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Thin Client preference


Andrew Gresbach1709152664

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I am just curious what everyone is using these days for thin clients.  We started w/ HP years ago and found their management software to be pretty terrible (at least in our experience ).  For the past 4 years we have been using iGel who's UMS management has been really awesome.  However as we are coming up for needing to look at updating/replacing i thought i'd see what people thought about what has worked for them.     iGel seems really great on their software and management but remote management (for clients in the field) and working w/ account management has been a bit rough lately.   When we went to iGel i coudlnt find any other vendor that could come close to their management tools but maybe something has changed in the last 4 yrs so just doing my due diligence to see what everyone recommends

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18 answers to this question

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48 minutes ago, Andrew Gresbach1709152664 said:

cool thank you.   since its been a few years since we used Stratodesk,  if we have telecommuters that work at home/field users  do they have any way to manage them outside of our building? (cloud management for setting changes, firmware updates, etc ) or no?

I don't believe Stratodesk has that ability. In fact, IGEL is the only vendor that I know of who does.

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10 hours ago, Andrew Gresbach1709152664 said:

one other thing that i'm not sure if it would affect things is with our dual monitor setup in our building we have a variety of monitors / connection options.  most do not have HDMI inputs (mostly display port , DVI or VGA).  I know the Pi models that offer dual monitor capabilities utilize HDMI outputs to allow 2 screens......is that reliant on you using direct HDMI or would it break this if you used a HDMI to DP/DVI adapter ?

I've used plenty of hdmi to vga/dvi $5 adpaters from amazon, you'll be fine.  

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11 hours ago, Andrew Gresbach1709152664 said:

Thats interesting.........i'll have to look into this a bit more i guess.   Any worry that the Pi's are limited to 1gb of RAM?  Back to my testing example between the old lenovo laptop performing a lot better than my iGel client would you have an idea what part of the hardware is making the older device perform so much better?  the lenovo laptop has an older core 2 duo CPU w/ 4gb ram where the iGel has a newer Via cpu and 1gb ram.....just trying to get a handle on what hardware specs are the most important given how we're needing to use them

 

i had found this article talking about some of the limitations using the Pi's in regards to video  https://www.citrix.com/blogs/2018/11/30/raspberry-pi-as-a-citrix-virtual-apps-and-desktops-thin-client-second-helping/

 

a stratodesk support guy said to be cautious of them too since they are lower powered entry level devices so i keep going back and forth what to look at given the emphasis on performance from our execs.  I really do like the Pi idea overall though so would be great if it would work

 

Is there any concern in regards to Clearcube as a company or reliability of their hardware as far as you know?  just trying to think of all options in case the Pi's wouldnt work they seem to be the only ones that offer stratodesk OS direct integration in a higher powered device (outside of the Pi's which you can get w/ nComputing, Clearcube or viewsonic)

I think "fat" hardware will always perform better honestly.  That article is from Tobias, a few tweaks and all will be good, it'll be even better with BCR so you'll be fine.  Read up on that if you're not familiar with it.  Stratodesk is just management software, you'll get that whether you choose ncomputing, clearcube or viewsonic.  I personally know nothing about clearcube, but like I said, Citrix and ncomputing are joined at the hip and I don't expect that to change anytime soon so Citrix is putting their focus there.  

 

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one other thing that i'm not sure if it would affect things is with our dual monitor setup in our building we have a variety of monitors / connection options.  most do not have HDMI inputs (mostly display port , DVI or VGA).  I know the Pi models that offer dual monitor capabilities utilize HDMI outputs to allow 2 screens......is that reliant on you using direct HDMI or would it break this if you used a HDMI to DP/DVI adapter ?

