Microsoft Clouds Pixels Reuse

The relationship between Citrix and Microsoft went to the next level today. Technology company Citrix has announced the release of its Windows 10 desktop-as-a-service VDI, running on Microsoft Azure. The company also committed to a previous agreement for its apps-as-a-service product to replace Microsoft’s Azure RemoteApp.

Today’s announcement at the Citrix Summit in Anaheim, California extends a partnership announced between Citrix and Microsoft last year. As part of that agreement, Microsoft started phasing out Azure RemoteApp in favor of Citrix solutions. The company says its RemoteApp replacement will be available during Q1 of 2017.

There are two new services in development, Citrix XenDesktop Essentials and XenApp Essentials. Both were launched today and were created in collaboration with Microsoft and the Azure team. Citrix offers application and desktop virtualization, networking, software as a service (SaaS), and cloud computing technologies.

XenDesktop Essentials gives organizations tools to create virtual instance of Windows 10 as a service. This is possible through existing software licenses. Microsoft will make the app available in the Azure Marketplace this quarter. Similarly, XenApp Essentials will give companies the ability to place Windows 10 Enterprise images on Azure.

Expanding Citrix on Azure

Calvin Hsu, VP of product market for Citrix says the solutions have been created to help organizations find a simpler way to deploy Windows virtual desktops in the Azure cloud:

“Microsoft customers who have licensed Windows 10 Enterprise on a per-user basis will have the option to manage their Windows 10 images on the cloud through our XenDesktop VDI solution. Once XenDesktop Essentials is set up and running, the service can be managed by the Citrix Cloud.”

Windows desktop and apps will have new delivery methods through the Citrix Workspace Cloud, which runs on Azure. This allows apps like Skype for Business, Office 365, and Intune to be delivered in a different channel via XenApp Essentials.

“Together, our solution allows IT administrators to define access control policies based on the state of the end user mobile device,” added Akhilesh Dhawan, principal product marketing manager at Citrix, in a blog post. “These policies will check each end-user mobile device before a user session is established to determine whether the device is enrolled with Microsoft Intune and is compliant with the security policies set by an organization and — only then — grant or deny access accordingly.”