Citrix Launches Access Suite 4.0

The Fort Lauderdale, Fla.-based company last week formally launched Citrix Access Suite 4.0, a major upgrade of its former MetaFrame platform. Version 4.0 features Presentation Server 4.0 with built-in conferencing, Citrix Password Manager 4.0, PocketPC support and new print engine and Citrix Access Gateway 4.0 based on Net6's SSL VPN. The upgrade also introduces a new location-awareness capability dubbed SmartAccess that senses and responds to a user's location automatically and optimizes access while preserving security.

Citrix CEO Mark Templeton said the company will drive sales deeper into vertical markets and tailor its products for specific customer segments, including SMB. It also plans aggressive channel co-engagement strategies.

Citrix executives claimed its Advisor Rewards partner program and the appointment of area vice presidents to drive partner business is improving margins for partners. The vendor also is targeting Microsoft resellers more aggressively since its product integrates directly with the Windows terminal services, executives said.

Still, the company last week also detailed plans to increase enterprise co-selling activities with IBM Global Services and create Citrix project offices—called Citrix Knowledge Centers—inside IGS. It also signed a deal with Hewlett-Packard that will integrate Citrix's Password Manager in HP OpenView Identity and Access Management suite. The deal also calls for joint development on future products.

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BJ Farmer, president of CITOC, a Citrix Gold partner in Houston, said the 4.0 platform and his new channel rep will help drive his business in 2005 but noted that the company hasn't given him a lead in eight months. "I'd like to see more love and resources come to us," Farmer said.

Templeton, though, predicted IGS and Citrix's traditional partners won't clash in the field. "It's only six project offices," he told CRN. "The kind of projects IBM gets involved in, I don't think a clear-thinking local or regional Citrix integrator would be interested in."