One of the top complaints we hear from prospective customers is “Citrix is slow”. This is often said as if it were a fact, as in the sky is blue, Citrix is slow, nothing you can do about it,
This week a hospital system, recently added to the Whitehat family, got their first introduction to their new Citrix environment with five second login times. Now that is what the Citrix experience should be like. Former skeptics, they are now convinced, like many before them, that Citrix environments do not have to be slow.
The point here is the Citrix experience can be should be flaming-fast. Five second logins are not always possible, but sub-20 is common, and sub-30 seconds is always possible. We built an entire service offering around this concept just to prove it. Essentially, if we can’t get login times below 30 seconds, our work is free. Done well, Citrix XenApp and XenDesktop are capable of some fairly amazing performance right out of the box, before a single third party add-on is introduced.
A great Citrix End User Experience is the culmination of a very clean, expert Citrix build AND precision interaction between SQL, storage, group policy, applications, the hypervisor, and network infrastructure, etc. Flaws in any of these areas can become readily apparent when an application or desktop virtualization project is introduced. Issues in any of these areas will just about always elicit the same response from end users, a ticket stating “Citrix is slow”. Unless, of course, IT Support is never notified because end users have given up on the idea that the end user experience can get any better.
There are many articles here detailing how, what and why things can go wrong and what to do to make them better, I am leaving that alone today.
For this entry, the message is this: Accepting a less than an optimal Citrix/Horizon View/Microsoft RDS, etc. environment or just accepting the fact that “Citrix is slow” is the equivalent of lobbing fist-fulls of hundred dollar bills out a car window traveling down the highway. Any productivity benefit is lost with the first login, and dings the meter again with every login thereafter. We call that the “Technology Tax”, paying for the (productivity enhancing) technology once when the contract was signed, and again every time, for whatever reason, it does not deliver.
Technology should remove barriers, freeing employees to be more productive and improve the end user experience. We are constantly working on building great End User Experiences that transform IT into a super power for our customers.
Virtual desktops can both transform business or be a big IT boat anchor. Accept nothing less than stunning Citrix performance. Your end users will love you for it. Sure beats the heck out of adding another box of shelf-ware to the collection.
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