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Virtual computing solutions specialist Citrix Systems announced a
new release of XenDesktop that extends desktop virtualization to
millions of enterprise laptop users with the addition of two new
technologies: XenClient and XenVault. Together, these two technologies
make it possible for IT to incorporate mobile laptop users into a
unified enterprise desktop virtualization strategy, including
corporate-owned laptops managed by IT, as well as user-owned devices
brought in by contractors or employees in a BYOC (bring your own
computer) program.

XenClient is a client-side hypervisor that enables virtual desktops
to run directly on client devices. It provides the security and central
management of server hosted virtual desktops (VDI), while allowing
users to work online or disconnected. When disconnected from the
network, XenClient acts just like a traditional installed desktop. When
users connect to the network, it synchronizes any changes with the
data center. If a laptop is ever lost or stolen, users can restore their
full desktop environment like it was to a new laptop, while data on the
original laptop can be wiped remotely.

The new XenVault technology automatically saves any user data
created by corporate apps into an encrypted folder, supporting both
virtual and physical desktops. Aimed at contractors and businesses with
employee-owned notebooks, XenVault automatically encrypts data created
by any corporate app that is delivered by XenApp (or the XenApp feature
of XenDesktop) or Microsoft App-V. When a contract is over, an employee
terminates, or the laptop is lost or stolen, corporate data remains
secure, and can even be wiped remotely.

Al Gillen, program vice president of system software for IT research
firm IDC, said for desktop virtualization to be adopted in a mainstream
way across the entire enterprise, mobile users are a critical use case
that has so far not been fully addressed. “Technologies like Citrix
XenClient that can deliver the control, security and centralized
management for IT while providing the personalization and flexibility
that users want, should help propel desktop virtualization into a
strategic initiative in enterprises large and small,” he said.

The new XenClient and XenVault technologies will both ship in the
new XenDesktop 4, Feature Pack 2 release, available at the end of
September; XenClient is available at no additional charge for
XenDesktop Enterprise and Platinum editions customers with current
Subscription Advantage agreements. The XenVault solution is enabled
through a plug-in to the Citrix Receiver software client, which is
available at no additional charge to all XenDesktop and XenApp

“This new release of XenDesktop represents an important next step to
realizing the benefits that desktop virtualization can deliver across
all users in the enterprise, including the growing number of mobile
workers using laptops as their primary device,” said Citrix’s senior
vice president and general manager of the desktop division, Gordon
Payne. “The new XenClient and XenVault technologies extend IT’s ability
to manage each desktop component separately, making desktop management
far more secure, scalable and cost effective."