once. Trying again always succeeds.

February 13, 2003
Brad Lachel

I tried the suggestion of restarting, but that did not seem to work. I did find something, and I don't know if this fixed it or not. I recreated a new connection, and instead of saving it to the desktop, I saved it to the folder containing the Citrix Application. The connection now works fine. I tried moving the connection file to the desktop, and it still worked.

February 24, 2003
Roy Long feels it's a configuration problem:

We use Citrix quite extensively at our site (which is 95% OS X on the desktop). I have seen this problem that Brad Stewart mentions a few times. The main reason we have problems like that is due to installations of new software rewriting the PATH variable on the Citrix boxes. If you go to Properties from the My Computer on the server (right-click) you can see what the PATH variable is set to. If this starts with anything other than %SYSTEM% or similar (i.e. has something like M:\Applications\winword\) then we just take this front portion of the PATH variable and paste it onto the end of the line -- ensuring that all the relevant semicolons separate each particular directory path...

For Example:

One time we installed a server management product from IBM and it tagged something like this at the start of the PATH definition:

M:\Program Files\IBMman;M:\IBM\Driver;%SYSTEM ROOT%\WIN\System 32\Drivers;

We took the first part -- then tagged it on the end like this:

%SYSTEM ROOT%\WIN\System 32\Drivers;M:\Program Files\IBMman;M:\IBM\Driver

(Obviously the line was longer than this, but that gives you an idea.)

We then restart the Citrix server and lo! you can connect properly again.

If this does not resolve the problem then I would next check into the settings for the person's profile, that's trying to connect. Sometimes profiles set up separate from the Citrix box your connecting to can cause connection issues - we put all our profiles on our file server so people have the same My Documents on whichever one of our Citrix servers they connect to. If these profiles are not set up correctly (or something changes on the Citrix server - like Windows updates) this can sometimes cause long long delays in connection times - you can sometimes force this by opening another connection to the same server at the same time (or from a different computer).

NOTE: After trying the release version of Citrix Client I had problems with full screen mode and other stuff -- I went back to the Preview Release and use that all the time still.

February 24, 2003
Tomas Fischer

I don't know that this is the answer, but I have seen this before.

To connect and authenticate to to Citrix without Microsoft Terminal Server License is possible only using Windows 2000 or Windows XP. If the OS is anything else it require Terminal License on the Terminal server. However, the first time connection is made, a temporary license is issued which will last for 90 days. After that all connections from the client will be denied unless the OS is reinstalled.

Suggestion: Deleting prefs

February 26, 2003
Klaus Thibault reports that deleting preference files fixes the connection problem for Citrix ICA Client for Mac OS X:

I´ve got the same symptoms using Mac OS X 10.2.4 and Citrix Client 6.30.314. Reinstalling the Citrix client did not solve the problem. Finally, I deleted the Citrix preferences -- now it works.

April 8, 2005
Michael Wilmar

We found the Citrix preference folder, deleted the CitrixID inside, rebooted, and it worked fine.

NOTE: The Citrix preference file is called CitrixID and is located here: (homefolder)~/Library/Preferences/Citrix ICA Client/

Comments on Citrix (Build 60841) ICA 6.30.314 client

December 31, 2002
Dan Oblak

You asked for feedback from users of this client; I wish I could provide more helpful notes, but the most notable point so far is the unhelpful dialog "The application Citrix ICA Client has unexpectedly quit." on about 2 out of 3 attempts to connect. I'd had much better success with the Java client (we launch out of an NFuse web page); but that has been problematic when on my wireless home network, so I've been trying to get along with the application version more often.

It's tolerable for my own use; but not reliable enough for me to recommend to those I support.

Oblak didn't mention which Java client he is using; HOBLink JWT is one we know of. Another is one created by Josef Kolbitsch. A third is Darren Montjar's Mystery Machine, for which we no longer have a working URL. All three are described above on this page.

Tips for troubleshooting Citrix ICA Mac OS X client.

May 2, 2003
David Gurvich was having trouble with his Citrix ICA Client for Mac OS X, but found the answer:

I have finally found a way to make the native Client work. I found it posted at a Citrix user forum. I just had to make sure that I used the correct client editor, go into default settings there and make that one change. After that the native client worked fine.

