Before you even get to the entertaining “Citrix vs VMware vs Other” quasi-religious debate, there will be a VDI vs RDSH altercation. It can altercate for days. Ultimately, no business question gets asked, nor decision made, as technical stags lock antlers.
At Citrix Synergy in Barcelona, this was a very good question that a number of partners were reporting their customers were asking. Citrix XenApp 6.5 is a market leading product. Windows 2012 is very new. What are the differentiating features, what key questions should you ask and how do you decide on the one for you?
Why do I need other XenApp with Windows 2012 RDSH – what stands out third party tools from Microsoft’s core presentation virtualisation offering?
OnLive, the desktop pundits favorite DaaS provider, is one step closer to being able to offer a viable and fully compliant virtual “desktop” service following the stealth update of its platform from a Windows 7 based VDI service to a Windows Server 8 R2 Remote Desktop Services offering. While this move eliminates the threat to the service that attempting to run a set based on a licensing model that was not compliant with Microsoft’s licensing policies, OnLive is still not out of the woods.
There is great outrage to Microsoft’s reluctance to play ball and support virtualization of IE. Without an alternative, the solutions offered by Microsoft are expensive, cumbersome and difficult to maintain. Virtualising the application may well allow different browser versions to co-exist – but the user-experience can be cumbersome with links to other applications not always launching the correct browser and users having to know which browser to choose. Unibrows offers an interesting alternative utilising isolation to support the deployment of different controls and centralisation to allow management and control and importantly wrapped up in what sounds like a very appealing cost.
Is virtualizing Citrix XenApp a waste of time and effort? In spite of the hardware abstraction allowing easier image management and OS upgrades; in spite of options for higher availability and faster recovery, even fail-over; in spite of enabling silo consolidation; in spite of enabling managing user capacity on servers – especially for x32 environments, but also x64; … what could virtualization of your Presentation Virtualization environment possibly do for you?