The Citrix XenApp 6 Technical Preview is now available and works fine, even if there are some “bugs” I haven’t notice yet a BIG problem. Anyways, XenApp 6 is the most important component of this new release because it goes along with Microsoft Windows 2008 R2, but there are many other new stuff like WebInterface 5.3, Single Sign On 4.8, User Profile Manager 3, unified administration console (Yes !), Merchandising Server 1.2 and many other things Sridhar Mullapudi list in his post here : http://community.citrix.com/display/ocb/2009/12/15/XENAPP+SNEAK+PEEK+-+XenApp+for+Windows+Server+2008+R2
I will bring some lights about what you can find in the 2,5Gb iso file and compare what’s new and different with what we are use to administrating every day.
More users, faster logons– Get up to 20% more users per server with XenApp on the R2 platform and faster logons with new Profile management streaming technology that improves user profile load times by up to 80%.
Seamless management integration– Role-based installation wizards, a new unified application management console, management through Active Directory group policies and support for PowerShell 2.0 help you deploy, configure and automate XenApp faster and easier than ever before.
More apps in HDX– HDX RealTime now delivers high quality audio using up to 90% less bandwidth and enables video conferencing using Microsoft Office Communicator or teleconferencing using VoIP softphones. New HDX Plug-n-Play support for Windows portable USB devices lets users connect more of the devices they need to the applications they use including point-of-sale, webcams, scanners, digital cameras and more.
Self-service application delivery– Citrix Dazzle, the first self-service “storefront” for the enterprise, gives corporate employees 24×7 access to the applications they need to work. Citrix Streaming technology with Windows service isolation and Microsoft App-V integration provide new options for delivering more applications to your users.
Complete mobility – New plug-ins as well as updated Receivers for Mac, iPhone, Android, and Windows Mobile, keep business moving by enabling complete mobility and freedom to access enterprise applications from anywhere.
More users and faster logons are mostly due by Windows 2008 R2 performance enhancement, I think Citrix did, of course, some work to bring more performance as well but mostly the Operating System is the base of everything. I haven’t done any load test yet but I am very satisfy with basic use (Desktop + Office 2010).
Role-based installation wizards will repair what should have been done a long time ago by Citrix, we will have XenApp Datacollector dedicated with only one role and a lot less server network “noise” for a basic operation (ex : enable / disable logon)
The very very long waited unified application management console is here :
As you can see, we can now manage in a single console, XenApp Administrators, Publish and Streamed applications, Load Balancing policies, Load Evaluators, Policies, a new feature to groupe your server the way you want despite the classic Servers node and the Zones node. The node to manage the Web Interface doesn’t exist anymore, now this is a full dedicated interface, check it out :
There is also a new License Server web interface design, it’s a bit fancy compare to the good old one where we were use to see only some color changing 🙂 I like it !
Coming next, part 2 with UPM3, Merchandising Server 1.2, Single Sign On 4.8, WebInterface 5.3