One theme you’ve been hearing from Citrix is our commitment to continuous innovation, where we’re constantly working to bring new value and unique new features to our XenApp and XenDesktop family. XenApp and XenDesktop 7.9 is the next upcoming release in our fast-paced Current Release (CR) cycle that continues to expand the security, user experience and flexible management features you need. Today at Citrix Synergy 2016, we announced that 7.9 will be available in early June.

XenApp and XenDesktop 7.9 enables secure single-sign (SSO) on to virtual apps and desktops using third party credentials while simplifying account management of contractors, partners and even new domains as a result of a merger or acquisition. To drive down the cost of high performance virtual apps and desktops, this release broadens our partnerships with key vendors like Intel and Nutanix and is strategically aligned with the release of the Citrix HDX Ready Pi program offering some of the industry’s lowest-priced thin clients.

It also delivers more flexible central image management optimizations that reduce IOPS by up to 95%, load balance print servers for greater throughput, and includes new versions of Citrix Receiver for iOS, Android, Chrome and HTML5 making it even easier to work from any device.

Secure single-sign on to virtual apps and desktops

The 7.9 release introduces Federated Authentication Service to provide secure business-to-business access to contractors and partners as well as simplify Active Directory domain integration as part of an acquisition, merger or cloud transition. The new Federated Authentication Service integrates with SAML-based identity providers via Citrix NetScaler to allow each business unit to manage their own accounts yet still provide the same secure, remote access to their virtualized apps and desktops hosted on XenApp and XenDesktop.

Central image management for ‘any hypervisor’ now includes Nutanix Acropolis

Citrix and Nutanix continue working together to drive down the cost and complexity of virtual app and desktop delivery. This 7.9 release marks a key milestone in this unique partnership, now XenApp and XenDesktop can provision virtual machines on the Nutanix Acropolis hypervisor via Machine Creation Services directly from Citrix Studio. With Citrix recognized as the leader in app and desktop virtualization and Nutanix recognized as the leader in hyperconverged infrastructure, this integrated solution can reduce the cost of ongoing app and desktop management by as much as 70 percent.

Ultra-low-cost, high-performing Citrix HDX Ready Pi thin clients

Citrix recognizes that a low-cost, high-performing thin client is key to delivering a cost-effective virtual app and desktop solution. Citrix has partnered with thin client vendors ViewSonic and Micro Center to develop and deliver the new Citrix HDX Ready Pi. This new Citrix HDX Ready certified thin client has everything you need in a fully assembled thin client based on the popular Raspberry Pi™. Available from ViewSonic and Micro Center for under $99, the Citrix HDX Ready Pi makes app and desktop virtualization accessible on any budget.

Delivering high-resolution graphics performance at an affordable price with Intel Iris Pro graphics

In partnership with strategic hardware vendors like HP, Citrix has integrated support for the Intel Iris Pro graphics technology across the full Citrix app and desktop virtualization solution including the new release of Citrix XenServer 7. With this compact integrated solution from hardware vendors like HP and Cisco, you can deliver stunning graphics performance for mainstream business application as well as 3D workloads at an affordable price.

Central image management optimizations reduce IOPS by up to 95 percent driving down shared storage costs

Optimizations for XenApp and XenDesktop central image management via Machine Creation Services (MCS) can now leverage high-performance, low-cost RAM for intensive read/write interactions, which dramatically reduces the amount of storage required for a VDI or virtual server.  Available in every edition of XenApp and XenDesktop 7.9, the Machine Creation Services RAM-based caching technology enhances the user experience by leveraging high performance local RAM and alleviating scalability dependencies on expensive shared storage solutions that are easily constrained.

Improving the provisioning of master desktop and server images from a locally mounted drive

Citrix Provisioning Services is one of the industry’s most popular image management technologies due to the speed at which it can provision hundreds of desktop or server images and overall management efficiencies. In environments where configuring network features like PXE or DHCP are limited, Provisioning Services master images can be provisioned using a locally mounted drive, known as Boot Device Manager (BDM). Now, the Provisioning Services setup wizard integrates BDM configurations and updates for simplified deployment as well as supporting modern firmware including UEFI.

Optimizing printing experience through improved availability and advanced features

An excellent user experience includes not only the user device, desktop and applications, but also the printer. With this new release of the Universal Print Server and Universal Print Driver, employees can now execute session-based advanced printing features like stapling and paper source selection – whether using locally defined or network printers. IT can also implement new load balancing policies to load balance print jobs across multiple print servers for optimal print job performance and greater throughput while also improving print server availability.

Enhancing remote access to Windows 10 desktops

Many organizations are preparing for a move to Windows 10 via a virtual desktop or upgrade a physical PC to the new operating system.  XenDesktop now enables high definition HDX 3D Pro performance for mainstream business apps as well as 3D intensive workloads running on a virtual Windows 10 desktop. For physical PCs, Remote PC Access can now be easily installed on Secure Boot Windows 10 workstations to make it easier than ever for employees to remotely access their physical Windows 10 environment.

And more…

The XenApp and XenDesktop 7.9 release also includes powerful new logon duration reports that let you drill into the user logon process for insights on how to expedite logons, new CentOS support for Linux server-based and VDI desktops – making it easier than ever to try a Linux virtual desktop. Plus there’s a new version of StoreFront, technical preview support for Windows Server 2016 Tech Preview 5, and new versions of Citrix Receiver for Android, Chrome and HTML5 making it easier to work from any device through new toolbar enhancements, enhanced multi-touch performance and more. For those of you with Platinum edition, you also get a new System Center Operations Manager bundle, Citrix Connector for System Center Configuration manager and an updated version of AppDNA.

Stay Tuned!

Today at Citrix Synergy 2016, we announced XenApp and XenDesktop 7.9 will be available in early June. Stay tuned to Citrix Blogs for the latest 7.9 release information. Visit Citrix.com to learn more about all of the XenApp and XenDesktop news made at Citrix Synergy 2016 and our continued commitment to improving security, user experience and flexible management.