AutoCAD Hardware and Network Recommendations for Citrix XenApp

Nov 20, 2012


You wish to plan hardware for use of AutoCAD based on concurrent user loads for Citrix XenApp 4.5, 5.0 and 6.0.


Note: Using Autodesk Citrix Ready products requires the purchase of a special license. Contact your Autodesk Authorized Reseller for additional information or to inquire about purchasing this license. For additional information about the license file format refer to the Licensing and license file format for Autodesk products on Citrix XenApp solution.

Performance of AutoCAD on Citrix technology varies dependent on the tasks being performed as well as on the server capabilities. Internal and external tests have shown performance improvements of AutoCAD 2012 on Citrix 6.0 (Windows Server 2008) over older configurations. Performance can be improved by disabling or limiting certain AutoCAD user interface components. Refer to the AutoCAD readme or the AutoCAD Performance Recommendations for Citrix XenApp solution.

For additional information on system requirements above and beyond the regular system requirements please review the System Requirements for Autodesk Citrix Ready products solution.

Hardware Recomendations:

Autodesk and Citrix recommend that Citrix XenApp administrators evaluate their environment and test data to determine an acceptable threshold for average resource utilization. The threshold accounts for the periodic CPU spike experienced during normal system usage as well as providing a buffer for unexpected or scheduled server operations. In some instances, organizations may choose to increase or decrease the acceptable threshold based on application characteristics and redundancy requirements. The information contained in this solution will help administrators estimate hardware requirements based on anticipated concurrent user load.

The attached file, citrixxenapp-map3d09-performance.pdf, contains the Autodesk AutoCAD Map 3D 2009 Citrix XenApp 4.5 Performance Analysis, which defines these user experience levels:

User experience level Application responsiveness
Excellent Equivalent or better than local PC performance.
 Good Screen updates are fluid and there is minimal effect on user’s workflow.
 Acceptable Slower screen updates are somewhat noticeable and latency is increased; however the user is still able to function in a productive manner.
 Poor The session becomes unbearably slow, frozen or disconnected. Therefore, the user cannot continue his/her tasks in a productive manner.


Based on these results in the Autodesk AutoCAD Map 3D 2009 Citrix XenApp 4.5 Performance Analysis, other analysis, and customer input Autodesk Product Support has compiled this table for concurrent user load per CPU core, RAM, and user experience level.

Users per CPU core Available RAM per user (GB) User experience level
2 to 4 .5 Excellent
4 to 6 .34 Good
6 to 8  .25 Acceptable
8 +   Poor


Autodesk Product Support recommends the lower concurrent user load in the range and exceeding the RAM per user amount.

Autodesk Product Support recommends these minimums:

  • A Multi-core CPU and 6 to 8 GB RAM should be the minimum regardless of the number of users.
  • Plan for a minimum of 1 GB of RAM for each concurrent user plus additional RAM for the operating system, XenApp and other processes.

For example:

  • To achieve an Excellent user experience a multi-core processor and 6 to 8 GB of RAM would be a minimum needed for 4 concurrent users.
  • To achieve an Excellent user experience 6 processor cores and 12 to 16 GB of RAM would be a minimum needed for 10 concurrent users.

If you are working on large data sets you may need to exceed these RAM quantities sever times.

For detailed information about system sizing, optimization, configuration, and deployment scenarios, see the Citrix web site.

Network Recommendations:

  • Network latency of less than 75 ms is recommended for best user experience.
  • Network bandwidth of 2 Mbps or greater is recommended for best user experience.


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