Over the past few months, we’ve made several posts about XenClient. But in case you haven’t read them, or you need to refresh your memory, XenClient is (quoting from Citrix here): “…a high-performance, bare-metal hypervisor that runs directly on the client device hardware, dividing up the resources of the machine and enabling multiple operating systems to run side by side in complete isolation.”
Of course, there are other ways to run multiple operating systems side by side on a client device, although they may not give you the level of performance that XenClient – because of its small footprint – brings to the table. The tricky part is figuring out how to manage that environment once the user unplugs the laptop from the network and takes it on the road. How do you patch it? How do you back up user data? What do you do if the laptop is lost or stolen? If one of the OS instances is corrupted, or accidentally deleted, how do you get it back?
That’s the job of the Citrix Synchronizer – a virtual appliance that runs back in your data center and communicates with your XenClient-equipped laptops securely (via SSL) over the Internet. But rather than try to describe to you in detail exactly how that all works, it’s probably easier to simply show you. So take a few minutes to watch our own Steve Parlee demonstrate the interaction between Synchronizer and XenClient.