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Overview of MSIX AppAttach in NMM

Applies to: Nerdio Manager for MSP (NMM) v2.0+

To begin using AppAttach in NMM you need to create a VHD(X) package containing the MSIX application.  The process for creating such packages is documented here.  

You will need the following items to get started:

  • VHD(X) file containing the MSIX application - this is a file that you create (or obtain from app publisher) that is ready to be used for AppAttach.
  • Application name - this is the name of the application as seen by Windows when it is installed.  It is typically provided by the application publisher.  As an example, Notepad++ app name is NotepadPP_1.0.0.0_x64__gz1by593hb2dw.
  • Parent folder name - this is the name of the folder in the VHD(X) file that contains the expanded MSIX application.  It is provided by the application publisher or something that you specify when creating the VHD(X) package.  
  • Volume GUID - VHD(X) packages are mounted on the AVD session host VMs as virtual disks and have GUIDs associated with them.  This is something that is provided by the creator of the VHD(X) package.
  • (Optional) Certificate - each VHD(X) package is signed with a digital cert.  If you used a self-signed cert that was used to sign the VHD(X) package you will need to be sure that this cert is installed on the session host VMs.  Have the .CER file handy. 

To help you get you started, we created a few VHD(X) packages for some popular applications that you can download and start using in your AVD environment for testing purposes.

  • Notepad++
    • VHD file MSIX package
    • App name: NotepadPP_1.0.0.0_x64__gz1by593hb2dw
    • Parent folder: NotepadPP_1.0.0.0_x64__gz1by593hb2dw
    • Volume GUID: dba970e4-0000-0000-0000-010000000000
    • Self-signed cert file
  • Mozilla Firefox
    • VHD file MSIX package
    • App name: MozillaFirefox80.0.1x64en-US_80.0.1.0_x64__1z5jebwm3hact
    • Parent folder: Firefox80.0.1
    • Volume GUID: 0ab29bd3-b6f6-4f75-a0b5-872ed617dff5
    • Self-signed cert file
  • Google Chrome
    • VHD file MSIX package
    • App name: GoogleChrome_85.0.4183.0_x64__0j934r0fz72wg
    • Parent folder: GoogleChrome85.0.4183.0
    • Volume GUID: 961e606e-21a6-46c7-871a-1068f84269c8
    • Self-signed cert file
  • Slack
    • VHD file MSIX package
    • App name: Slack_4.9.0.0_x64__0j934r0fz72wg
    • Parent folder: Slack4.9.0
    • Volume GUID: ad841ed3-59f8-4e81-882a-aea56e2f8690
    • Self-signed cert file

Pre-requisites to use MSIX AppAttach with NMM

To get started with publishing MSIX AppAttach applications to your users' AVD sessions with NMM you will need the following four things.

  1. VHD(X) package with associated information listed above.  Feel free to use our sample packages to get started.
  2. Azure Files share that is integrated with Active Directory and has the proper security configuration.  More on this below.
  3. AVD host pool with session hosts running Windows 10 2004 or newer.  MSIX AppAttach is not available in prior versions of Windows 10.
  4. Nerdio Manager for MSPs version 2.0 or later.
  5. App attach does not work on Windows 10 1909



Once you've created an Azure Files share and joined it to your AD domain, you must configure security settings on the share to allow session hosts and users to read the contents of the AppAttach packages.  With Azure Files, there are two places where these security settings are configured.

  1. Azure Files Access Control


2. NTFS permissions


In these two places, both the session host VM computer and user who will use the application must have at least reader access.  The good news is that the default NTFS permissions on newly created Azure Files shares already have the necessary configuration.  However, Azure Files share Access Control still needs to be configured.
Recommended method
This is an easy method to give all current and future session host VMs access to the Azure Files shares.

  • In Active Directory, create a new Global Security group in an OU that is being synched to Azure AD with ADConnect
  • Add Domain Computers and Domain Users to the new group
  • mceclip2.png
  • In Azure Portal, find your Azure Files share and go to Access Control
  • Add the new security group with Storage File Data SMB Share Reader role (you may need to wait for the next sync cycle for new groups to be available in AzureAD)
  • mceclip3.png

The end result will be read-only access to the Azure Files share by all domain users and computers.  Feel free to customize the above procedure to suite your organization's security policies.

