Re: Citrix accessibility - could start cooperations #NVAccess

Didier Colle

Dear Adriani,

For what it is worth, I will share my experience.

When the NVDA remote add-on was released (one or two years ago?), I tried to run it on the citrix platform of one of my employers making use of magnification and the very little vision I have left.

I did this as simple user, thus no administrator or whatever other priveledges: I just ran a portable NVDA copy on the citrix platform, thus NVDA does not need to be "installed" on that platform.

functionally, it did work. However, somehow the voice was kinda choppy. Why that was the case, is unclear to me, as only commands are send over the network connection and not the audio itself (the speech is generated on the local machine). Perhaps this has somehting to do with the bad/no support for multithreading in python? Do other users of the remote add-on experience something similar?

Besides the choppy speech issue, a point of attention is the user friendliness.

First of all, the citrix platform administrators should provide an easy way to launch NVDA. Probably that means somehow installing NVDA or at least the platform should be aware where an NVDA portable copy can be found, such that on the webpage where citrix applications can be launched/chosen also NVDA can be launched. (in particular what I did was fire up the remote Windows Explorer application from that page, which allowed me to navigate to my local disk, which was mounted after the necessary security dialog box asking whether I wanted to allow the remote application to access my local disk, after which I could simply navigate to the portable NVDA copy I created on my local machine, after which I could fire up NVDA remotely... having almost no vision left, a very impractical procedure, but for a single test run good enough).

Secondly, the current remote add-on needs configuration, for mainly configuring the network connection. Instead of having the remote and local NVDA instance communicating over a separate dedicated network connection, I believe the remote add-on should be changed such that on citrix the NVDA communication is tunneled through the citrix network connection as separate virtual channel. This would prevent for each session a new configuration would take place. This is something the NVDA community should be able to realize.

I do not expect major issues from a technical point of view why those two issues could not be realized

From a hardware perspective, a citrix platform is a bunch of servers, also called a server farm. A bit simplified, one or a couple of these servers orchestrates the whole platform, meaning when a new instance of an application is launched, it decides on what other server machine that instance should be launched and then contact that machine to instruct it to launch that application for the right user. All the other worker servers act pretty much as normal windows machines (again pretty much simplified).

I guess (but I do not know enough about citrix) that this means that there is no guarantee that firing up a new application instance would take place on the same machine as the one on which the remote NVDA instance was started: in such situation that running NVDA instance would be of no use for that new launched application. Preventing or dealing with such circumstances would be harder as it would imply something more than just having NVDA launched as any other application on the citrix platform (a tighter intergration/cooperation with the orchestrator component would be needed). I have no clue whether such circcumstances could occur and if they can how rare they are; it did not occur in my small experiment I described above.

Kind regards,


On 22/09/2017 21:39, adriani.botez via Groups.Io wrote:
Dear all,

here is a very comprehensive statement of Citrix on accessibility

I wonder why NVDA is not being covered at all. Citrix commited itself to accessibility during this year and explained that through their Voluntary Product Accessibility Template (VPAT) for every product. But if you read the accessibility note above, it is far to complicated for a simple user. Especially when a company has 50 servers or more like in a bank. Data security will become more and more important. Every company will adapt their server structures and will not work on just one server. it will get more complicated for us screen reader users to convince them to install everything on every server. This cannot be a good solution in the long run.

In my view, NV Access should start cooperating with them. Or at least try to simplify the procedures.

What is your opinion folks?


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