By Meraj Malik, Solutions Manager - Asiasoft Solutions
App Layering, Seclore & XenServer
Back in the day, when I was finding my feet in consulting, I remember the message from Citrix’s earlier days of “End to End Application Delivery”, which always appealed to me. Over time, a lot has changed and today security has become important for all organizations. Without losing their penchant for delivering a myriad of functionality options, Citrix has been able to incorporate security in their full solution suite. One way Citrix was able to making such a transformation was by integrating acquired and partner technologies. My favourites are the Citrix implementation of App Layering (Unidesk) and the integration of Next-Generation Information Rights Management (Seclore) to Citrix Sharefile.
App Layering can solve of VDI’s major problems. Anti-virus software updates. Since AV software has always been closely integrated with the OS, a VDI pool commonly installs AV in the golden image. What happens when the AV signature or versions are updated? That’s a new golden image to manage, and no one has only just one golden image to update. App layers allows you to decouple applications, including AV software from the OS and update them separately. So only one AV image and one OS image to update and manage from now on.
With Seclore, Sharefile can protect files even after a user downloads the file to the local hard drive. If they try to send on the files, they will be sending a protected file that can’t be opened by anyone other than the intended recipient.
At ServTech there also were a few surprises, especially learning that XenServer now supports live migrations across hosts for gpu-enabled VMs. Funny, because it is exactly the feature that I was griping about just one week before the event!
The Modern User
Another interesting take-away from the event was to learn that Citrix expects the modern user to use every technological tool at his disposal. For example, XenApp and XenDesktop are inherently a great enabler of customers moving to Microsoft Azure and Office 365, especially for the popular Hybrid deployments. Other than Lync optimization packs, NetScaler enables several authentication options and Endpoint Analysis, thereby boosting the delivery and security options for the modern cloud-enabled organization.
With Personal Connectors in Sharefile, Citrix expects organization to store data everywhere and yet, still want to manage them centrally. These Personal Connectors provide a centralized platform for users to share, store and secure data that could be on Dropbox, Box, Google Drive, OneDrive and Sharepoint Online. I myself will follow the development of this functionality with great interest.
The willingness to play with others
Overall, Citrix APJ ServTech was a very positive experience since I could expanding my insight of the core and complementary options of delivering work to users and I got to know many of the technical leaders and specialists from Citrix but also Nvidia, eG Innovations and others. I have always seen Citrix products as a great enabler of work and have admired their willingness to “play with others”. My compliments to Citrix on this successful event and I hope to be there again next year.