Some things to check:

1) Open the ICA Client editor for Mac OS X and make sure the protocol is set to TCP. To do this open the ICA client editor and make the window the focus. Select options -->default settings from the menu. Make sure TCP/IP is default protocol.

2) Check the event viewer of the metaframe server you are connecting to and see if any errors are reported.

3) Can you make a connection to the metaframe server without going thru csg with the Mac (This assume that you can get the Mac on the LAN).

Citrix ICA Client "Loading Controls" problem disappears with Remote Desktop Client and Mystery Machine.

Strangely enough, this problem only occurs with the Citrix ICA client. The problem does not occur when the Macs use Microsoft's Remote Desktop Client or Darren Montjar's free Mystery Machine client.

June 2, 2003
Richard Bird

Internet Explorer for Windows in Citrix fails "Loading Controls." This only goes wrong when the native Citrix Client is used. Remote Desktop Client (RDC) and Mystery Machine connecting to the same Citrix server and web page work fine.

We are using Citrix as a way for Mac users to run a fully "Windows compatible Internet Explorer browser." Yes, Mac Citrix clients are simply running Windows Internet Explorer as a published application on the Citrix server.

In the native Citrix ICA Client connections on both Mac OS 9 and Mac OS X, Internet Explorer v5.x and v6.x running in the session freeze while attempting to load a specific website page. Same parameters via Microsoft's RDC - page loads fine. Same parameters via Mystery Machine connection to Citrix - page loads fine. Same parameters in Windows ICA connection - page loads fine. Same parameters in Java Client connection - page loads fine. Same parameters on server desktop connection - page loads fine. ONLY the official Citrix ICA Client on Mac OS 9 and X fails!

The web page being loaded contains interface elements that display and allow manipulation of a Microsoft Project Gantt chart in the browser window. The Gantt chart fails to draw when the IE status bar displays "Loading Controls." Remember, this only goes wrong when the native Citrix Client is used. RDC and Mystery Machine connecting to the same Citrix server and web page work fine. Windows ICA connections work fine. Etc. Etc. I have invested 3 full days this week in troubleshooting and experimenting. The issue definitely lies with both the OS 9 and OS X Citrix ICA Client.

I've talked with the programmer of the web page, who tells me the only "unusual" code being sent to the browser contains VML - Vector Markup Language. Otherwise, just HTML, JScript, etc. Remember, there is no problem loading this page in any other situation other than when using the native Citrix ICA Client for connection.

June 5, 2003
Kim Holburn

I have this same problem. Citrix Client 6.3.0 (6.3.314 (Build 60841)) works without VPN, Mystery Machine works with or without VPN. A TCP dump shows that Citrix has chosen the right interface (ppp0) but got the wrong source IP number (the IP of en0).

If you've seen this problem, or have a clue as to the cause, please let us know.

Mac OS X 10.3.6 breaks Citrix client.

November 29, 2004
David Merzel reports that installing the Mac OS X 10.3.6 update "broke" the Citrix client. Reinstalling the latest client didn't change things:

Since upgrading to OS X 10.3.6, Citrix access stopped working after a year of no problems. Now I get the following: "SSL Error 0: The remote SSL peer sent a bad MAC alert. Error number: 183".  I deleted the Citrix client and downloaded their latest client for Macintosh but no change. Network guys at work and Mac users all stumped. I even tried using IE, Firefox, Camino, and Netscape from my G5 and PowerBook G4 but always the same message as above. The problem seems to be with Panther and not the browser. Can't work out of office, productivity down. Any help appreciated.

December 1, 2001
From the number of reports we've received, it appears that the problem appears to occur only with the browser-based client. There was also a suggestion that the problem occurs with Safari, but not Internet Explorer.

Jon Posin describes the problem:

I too lost my Citrix functionality after the update. I can log into my Citrix server through Safari, get to my applications page, click on the application, then once the Citrix tool is downloaded and launches Citrix on my Mac, I get an error message that the link was broken.

