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Author: Jim, Client Director  
  
Last updated: April 17, 2018

As cloud technology progresses, the global desktop-as-a-service market (DaaS) is expected to grow 44% by 2020. But what advantages do cloud desktops hold over a traditional PC estates?

For organisations looking to expand on a global scale, a Citrix desktop can simplify the deployment and management of user environments. And, when coupled with Microsoft Azure’s advanced functionality and security, things become even easier.

As Citrix on Azure specialists, we’re currently working with an international financial services organisation to modernise their desktop environment and help them realise the full potential of Citrix DaaS.

To boost the performance of their current legacy environment, we’ll be managing the migration to Citrix Cloud, enabling them to experience all the agility, scale and flexibility Azure has to offer.

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Here’s a look at the process we’ll be following and the key takeaways you can apply to your own organisation.

Upgrading to a Citrix Desktop Solution

According to IDC, overall investment in on-premises infrastructure is gradually declining.

This change in approach is due to a host of common issues, all of which played a part in our client’s decision to move to Citrix desktops on Azure:

  • Hardware failure and software issues
  • Large management and deployment costs
  • Limited agility and flexibility
  • Expensive end-user support and downtime
  • Poor elasticity
  • Network and security difficulties

The firm’s current desktop estate comprises of standard PCs and locally installed applications, which are managed independently of each other. While the installation of new local applications is rare, there are persistent concerns about security patching and endpoint management, both of which are accelerating as the business grows. 

Global Growth in the Citrix Cloud

When we first engaged with the firm, we worked with their IT team to create an initial footprint within Azure.

Fast forward to 2018, and their growing business means there’s a new set of demands to consider. Their key priority now is a Citrix desktop solution that provides stability and support to a global network, and will scale in line with their vision.

With the firm opening offices all over the world, they need to expand rapidly, while retaining centralised control of their systems. Due to its industry-leading reputation for scale and flexibility – and the firm’s existing cloud infrastructure - we felt Citrix on Azure was a natural fit.

The Benefits of a Citrix Desktop in Azure

The firm’s global offices need support from a UK-based IT team.

With their current on-premises estate, gaining access to remote endpoints is a consistent challenge and a drain on employee resources.

Ultimately, our goal is to provide the firm with a Citrix desktop they can deliver to remote users from a local Azure datacentre. With a focus on resilient networking and intelligent architectural design, this cloud environment will start up quickly and painlessly, with zero disruption to employee productivity.

Through Citrix on Azure, users will be able to gain centralised access to documents and applications in any environment, regardless of whether they’re stored on-premises or in the cloud. Using this approach, the firm’s UK head office can monitor and update each Citrix desktop from the same location.

We’ve also chosen Azure for the secure deployment of Citrix virtual desktops and applications. This means new desktop infrastructures can be made available in minutes rather than weeks.

Understanding Specific Use Cases

To realise the full potential of Citrix on Azure, we first need to understand the client’s specific use cases. For instance, we’re working with them to fully optimise the user experience by focusing on:

  • Which applications they currently use and how they access them.
  • Which physical locations employees work from (in the office, on the move or at home).
  • Whether they require a full Windows operating system or just certain applications.

By conducting this initial persona analysis, we’ll be able to identify their desktop requirements and design an environment that’s best suited to their unique needs. The end result will be a matrix of different use cases, which we’ll overlay with the Citrix cloud solutions we offer.

Making the Switch to a Citrix Desktop

As more companies move away from traditional desktop estates in favour of cloud and hybrid platforms, clear migration strategies will enable them to get there quicker and more efficiently.

Before you decide to move your current desktop environment to a Citrix system, it’s worth considering the following questions:

  • How will your users access virtual apps or virtual desktops?
  • Are you planning to retain data or applications on premises?
  • Is your cloud architecture secure enough for the move?
  • Is VDI integral to your business mission?
  • Is your IT team equipped to deal with the desktop migration?

At RedPixie, we champion Citrix and Microsoft’s winning partnership. In cases where moving to a Citrix desktop helps you reach business outcomes quicker, we’re on hand to design, build and manage your new cloud infrastructure.

To find out more about Citrix on Azure solutions and the work we’ve been doing in this sector, check out our Citrix VDI page.

 

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Topics: Azure, Case Study, Citrix

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