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Citrix gives the virtual desktop another bump

Tim Stammers | Oct. 12, 2009
Citrix has reworked its XenDesktop desktop virtualisation software, in the process tying together its old and new technologies.

Citrix is energising its base in a fast-growing market

Citrix says that almost two-thirds of its hosted virtual desktop (HVD) and streaming system buyers are already users of its traditional thin client product, XenApp. So the company is offering XenApp users an 80% discount on list prices if they switch up to the new XenDesktop 4.

That huge XenApp customer base means that desktop virtualisation is Citrix market to lose. Currently Citrix only major competitor is VMware, which is claiming nearly 1 million deployed seats for its desktop virtualisation systems. Citrix brought XenDesktop and its HVD software to market a little later than VMwares rival View product, and so far Citrix has not cited any XenDesktop deployment numbers. But XenDesktop is a very competitive product, and Citrix is already claiming some very large deployments for it and some massive commitments by customers to future deployments. We expect that even if Citrix is not yet matching VMwares current deployment numbers, it is catching up fast.

The take-up of Windows 7 next year will accelerate the use of desktop virtualisation. Rather than go through the pain of installing the new OS on every desktop, businesses will instead install desktop virtualisation systems. Then they will only have to install Windows 7 into centrally managed and stored virtual desktops a fact that illustrates the appeal of desktop virtualisation. 

Timothy Stammers is senior analyst at Ovum. 


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