Citrix Dazzle 1.1 – Empowering Users

2017-07-27T00:01:12+00:00 January 18th, 2010|Uncategorized|

 

 Citrix Dazzle — the first self-service “storefront” for enterprise applications gives corporate employees 24×7 self-service access to the applications they need to work. Dazzle offers a rich, intuitive user experience that requires no training. If you’ve used DirecTV or Apple iTunes, you already know how to use Dazzle. Dazzle makes self-service IT a reality for the first time ever, giving users simple access to apps and IT services, and bringing the economics of the web to enterprise IT.

Empowering Users with an Enterprise App Store
It’s easy to choose exactly what you need, when you need it – apps, your desktop, or any IT delivered service. Simply browse or search for the app or IT service you need. Subscribe or unsubscribe with one click. Organizing selected apps into user-defined “playlists” is easy and intuitive. Users decide the folders that appear in their Start menu (or, in the future OSX Dock). Simply click to create, then drag and drop any app or IT service.

Self-Service Storefront for XenApp
For the more than 200,000 enterprise customers already using Citrix Delivery Center products like XenApp and XenDesktop, Dazzle effectively acts as a storefront to their existing delivery infrastructure. IT is in control, instantly and easily advertising the existing offline and online Windows applications and Web applications with XenApp’s “app publishing” interface. Adding, updating and removing apps and IT services takes minutes – not days, weeks or months.

Zero-touch install and configuration
Dazzle is fully integrated with Citrix Receiver, so getting users started is easy. IT just loads the Receiver plug-in for Dazzle into Merchandising Server, schedules it for delivery, and it’s silently pushed to every PC or Mac that has Receiver installed. When users launch Dazzle, the store will be fully stocked with all the apps IT has to offer. It’s that easy.

565x322_ReceiverDazzle

One-click live help
Users get one click to talk to a service agent that can remotely assist them with any enterprise IT service question allowing IT to provide a “first call resolution” service at low cost that keeps users productive and satisfied. GoToAssist – the industry’s gold standard for remote support – can be fully integrated with third party trouble ticketing systems such as Remedy.

Source: Citrix

Microsoft Application Virtualization for Terminal Services

2010-01-04T12:06:03+00:00 January 4th, 2010|Uncategorized|

Microsoft Application Virtualization for Terminal Services now included as part of Windows Server 2008 RDS CAL
As of September 1, 2009, all users or devices connecting to Windows Server 2008 R2 Remote Desktop Session Host Server or Windows Server 2008 Terminal Server managed with Microsoft Application Virtualization for Terminal Services no longer need to acquire a separate Microsoft Application Virtualization CAL for Terminal Services. See more details.

Server growth is a costly issue for organizations that rely on Terminal Services. To avoid application conflicts, applications must undergo significant testing to determine which applications will collide and, therefore, must be separated and run on different Terminal Server silos-a time-consuming and costly process.

Running multiple separate terminal servers for each application routinely results in servers being underutilized because each one is locked into a specific configuration, capable of serving only a limited set of non-conflicting applications, typically using just 25 percent of capacity. Often, 20 servers are required to support 1,000 users. Microsoft App-V for Terminal Services completely changes this situation. Microsoft Application Virtualization for Terminal Services offers the following features and benefits:

Consolidate servers and end server siloing, increasing server farm ROI: App-V’s application virtualization allows any application to run alongside any other—even applications that normally conflict, multiple versions of the same application, and many applications that previously could not run under Terminal Services. This eliminates the need for server silos and significantly improves server utilization. As a result, the number of servers needed is much lower, operational costs for managing the remaining servers are reduced, and the server farm ROI is increased. For instance, it has enabled Russell Investment Group and Fidelity National Financial to shrink their application server farms by 33 to 40 percent.

End application conflicts and regression testing: By eliminating the need to permanently install applications on servers, and shielding the operating system and applications from changes created when installed applications run, Microsoft App-V for Terminal Services prevents problems that hinder deployments. The need to perform lengthy regression testing is also significantly reduced.

Accelerate application deployment: Applications that use App-V only need to be packaged once for desktop or terminal services platforms. This reduces the need for “double packaging” or creating two different processes and packages when providing the choice for running an application on a desktop or via a terminal server.

