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Microsoft App-V 4.6 Creating Shortcuts on Re-directed Start Menu

Application Virtualization is a great way of abstracting the application away from the underlying operating system, improving compatability and managability.  Streaming the application to the users desktop based on Active Directory permissions ensures that users get the applicaitons they are authorized for dynamically no matter what computer they are on, this is great for roaming users.  The Applications are centrally managed ensuring that the application experience is the same for all users.

The Microsoft App-V client has the ability to publish shortcuts to a users desktop, start menu or as a quick launch item but what if you re-direct these to a remote server share?  Well here in lies the issue if you re-direct a users desktop and start menu and do not give the users permission to modify these then you will find that the App-V client can not publish shortcuts to these locations.  If the authenticated user does not have permission to modify the re-directed desktop or start menu then the client can not create the shortcuts even though the user has permission to the published application.

The way around this is to create manual shortcuts and either place these in the folder that the start menu re-directs to or on the re-directed desktop.  App-V shortcuts target the Application Virtualization Client located in program files and then  calls the published application with the /launch switch, if the user has permission to this application then it will launch as expected.

for example -

"C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Application Virtualization Client\sfttray.exe" /launch "Oracle Discoverer Desktop"

App-V Oracle shortcut

App-V Oracle shortcut


The only issue I noticed with this method was that the user did not have access to the .ico location located in %APPDATA%  the program loaded correctly, The icon just did not display.  The work around was to point direcly to the .ico file located in the App-V content share.

\\YOURAPPVSERVER\content\OracleBITools\OracleBITools Icons\Oracle Discoverer Desktop

Although this is a bit messy, it is the only way I have found around getting shortcuts to end users with re-directed start menu's and desktops with restricted privilages.  The user has access to the application the shortcut is just merely a way of calling the application from the App-V client 'sfttray.exe' and although you are creating a manual shortcut it is still centrally managed and only needs to be created once.


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