Michael Wilmar agrees with the web/Safari theory, and offers a workaround:

Citrix works fine for me either via my firm's VPN or via browser with OS 10.3.6 and the latest Citrix client (which by the way, has some cool improvements). And the browser may be the issue. If David is using a browser, I assume he has been using some kind of certificate and not a VPN, which doesn't need a browser. If he is using a browser, Safari won't work, only Firefox or Internet Explorer. Further, I had to have my IT people email me a certificate; it wouldn't work automatically. Then I had to manually put the certificate in the cacerts folder in the Citrix keystore folder. I also had to change the suffix from whatever it was (.cer) to .crt. After that, it worked fine.

John Schumacher also offered suggestions:

My Citrix Client loses its configuration settings frequently, but re-entering them via the client editor fixes this. Moments ago I established contact with a Win2K server as a test of 10.3.6. After re-entering the connect information, Citrix started up without a hitch under Mac OS X 10.3.6.

Part of my problem is site specific; the Citrix servers that I access (infrequently) are replicated on 4 different 2K servers. The client connects to an "application" on a user specified server. If the particular server is down/offline, the user must open the client editor to configure the client to connect to one of the other 2K servers -- I have had to do this on several occasions.

Robin Jackson was one of many users who said that the 10.3.6 upgraded did not affect the non-browser client:

I have never used the new browser based Citrix client but I can report that the old Citrix ICA Client does still work fine under 10.3.6.

Several readers report that the newest version of the Citrix client is not affected by the 10.3.6 update:

Mark Matuschak:

Saw the report about 10.3.6 breaking Citrix. Using the old Citrix client, 6.20.139, this was true - the Citrix application just quit shortly after the splash screen.

However, the new Citrix client, 7.00.400, works great for me. In fact, it finally has full-screen and resizable screen capability and is finally native OS X. What a big improvement!

I am using 10.3.6 on a PowerBook G4 (15").

Stefan Kirchanski:

I experienced a "broken connection" with Citrix after I updated to 10.3.6. Problem disappeared when I downloaded the latest ICA client. Don't recall how old my former client was. Things work fine with new client so problem must be the precise Citrix set up in question. The default runs with our Citrix server. Probably more difficult if the server is configured differently.

However, other readers reported having no problems with the 6.3.x client, presumably the non-browser versions.

Thanks to the many other readers who wrote in about this problem. Your reports helped us zero in on this apparent cause of the problem.

An explanation and fix

December 10, 2004
David Merzel

A sympathetic IT staffer figured out the problem as it affected both Mac and Linux. As noted in his memo below, Verisign changed their SSL certificates affecting Mac and Linux. Whether the blame is with Versign for not writing code for the Mac/Linux users or with programmers for Apple and Linux not "keeping up" is anybody's guess.
This problem was due to an SSL certificate that we have purchased from Verisign. We recently had been reissued the certificate from Verisign, and from that time on, no Mac or Linux clients have been able to access the portal site. Verisign has changed the way that certificates are formatted and Macs and Linux do not agree with the new format. We are currently testing a fix that involves us issuing our own certificates so that we no longer have to rely on Verisign.

I tested it from home last night from my Linux client, and I was able to connect with the portal. We still have a little testing to do before we can role it out...The good news is that Mac and Linux are pretty close.

The problem was a certificate by Verisign. They changed the certificate they sold from a "1024 certificate" to a "4096 certificate." Windows could read the higher number of bits (related to security) but Macs and Linux machines could not. Our network guy figured this out and re-obtained the lower-bit certificate and now everything works.

Citrix ICA client crashes with MS Word and Excel

There are some workaround to this problem offered below. Also, readers report that Mac ICA client Version 7.00.402 fixes the problem.

Problem reports with Word

December 7, 2004
David Morgenstern

I haven't experienced any serious problem connecting with the Citrix ICA Version 7.00.400, both before or after installing the 10.3.6 update. However, I do notice that the client will crash when I have MS Word 2004 open (this was true before the system update). Or when I try to use Word, the Citrix client dies.

Thankfully, TextEdit can open Word files with OS X 10.3 and later.

December 10, 2004
Ben Knudsen

I'm running Mac OS X (10.3.5) with Microsoft Office X (with service packs). My Citrix client is version 6.30.326. Our server is running Windows 2000.

The problem occurs whenever I have Microsoft Word opened and copies any amount of text from a Word document. Immediately the Citrix client will crash (we're only talking about copying here - I never make it to the "paste" part)

Word and Citrix run fine as long as I don't copy any text. I can restart the Citrix client, but only if I have dumped the copy-buffer by copying something else e.g. some text from an email.

