Thursday, 26 May 2011 19:41

Citrix boosts XenClient compatibility, security Featured


While Citrix's XenClient - a bare-metal client hypervisor that allows centrally managed virtual desktops to run directly on corporate laptops even when disconnected from the network - has been well received, customers wanted more. So Citrix has released a technology preview of XenClient 2, along with a first look at a new member of the family that provides greater security and isolation between clients.

The forthcoming XenClient 2 can be used on a much wider range of hardware than its predecessor. It runs on non-vPro systems such as value-priced models from major manufacturers, but lacks 3D graphics support on such notebooks.

A volume enterprise model with Core i7 and  vPro "gives you the best performance," said Peter Blum, director of product management. It also runs on workstation-class notebooks such as the HP EliteBook, and supports direct access to AMD FirePro and Radeon graphics.

The technology preview is available for free download and allows a maximum of 10 clients. No date was mentioned for the delivery of the finished product.

XenClient XT provides extreme security, extreme isolation and extreme performance, Citrix president and CEO Mark Templeton told delegates at the company's Synergy 2011 customer conference in San Francisco.

Some of the security benefits come from taking advantage of features of Intel's Core vPro platform, including the ability to checked for a known good configuration at boot time to ensure no unauthorised modifications have been made.

John Fanelli, vice president of product marketing for the company's enterprise desktops and applications group, said XenClient XT was designed to meet the needs of government and defence customers. In addition to providing strict isolation between the virtual desktops, it also delivered higher performance as needed for demanding applications such as graphics and modelling software.

XenClient XT is  scheduled to ship in June.

Disclosure: the writer travelled to San Francisco as the guest of Citrix.

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Stephen Withers

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Stephen Withers is one of Australia¹s most experienced IT journalists, having begun his career in the days of 8-bit 'microcomputers'. He covers the gamut from gadgets to enterprise systems. In previous lives he has been an academic, a systems programmer, an IT support manager, and an online services manager. Stephen holds an honours degree in Management Sciences and a PhD in Industrial and Business Studies.

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