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Citrix is something of a household name when it comes to remote computing. As a provider, they offer a range of possibilities and solutions for remote work and access: “digital workspace” as the phrase goes. These are generally cloud-hosted and on subscription. Citrix provides distant access to applications, desktops, resources, mainly via what is called virtualization. How does Citrix work? And how does it compare our very own TSplus software and solutions ?

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How Does Citrix Work in Practice?

By this method of virtualization, Citrix services deliver virtual applications and virtual desktops to users of remote devices. The process is costly and complex. It involves a panel of layers and possibilities but is also potentially heavy to maintain in time and manpower due to this.

Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops is what used to be XenApp and XenDesktop, while Citrix Virtual Apps is what was known as XenApp. The latter uses application delivery. Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops, on the other hand, uses virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) to publish entire virtual machines. These are the two principal ways Citrix provides remote access.

One basic thing to note is the fact the applications or desktops do not get installed on the remote device, whichever it may be. The technology used by Citrix or any other provider of remote access or virtualization has one thing in common. Indeed, the virtualized or published items appear on the distant devices but are not hosted there. Citrix Server effectively manages that aspect for Citrix Virtual Apps.

Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops Uses Virtualization – What is That?

The virtualization process extracts the OS, applications, data and user settings from the target server. It then makes it available to the device from which the user is remotely connecting. Actions of access and control are possible according to the security and connection parameters set by the administrators. In one given server (physical or cloud), any number of independent virtual machines can run autonomously. Each of these can support different operating systems and hold a variety of applications in accordance.

Citrix Virtual Apps Publishes Applications – How Does That Work?

Thanks to the Citrix Receiver, the one item users need to install in their device, a user can use remotely whichever of their applications they open. Citrix Virtual Apps lets them open an application and send instructions via mouse and keyboard. In effect, users interact with the visual of the app they see on their screen. The image on the screen is updated as though it were hosted on the device. Nonetheless, all the processing takes place in the central server which hosts the apps. This streaming method avoids hampering the remote device even with more than one application.

What is the Difference Between Virtualization and Application Publication?

This highlights one of the main practical differences between the two processes. Published applications share resources in their host server while virtual desktops have individual allocated space. Thus, the central server runs the published applications although they appear seamlessly on the user’s screen.

In summary, virtualization involves creating a virtualized environment in which applications are separated from the underlying hardware. Meanwhile, application publication involves "streaming" the appearance of applications from a central location to end-user devices. Both technologies can be used to deliver apps to end-users. Yet, they have different underlying processes and approaches.

High Potential of Application Publishing Over Virtualization

Application publication can allow you to run memory-heavy programs on smaller or less powerful devices. This is possible because the application runs on a remote server and only appears on the local device. So, the local device only needs to have enough resources to run the remote display and user data-flow. This can be especially useful for older or less powerful devices with otherwise insufficient resources to natively run the program.

Extra Information Comparing Virtualization and Application Publication

However, how well you can run a memory-heavy program using virtualization depends on the resources available both on the virtualization server and the device used to access the virtual desktop. To be effective, it requires more resources than application publication. Indeed, a virtual machine needs to run the entire operating system and the applications. Application publication, on the other hand, simply concentrates its work on the chosen application (or set of applications).

Therefore, two conditions need to be met for virtualization to run a memory-heavy program. Firstly, the virtualization server needs enough resources to handle the program. Secondly, the device used to access the virtual desktop requires sufficient resources to run the remote display and user input and output of data. Nonetheless, if resources are limited, then the combination may use excessive processing from an older or less powerful device to handle. Seize this opportunity to look at Citrix alternatives by clicking here .

How Does Citrix Work on Less Powerful Devices?

In general, both application publication and virtualization can help extend the life of older or less powerful devices. They do this simply by allowing them to access and run memory-heavy programs remotely. However, virtualising a particular program for a specific device will weigh more heavily on the resources available and any specific requirements of the program than with application publication.

How to publish Applications to the Web just like Citrix with TSplus

Our software uses application publication to enable remote access. TSplus Remote Access offers various ways to display remote applications and remote desktops . Here are our main display options:

1. RDP – Full Desktop: users can access the full Windows Remote Desktop using MSTSC (Microsoft Terminal Services Client) or TSplus 1-click client.

2. RemoteApp - Floating Panel (or application panel): remote applications can be displayed in a floating panel. This provides users with a seamless experience, as though applications were run locally.

3. RemoteApp – on the Taskbar: users can access remote applications through the TSplus Taskbar. Assigned applications appear on a taskbar within the remote session.

4. HTML5 Web Portal: users can connect to remote applications or full desktops through a customizable HTML5 web portal. Either the applications or the desktop display within the Web browser.

5. TSplus Seamless Client: display only the applications, without showing the desktop, thus providing a seamless user-experience.

6. MS RemoteApp Client: this option uses the native Microsoft RemoteApp to display remote applications.

7. Windows Client over the TSplus Web Portal: via the TSplus Web Portal, users can access remote applications and desktops through a Windows client.

8. HTML5 Client over the TSplus Web Portal: users can also access remote applications and desktops through an HTML5 client via the TSplus Web Portal.

Thanks to this variety of options, administrators can customize the end-user experience according to combined company requirements and user preferences.

Conclusion on How Does Citrix work?

So now you know a bit more about the inner workings of Citrix Virtual Apps and Citrix Apps and Desktops. As a lightweight application and desktop publishing solution to suit even a lightweight budget, TSplus Remote Access is secure and easily customised. If you have not done so already, follow the lead to our product pages to find out more about TSplus Remote Access and try it out for free .

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Ultimate Citrix/RDS alternative for desktop/app access.Secure, cost-effective,on-permise/cloud

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