Reduce Deployment Risk: Installing a new application on a terminal server was traditionally a risky process; first you had to ensure all users were logged off, then you had to change the mode of terminal server, followed often by reboots. Software updates and uninstalls provide even great complexity and risk. With Microsoft App-V applications can be deployed and updated on demand to users without having to reboot or log users off.

Simplify Profile Management: Microsoft App-V allows application settings and data to be stored in a single network location. This ensures a user’s application settings are available no matter what terminal server is used—without the need for roaming profiles. Additionally this feature makes mandatory profiles a viable option for TS scenarios—OS settings remain locked within the mandatory profile while per application settings can still be modified by the user. This dramatically simplifies the complexities of managing profile data.

Terminal Services

Source: Microsoft

Twelve Money-Making Reasons for Workspace Virtualization

2017-07-27T00:01:12+00:00 October 28th, 2009|Uncategorized|

symantec_logo tranDesktop virtualization is the second-fastest growing of all virtualization technologies. According to EMA research, around 26 percent of respondents had adopted or were planning to adopt desktop virtualization in 2006; but that number has almost doubled to 46 percent by 2008.

For institutions, the technology has valuable applicability: fault tolerant endpoints for the trading floor; single sign-on application access for the call center; easy desktop management for branch and remote workforces; productive workspaces for telecommuters and mobile workers; and guaranteed anywhere access for disaster recovery applications.

But the real business case lies in the impact workspace virtualization can have on an institution’s top- and bottom-line. Here are 12 reasons that should make this IT investment a done deal for financial institutions looking to thrive (not just survive) in a tough economy

1. On-demand access to applications from any location.
With streaming technology, users can access their workspaces and applications from anywhere, anytime. That access drives user productivity and is a direct contributor to the top line.

Business Impact:
A Day in the Life of a Power User – In the virtual reality, a user isn’t tied to her desk to be productive. Take Kelly, for instance, who is stuck in Aruba on a vacation gone awry – with no chance of getting home in time to finish an important business plan for this quarter’s board meeting. She finds her way to a local Internet café and logs in to the portal. Her workspace is waiting for her there, just the way she left it in the office. She has instant access to all the applications and data she needs. Instead of taking precious time to install specific applications, she’s productive from minute one. Kelly completes her plan and forwards it to the board members. She might not make the meeting, but her plan will.

2. Save time with delta-only updates.
Less downtime has its own impact on the top line. Delta-only updates ensure that users always have the right version of the right application, without surrendering their systems for upgrades—so they’re always ready to work.

3. Proactive license compliance.
A streaming platform manages application licenses and user authorizations. That means institutions will always be in compliance, avoiding surprise license consumption come end-of-year inventory.

4. Reduce license costs by eliminating unnecessary deployments.
For even deeper cuts, institutions no longer pay for licenses that may never be used. By deploying only icons, applications are only installed when they’re actually used.

5. Optimize license costs.
Additionally, institutions can proactively recover licenses for unused applications. If an application goes unused for an unusual amount of time, that unnecessary cost can be recouped.

6. Instant endpoint configuration based upon domain login.
As users move from endpoint to endpoint, the system configures applications based on their login. That means a common OS image can be used across the masses for untold IT efficiencies.

7. Increase the stability of endpoints.
Application virtualization separates applications from other applications and the OS so there are no dependencies or conflicts, resulting in greater availability of the workspace and less downtime for users.

8. Save time by eliminating pre-deployment testing of new and updated applications.
Pre-deployment testing is a necessary albeit time-consuming task that can delay installs or updates. With virtualization, there are no conflicts, so testing isn’t required, and installs and updates happen instantaneously to free IT resources and users alike.

9. Allow for instant application repair without redelivery.
Broken applications are a huge drain on IT resources with tasks like troubleshooting, testing, remediating, and redeploying software. Virtualization can reset applications to their “known good state” so folks can put those fixes behind them and get to work.

10. Central management of users, applications and workstations.
A desktop connection broker can dynamically allocate traditional and virtual computing resources like information, user profiles and applications to the endpoint regardless of device—thus reducing IT workloads.

