I am looking forward to next week’s Citrix Synergy conference in Anaheim, Los Angeles with sense of great anticipation. If you are fortunate enough to be attending, I am sure you are looking forward to next week too – and surely not because of the proximity to Disneyland. Whether it’s Mark Templeton’s keynote or the CTO innovations session or the Citrix party – there is always lots to learn and great people to meet.  Just as important for me, we at Cisco have another great opportunity to share and demonstrate the latest innovations in our Cisco Desktop Virtualization Solutions portfolio for Citrix XenDesktop environments. There is something in store for every IT professional, from self-guided demos to a live expo of what’s going on behind the scenes at the conference.  I want to spend the next few minutes taking you through a virtual tour of the Cisco presence at the event.

Since I visited Citrix Synergy Barcelona in 2012 October, Cisco has made significant progress by expanding on the Desktop Virtualization front to help you choose a desktop virtualization solution ideally optimized to your own delivery model, scale, use case and cost requirements Ashok Rajagopalan does a great job describing these solutions in his video blog


For some really fascinating customer insights into these solutions you can also view a video webcast that was broadcast last week with Jim McHugh, VP of UCS Marketing moderating the panel.  

 At Synergy we will have an in-depth session on how to choose the best of these solutions for your own XenDesktop deployment.  Our own Mark Balch, Director for UCS Product Management will be delivering a breakout session SYN 417 titled “Choosing the Best Cisco UCS Architecture for Your XenDesktop and XenApp Implementations”. Mark will discuss the recently introduced architectures and solutions based on Cisco UCS and how it helps customers achieve scale, performance and cost benefits across a diverse set of use-cases and Citrix delivery models. Don’t miss Mark’s power-packed session on May 22nd, Room 304A, 2.30 PST

Any time you are in the exhibit hall, I suggest you make a beeline for the theater and demo pods at the Cisco Booth # 203. You’ll find knowledgeable Cisco folks happy to discuss the latest combined Cisco and Citrix innovations in cloud orchestration, networking, and desktop virtualization. You can’t miss us as we are right opposite the entrance and if you happen to be Spiderman swinging from the ceiling it will look something like this.


At the demo Pods you will be greeted by among others, two cool desktop virtualization demos.  One of these demos features the Cisco UCS Storage accelerator with Citrix XenDesktop that showcases how performance intensive Citrix write-cache can be placed locally on the UCS Blade servers. You guessed it, this eliminates the need for expensive SAN storage. Come, learn and experience, how you can achieve 50% reduction in SAN costs, increased IOPS and all the jazz that comes with Cisco Storage Accelerator and Citrix XenDesktops.

The second desktop virtualization demo will equally impress  you. It is about user experience with Cisco XenApp on Cisco UCS with VM-FEX.  Do not forget to ask me or whoever else is staffing the demo about the recent Principled Technologies benchmark results on CPU optimization and Response time improvements with UCS VM-FEX

The Cisco theatre, set impressively in the middle of the booth features a rich catalog of Cisco and partner presentations from EMC, Citrix and NetApp.

Our theater schedule runs several hours each day, and among others features my own presentation on benefits of server caching with UCS for XenDesktops. My colleague Ashok Rajagopalan will be presenting on why UCS is the ideal infrastructure for Desktop Virtualization. It is not my goal to enumerate all presentations, but I strongly urge you to attend Citrix and NetApp gigs, as they pertain to Cloud and XenMobile.

So if you are planning on attending Citrix Synergy, here’s one more thing I encourage you to do: reach out to your Cisco representative and request a meeting with the experts from Cisco that will be there. And if you happen to be there for the Citrix Partner Summit, please attend a special Citrix and Cisco Partner Development Workshop held on Tuesday, Room 304A, 3.30 PM, May 21. In this short workshop session we’ll tell you everything you need to know about how to align your business with the Citrix and Cisco go-to-market plan.

Before I forget, I want to share with you the recently compiled Cisco UCS – XenDesktop best practices. Check out the recent webinar hosted by Chris Carter (Cisco) and Bhumik Patel (Citrix). The webinar spans a full one hour and goes at length on how best to design and deploy UCS service profiles, and concludes with an insightful video. Come to the Cisco Theater to hear more.

In closing, I want to remind you that Synergy 2013 Anaheim will be a packed event. Please do not hesitate to reach out to Cisco folks at the solutions floor for any help you may need. You can also check Cisco’s external website for Citrix Synergy

I am re-capping the main features I elaborated earlier

  • Sponsored Breakout Session – Mark Balch, Session SYN 417, on May 22nd, Room 304A, 2.30 PST
  • Demos and Theater presentations – Cisco Booth 203, May 21 – 24
  • Cisco and Citrix Partner development workshop – Room 304A, 3.30 PM, May 21

I wish you a happy Synergy 2013, and hope to meet you at the Cisco booth.




Ravi Balakrishnan

Senior Product Marketing Manager

Datacenter Solutions