NetScaler – StoreFront monitor quick tip

Citrix NetScaler has a built-in monitor that monitors the state of your StoreFront store – rather than just checking port 443 is up, it checks the state of several services.  For a description of what it does and how it works check here:

http://docs.citrix.com/en-us/netscaler/11/traffic-management/load-balancing/load-balancing-builtin-monitors/monitor-citrix-sf-services.html

When you configure a monitor and bind it to your StoreFront services, you may find it does not work as expected and marks the services as “down”.  As you can see in the screenshot below, the details in the monitor are correct for the store in question yet the services are still marked as down.

NS-Monitors

This is because if you have a Store name with a space in it, eg “Company Apps” and enter this into the monitor it doesn’t work.  What the monitor really needs rather than the store name, is the sub-path on the IIS site – usually this will be “CompanyApps” from the full path of https://storefront.company.com/Citrix/CompanyApps.  Check your StoreFront or IIS console to be sure.

One last tip – in NetScaler 10 the detail of why a monitor failed was quite easy to find, in NetScaler 11 less so – look under Traffic Management -> Load Balancing -> Service Groups -> Edit the service group -> Service Group Members -> Monitor Details.