RemoteFX, PCoIP, ICA in a WAN world. 4


Last week as you all know Microsoft announced RemoteFX, the name for all the work/technologies they acquired from Calista a couple years ago (amazing how long it took them to get here. Subject for another post). All nice and great for VDI and I am certain, with the licensing changes announced as well, it will help the industry moving forward towards the adoption of such model in a larger scale.

The main problem now is simple. As Shawn Bass mentioned on Twitter, ‘WAN is King’. And that is definitely true. With the rise of mobility, either on mobile devices like the iPhone/iPad or on full blown PCs connected through 3G cards, several companies do rely on these to connect back to corporate and more than that, are willing to expand such option for an ‘always connected’ solution. The problem is, once you hit the 3G/EVDO data network, latency and packet loss will be there. Guaranteed.

The end result is a much worse experience over the WAN, no matter what kind of magic Citrix, Microsoft or VMWare have as of today. Throw Riverbed and all other products like that to the mix too. They do help. But again, once packet loss/latency is there, they are also in bad shape.

That is where we come to the picture.

After years of development, we now have a hardware (appliance) or software solution (driver) that you can mix (HW-HW or HW-SW or of course, SW-SW) that drastically reduces packet loss (typically to 1/10 of what you had before using us – so to 0.5% if you had 5% loss before) and makes life on the WAN much easier for all the things mentioned on the title of this post.

The good news is this is a mature technology that we developed and that has been in use by some large people out there (no names at this point) for other things (video conferencing mostly) with impressive results. But once we realized how much we could do for SBC/VDI, after testing it internally, we decided to take it to the public, to validate and prove the results we have seen with RDP, ICA, PCoIP and other things. So our BETA program is officially open as of today.

If you are interested on testing our solution, all I ask is you to email us at BETA at IPeakNetworks dot com and of course let us know about your environment so we can assist you on how to get the most out of it. And yes, I do ask you to provide honest feedback. What you have seen before and after. Good or bad. We are here to listen.

For now we do not have our SW solution ready for all platforms but it is in the works (it is Win32/Linux for now) and the HW one we should have available as virtual appliances for all major virtualization solutions (VMWare ESX, XenServer and Hyper-V) shortly.

I do think the VDI battle will be decided on the WAN. Vendors, no matter which one, do realize that but may not want to say it, especially if whatever protocol they have sucks on the WAN. Again, with high speed wireless available everywhere it is just natural that more and more employees will be indeed connected to their desktop/session over a wireless connection. So the WAN is the battle ground. Period. 

We are the ammunition.

CR

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4 thoughts on “RemoteFX, PCoIP, ICA in a WAN world.

  • Anonymous Coward

    I’m not sure what you’ve actually tested or verified with your own eyes…but I’ve used XenDesktop over a 3G card and it works great…I have a great user experience when I use it.

    • crod

      Anonymous on SBC Global in Dallas, TX: it all gets down to the carrier. Just because it worked for you perfectly over a single carrier does NOT mean it will work for everyone out there. Remember, there are hundreds of different carriers worldwide and not all with the same quality of service. If you were in Canada and in certain areas you would clearly understand what I mean.
      For sure if we restrict the world to a single block around your house using your single carrier, yes, all may be perfect. Real world scenarios are not like that though.

  • Andy Wood

    I’d agree with crod – the major driver for delivering thin client (SBC) was to support remote/branch offices from a centralised location. You got your cost savings from reduced support, reduced hardware costs and importantly reduced WAN costs.

    The current raft of VDI solutions focus on delivering ‘like a PC performance’ – which is very whizzy, but fails to deliver on the WAN.

    Sure ICA works well on 3G, or wireless – heck it even works on satellite links – but at the sacrifice of colour depth, local drive access, printing.

    Sure vendors realise this – why else would Citrix be pushing the likes of their branch office repeater? Why do Ericom push marketing at Blaze, why do Quest highlight +ves of EOP? Becasue WAN performance is often the entire focus of a project – I’d be tempted to say Shawn is wrong – WAN is the Queen – lose that and the game is often pretty much lost.

    Its not going to be an easy market to crack I reckon – but best of luck and I’ll be sure to take a look.