XenApp Essentials Service – Frequently Asked Questions

XenApp Essentials, previously referred to as XenApp “express,” is the new Citrix Cloud service recommended by Microsoft as the replacement for Azure RemoteApp. In many ways, you can look at XenApp Essentials as Azure RemoteApp v2.0. You can also see it as the fastest, easiest way to use XenApp in the cloud. Either way, XenApp Essentials will be the next generation application virtualization and delivery service for Azure.

XenApp Essentials is part of our comprehensive Citrix Cloud strategy designed to simplify app and desktop delivery for every use case. Now with XenApp Essentials we can combine the power and flexibility of our Citrix Cloud platform and extend the original simple, prescriptive, and easy-to-consume vision of Microsoft Azure RemoteApp by orchestrating the applications in the cloud as well. This offering will radically simplify app delivery without sacrificing management or end user experience.

Microsoft Azure RemoteApp is a cloud-based solution for delivering Windows apps. Azure RemoteApp brings the functionality of the on-premises Microsoft RemoteApp program, backed by Remote Desktop Services (RDS), to Azure. Azure RemoteApp helps you provide secure, remote access to applications from many different user devices. Azure RemoteApp basically hosts non-persistent Terminal Server sessions in the cloud, and you get to use them and share them with your users. See Microsoft documentation for more details.

Microsoft announced the deprecation of Microsoft Azure RemoteApp service on August 12, 2016. Microsoft shared that it is expanding the partnership with Citrix to help deliver the next iteration of Azure RemoteApp through Citrix XenApp Essentials Service, built by Citrix and delivered through Citrix Cloud. XenApp Essentials is the recommended migration option for existing Azure RemoteApp customers. Additional options include moving to a hosted solution through one of many Microsoft hosting partners along with Remote Desktop Services deployed on Azure IaaS.

Please see the Microsoft deprecation notice for Azure RemoteApp for the latest information regarding support.

XenApp Essentials is currently available in the Microsoft Azure Marketplace.

XenApp Essentials trials are currently available on a limited basis. Priority is being given to current Microsoft Azure RemoteApp customers to try the service first. Azure RemoteApp customers can register for a trial here.  Citrix will evaluate each request and reach out to customers as the trial is available to them.

No. The XenApp Trial currently available in the Azure Marketplace is not XenApp Essentials. It is an opportunity to quickly and easily try the on-premises version of XenApp by offloading workloads to Microsoft Azure.

Citrix and Microsoft are collaborating to identify and build migration tools to help existing Azure RemoteApp customers move to XenApp Essentials. We will share more details as the capabilities are available.

It is easy to purchase XenApp Essentials directly from the Azure Marketplace for a minimum of 25 users using your Microsoft Azure account. As part of the XenApp Essentials onboarding process, you will also be required to create a unique Citrix Cloud account at https://onboarding.cloud.com to complete the transaction*. Please make sure you enter accurate information for all details including address fields to ensure your order can be processed.

*Note, your XenApp Essentials Citrix Cloud account cannot be affiliated with an existing XenApp and XenDesktop service or XenDesktop Essentials service entitlement.

XenApp Essentials is available in Azure Marketplace starting at $12 per user per month. You can purchase XenApp Essentials for as few as 25 users on a monthly basis. The service will auto-renew on a monthly basis until you cancel. The cloud based solution and monthly term makes it highly attractive for customers looking to avoid large capex expenses and long term commitments.

1. Requires 25 user minimum. Includes NetScaler Gateway Service with 1 GB Data transfer per user per month.  Additional NetScaler Gateway Service 25 GB Data transfer Add-on available for $12 per pack per month

2. Available from Azure Marketplace when purchasing XenApp Essentials. Please consult your Microsoft representative to bring your own RDS CAL.

Your bill for XenApp Essentials usage will appear directly on your Microsoft Azure bill. When you purchase XenApp Essentials, you are enlisting for a month to month subscription and will be automatically charged for the remainder of the month. You can change the number of users and NetScaler Gateway data transfer add-ons each month. Your XenApp Essentials subscription renews automatically at the end of each month unless canceled.  

You can use Azure Monetary Commitment and/or Azure Credits to pay for the Remote Access Fee and the Azure infrastructure associated with the virtual application workload for XenApp Essentials, i.e. the virtual Windows Server instances hosting your published app in Azure. However, Azure Monetary Commitment or Azure Credits cannot be used for the XenApp Essentials service charges or optional NetScaler Gateway add-on packs. 

The Citrix XenApp Essentials offering accesses Windows Server remote session capabilities that would typically require RDS User CALs. RDS CALs are licensed along with Windows Server software, separately from Microsoft Azure, and require minimum 12-month commitments. For the convenience of customers subscribing to the Citrix XenApp Essentials service via Azure Marketplace, Microsoft will charge a Remote Access Fee for each registered user (current price is $6.25 per user per month), which will enable you to use Citrix XenApp Essentials on Azure, without needing to purchase separate RDS CALs for this workload. However, if you have already purchased RDS User CALs with Software Assurance, and wish to use these licenses with this workload on Azure, then please contact your Microsoft representative.  

XenApp Essentials includes 1GB of NetScaler Gateway Service data transfer per user per month. Additional data transfer packs of 25GB are available for purchase and can be shared across users. Citrix estimates that traditional task and knowledge workers would not require more than the included 1GB and suggests the optional add-on packs for use cases where more bandwidth would be required, such as for workers using 3D rendering applications or other bandwidth-heavy apps.

XenApp Essentials supports Windows Server 2012 R2 and 2016.

Please see www.citrix.com/xenapp-essentials to learn more. The page will be updated as there is news regarding XenApp Essentials.