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Thats interesting.........i'll have to look into this a bit more i guess.   Any worry that the Pi's are limited to 1gb of RAM?  Back to my testing example between the old lenovo laptop performing a lot better than my iGel client would you have an idea what part of the hardware is making the older device perform so much better?  the lenovo laptop has an older core 2 duo CPU w/ 4gb ram where the iGel has a newer Via cpu and 1gb ram.....just trying to get a handle on what hardware specs are the most important given how we're needing to use them

 

i had found this article talking about some of the limitations using the Pi's in regards to video  https://www.citrix.com/blogs/2018/11/30/raspberry-pi-as-a-citrix-virtual-apps-and-desktops-thin-client-second-helping/

 

a stratodesk support guy said to be cautious of them too since they are lower powered entry level devices so i keep going back and forth what to look at given the emphasis on performance from our execs.  I really do like the Pi idea overall though so would be great if it would work

 

Is there any concern in regards to Clearcube as a company or reliability of their hardware as far as you know?  just trying to think of all options in case the Pi's wouldnt work they seem to be the only ones that offer stratodesk OS direct integration in a higher powered device (outside of the Pi's which you can get w/ nComputing, Clearcube or viewsonic)

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Since you're a Citrix guy, I would only opt for ncomputing, reason being is b/c Citrix has a huge vested interest in this device.  You're not going to get that with clearcube, they're just like everyone one, plus their focus is really VMWare Horizon since nComputing is not allowed to do the Horizon protocol due to their agreements with Citrix.  As for youtube and such, you'll be fine with ncomputing, just be sure to use edt/udp and thinwire+ and your youtube will be fine.  Tobias has a great article on Citrix blogs discussing the Pi and his experience with it.  Dane Young also has a youtube as well.  Skype works with it as well using the feature pack.  I'm not even sure the clearcube dual monitor pi is out yet, they did show it off at the Citrix partner show from what I recall, but I'd be a little skeptical of it at the moment.  BCR is coming from nComputing very soon from what inside sources have told me and that will handle all of your youtube stuff too.  With the Pi now available for both citrix and horizon, hp and igel must be nervous.  ncomputing has won some very very big deals with the pi, in terms of 1000's of units purchased from very large fortune 1000 companies.  

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thank you to everyone who's given their input here!  We had used Stratodesk back about 5 years ago when we just repurposed  our old PC towers so i'm pretty familiar with their setup.  Since i opened this thread i've gotten setup w/ a new trial of Stratodesk and their management to get refamiliarized again and so far i'm liking it !  I love that we can put the management appliance in our DMZ and get mostly full control of field devices w/out having to pay a subscription fee like we would if we stay with iGel 

 

The point i'm stuck on is hardware.......I have been looking closer at Clearcube's devices since their Pi model (C3xPi) has dual monitor capabilities built into the 1 box (rather than needing a secondary box).  Any reason to 2nd guess their hardware over nComputing in your experience?

 

We are working on getting a demo unit for their:

 

-C3xPi (dual monitor Pi device)

-CD8801 

-CD8841

 

I really like the idea (and $$ ) of the Pi models but a bit nervous about those being underpowered since we use dual monitors, video conferencing (via Skype for Business in our VDA utilizing the HDX Realtime Engine in the thin client offloading).    And of course the usual Youtube usage that gets used as an example of what doesnt work well so I believe the CPU / hardware of the client plays a big role in that

 

I am testing Stratodesk on an old 9 yr old Core 2 Duo lenovo laptop and also installed it on one of our iGel UD3 clients (older 4yr old model w/ a lesser CPU).  Overall performance on the old lenovo laptop far and away blows away the newer iGel client so i'm trying to be very cautious what we pick for hardware next

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after doing citrix for 10 years, i've touched almost everything   hp is ok, but pricey and the management software is really old and clunky.  deploying simple stuff is way too complex, i wouldn't consider them for the new millennium.  igel is cool, but it's so expensive, you'd be better off rolling low end pc's for what they charge and using sccm.  dell i would definitely pass on, wyse wasn't too great either.  ncomputing's rx-hdx is my new favorite for a few reasons.

 

1. low cost 4k hdmi, $120

2. offer dual display for an extra $25, rumor is rpi4 will have native dual display

3. management software is uber simple, much like igel.  firmware and simple changes are 5 clicks or so and you're done for 1 or hundreds of boxes

4. offers openvpn built in so at home users can be managed with ease just like onprem, try that with hp and you'll want to hang yourself with a patch cable

5. poe support is already there!  big plus for us.  $7 poe injector from amazon, next version will have poe on board from the pi foundation.

