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Citrix Managed Desktop – Not an Option For SMBs

May 22, 2019 - Windows Virtual Desktop
Citrix Managed Desktop Is Too Damn High

Hey folks – I’ve been watching the announcements from Citrix Synergy around Windows Virtual Desktop this week, and from my perspective, Citrix still does not get (or does not want) the SMB market. Bas just wrote an excellent blog article on Citrix Managed Desktop here – please go read it – but my commentary below will focus on the pricing exclusively. Please note that these are brand new developments, so if pricing / assumptions change, I will update this blog post.

Per Usual, When Citrix “Manages” Anything, It Gets Hella Expensive For You

In order to run Citrix Managed Desktop, you will be shelling out a minimum of $525 per month, every month, even if you have less than 25 users. How so?

Citrix Managed Desktop costs $16 per user per month, with a 25 user minimum. That’s $400 per month right there. On top of that, they make you pre-pay an “Azure Consumption Commitment” of $5 per user per month to be applied to your Azure VM compute costs, which is another $125 per month minimum.

If you don’t already have subscriptions for Microsoft Office 365 / Windows 10 licensing levels that support access to the Windows 10 Multisession OS, you’ll be paying for a Windows RDS CAL on top of that, which will cost another $6 or so per user per month. So, the actual minimum cost could be nearing $700 per month.

Increasingly, It Seems Citrix Just Doesn’t Want Revenue From SMBs or Managed Service Providers

These price points just don’t make sense for Managed Service Providers or most SMBs. As a point of comparison, my company’s Remote Desktop Commander Suite manages and monitors classic RDS deployments and Windows Virtual Desktop deployments for less than $10 per multi user session host VM per month. Given that most user densities are 10 users or more per host, we typically cost less than $1 per named user to layer our solution on top of RDS or Windows Virtual Desktop. That’s 20 times less expensive than Citrix Managed Desktop, and I would argue that Citrix Managed Desktop does not deliver 20 times more value than our offering. Anyway, as in all things software and public cloud, caveat emptor and do your due diligence when calculating total cost of ownership!

Andy Milford is the CEO and Founder of RDPSoft, and is a Microsoft MVP in the Enterprise Mobility / Remote Desktop Services area. Prior to starting RDPSoft, Andy was the CEO and Founder of Dorian Software, a log management company acquired by Ipswitch in late 2009. He loves creating easy-to-use yet powerful software solutions for SMBs and emerging enterprise companies.

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