The SME Antidote to Citrix lock in
March 13, 2020

The SME Antidote to Citrix lock in

Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User

Overall Satisfaction with Parallels Remote Application Server

We have implemented several implementations of Parallels Remote Application Server [RAS], and it is in widespread use internally and amongst several of our customers.

Our introduction to RAS came when a total system failure of a legacy Citrix system left a client searching for a replacement system that offered similar functionality but which was easier to manage by their internal IT Staff. We selected and implemented RAS on the basis of our experience with other Parallels products, namely Parallels for Mac, and Plesk, however despite this somewhat ad-hoc selection process we were immediately impressed by the ease at which our proof of concept system was up and running and then further impressed by time to production for the live system.

We used RAS to provide access to a thick client ERP package to Sales Representatives on the road across the EMEA, and the implementation was an unmitigated success. In particular remote UX has been improved greatly, especially in zones of marginal network coverage. We were also impressed with the breadth of platform coverage, from the old standards, Windows, MacOS, to other platforms like IOS and Android.

The initial success led to us standardising on RAS for our SaaS offering when offering thick client applications, and I would have no hesitation in recommending the softward.

  • Rapid time to deployment
  • Ease of management
  • Low maintenance overhead
  • Good information security
  • Better remote desktop experience (launch files in client app)
  • More modern management UI
  • Better online documentation / Knowledgebase
  • It has enabled us to meet a demand that we did not have the means to meet previously.
  • Allowed a 10-20-fold increase in bandwidth usage when making applications available to external resources.
  • Citrix Virtual Apps (formerly XenApp)
We have extensive internal experience in a suite of Citrix products. However, our typical customer will have minimal internal infrastructure resources, and those who were using Citrix were typically experiencing pain points around upgrade, management, and cost.

This was in part due to the withdrawal of Citrix from the SME sector, which left many customers running legacy Server 2003-era machines just to keep remote access running, a security risk, and business risk with hardware increasingly difficult to keep going.

In general, we still offer to upgrade RAS systems when necessary, but generally, it has proven to be a simple 'auto-update' type process. Likewise at almost every site customer resources can manage the systems themselves. A simple example would be the publishing of an application, tricky on XenApp, almost a two-click process with Parallels.
I haven't needed to use Parallels Customer Support.

However I have found the online material / knowledge to be somewhat lacking. In particular there will often be older content available which has been superceeded.

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Parallels Remote Application Server is well suited for allowing access to applications that run traditionally on LAN type infrastructures and do not scale to WAN situations. It provides controlled access to sensitive internal applications without exposing the underlying assets and reducing the attack surface. Parallels provides a full suite of remote access and remote desktop applications to companies of all sizes, from SME to large corporate. But critically without reliance on a high cost, high skill internal workforce.