Administrators are often faced with tough choices when it comes to user experience vs environment complexity – but with Citrix App Layering User Layers, you can have your cake and eat it too. User Layers gives administrators the cost benefits of providing a pooled desktop environment, while end users have the look and feel of a dedicated desktop.

 A common challenge facing administrators in delivering virtual desktops is providing the dedicated machine experience users expect, while gaining the cost and management benefits of a hosted desktop solution.

 Administrators prefer non-persistent desktops for two reasons:

  • Time savings: only one image template needs to be updated and patched rather than expending the overhead of managing dedicated machines
  • Cost savings: leveraging a single image results in dramatic storage savings, compared to hosting individual VMs for each user

End users want the same kind of experience they would get with a personal machine. They want

  • The ability to install applications.
  • To customize applications, have personalization, and retain settings.
  • To have an instantly accessible Outlook cache, OneDrive content, and Windows search data that can be retained across sessions.

Only Citrix gives you the tools to deliver on these user demands, while enjoying the benefits of a hosted desktop model  – with App Layering with User Layers.

User Layers gives users a fully persistent experience by storing users’ personal data and installed content in a separate modular container that is seamlessly joined to the underlying layers at the session launch. App Layering further simplifies administration, as individual layers can be modified without the need to tear down and rebuild images from scratch. The Operating System, platform, and application layers that make up these virtual machines are all shared between users, so the content isn’t duplicated. It can be updated in a single location – resulting in a dramatic savings in time/cost versus what was required with dedicated desktops.

To learn more about the fundamentals of App Layering, read Ron Ogelsby’s intro about the Magic of Layering.

So how’s this for having your cake and eating it too: simplified image management with full user customization – delivered via cost-effective virtual environments? Sounds delicious.

User Layers has been released in Citrix App Layering 4.14. You can read more about it here.

Want to see App Layering in action?  Take ten minutes to see a product walk-through. You’ll get a view of both of these parts of the user and admin experience: accessing and setting up user layer-enable sessions.

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