Bringing Internet Class Security and Availability to Flexible, Virtualized Mainstream Microsoft Applications
Microsoft is a premier provider of business collaboration tools. Their 2010 editions of Exchange Server and SharePoint are the latest incarnations of their enterprise productivity solutions. Yet, Microsoft is not standing pat. They created an integrated and fully virtualized delivery stack for these and many other applications with their Hyper-V hypervisor offering. They then went for the hat trick with their System Center tool that provides a common management console for managing an entire virtual environment and monitoring its health and availability. Read the Microsoft Executive interviewon System Center software and reducing cloud datacenter expenses.
NetScaler VPX as a First Class Citizen in Windows Environments
As virtualization takes hold, IT administrators are demanding the same overall control of applications and service level agreements that they currently possess for existing Internet-class applications. Organizations will need to rapidly provision the virtual datacenter infrastructure to deliver mainstream applications with the same fault tolerant and robust security common to Internet applications but without the associated cost and complexity. At the same time IT requires the flexibility of seamless alignment of applications with virtual deployments. All this adds up to a boatload of “musts”. Well, the key to fulfilling this wish list is to be fully integrated into this next generation datacenter management system. VPX surpasses this hurdle as it isnow available as a native Windows service with full incorporation with System Center. All the NetScaler functions from basic load balancing, application security, to accelerated response times are available for these and many other Microsoft applications. NetScaler VPX has indeed earned its virtual merit badge and holds first class status within the Windows household.
Simplified Management of Virtual Delivery Infrastructure
NetScaler VPX can be seamlessly managed and dynamically provisioned via Microsoft System Center Operations Manager (SCOM) and System Center Virtual Machine Manager (SCVMM). The tight coupling between Citrix NetScaler and these key Microsoft Systems Center elements allows organizations to deploy a single virtual delivery stack for Microsoft applications that can be jointly managed and monitored – a feat that only Citrix can offer thanks to its strong history in supporting Microsoft solutions. In virtualized datacenters, applications are being constantly monitored, and alerts are triggered when application performance degradation drops below established service level agreements. NetScaler alerts SCVMM to these deviations for virtual machine based automatic recovery with minimal or no administrative intervention. Late night wake up calls and firefighting over unplanned outages are a thing of the past. Finally IT managers can get a good night’s sleep. The System Center Operations Manager can discover and report on a variety of NetScaler attributes, including device status, application health, and traffic metrics for applications being delivered by NetScaler. So if you have insomnia these logs will make great bedtime reading. This extensive reporting provides the IT administrator comprehensive visibility into all aspects of the application delivery stack, at all times; even if you don’t really want to know.
NetScaler VPX Support Extended to Microsoft Hyper-V
NetScaler VPX provides a variety of hypervisor support including, of course, Citrix XenServer and VMware ESX for on-demand provisioning on physical hosts. This has now been extended to Microsoft’s Hyper-V for true integration with the virtualization present in Microsoft environments. Microsoft datacenter administrators will be able to apply all the same NetScaler acceleration, traffic management and security features as a native Windows Hyper-V workload from directly within System Center – with no networking knowledge or configuration required (now you wonder why you bothered getting that Masters degree in MIS!.) This combination of tools also provides a highly flexible range of performance levels and cost-effective price points that match any datacenter need. Well no, VPX is not free but pretty darn cheap. On second thought it is free if you are willing to accept a 1 Mbps version.
Customizable and Simplified Support for Microsoft Exchange Server and SharePoint 2010
NetScaler provides automatic infrastructure optimization via AppExpert Templates for many applications; Microsoft Exchange Server and SharePoint 2010 are two recent additions. NetScaler includes the intuitive capabilities of Citrix AppExpert Policy Manager, which provides pre-built and customizable templates capturing application-specific deployment details. Turnkey AppExpert templates codify configurations to automatically optimize the delivery of an application. Network and datacenter managers now have the ability to ensure the best application performance and reliability. Application groups can configure the NetScaler appliance without a steep learning curve or assistance from network experts or system architects. Best of all these templates are available free from the vast Citrix NetScaler user community; guaranteed results or you money back! Simply download and use as is or make customizable changes as desired. Configurations can literally be made in minutes.
NetScaler VPX + Hyper-V + Systems Center + 2010 Application Templates
Citrix now has the industry’s first virtualized delivery infrastructure for Microsoft 2010 Applications combined with full interoperability with Microsoft System Center. This flexible software form factor allows IT administrators to move through the datacenter configuration and management functions with the ease and grace of a butterfly. At the same time you have the hardened capability to command the most comprehensive and powerful applications in the IT realm—so you can sting like a bee. And yes I am old enough to know who Cassius Marcellus Clay is.