6. commodity hardware is always better, much larger eco system which drives down pricing and provides rapid innovation

7. probably the tightest integration of any citrix partner since citrix has ALOT of skin in this game.  i

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so how did you configure dual monitors w/ the Pi model w/ NTC? I am familiar w/ STratodesk as we used to use them for our pc repurpose years ago and have a trial setup and some demo units from Clearcube coming (since they have the dual monitor stuff baked right in).  Support told me that the dual monitor setup is setup differently the the Pi's

 

Also any concern about the specs of the Pi for performance given we'd just be using them for connection to a single Xendesktop desktop? (using the HDX realtime engine on occassion too of course).  i've just not used a Pi for anything like this so not sure how beefy the latest CPU and 1gb of ram/ graphics embedded does w/ this stuff

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9 hours ago, Andrew Gresbach1709152664 said:

as for the ncomputing devices.....so we USED to use Stratodesk (converted our old desktops to use their OS/management) about 5ish years ago and while it worked fine it was pretty unpolished at the time....i wonder how its evolved the past few years.   since you've used both RX-HDXs and iGEL, how was the performance of the ncomputing devices compared to iGel? we are starting to ramp up using video conferencing w/ Skype so thats a big factor.

We haven't been doing any heavy testing, really. Just basic configuration and functionality testing because we were in the middle of a massive Citrix migration at the time. The workflows we're going to use them for likely won't include any sort of video conferencing or heavy image/video rendering. The only area that I have been unable to replicate with IGEL is the the Imprivata functionality with a published application. Appliance mode works great for tapping into a XenDesktop, but we also need to be able to tap authenticate into a published application from within IGEL's Linux desktop, too.

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On 2/25/2019 at 1:06 PM, Nick Panaccio said:

We've been playing around with a number of different thin clients for the past few months in our QA environment, and have essentially narrowed it down to the IGEL UD3 LX. We have a few nComputing RX-HDX's, but one of them already died only a few months after being turned on for the first time. We tested a few Dell devices just to do our due diligence, but their management software made me want to light their devices on fire, so that ended quickly.

 

I actually really liked Stratodesk's management web console, more so than IGEL's if I'm being honest. It was just a little cleaner and easier to navigate. That said, IGEL partnered with NVIDIA, so they'll be releasing low-cost, ARM-based devices in the near future. The rumor I heard was under $200/each, which would directly compete with the nComputing RX-HDX.

 

thank you all for the input on this.    i agree that no one can touch igel as far as management goes (we used to use HP and it was painful).  the only thing that bothers me with them is we have all UD3's from about 3 years ago that can't handle their v10 firmware (only 1gb ram).  we are working on bumping up the RAM  which will void the warranty but we can then upgrade....but i just saw they now have v11 firmware but only supports the latest generations of the UD3's so even with this update we're already on outdated firmware (not sure how long they'll continue to put out v10 versions ).   I'm pretty curious about that arm based version that you mentioned.  we are needing to start replacing our older UD3's but it would be nice now to have to shell out $500 / device if they have a better device coming soon

 

as for the ncomputing devices.....so we USED to use Stratodesk (converted our old desktops to use their OS/management) about 5ish years ago and while it worked fine it was pretty unpolished at the time....i wonder how its evolved the past few years.   since you've used both RX-HDXs and iGEL, how was the performance of the ncomputing devices compared to iGel? we are starting to ramp up using video conferencing w/ Skype so thats a big factor.

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We've been playing around with a number of different thin clients for the past few months in our QA environment, and have essentially narrowed it down to the IGEL UD3 LX. We have a few nComputing RX-HDX's, but one of them already died only a few months after being turned on for the first time. We tested a few Dell devices just to do our due diligence, but their management software made me want to light their devices on fire, so that ended quickly.

 

I actually really liked Stratodesk's management web console, more so than IGEL's if I'm being honest. It was just a little cleaner and easier to navigate. That said, IGEL partnered with NVIDIA, so they'll be releasing low-cost, ARM-based devices in the near future. The rumor I heard was under $200/each, which would directly compete with the nComputing RX-HDX.

 

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Check out the RX-HDX from nComputing.  They make a nice little thin client at about $120 a pop.  I'm starting to roll them out in my environment and they've held up pretty well.  

 

Management is nice.  You can build configurations and assign them manually, or have them autodiscover and autoconfigure themselves.

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