AVD and Citrix – Value for a Hybrid Strategy

Microsoft Azure Virtual Desktop is driving massive interest across organizations of all sizes.  Before heading down the AVD road, it’s essential to understand how AVD may impact your existing on-premises and hybrid strategy and identify how AVD can compliment your existing Citrix investments.

What is AVD?

Microsoft Azure Virtual Desktop (AVD) is a comprehensive application and desktop virtualization service running in the cloud – Microsoft Azure specifically.  Launched in 2019, AVD is the evolution of Microsoft’s Remote Desktop Services technology. It includes Windows 10/11 multi-user operating system (among traditional server-based and single-user client operating systems), user profile management through FSLogix, the platform to support management and connection brokering, as well as licensing management.

AVD is available as part of entitlement through Microsoft 365 Business, E3, E5, A3, A5 or as a standalone subscription.  Today’s interest in AVD is not only driven by the capabilities of Microsoft Azure – and it’s native flexibility and agility – but also by these existing subscriptions that entitle organizations to WVD use.

Unfortunately, Microsoft AVD is only available in Microsoft Azure.  The ability to deploy AVD workloads outside of Microsoft Azure may never be an option or, at minimum, require Azure Stack deployed on-premises.  This limitation may impose challenges in accommodating a hybrid strategy and, potentially, lead to a fragmented end user experience in accessing applications and desktops delivered from both on-premises and cloud environments.

Suppose you are an organization who has already invested in Citrix technology to centralize and streamline delivery of on-premises applications and desktops and are considering AVD as part of service delivery strategy. In that case, AVD is a complimentary strategy to Citrix, not a displacement.  Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktop Service (CVADS) provides immense value to simplifying AVD adoption and provides the Citrix tools you have become accustomed to and dependent on.  Further, leveraging CVADS maintains the positive experience our users demand by amalgamating resources within a single access strategy regardless of where workloads are being delivered from.

How does Citrix compliment AVD?

Let’s explore ten key areas to highlight how Citrix adds value to AVD and supports a hybrid strategy.

  • Hybrid Cloud Management – Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops provides a single management interface for Citrix workloads for both on-premises, in cloud, Azure, and Windows Virtual Desktop.  This allows you to migrate at your pace and burst or load-balance between on-premises and cloud when, and if, you ever need to.
  • Citrix HDX Technology – Citrix’s leading-edge protocol delivers user experiences across any device and across any connection, automatically adapting under demanding conditions to ensure the best user experience possible.  Further, leveraging built-in optimizations for interactive multimedia performance for Microsoft Teams and industry-standard telework applications maintains rich, smooth, and positive interactivity with colleagues.
  • Performance and Security Analytics – Targeted specifically at application and desktop virtualization, Citrix analytics tools give administrators deep visibility into user behaviour and session responsiveness, providing IT the power to catch small issues before they become big ones.
  • Workspace Environment Management – Optimize user density and logon performance with a suite of technologies designed to improve user experience while maximizing the value of IT spend.
  • Session Recording – Access full record and playback of user session for issue diagnosis, compliance, or security audits.
  • Citrix App Protection and Watermarking – Protect your environment from accidental or malicious data leakage.
  • Advanced Monitoring – Administrative and helpdesk tools build for enterprise scale to monitor site and session health, track user sessions, diagnose issues, and more.
  • AutoScale – Scale your environment up or out based on schedule or load and use your existing on-premises investment and ramp sessions to the cloud as needed.
  • Citrix Provisioning – Maintain the same tools that already simplify administration and enhance on-premises reliability to rapidly deploy environments of any scale to cloud.
  • Citrix App Layering – Take advantage of flexible operating system, application, and user layering technology to enhance user experience while maintaining non-persistent environments.

Watch below for a quick discussion around some of these key points.

Interested in More?

At Third Octet, our Citrix expertise runs deep, likewise for Azure Virtual Desktop.  Take advantage of our expertise, learn from our experience, and simplify your hybrid strategy and AVD implementation to ensure both a positive IT and end user experience.  Contact us to discuss how and why Microsoft Azure Virtual Desktop adds value to your hybrid cloud strategy and why Citrix and AVD is the best strategy moving forward.

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