You can upload MSIX App Attach images or certificates using NMM portal. Follow the steps given below:

  1. Login to NMM portal and from the main menu, select "Accounts" tab. Select "Manage" option on an account where you want to upload MSIX App Attach images/certificates:Accounts_page.png
  2. Inside the account, on the main menu, you will be able to find "MSIX App Attach" tab:Accounts_MSIX_AppAttach.png
  3. Expand "MSIX App Attach" tab:Expand_MISX_AppAttach_tab.png
  4. There are two options under "MSIX App Attach" tab:
    1. MSIX App Attach Images
    2. MSIX App Attach certificates


Uploading AppAttach VHD(X) packages and assigning users

Once you've added the AppAttach Storage Location on the SETTINGS page, you're ready to upload VHD(X) packages and assign them to users.  Go to APPATTACH APPS menu and click Upload.

Once the package is uploaded, click on Assignments next to the app and assign users and groups.  

NOTE: users will not see the application until it is assigned to them on this page


MSIX App Attach images

Navigate to MSIX App Attach images page: Click "Images" to go the MSIX App Attach Images page:MSIX_appattach_pagenew.png


Upload MSIX app(s): Click "Upload MSIX app(s)" button to upload one or more MSIX app(s): MSIX_packages.png
Provide the following details:

  • Image Name: Enter an MSIX App attach  image name
  • Storage location: Select storage location from the drop-down
  • MSIX files: Upload MSIX files
  • Certificate files: Upload certificate files
  • Temporary VM settings:
  • Name Prefix: Enter name of the VM
  • Network: Select options from the drop-down
  • Desktop image: Select options from the drop-down
  • VM size: Select options from the drop-down
  • OS disk: Select options from the drop-down
  • Click "OK" button when done.

Upload images: Click "Upload image" button to upload MSIX image: Upload_image.png
Note: MSIX App Attach is not supported for accounts that use Azure AD DS

Provide the following details:

  • Friendly name: Enter a name for the image
  • Description: Enter a short description
  • Storage location: Select region from the drop-down
  • Version: Enter version number for the image
  • Image files: Upload image files
  • Certificate files: Upload certificate files
  • Click "Upload" button once done

New image Version: Click "New image Version " to change the version of an existing MSIX App Attach image:Upload_new_image_version.png

Provide the following details:

  • Version: Enter the new version number for the image
  • Image files: Upload new image file
  • Certificate: Upload new certificate file
  • Click "Upload" button when done

Delete image: Click "Delete" button on an existing MSIX App Attach image to delete it : Delete_MSIX_appattach_image.png

View status of image tasks: You can view the status of MSIX App Attach image tasks under "MSIX App Attach image tasks" section. You can search tasks by any text in the tasks or filter tasks by status (ALL STATUSES, PENDING, IN PROGRESS, COMPLETE, ERROR and CANCELLED). You can refresh tasks and also download them in JSON format:


MSIX App Attach certificates

Navigate to MSIX App Attach certificate page: Click MSIX App Attach->Certificates to go the MSIX App Attach Certificates page: MSIX_AppAttach_certificates_page_-_click_add_certificate.png

Add certificate: Click "Add certificate" button to upload MSIX certificate:Add_certificates.png


Upload the certificate file and click "OK" button to confirm.

Delete certificate: Click "Delete" button next to an existing MSIX AppAttach image to delete it:MSIX_AppAttach_certificates_page_-_click_delete_certificate.png


Click "OK" button to confirm delete action:


View status of Certificate tasks: You can view the status of MSIX App Attach certificate tasks under "MSIX App Attach certificate tasks" section. You can search tasks by any text in the tasks or filter tasks by status (ALL STATUSES, PENDING, IN PROGRESS, COMPLETE, ERROR and CANCELLED). You can refresh tasks and also download them in JSON format: MSIX_AppAttach_certificates_tasks.png



Related articles

How to manage Azure File shares in NMM


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Important Notification for NFA Partners Only
  • Microsoft is sunsetting Azure Classic (not Azure Virtual Desktop (AVD)) - Microsoft Article
  • NFA sunset occurs February 20th, 2023
  • NFA will be fully supported until the official sunset -


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