My present workaround is to open Word docs in TextEdit and copy the text from there to the apps running in the Citrix environment (our web content management system currently only supports editing on windows, which is why I need to run Citrix anyway).

December 10, 2004
Joseph Awad

When I try to copy text from a Word 2004 document it will cause my Citrix client to quit, with version 6 and the current 7 client. This is a problem on my early dual 2G G5. This problem didn't always exist but appeared in the last few months probably related to one of the OS X 10.3.x updates.

December 10, 2004
Michael B. Wilmar

This has been and continues to be a problem with Citrix and Word. It occurs when I do a cut and paste in Word. Neither Microsoft nor Citrix seem to be particularly interested in fixing it.

Problem reports with Excel

Several people report that the problem also occurs when Excel is open. Beat Rubischon of Zurich:

We have here a similar problem as described at MacWindows. When copying some data in Excel 2004 to Clipboard, the ICA Client 6.30.

December 10, 2004
anonymous (name withheld by request)

I can verify that this problem exists, and is not limited to MS Word. Any macro operation (cut/paste/save/print/[formula]/merge) in any Office 2004 application (e.g. Excel) on a Mac (10.3.6 here, but had the problem all the way back to 10.3.1) can abruptly quit any open Citrix (up to and including version 7) clients. There is no workaround that I'm aware of, other than to not open MS documents when you have an open Citrix client connection.

December 10, 2004
Orion Smith says the problem occurs with all Offices applications, and offers an explanation:

What seems to be happening is when you copy something from Word, and move over to Citrix, the clipboard has trouble making the switch and Citrix crashes. Apparently Word 2004 puts some extra info in the clipboard (related to Unicode?) that Citrix can't parse (even if you don't paste) and Citrix crashes. Apparently this happens with all Office 2004 apps.

I'm very frustrated that Citrix has not dealt with this yet. It's not easy to use TextEdit as my copy/paste board, as even if I copy something in Word with Citrix in the background, it still crashes.


December 10, 2004
Jamie Marshall sent us a link to a workaround he posted at on the Citrix forums.

December 10, 2004
Steve Maser describes his fix:

The problem exists as a conflict with Word 2004 and Citrix 6.3 *and* 7.0. Citrix has given us (shh) a bug fix release for 7.0 that fixes this crash. However, we still have other issues that prohibit us from rolling this out.

Fortunately, there are two workarounds:

1) Revert back to "Word v.X" -- that doesn't generate the crash.

2) Disable the ability to copy/paste between Mac OS X apps and Citrix in the Citrix prefs. Which isn't really a viable workaround if you need this.

We also have issues with the app not (sometimes) being able to read files from the TEMP folder that are more than 32 characters in name. Sometimes. Citrix apparently can't reproduce *that* bug, but we can here.

Citrix Mac ICA client Version 7.00.402--fixes problem with Word, Excel copy/paste

January 14, 2005 -- Citrix has released Mac ICA client version 7.00.402. (Thanks to Edwin ten Dam of the UK for the Tip.)

Matt Richard has tried it and says it fixes a problem.

The new Citrix release, Version 7.00.402, appears to resolve the clipboard-related crash with the Citrix client and MS Office 2004, as reported at MacWindows.

I've been running it for two days and it's been stable, and I've been able to copy from Word 2004 and paste inside the Citrix window without a crash.

Printing problem with Citrix Mac ICA client Version 7.00.402

January 26, 2005
Steve Maser verifies that if fixes a copy/paste problem with Word and Excel, but he ran into printing problems:

I've been running it for two days and it's been stable, and I've been able to copy from Word 2004 and paste inside the Citrix window without a crash.

We've had this client for a week or so. It also fixes a bug where Citrix wasn't reading some files that had more than 32 characters in their name.

That said, we are unable to print with any of the 7.00 clients to our HP LaserJet 2xxx and 4xxx series printers. We either get that:

  • Page 1 prints, but then all subsequent pages are blank
  • Pages print, but are missing "objects" on the page.

No matter what driver seems to be installed on the Windows side of things -- these things happen in various shades of nonprinting. A couple of folks on the Citrix support forums are posting similar issues.

