Infinite Ops Delivers Flexible Templates For Deploying Citrix In The Cloud

Infinite Ops, a startup battling it out in the rapidly emerging Workspace-as-a-Service market, released a version of its multi-cloud automation platform Monday that enables rapid deployment of Citrix-virtualized environments across public cloud providers.

The updated Infinite Ops console, available in beta through a handful of select partners, includes a template engine that allows partners to quickly build diverse cloud environments and services tailored to their customers' needs, said Michael Fraser, CEO and founder of the Seattle-based company.

"This type of templating engine doesn't exist in the channel currently," said Fraser. "And the first use case for it is the whole Citrix deployment."

[Related: Infinite Ops Releases Workspace-as-a-Service Platform]

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With the latest release, Citrix partners can launch XenApp or XenDesktop across a specified set of cloud providers and virtual machines, a need Fraser said he recognized when talking to the virtualization vendor's partners at its last Synergy conference.

Citrix has been working on its own cloud-based workspace platform for some time, which in its latest pre-release iteration is being called Citrix Cloud.

But Fraser said Infinite Ops is not in competition with that coming product, but rather provides Citrix partners a different type of solution to fulfill different customer needs--primarily simplicity of deployment, flexibility of environment, and integration with other cloud services.

The Infinite Ops templates can deploy Citrix virtualized apps and desktops on Microsoft Azure, Amazon Web Services and Google Cloud Platform (though the Netscaler VPX application delivery virtual appliance can't yet install on Google's cloud), he said.

And a template can integrate those Citrix components with other cloud services, such as a Microsoft Active Directory, or an SQL database, or unique networking specifications.

’If you can package together solutions and get customers on an engagement where they can start paying money instead of a lot of project work, you can shift the mindset of how to go about selling Citrix in the cloud,’ Fraser told CRN.

That helps roll customers into a recurring revenue model who previously weren't a good fit for one, he added.

Scott Gorcester, CEO of VirtualQube, a longtime Citrix partner based in Seattle, told CRN the value from the Infinite Ops console comes from the unique level of automation it delivers.

"We can go in and provision customers and networks and packages of technology that are very close to what we do manually today," he said. "The ability to really cut down the admin time and have a fast and predictable outcome is huge for us."

VirtualQube has been implementing Citrix technology for customers since the mid 1990s, and started deploying those solutions in the cloud about six years ago. The company can architect anything in the cloud that it can on-premises, Gorcester said, using its own data center as a host.

But using an Infinite Ops template, where it can choose from multiple back-end hosting environments, drastically reduces that onboarding time and the effort its engineers expend on a project.

"It turned something that's one to two days of work to a couple pushes of a button and a few hours wait," Gorcester said. "It dramatically increases our speed to deploy to customers."

The beta version of the latest Infinite Ops release currently requires partners to bring their own Citrix licenses, but it is likely Infinite Ops will at some point become a Citrix partner, Fraser said, which will enable the company to directly resell the Citrix products through its console.