11. Use Single Sign On to simplify and secure user access.
User access can be a one-step process, leveraging various authentication methods. They don’t have to re-authenticate as they move from application to application, so they’re more productive.

12. Simplify endpoint management.
A single, centralized management system is used across all platforms—local or remote, virtual or not. There’s one setting per user, per application no matter the endpoint, yielding much less resource-intensive management and huge cost savings.

Info/Security Impact:
A Day in the Life of an IT Staffer – Virtual workspace management frees IT resources from the many challenges that plague traditional desktop environments. Consider Steve, a harried IT guy who is hit with a particularly nasty virus that’s corrupting Microsoft Word—a popular application that can potentially impact all employee workstations, local and remote. In the old world, Steve would have had a busy morning, traipsing from desktop to desktop reinstalling the application. But in virtual reality, Steve sits back and in a matter of a couple of keystrokes he reverts Word back to its last known working state—on all 350 workspaces. Crisis averted, and his users remain unawares.

“Security can be a tough sell, regardless of the economy,” concludes Enterprise Management Associates’. “And risk management is not always a top priority.” But when you consider the impact that workspace virtualization has on an institution’s top- and bottom-line, as outlined in these twelve sound business points, then you might agree: A well-managed workspace is a secure workspace. And what price do you put on that?

Source: Symantec.com

Variety In Desktop Virtualization

2017-07-27T00:01:12+00:00 October 26th, 2009|Uncategorized|

dell_ultra_small_desktopWill one single type of desktop accommodate the needs of this complex workforce? Simply put, it can’t. These workers require a multitude of desktop experiences. That means either a plethora of desktop products, or a single framework that can be configured and extended to support a variety of workplace scenarios.

A powerful technology that affords flexibility and manageability, and can enable these new workforce scenarios to come to life, is virtualization. Most IT managers are aware of the power of virtualization technology, specifically as it applies to servers and consolidation. However, many may not be aware of how virtualization can be applied to the desktop.

There are four areas of virtualization that enable flexibility at the desktop level:

1. User-state virtualization separates an end user’s data and settings from a specific desktop machine. This enables IT to store those user elements centrally and at the same time make them accessible to other PCs in the organization. It enables a user to employ a variety of PCs (or mobile devices) as if each were that person’s unique PC.

2. Microsoft® Application Virtualization (App-V) turns an application into a self-functioning entity. It allows IT administrators to store an application centrally and stream it to a desktop based on user access privileges. It isolates applications from each other, allowing them to run in concert even if they require the same resources from the OS.

3. Microsoft Enterprise Desktop Virtualization (MED-V) decouples the location of the user interface from where the application is executing. This allows the execution of a desktop environment at one place (a server) and presentation of that environment or user interface at a different location (a desktop or mobile computer).

4. Microsoft Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) centralizes virtual PCs inside the datacenter while allowing users to remotely access their desktops. Being server-based, it requires hardware and storage that can be costly. Before you start evaluating VDI, rationalize your VDI deployment, outline your VDI scenarios and explore the licensing implications.

Microsoft has incorporated powerful virtualization technology as a key element in its strategic blueprint, the Windows Optimized Desktop.

Source: Microsoft.com

Reduce Costs By Streamlining PC Management

2017-07-27T00:01:12+00:00 October 25th, 2009|Uncategorized|

Microsoft PC ManagementThe cost and administrative challenges in managing a modern desktop infrastructure are daunting. Envisioning the desktop infrastructure as a strategic asset rather than a cost center can benefit both users and the organization as a whole. Microsoft, in collaboration with IDC and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, has created a strategic roadmap for desktop infrastructure optimization that characterizes an organization’s desktop management practices along a curve that moves from simple and reactive to mature and optimized:

Basic Desktop Infrastructure

Characterized by manual, localized processes with minimal central control, the basic desktop infrastructure is fundamentally reactive—both in terms of process and security—and  a highly dependent cost center.

Standardized Desktop Infrastructure

Standardization of desktop technology— hardware and software— results in an increasing degree of coordination between management and end users, making administration of the standardized desktop infrastructure more efficient.

