I am very pleased to be able to introduce you to Citrix XenDesktop 5, announced today at Citrix Synergy in Berlin! This is a major release that comes on the heels of an incredible year of success and growth with XenDesktop 4. Many of our customers are starting to reach scale in their deployments, and XenDesktop 5 is designed to enable them to “go virtual” faster, with less effort, and with greater control, than was ever possible before.

XenDesktop 5 is planned for released later this quarter, so while you are waiting to get your hands on it, let me draw your attention to some of the major new advancements in this release:

Faster, Simpler, More Powerful - Those of you that are new to virtual desktops will be impressed with how streamlined and straightforward the setup process is – and those of you that have been doing this from the early days will be completely amazed! Once you have some of the basic infrastructure ready, like Active Directory services, networking, etc., the installation procedure is literally a matter of a few minutes. Then you move into the new Desktop Studio console, where common, labor-intensive desktop administrative tasks have such as building, testing, deploying and rolling back images have been reduced to just a few clicks!

And we thought about the helpdesk, too, with the all new, web-based Desktop Director console. Now, for the first time ever, support staff can be sitting anywhere in the world and have all the information they need at a glance to monitor, troubleshoot and fix virtual desktops for thousands of users working anywhere. Desktop Director gives complete, real-time status and statistics, and lets you take common corrective actions like sending messages to users, shadowing sessions, restarting desktops and more.

To top it off, XenDesktop 5 also includes a new, extensive SDK, so that these features can be integrated with your existing systems management infrastructure.

HDX just keeps getting even more, well, HD! - XenDesktop users have always appreciated HDX technology, and the latest enhancements show that we’re not resting on our laurels. New features dramatically improve performance for resource intensive tasks like high-def video collaboration and large-file printing, even over low bandwidth connections. We’ve added 32-bit color support, as well as a new “dynamic color compression” which reacts to network conditions to adjust the amount of compression. We’ve even completely simplified the entire logon process, making it more user friendly and welcoming the first time they access their new virtual desktop.

More devices, more touch-enabled, more security - Citrix Receiveralso gets a significant facelift, with support for several new devices, including the latest tablets and smartphones. What’s more, XenDesktop 5 gives you the ability to instantly “touch-enable” existing enterprise apps that were never designed to run on new touchscreen tablets such as the Apple iPad or BlackBerry PlayBook – pretty cool!

In addition to empowering all those new devices, Receiver also incorporates the new XenVault technology that creates an encrypted data space exclusively for the use of corporate applications that you deliver through Receiver (that includes Microsoft App-V apps, too!). This not only protects corporate data on the endpoint – even when disconnected – it also enables IT to securely wipe any corporate data remotely when a contract is over, an employee terminates, or the laptop is lost or stolen.

Seamless integration of all your apps - Also with the new Receiver is a new enterprise app store interface, that gives users one-click, single sign-on access to all their apps, including externally hosted web, cloud and SaaS (software-as-a-service) apps. That’s right, Windows, web and SaaS apps, all from one self-service, secured interface, and it’s here this quarter – not somewhere over the horizon.

XenClient joins the FlexCast ranks - XenClient just completed an extremely successful beta period, where the response from IT pros putting it through its paces has been just phenomenal and overwhelmingly positive. Now it is officially released and part of the many options you have for FlexCast desktop delivery. The full release of XenClient doubled the HCL from early pre-release version, which represent millions of corporate laptops in use today. Now you can have the management and security of hosted virtual desktops, with the flexibility to to work connected or disconnected

We can’t wait for you to get your hands on XenDesktop 5, due later this quarter!