#CitrixTEX2013 – an exec summary and what’s next with #ProjectMerlin

Citrix Technology Exchange 2013 Keynote opening

Citrix Germany invited their community in the beginning of this week 10/21st and 22nd for their Technology Exchange event 2013 – #CitrixTEX2013. This event became very popular after Citrix canceled Synergy Europe this year. Attendees were partners and customers from Germany, Austria and Switzerland, the so called DACH region. With more than 700+ attendees, the event was fully booked and very crowded for the location. So, what to expect from this local event?

The keynote demos were done live with the challenge of Wi-Fi lost and the “demo god” was not really with them in the beginning. No real big announcements happened except Citrix XenDesktop 7.1 & GA date for 10/23 which was obvious. The keynote agenda was picked around the product portfolio in the following order:

  • Social Collaboration=GoTo Products
  • Data Sharing=ShareFile
  • Mobile Platforms=XenMobile
  • Desktop Virtualization=XenDesktop
  • Cloud Networking=NetScaler
  • Cloud Platforms=CloudPortal

The GoTo product group launched some interesting products since Synergy where the Citrix community discussed about. So it was interesting to see, what Citrix wanted to do with them:

  • Project Zeus
  • Talkboard
  • Crystal Palace

Citrix, Project Zeus, Talkboard, Crystal Palace

Citrix announced their latest XenDesktop release 7.1 which is the result of project Bruin. It was somehow a farce that the GA release date was 10/23 – two days after the keynote. The Citrix XenDesktop 7.1 release is somehow a Windows platform enhancement release plus vGPU support with the NVIDIA GRiD:

Citrix XenDesktop 7.1 release

With the new release of XenDesktop, AppDNA also supports the latest and greatest Microsoft & Citrix platforms and offers some new reports.

So what’s the next step for XenDesktop with Project Merlin? Project Merlin first release will be about App Orchestration and is planned for the first half of 2014. It is very likely that the release is linked with Citrix Synergy in May 2014. The idea behind the project is to reduce complexity with central management with unifying components, compute, data centers and tenants. The configuration concept seems easy with three simple steps:

  1. Define Environment
  2. Design Offerings
  3. Deliver Service

With that concept, Citrix wants add the following benefits:

  • Increase visibility during troubleshooting (reduce support costs)
  • Environment visibility (hotfix parity & consistent user experience)
  • Aggregate license alerts within Director (remediate license alerts before they affect user satisfaction)
  • Unified Self-Service Help Desk (Increase first call resolution satisfaction)

Migration seems to become part of the major concept. At least Citrix was presenting three slides about migrations and two methods:

Citrix Project Merlin Migration methods

GeekSpeak was also adopted at this event, which is a great format compared to mainstream tracks & highly polished PPTs. Therefore Citrix invited some CTPs:

The evening event on Monday evening was really a huge surprise, great possibility for networking:

Citrix Technology Exchange 2013 evening event

Overall the Citrix Technology Exchange 2013 Germany was a positive surprise for me, I was not expecting so many attendees. The speakers did a great job, overall a very valuable event for all attendees. Some melancholy came up compared to the Citrix Synergy events, I really missed some management and key influencers from Citrix headquarter. Events like this shows that Germany or Europe does not have the same attention like the ones in the US – maybe just my interpretation, but it was a slap in the face to dismiss Citrix Synergy Europe without even announcing this officially.



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