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Citrix, HP and Brian Madden seem to think "Citrix Access Essentials is actually cool now!"

I've been doing some work with Citrix and I've started to see a bit on an alignment come together for the small business arena.  There are still areas where just a few users on terminal services is just fine - ala the white paper (SBS 2003, Virtual Server and / or Terminal Services and why use virtualisation and the risks to consider), but for those who need better management, have more users, heavier applications or poor comms then the Citrix solution is good.  Even Brian Madden was impressed and if you read all of his blog article then you will see it took a long time to impress him

The next day I sat down with her at iForum. She sat across the table, smiled, leaned in, and asked point-blank why I have been ignoring CAE. Apparently she’d changed positions within Citrix, and whatever it is she’s doing now, she’s very passionate about CAE.

I leaned back in my chair, took a sip of Coke, closed my eyes and exhaled, saying, “Vicky, there is nothing at all about CAE that is even remotely interesting.”

“That’s where you’re wrong!” she exclaimed, somehow managing more enthusiasm than a minute earlier. “Have you seen v2? We have multiple servers--complete with 100% automatic and transparent failover! We have role-based server configuration! We have simple and automatic status emails to admins! We have an option to buy only the Citrix CALs if you want to upgrade from pure TS!”

“Okay, you have my attention.”

And she kept it for the next 45 minutes as we discussed what CAE had become today. Here’s a synopsis of what I learned about Citrix Access Essentials 2.0:

  • Like previous versions, CAE v2 is limited to 75 users. However, you can build as many Citrix servers as you need to support whatever application mix and usage scenario you have for those users. In the event that you want to grow larger than that, there is an upgrade path from CAE to Citrix Presentation Server. (This is a licensing upgrade path--you’ll have to rebuild your server environment based on real CPS when you upgrade.)
  • In the vein of multi-server support, you can use a wizard to configure the various CAE roles on each server, so you can easily configure one to be an application server, one to be a secure gateway, etc.
  • An easy-to-use email-based alerting system sends status and problem messages to admins. This could be to an engineer at a consulting partner who sets up the server, since many CAE customers will not have a real IT staff per se.
  • Since multi-server introduces some additional complexities, Citrix has built a new automatic failover system where the second server can grab the IP address and everything from the first server. This could let the system stay up and running in a completely transparent way, and then of course the email alert could be sent out to let an engineer know that the first server requires some attention.
  • On the licensing front, CAE v2 is still licensed based on named users, and the USD$249 CAL includes the MS Terminal Services CAL and a year of Subscription Advantage from Citrix. If you then upgrade to “real” Presentation Server, you can keep the Microsoft TS CALs to apply to your new environment. Further, if you already own TS CALs, you can buy a cheaper CAE CAL that does not include the Microsoft CALs.

Oh wow! Citrix Access Essentials is actually cool now! - From BrianMadden.com


However there is more.  HP is now also in on the act and putting the CAE product onto its boxes:

HP Unveils Four Entry-Level Servers

The servers are available pre-configured with Citrix Access Essentials and Microsoft Exchange Server 2007.

Hewlett-Packard on Monday introduced four entry-level ProLiant servers for midsize companies with limited space and IT staff.

The new servers include software tools that guide users through system configuration. "HP is aggressively focused on creating technologies that reduce complexity for midsize customers at every step," Paul Gottsegen, VP of marketing for industry standard servers for HP, said in a statement.

The four products use serial ATA (SATA) hard disk drives and support redundant arrays of independent disks. RAID is an umbrella term for storage schemes that divide and replicate data among multiple disks.

The new lineup includes the ProLiant DL180 G5 and the DL185 G5, which are two-processor, 2U servers with three PCI-Express slots and optional redundant power supplies. The DL180 G5 has up to 9 Tbytes of storage while the DL185 G5 has up to 10.5 Tbytes. The latter also has dual network interface cards and is a good option for mail and messaging, video capture, online gaming, and high-performance computing, HP said.

HP Unveils Four Entry-Level Servers -- Servers -- InformationWeek


For more information on CAE, have a look at

Citrix Access Essentials

Go Into Work Over the Internet

Citrix Access Essentials

Citrix Access Essentials™ enables small organizations with 5 to 75 users to securely access order entry, billing, scheduling, CRM, accounting and other Windows-based line-of-business applications over the Internet with just a Web browser. The cost-effective software makes centrally maintained information as easy to update and retrieve from home, while traveling, or from Internet cafes, as if at the main office. Citrix Access Essentials software inexpensively addresses your remote requirements, by layering simple wizard driven administration and secure role based web access on top of the Microsoft Terminal Services foundation.

What Problems Does It Solve
Anyone who owns or manages a small business knows how difficult it can be trying to enter orders, bill customers, schedule resources, manage accounts, and generally run line-of-business applications when you leave the main computer facility – usually located at headquarters. Firewalls that block connections, impossibly poor response over slow lines, security threats from public networks, and improper or inadequate equipment at the remote end are just some of the obstacles that get in the way.

Citrix Systems » Citrix Access Essentials




Posted Sat, Jan 26 2008 6:40 AM by David Overton


Alan Osborne wrote re: Citrix, HP and Brian Madden seem to think "Citrix Access Essentials is actually cool now!"
on Tue, Feb 26 2008 9:03 PM

Hi David,

Awhile ago, I reviewed Citrix Access Essentials 2.0 on my blog here:


I'm really surprised this product hasn't generated more interest. I think Citrix simply isn't marketing and promoting this product sufficiently which is a real shame.

I found CAE 2.0 to be a well executed product that services its niche well and offers SMEs a compelling and affordable solution for providing staff with remote access from anywhere to the core business applications and data.


Alan Osborne


VCIT Consulting


g5 wrote g5
on Thu, Mar 6 2008 10:50 AM

Pingback from  g5

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