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Thursday, 13 October 2011 16:00

Cisco & Citrix integrate data centre and desktop virtualisation offerings


Cisco and Citrix Systems have entered into an alliance to integrate Cisco desktop virtualisation products with Cisco's data centre compute, storage, network and collaboration products.

The two plan to combine "Cisco leadership in networking, data centre, endpoint devices and collaboration," with "Citrix leadership in virtualisation and the delivery of desktops, applications and data," to "help enterprises easily and cost effectively deploy virtual desktops to millions of PCs, Macs, tablets, smartphones and thin clients."

They also plan to supply data centre products that will "make it easier for organisations to deploy the infrastructure required to deliver IT as a service across multiple networks and geographies."

As the first result of the strategic alliance agreement, Cisco will deliver a new release of Cisco Wide Area Application Services (WAAS) optimised for Citrix XenDesktop and Citrix HDX technology in the fourth quarter of this year. It says this "will further enhance the performance of virtual desktops and applications over Cisco networking infrastructure."

Citrix client applications - the Citrix XenDesktop and the Citrix Receiver universal software client - will also be optimised for Cisco endpoint devices such as the Cisco VirtualExperience Clients (VXCs) and the Cisco Cius enterprise tablet.

The two companies say they will invest in joint go-to-market activities to drive demand for the their products and services in high growth market areas such as desktop virtualisation and cloud markets. During Citrix Synergy in Barcelona October 25 - 27 Cisco will showcase the first deliverables of the alliance and other VXI solutions.

According to Cisco, "As the industry transitions from the PC era to the cloud era where mobile work forces need to access media-rich applications from any device, anywhere, anytime, enterprises are turning to desktop virtualisation to give them the benefits of the security, flexibility and cost-savings by delivering desktops and applications as a centralised service."

The two have already announced two customers for the alliance's products. The University of Tennessee at Knoxville has selected Citrix XenDesktop running on Cisco infrastructure to provide free, anytime access to desktops, applications, resources and personal files to more than 27,000 students; and Seattle Children's Hospital has installed Citrix XenDesktop on 5,500 workstations, supported by the Cisco Unified Computing System.

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