Use FSLogix Group Policy Template Files

Overview

FSLogix relies on a set of registry keys to be enabled and correctly configured on the WVD Host Pool VMs.

The complete list of registry keys that can be applied is documented in these reference articles for Profile Containers and Office Containers

There are several ways to apply these registry keys, depending on the scenario and scale of your environment:

  • Manually creating registry keys using Windows Registry Editor: it is not recommended since error prone and potentially high risk. Manual effort is required and scale to many hosts is difficult. Should be used only for testing and prototyping on a single machine.

  • Local Policies: it is possible to use Group Policy Object (GPO) mechanism in Windows to apply a set of configuration settings (registry keys) using an object stored locally on a single computer. Should be used only for testing and development of GPO object to be applied on larger scale using a Central Store.

  • Central Store for Policies: this approach is the recommended mechanism to apply FSLogix, and any other configuration setting, at scale on all WVD Host Pool VMs. A centralized repository hosted on Active Directory Domain Controllers is used, thus replicated throughout the entire Active Directory domain.

Prerequisites

Local Policies and Central Store for Policies rely on a Windows feature called Group policy administrative templates, also known as ADMX templates. Remaining part of this article will describe this feature.

Before proceeding, you will need to download FSLogix installation package located here, then unzip the file and then inspect the content:

FSLogix Package Content

The two files that you will need to copy out to create your ADMX template are fslogix.adml and fslogix.admx.

Note

In older versions of FSLogix installation package, two additional and separate files have been provided to configure ADMX template for Office Container: FSLogixODFC.admx and FSLogixODFC.adml. These files are no longer provided since all the contained settings are now inside a single set of files, that is fslogix.adml and fslogix.admx. These files also include the necessary registry keys for FSLogix CloudCache component.

ADMX Templates

Group policy administrative templates, also known as ADMX templates, include settings you can configure for Windows machines through Group Policy Objects (GPO). Administrative Templates files are divided into .admx files and language-specific .adml files. The changes that are implemented in these files let administrators configure the same set of policies by using two languages. Administrators can configure policies by using the language-specific .adml files and the language-neutral .admx files.

In order to facilitate GPO creation, administrators can import these templates and have editor user interface automatically configured with all the included settings.

Once development of GPO is finished with all the desired changes, the resulting GPO object can be associated (linked) to an Organization Unit (OU) in Active Directory.

Tip

Even if it is possible to associate the GPO to different scopes in Active Directory (site, domain, and organizational unit), it is recommended to create a specific OU for each WVD Host Pool, and move here all the related VM machine accounts.

When WVD Host Pool VMs will be created and joined to the Active Directory domain, GPO policies will be automatically applied and FSLogix will be configured.

Local Policy Edit

Even if it is possible to create and edit locally a GPO object using the same template files, in a production environment is recommended to use a Central Store. For completeness, here are the steps necessary to use the template files locally:

  • Copy the ADMX file (fslogix.admx) to C:\Windows\PolicyDefinitions (and unblock the access to the file in the file attribute)

  • Copy the ADML file (fslogix.adml) to C:\Windows\PolicyDefinitions\en-US (and unblock the access to the file in the file attribute)

  • Run the “Local Group Policy Editor” tool (GPEDIT.MSC)

  • Browse to Computer Configuration thenAdministrative Templates then look for FSLogix container.

  • Review and enable desired settings, then save the object.

Local Policy Settings

Note

The object just created will be stored and applied only on this machine, and will not be applied to other VMs in the WVD Host Pool.

Central Store

To take advantage of the benefits of .admx files, and to distribute settings automatically to the entire WVD Host Pool VM fleet, you must create a Central Store in the Sysvol folder on a Windows domain controller. The Central Store is a file location that is checked by the Group Policy tools by default.

The Group Policy tools use all .admx files that are in the Central Store. The files that are in the Central Store are replicated to all domain controllers in the domain. To create a Central Store for .admx and .adml files, create a new folder that is named PolicyDefinitions in the following location (for example) on the domain controller:

\\contoso.com\SYSVOL\contoso.com\policies\PolicyDefinitions

Now copy the FSLogix file fslogix.admx only into this location.

The PolicyDefinitions folder on the Windows domain controller stores all .admx files and .adml files for all languages that are enabled on the client computers. The .adml files are stored in a language-specific folder. For example, English (United States) files are stored in a folder that is named en-US. If not present already, you will need to create a language-specific folder en-US, then add fslogix.adml inside.

For more information on Central Store, you can refer to this article:

How to create and manage the Central Store for Group Policy Administrative Templates in Windows

Template Edit

In the previous section, you completed the preparation of the ADMX template specific for FSLogix for your Active Directory domain. Now you are ready to use this template to create a GPO for your WVD Host Pool.

The administrative tools you will use are the Group Policy Object Editor and Group Policy Management Console: these tools are already installed on Windows Server, instead will require manual installation of an additional package on Windows client:

  1. Sign in with a Domain Administrator account to a machine or VM part of your Active Directory domain.

  2. On Windows client OS, if necessary, install the "RSAT: Group Policy Management Tools":

  • Open the Settings app > Apps > Optional features > Add feature.
  • Select RSAT: Group Policy Management Tools > Install.
  • Wait while Windows installs the feature.
  1. On the admin computer, open the Group Policy Management app.

  2. Locate your Organizational Unit (OU) where WVD Host Pool machine accounts are located, then from the context menu select "Create a GPO in this domain, and Link it here...". Fill in a name for the new GPO and press “OK”

  3. Right-click on the new created policy and select “Edit”, the Group Policy Management Editor app opens.

Domain Edit of GPO Policy

  1. Expand Computer configuration > Policies > Administrative Templates > FSLogix and enable the desired settings for your configuration. Under parent FSLogix folder, there are dedicated sections for Cloud Cache, Office 365 Container, and Profile Container.

  2. For each setting, double-click on it, enable and eventually fill in required values. At the end, be sure to click on “Apply” to save and exit the dialog:

Enable GPO Setting for FSLogix

  1. Once finished, close the dialog and return to the main editor windows. At next GPO refresh cycle, WVD Host Pool VMs will receive these new policy settings, and will apply to the local machine registry configuration. If you want to expedite the process, you can connect locally to the machine and execute the command below
GPUPDATE /Target:Computer /force