Rationalized Desktop Infrastructure

Consolidation and coordination of desktop and server assets, combined with a significant degree of automation, make the rationalized infrastructure highly effective and a business enabler.

Dynamic Desktop Infrastructure

Dynamic resource usage combined with fully automated functions and processes, which allow for business-linked service-level agreements, make the dynamic desktop infrastructure a strategic business asset.

An optimized desktop infrastructure can lead to greater business continuity, enhanced compliance, and better, more secure access to network resources. Organizations can increase agility and achieve notable improvements in the ability to provide faster, more responsive it service.

Higher levels of optimization can result in savings of up to 80 percent in it labor costs, according to a 2009 idc study. Standardization alone pays dividends. According to idc, companies that maintained a standardized desktop strategy for three years or longer decreased

Pc labor costs by an additional 34 percent over the initial short-term gains.

The Windows optimized desktop is intended to support an organization’s effort to optimize its overall desktop infrastructure. it does this first by facilitating standardization and consolidation through the use of a single, stable, familiar and well-integrated client-server architecture. But it also offers technology managers capabilities and tools that facilitate coordination, automation and dynamic resource allocation, including:

Microsoft Application Virtualization (App-V) this reduces the application deployment effort because technology managers no longer need to test how different groups of applications work together every time one is upgraded. it removes an application from the desktop footprint, which allows it to deploy a smaller master Pc image across a variety of business groups.

Microsoft Enterprise Desktop Virtualization (MED-V) this resolves application-compatibility problems by letting legacy applications run in a virtual environment.

Windows 7 Advanced Image Management and Deployment Tools these enable it to ease os deployments and reduce the cost and complexity of managing PCs and virtual machines.

The DirectAccess network access technology so effective in supporting mobile workers works both ways: it not only allows users to access corporate resources directly, it enables administrators to configure and manage Pcs remotely across the internet, especially when used in conjunction with these tools:

  • Group Policy Management Console, which allows it administrators to centrally manage Pc and application settings.
  • Windows PowerShell 2.0, which enables technology managers to automate repetitive tasks.
  • Internet Explorer Administration Kit, which can be used to configure an initial internet explorer setup or manage user settings after internet explorer has been deployed

Return on investment can be measured two ways: Lower costs and more effective use of resources. the Windows optimized desktop helps lower the cost of desktop administration and increase dynamic resource usage by providing tools that help both users and administrators resolve problems faster—and therefore return to productive work quicker:

Microsoft Diagnostics and Recovery Toolset this tool helps technology managers and administrators identify and repair Pcs that have become unusable by offering tools that analyze and solve the problem.

System Center Desktop Error Monitoring through agentless crash-monitoring technology, this tool identifies the impact, probable cause, and resolution of application and operating system failures, which helps to make desktop Pcs more stable and reliable.

Windows Troubleshooting Platform the Windows troubleshooting Platform can reduce calls to the help desk by diagnosing and resolving common Pc issues, and by providing built-in troubleshooting help, including audio, video, and networking, for several different types of problems.

Virtualization may be intimidating to it managers unfamiliar with the technology. the Windows optimized desktop provides tools to manage both physical and virtual assets.

System Center Configuration Manager

System center configuration manager 2007 assesses, deploys and updates software on servers, clients and mobile devices across physical, virtual and distributed environments. Organizations leveraging Microsoft system center configuration manager will benefit from internal end-to-end hardware and software inventory and metering capabilities. The solution’s asset intelligence component translates the inventory data into information, providing rich reports that it administrators can use to optimize hardware and software usage.

System Center Virtual Machine Manager

System center Virtual machine manager enables dynamic and responsive management of a virtual infrastructure, rapid provisioning of new virtual machines, and unified management of physical and virtual machines. These days, lowering cost is imperative, and most organizations are looking for short-term return on any investments they make, including technology. The

Windows optimized desktop provides a cost-effective way for it administrators to begin the upgrade and optimization of desktop infrastructure by serving both short-term goals—for instance, by providing a platform to test the efficacy of desktop virtualization technology—

and long-term needs, by being able to implement new desktop technology quickly and recycle used equipment efficiently.

Source: Microsoft.com

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