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Whether a company is moving to the cloud as part of a planned transition or is accelerating its cloud migration strategy because of new demands related to remote working, business continuity and agility, Citrix offers the right tools for reducing the complexity of cloud migration.
We realize the term “migrate” can be daunting, as it evokes thoughts of a long journey of moving workloads, infrastructures, databases, application servers and legacy apps — you name it. But Citrix innovations make it simpler for organizations to migrate their Citrix management infrastructure, as well as their on-premises workloads and end-user resources, to the cloud, all while retaining the existing skill sets and processes that they have built around these investments.
Many Citrix customers have found that in order to succeed with their cloud migration strategy, they need to get their desktops up and running immediately. Indeed, 2020, more than any year, has shown everyone the importance of acting quickly in response to unforeseen circumstances. Such speed can make the difference between a company’s survival and its failure.
To help organizations move as quickly as possible, Citrix has extended our cloud offerings to incorporate a new Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops standard for Microsoft Azure cloud migration, one formerly known as Citrix Manage Desktops. This is a Desktop-as-a-Service offering, built entirely in and for the cloud.
It is designed to be the easiest, fastest way to get virtual apps and desktops running in Azure, supported by a simple management interface and the ability to add in Azure compute capacity through a single monthly or yearly bill. Moreover, for any company with an entitlement to Windows Virtual Desktop (WVD), this Citrix solution is the fastest and most effective way to configure WVD in Azure and manage it there at scale.
These core capabilities — for enabling the quick and easy deployment of apps and desktops with managed Azure capacity— are included in every edition of the Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktop service, as well as in Workspace Premium and Premium Plus. Citrix is the only solution provider delivering such comprehensive flexibility for every use case from self-management of on-prem and cloud resource locations, to the setup and configuration of cloud-native data offerings.
As more companies look to migrate the management of their Citrix infrastructure to the cloud, Citrix has been investing in the specific solutions that will make flexible and seamless migrations possible. Let’s look at a few of the options.
Companies on Google Cloud often have multiple projects running there, each with its own set of particular networks and security requiring a virtual private cloud. In late 2019, Google introduced the Shared Virtual Private Cloud (VPC) concept to address these needs
By using a VPC, companies can connect resources from multiple projects to the same VPC network, for secure and streamlined communication using internal IP addresses. A Shared VPC facilitates tight control over network resources, while still letting teams spin up the resources they need without major obstacles. VPC is a tremendous innovation, and one that Citrix customers have been eager to take advantage of since it was announced.
In response, Citrix now supports Google Shared VPCs within Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops, using Machine Creation Services cloud migration tools. Citrix Machine Creation Services is the first solution of its kind to support provisioning images in Google Cloud, giving enterprises the ability to quickly and easily migrate workloads that rely on Shared VPCs. Citrix customers can also scale these workloads as needed, using the full capabilities of Google Cloud Platform and its new built-in controls and security features.
Machine Creation Services is just one way in which Citrix is enabling more people to transition their Citrix workloads to the cloud. Another is the Citrix Automated Configuration Tool, which has recently been updated.
From ad hoc automation tools to Citrix automated configuration tool
Over the years, Citrix has observed many organizations creating their own automation tools to support successful migrations, and some companies have even shared their creations with the broader community. But, unfortunately, those tools are officially unsupported and often use-case specific, which limits their overall utility.
In contrast, the Citrix automated configuration tool simplifies the entire migration process by providing a fully supported platform, capable of addressing a wide range of use cases. It makes life much easier for administrators to test how their current on-prem configurations will work once ported to Citrix Cloud Services and connected to the Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktop service.
The automated configuration tool is designed to automate the migration of Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops configurations — such as policies, applications and machine catalogs — from one or more on-prem sites to the Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktop Service hosted in Citrix Cloud services, letting companies place Citrix workloads on the cloud(s) of their choice. Some possible cloud migration use cases include:
In all cases, the Citrix automated configuration tool can help IT administrators, particularly those who oversee large environments and accordingly know that any migration of the resources therein can be a pretty daunting process. It discovers and exports one or more on-prem sites as a collection of configuration files, which administrators can actually edit, and then it imports these files into the Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktop service.
As a result, companies can realize reduced administrative overhead, now that Citrix is managing part of the backend control plane. Plus, they receive automatic and customizable updates for Citrix Cloud services and can access a new migration best practices guide that takes customers through the entire cloud migration process, step by step.
More benefits of cloud migration via the automated configuration tool
The Automated Configuration Tool can help manage steady-state configurations, such as merging multiple sites to achieve consistency of images, constantly syncing existing configurations for version control purposes, managing development environments for dev staging and production, and handling disaster recovery. For administrators who use public cloud providers, the Citrix Automated Configuration Tool also allows for the automatic creation of combinations objects, similar to ARM templates in Azure and CloudFormation in AWS.
Overall, the Automated Configuration Tool is an invaluable resource for supporting cloud migration services and configuration management. It stands apart from traditional migration tools that are simply for getting from point A to point B before being discarded, instead serving as an essential, ongoing part of how organizations manage their operations and holistic cloud migration strategy, beyond just how they migrate their Citrix workloads in particular.
VMware Horizon Cloud Migration in Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops
Our goal at Citrix is to make it easy for customers to transition their on-premises Citrix Virtual apps, and Desktops deployments to the cloud. At the same time, we have received a lot of requests from customers with VMware Horizon running on-prem to make it easier to shift those setups to the Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops service.
This type of migration is now possible with our new VMware Horizon to Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops Service Migration Tool. With just a few clicks, this tool automates a large portion of the manual work typically required for such a move. Admins don’t have to rebuild any workloads, and the time for migrating users and their respective desktop assignments is cut dramatically.
All an administrator needs to do is install Citrix VDAs on your VMware virtual machines and then point them to the Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops control plane in the cloud. Employees will immediately notice a difference with a better experience via HDX, while maintaining access to all of their apps and files.
We're helping companies move Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops to the cloud, while recognizing that they have other applications and services that need to be migrated as well to complete the cloud journey. Typically, this process is very complex, since network infrastructure must be re-architected to address the new destination of the application. Plus, each cloud is a little different.
For Citrix Application Delivery Management service customers, we have made it quick and easy to migrate these workloads from on-prem to the cloud, or between clouds.
Citrix Application Delivery Management service is a cloud-delivered, intuitive and comprehensive platform that enables automation and orchestration management analytics for application delivery across hybrid multicloud environments. When companies have Citrix ADCs on-prem and in the cloud, they can manage all of them from a single console in the Citrix Application Delivery Management service. It offers a centralized management and control plane for all ADCs across environments.
Citrix ADC uses a single codebase across the portfolio for operational consistency and feature consistency across multicloud, paired with capacity licensing that allows for the easy reallocation as needed.
The end result is superior agility and simplified application delivery. Using Citrix Application Delivery Management stylebooks, Citrix customers can move applications from a source ADC to a target ADC, anywhere in a hybrid multi cloud setup. Citrix Application Delivery Management selects all relevant configuration files for the application and allows the import of SSL certificates along with any manual adjustments made to config files. In a matter of minutes, it migrates the application to the chosen cloud ADC.
To summarize, Citrix is delivering multiple innovations to help organizations move to the clouds of their choice, through: