Compare Citrix SD-WAN to the competition

As a complete WAN edge solution, Citrix SD-WAN consistently delivers high performance and a superior experience for SaaS, cloud and virtual applications including those delivered via the Citrix Workspace. At the same time, it helps increase agility, reduce network costs, and provide visibility into network performance.

Among SD-WAN providers, Citrix SD-WAN offers one of the most comprehensive and automated solutions.

Only Citrix SD-WAN

  • Provides the best user experience for SaaS, cloud and virtual apps
  • Detects, classifies and accelerates over 4,500 applications with built-in Application Control Engine and Deep Packet Inspection (DPI)
  • Prioritizes various types of applications, especially Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops, based on policies with automatic, bi-directional Quality of Service (QoS)
  • Ensures fastest link failover in milliseconds with bi-directional monitoring

The difference is in the details

Citrix SD-WAN Orchestrator enables customers to run SD-WAN management as a service, helping to significantly cut down on operations. As a single-pane management and analytics tool, Citrix SD-WAN Orchestrator is architected from the ground up to manage a large-scale infrastructure with ease through an informative dashboard and intuitive graphical interfaces.

Citrix SD-WAN Orchestrator allows SD-WAN customers to:

  • Consume the network management as a service, without having to deal with management server, data backup, version management, or sizing for scale.
  • Have the flexibility to manage their SD-WAN network themselves, or consume it as a partner managed service. This allows for multi-tenancy and Role-based Access Control (RBAC).
  • Enjoy centralized and simplified configuration of SD-WAN networks, with guided workflows, visual aids, and templates.
  • Take advantage of zero touch provisioning which enables seamless and centralized bring-up of the network and connections, without needing technical supervision at each site.
  • Create application-centric policies which allows for rich application visibility, including Citrix HDX, and enables application-based traffic steering, Quality of Service (QoS), and firewall policies.
  • Centrally monitor health, usage, quality, and performance trends of the network, with the ability to drill down into individual sites and associated connections.
  • Centrally run diagnostic tests and review device logs across the network, without having to log into individual devices.
  • Leverage integrated user, application, and security insights across Citrix products.

The Citrix Cloud Direct service extends the performance and QoS benefits of Citrix SD-WAN to any SaaS application. It provides a branch location with resilient and high-performance access to private and redundant point-of-presences (PoPs) that are directly peered to thousands of SaaS applications, and over 150 cloud and internet exchanges. Every SD-WAN will inherently be dual-homed via virtual links to redundant PoPs to ensure maximum SaaS uptime and ability to failover in milliseconds. Additionally, Citrix has also integrated Cloud Direct service into its SD-WAN Orchestrator management platform to provide automation, visibility, and health-monitoring of every connection.

Citrix SD-WAN can classify over 4,500 applications and sub-applications with its deep packet inspection (DPI) engine out of the box. The integrated stateful firewall allows admins to create policies between zones and services. Citrix SD-WAN understands common applications and applies QoS policies to them, while providing fine tuning for further routing customization. Citrix SD-WAN is one of the only solutions that can identify and classify Office 365 traffic and route it directly to the nearest Office 365 front door on the first packet to reduce latency. 

 Optimize Office 365 performance with Citrix SD-WAN (1:37)

What other solutions see

What Citrix SD-WAN sees

Most applications require high performance, reliability, and quality in order to deliver the expected user experience.

Citrix SD-WAN can:

  • With the ICA traffic streams, Citrix SD-WAN can automatically prioritize and steer traffic streams, even over a single port. Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops traffic is configured so the various virtual subchannels are split across multiple streams (in-band audio, display remoting, multimedia redirection, printing) and then prioritized for an optimized experience, especially when it comes to real-time communications.
  • Match each packet in real time to the most optimal path and load balance the packets across multiple links simultaneously without the need for time-consuming reordering of packets at the destination.  
  • Allow traffic from a single session to be duplicated over two or more links in the same virtual path to ensure real-time traffic always arrives and large tasks such as backups and large file transfers are completed quickly.
  • Efficiently utilize asymmetric networks and measure the path in both directions based on path metrics, QoS policy, firewall policy, and priority and then place the next packet on the best eligible path.

The failover of a network link can interrupt user productivity and customer communications. Manually rerouting traffic to back-up links forces high-priority applications to contend with all other traffic for limited bandwidth, creating user dissatisfaction.

Citrix SD-WAN:

  • Is application aware, ensuring reliable packet delivery and application performance by routing traffic along the most optimal links between two points on a per-packet basis.
  • Detects network link outages and any degradation in link conditions or congestion to automatically reroute traffic to alternate available links.
  • Can identify outages and take corrective actions in less than a second, making outages unnoticeable to users.

Citrix SD-WAN offers a range of deployment options including pre-configured appliances and virtual appliances that run in the cloud. Citrix SD-WAN orchestration automates provisioning of cloud on-ramps for SaaS, IaaS, data center, and security resources.

  • Citrix offers branch connectivity to IaaS clouds through the virtual SD-WAN appliance (VPX) available on the Azure, AWS, and Google Cloud Platform marketplaces. Citrix SD-WAN improves the performance of Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops in these clouds by prioritizing high-priority ICA channels over less critical ones during periods of bandwidth contention to ensure that application performance doesn’t suffer when only limited resources are available.
  • Citrix SD-WAN uses Microsoft Azure Virtual WAN APIs to automate network deployments, removing the complexity of connecting branch offices to local Azure PoPs. Traffic is sped up across Microsoft’s private Azure backbone network with intelligent routing for improved access to cloud resources across the world. Additionally, connecting a physical SD-WAN appliance in the branch to a virtual SD-WAN appliance in Azure in your VNET provides benefits including bandwidth aggregation, QoS, packet duplication, and support of the Citrix ICA protocol.
  • Citrix SD-WAN for AWS increases network reliability and performance with high availability and fast failover. The integration provides easy to deploy branch connectivity to AWS through virtual overlays while optimizing bandwidth reliability and utilization with support for BGP and OSPF routing. Strong encryption, IPsec connectivity, and a built-in stateful firewall protect application traffic. Support for basic Amazon CloudWatch metrics offers monitoring of SD-WAN instances running on AWS.
  • Citrix SD-WAN provides an easy on-ramp to workloads on Google Cloud Platform (GCP) making it a cost-effective alternative for branch office connectivity. The integration provides WAN reliability and resiliency with the ability to bond and connect branches using low-cost bandwidth links.

Whether your applications reside in SaaS, hybrid-, or multi-cloud environments, Citrix provides integrated and centralized control.

  • Starting from the branch, Citrix SD-WAN includes a built-in stateful firewall.
  • Optionally, add next-generation firewall capabilities through virtual network functions from partners.
  • In IaaS clouds such as AWS, Azure, or GCP, Citrix offers virtual firewalls.
  • Citrix SD-WAN automates IPsec tunnel creation to connect branches to Azure Virtual WAN.
  • For the breakout of internet traffic, Citrix partners with vendors who provide cloud-based security. Citrix SD-WAN uses APIs to synchronize with the management systems of partners such as  Zscaler and Palo Alto , so setting up cloud security from Citrix SD-WAN is simply a few clicks away.

ESG Lab Review: SD-WAN Integration with Amazon Web Services – Citrix

Discover the strength of the integration between Citrix SD-WAN and AWS

Next step