If you've seen this problem

March 25, 2005
Paul Rinkes suggests a workaround:

We're experiencing the same problem here--it's just not possible to print beyond page 1 of any document in Citrix.

The only workaround we're finding is setting up drivers on the Metaframe server to print directly to the printers, and avoiding the Citrix-sends-to-Mac-to-print paradigm.

That works flawlessly. Too bad I have to map 55 printers in Citrix.

March 29, 2005
Dan Freeman

We have definitely seen this problem and had to use the server printer setups as a workaround for poor client printing performance.

Client driven printing was mentioned as a commonly known issue for all Citrix clients in a formal Citrix training class.

Citrix problem with Tiger and a fix

May 5, 2005
Rick Nooner had a problem installing the Citrix client, but found a fix:

It looks like the Citrix ICA client version 7.00.402 for OS X will not install on Tiger. I used this same client successfully on Panther for the past few months. This client is used to connect to the Citrix MetaFrame environment.

Turns out that the installer for the OS X Citrix installer throws up an error message making it look like the installation fails.

Actually the error can be ignored since the installation really succeeds. The client works fine.

Victor Mora has less luck, saying "Citrix Client does not work."

Citrix client crashing in Tiger

May 17, 2006
Kenneth Carlile reports a case of the Citrix client crashing upon launch:

I've got one user with a G4/733 who cannot get Citrix ICA client to run. Looking at the Citrix user forums, other people are having similar problems.

She goes to our Citrix server in Safari, logs in just fine, clicks the published app. It downloads and opens the Citrix ICA client, which then crashes. She upgraded from 10.3.9 to 10.4.6, but the problem persists. She's used 7.00.405, and I think she is now on .407. It works just fine on my Mac mini (G4) running 10.4.6.

I’ve tried uninstalling and reinstalling, trashing the Citrix preference files, repairing permissions, disabled Norton Antivirus, made sure Sophos was disabled (why she has both, I don't know), installed Firefox and attempted from there, checked her Client Editor settings (changed it to TCP/IP only instead of TCP/IP+HTTP), put the default server address in the default settings. I also tried creating a new user.

It still crashes immediately on launch. Doesn't even get to the contacting/loading screen. It's pretty much one bounce and then dead. There’s nothing in the console, and no other indication that anything is wrong.

May 19, 2006
Brian McCarthy's crashing Citrix Client is a little different, but he found a workaround:

I have a similar but slightly different issue related to the Citrix Client on my G4 iMac running OS X 3.9. I find that if I launch the Citrix client manually before clicking the published app, it comes up fine. If I do not launch the Citrix client before clicking on the published app, the client launch but crash before I get all the way into the published app. I have no idea why, but it does seem to work for me.

If you’ve seen this problem  

TIP: Corrupt Prefs file and Citrix ICA Mac client license expiring

October 12, 2006
Michael Zara reports of a strange problem with his Citrix client, and how he fixed it:

I'm running the Citrix ICA Client for Mac, 7.00.407, and logging in to my office's network. It's been working for years, but suddenly I get an error message every time I log in, to the effect that my temporary terminal services client license is due to expire in X days.

The problem seems to be in a file in ~/Library/Preferences/Citrix ICA Client called "CitrixID". Deleting this file does the trick.

Reports on the Universal Binary (Intel-native) version of Citrix ICA Client for OS X

January 8, 2007 -- Citrix has released version 7.10.500 of its ICA Client for Mac OS X, a "thin client" used to run Windows software hosted on a Citrix server session. The new version is the first Universal Binary build (Intel- and PowerPC-native), though Citrix is still offering the older PowerPC-only version 7.00.411 at the site.

Of the new release, reader Brian Paquin said "Other than a new icon, I haven't noticed much different."

Citrix Universal client not secure

January 9, 2007
Svein Tjemsland reports that the Citrix ICA Client for Mac OS X version 7.10.500 lacks one security feature that the older version has:

All is not that great, it does not do 128-bit secure communication, so I still have to use the old PowerPC version on my MacBook Pro.

'EncRC5' error with Citrix Universal Client, and workaround

January 29, 2007 -- John Zurlo reports a problem with the recently released Intel-native version of the Citrix Client for Mac OS X:

I just purchased a 20" iMac for work where we use the Citrix client to access a lab program.  The client would not allow connection.  A warning pop-up about the lack of a security feature came up.  It then closed. The error message I received was "Cannot find encryption module 'EncRC5'"; session will be unencrypted". It then would not connect.

