Pivot3 and Citrix have been partnered around a joint solution here for years, but the Pivot3 software now provides policy-based intelligence and much greater density.
Hyperconverged infrastructure [HCI] provider Pivot3 has announced an updating of its partnership with Citrix to support the latest version of Citrix Virtual Desktops on Pivot3’s HCI platform. The company is emphasizing that this is more than simply updating their long-time support for the new release of this software.
“This is the extension of a relationship between two old partners, but we think this will be transformational in VDI,” said Bruce Milne, Pivot3’s CMO.
While in 2017, Pivot3 deepened their enterprise capabilities with the introduction of their Acuity priority-aware HCI software platform, in their earlier days their strength in HCI was in the surveillance market. That market did have a VDI component however, so that Pivot3 has been partnered with Citrix for years.
“We’ve been working with Citrix for a decade,” Milne said. “It has involved a lot of VDI work, both general VDI but also in video surveillance. At least half of our business in data centre applications is VDI, and that’s half of our business overall. One of our audiences is ones where performance expectations are very high, because we do a lot of mission-critical deployments – mobile medical workstations, mission control for military, financial services and video walls for campuses.”
This generation of Pivot3 software benefits from the Acuity upgrade, with a policy-based Intelligence Engine and intelligent automation capabilities, together with its NVMe PCIe flash for improved performance. The technological upgrade moved Pivot3’s technology from the branch office market into applications which required data centre capabilities.
“We see two things being particularly dramatic about this,” Milne said. “First, today, we see customers deploy many apps on the same infrastructure. They need some way to balance them and make sure missional-critical apps get the resources to make their SLAs. Our software now has artificial intelligence that lets you set policies for applications, so you can get your SLAs for an infinite number of VMs. You just designate which is mission-critical.”
The second thing Milne sees as significant is transformational economic value.
“Our incorporation of NVMe lets us do with three nodes what Nutanix takes four to do, and we can support 2-3x same clients on that same array,” he stated. The software’s ability to scale compute, storage and GPUs separately offers additional flexibility as the Citrix VDI environment scales.
A third new feature, which is not as dramatic as the others but still a nice addition, relates to cloud backup capability.
“Customers are increasingly looking to variations on cloud to support workloads like VDI, by using it as a backup target,” Milne said. “Our policy engine will manage it from the cloud. That can be a really big deal for economic backup. It opens up the world of many clouds, public and private – all completely automated.”
Pivot3 partnered with Login VSI to validate the ability of a reference solution architecture utilizing Pivot3 HCI, Citrix Virtual Desktops and Windows 10 to meet high densities for demanding VDI workloads.
“Citrix is excited because of the density we can now get with our newer technologies,” Milne said. This is expected to make the solution of interest to in the defense, health care, financial services and education sectors.
Pivot3 channel partners should also be excited with the new integration.
“Partners are looking for a differentiated solution in a crowded and more mature marketplace,” Milne said. “This is differentiated from a performance standpoint. It has better economics, better density, and puts a competitive offering in front of any Citrix customer. For partners who are focused on VDI, it’s a game-changer in terms of what they can bring to their customers.”