Problem with Universal Citrix Client confirmed; Workaround exists. February 5, 2007 -- Several readers have verified our previous report of a problem with the new universal binary version of the Citrix ICA client for Mac OS X. The new client lacks 128-bit security and gives the error message "Cannot find encryption module 'EncRC5'" when users try to connect.

Peter Arnold reports a workaround to prevent the error message:

I, too, had the "EncRC5" problem. There is a thread on the Citrix forum about this problem. I modified my Modules preference file as directed by one of the respondents on that thread and now the client is working. The author of the workaround is Steve Maser. The relevant message is the 12th entry in that thread.

Mike Sneider also confirmed the problem:

I can confirm the lack of 128-bit secure communication with the new Citrix 7.10.500 release for OS X on Intel. There is no secure 128-bit module, and adding the files from the PPC version doesn't work. This release results in an insufficient encryption error when I use it to log in to the Citrix server at work. I've had to revert to the previous (non-Universal) release. I'm hoping this is just an oversight, and a new version will be forthcoming.

Citrix is aware of the problem, and notes that "By design, RC5 encryption support was removed from version 7.10.500 of the ICA Client for Macintosh."

John Dorsey saw the Citrix explanation, and notes that the PowerPC version includes RC5 encryption:

The ENCRC5 issue is unavoidable under the newest (Intel) version of the OS X client software. Citrix omitted the module in this build of the Mac client, with no plans to replace it. "It works as designed", they say. Nice stuff!

Here's a link to discussion in the Citrix forums on the subject. The "solution" is to download and use the PowerPC version of the software, which does not suffer this deficiency. Just be sure to wipe the Intel version from your hard drive before attempting the "downgrade."

Ryan Taylor confirms that the PowerPC version works:

My group is experiencing the same issue. We've reverted back to the PPC client, which works perfectly.

Chris Ruprech noted that it also doesn't occur in the Windows version.

Can't access Windows apps with Citrix Mac client: launch.ica downloads

April 30, 2007
Michael Brooks can't launch Windows applications from a Citrix server. Instead, the client downloaded a file called launch.ica that didn't do anything.:

I am having problems launching applications over Citrix accessed from my Mac.

I can log into the network successfully but when I try to launch an application on the Citrix desktop a file called launch.ica downloads onto my Mac desktop. When I try to open this file I get notification of an error 10660.

I was previously able to access this network from my mac but my work recently upgraded Citrix and I now get this problem. I have downloaded the latest Mac Client from the Citrix website and I have tried using the java client configuration. However neither fix this problem.

I am running OS X v10.4.9 on an Intel-based iMac.

Solutions to the problem

May 2, 2007
William Harrison sent two suggestions, the second using Terminal:

This sounds like a Launch Services error.

Make sure a copy of the Citrix application is not in the Trash.

If not, try rebuilding the Launch Services database:

/System/Library/Frameworks/ApplicationServices.framework/Frameworks/LaunchSe rvices.framework/Support/lsregister -kill -r -f -domain local -domain system -domain user

Michael Pardee has two suggestions, noting the lack of high encryption in the Intel-native version:

Something to check: make sure the .ica files are associated with the Citrix ICA client. When I went to the Intel-based MacBook Pro I also had to go back and use the PowerPC version of the ICA client as the Universal Binary does not support high encryption, so watch for that one as well.

Ric Washer pointed out that in general, but the Intel and PowerPC clients should work on Intel Macs:

I support over 50 macs, 6 of them Intel Macs. We have not seen any issues with running Apps via Citirx. For the Intel Mac we have downloaded the Intel Client update. But we also have been using the PowerPC client on Intel Macs.

A simpler Fix for Citrix "launch.ics " problem

May 7, 2007
Andy Fragen sent us a fix for the problem of the Citrix ICA Mac client being unable to open Windows applications. His solution is simpler than one we posted last week:

I've seen the Citrix Mac problem in just having a 'launch.ics' file download. This happens in Safari. My solution is to use Firefox when I need to access the Citrix client. On the first download attempt of the launch.ics file Firefox asks if you want to open this file in an application. Simply select the Mac Citrix ICA Client and you're off.

If any of these fixes worked for you

May 9, 2007
Michael Wilmar:

Andy Fragen is right. The basis rule is it is generally not a good idea to use Safari with Citrix. The Java client doesn’t work very well (at least not for me). I would advise anyone using Citrix to use Firefox.

May 9, 2007
Richard Heend

I can confirm that, when connecting to a Citrix server, Firefox handles the launch.ica download transparently and launches the Citrix client flawlessly. Safari chokes on the file and it does not seem to work reliably to launch it manually. So if you connect to Citrix with your Mac (and 10.4.x) use Firefox.

May 14, 2007
An anonymous reader isn’t seeing all of the problems that other readers have reported with Safari and Citrix:

Saying Safari doesn't work at all for All Citrix based apps is too general, from our experience.

Safari works just with the Citrix PowerPC and Intel client. the Intel client is not 128-bit encryption, however, so that can be an issue for Citrix apps requiring 128-bit.

Citrix and Java both load fine in Safari and we are presented with the application (quite a huge application for us here in our hospital).

There is one issue: one cannot copy and paste from within Safari. I am sure there is something broken within Safari on this, but the Firefox copy-and-paste functionality works fine.

All of this on Mac OS 10.4.9 and latest Mac Citrix clients.

Reader's Citrix Profiles are disappearing

Monday, December 15, 2008

Tim Murray's Citrix profiles are vanishing into thin air:

It seems that my profile files have a short life-span: If the client session has any problem at all, or sometimes even if not, the profile (*.ica) file I used to start the session disappears. It's not in the Trash, either ... it's just gone. I work around this by keeping a set of profiles elsewhere, but still...

System: PowerBook G4, 10.4.11, Citrix ICA Client 10.00.601

If you've seen this problem

Reader verifies problem with Citrix profiles disappearing

Monday, January 5, 2009

Jesse Collier verified a previous problem report about Citrix profiles disappearing on a Mac:

I just wanted to let you know that I've had the same problems with the Citrix ICA Client as Tim Murray. For us, it wasn't until they released 10.00.601 that we were even able to connect to our setup. But any problems connecting and the .ICA file is gone.

If you've seen this problem

TIP: Fix for Citrix profiles disappearing

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Charlie Nancarrow offered a fix for a problem of Citrix Mac client profiles that disappear:

By default the launch.ica files generated by the Web XenApp are set to RemoveICAFile=yes

Change this to no in XenApp administrator or remove this from your manual .ica files.

If you've tried this

Mac Citrix ICA Client issue with dual displays

Monday, January 19, 2009

Andrew Milne reports a problem with the Citrix Mac client with two displays:

I am using Citrix Mac ICA Client 10.0.603, the latest version. Using the Reuters 3000 Xtra program, I am not able to get the client using both of my displays. If I run the client under Parallels, the client works fine - I am able to use both monitors, so it isn't a server configuration issue.

On the Mac (I use Firefox), the Citrix client splash screen appears in the middle of one display, and when the application loads, the Windows cannot be moved on to the other screen beyond where the mouse reaches the edge of the first screen. Perhaps the client only knows about the first screen, but the interface to the OS X windowing system still displays the 'hidden' part of the window on the other display.

If you've seen this problem

TIP: Workaround for Citrix dual-display problem

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Matthew Gaylen sent us a workaround for a problem with the Citrix ICA Client running on dual displays:

After you have logged into Citrix, click the User Interface Icon and then click Connection Preferences. Under Select Window Size change the setting to anything but Seamless. Seamless windows cannot be moved between screens in a dual display configuration.

Additionally, if the overall screen resolution for both displays combined is greater than what your video card can handle - then colors rendered in Citrix might be wonky.

For instance, when my MacBook Pro 15" is configured to 1440 x900 and my Apple Display is configured to 1900 x 1200 then Citrix does not always displays colors accurately - especially if more than one Citrix application is running concurrently.

If there is a fix for this - other than reducing overall resolution or moving to a single-display configuration - I do not know what it is.

If you've tried this workaround

Access Your PC with Your Wireless Device
Citrix's online version, GoToMyPC, lets Mac access Win apps

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