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Local Host Cache - On premise storefront required or not


Christopher Yue

Question

I came across this article which seems to indicate that LHC was going to be built into the Cloud Connectors (at some point).

https://www.citrix.com/blogs/2018/09/25/the-local-host-cache-and-citrix-cloud/

 

Then I came across another more up to date article which specifies the requirement for an on-premise Storefront server.

https://docs.citrix.com/en-us/citrix-virtual-apps-desktops-service/manage-deployment/local-host-cache.html

 

Does anyone know if there are plans for native LHC support inside the Cloud Connectors in the medium to long term?

 

 

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Hi Christopher,

 

LHC is enabled in Cloud Connectors currently(see: https://docs.citrix.com/en-us/citrix-virtual-apps-desktops-service/manage-deployment/local-host-cache.html). To leverage any direct benefit from this you would need to be hosting your own access layer (StoreFront/NetScaler) as LHC provides some insulation against Citrix Cloud outages, but you still need users to be able to launch and connect to the actual resources in your resource location.

 

A typical scenario for this would be an ISP fault breaking internet connectivity but still enabling internal users to access resources uninterrupted.

 

Looking at a broader failure scenario, if Citrix Cloud as a whole was inaccessible (think Azure outage), if you host your own Access Layer then you could still be operational by leveraging LHC on the connectors. If you were leveraging Workspace and the Gateway Service, as these are integral parts of Citrix Cloud, they would likely be impacted by the outage.

 

Hope this helps,

 

Andy

 

 

 

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Hi Andy,

 

Thanks for the response.

 

One of the things holding off me going to Citrix Cloud was the need to have at least one StoreFront server on premise for situations like internet outages.

 

As you mentioned earlier, if the Cloud GW service is being utilised (i.e.. no on premise Netscaler) then LHC is really not going to benefit me in any way.

 

If you want to use Citrix Cloud with resilience, then it does seem to be the case of having a NS and SF server on-premise, which kind of defeats the object a bit. 

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IMHO it's down to risk management and mindset. Some organisations are risk adverse and need to ensure high availability and want to insulate against failures. For these orgs, hosting access layer components may be a small price to pay. If you're moving to Cloud because you want to consume everything as a service then it would certainly make it less appealing, but it's largely going to come down to business requirements and levels of acceptable risk.

 

I say mindset because if you'd have talked to most orgs about moving email to the cloud 10 years ago you would get bogged down in conversations about "what happens when it goes down", now you'll be hard pushed to find places that aren't either in o365 or moving to it. Same scenario with Salesforce, many orgs are happy to move their whole CRM/Sales/Ops processes to Salesforce - if it were to go down then those processes stop. These are tier 1 services in most orgs, same as CVAD services.

 

A lot of it comes down to level of trust - o365 hit critical mass when people looked around and saw people moving to it and it working well, and no-one getting fired for an outage!

 

That point will come for Citrix - personally I've done more cloud deployments in the last 18 months than on-premises so I don't think we're too far away from that happening - but in the meanwhile you can still mitigate the risks with things like LHC and StoreFront/NetScaler while you build that level of trust. It might only be short term - I have some customers that host their own Access Layer, but have plans to migrate within X months/years. Other's have technical/security reasons why they must deploy in that architecture. 

 

The upside is, at least you can choose rather being pushed into cloud only!

 

Andy

 

  

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On 11/07/2019 at 10:18 AM, Andrew McCullough said:

IMHO it's down to risk management and mindset. Some organisations are risk adverse and need to ensure high availability and want to insulate against failures. For these orgs, hosting access layer components may be a small price to pay. If you're moving to Cloud because you want to consume everything as a service then it would certainly make it less appealing, but it's largely going to come down to business requirements and levels of acceptable risk.

 

I say mindset because if you'd have talked to most orgs about moving email to the cloud 10 years ago you would get bogged down in conversations about "what happens when it goes down", now you'll be hard pushed to find places that aren't either in o365 or moving to it. Same scenario with Salesforce, many orgs are happy to move their whole CRM/Sales/Ops processes to Salesforce - if it were to go down then those processes stop. These are tier 1 services in most orgs, same as CVAD services.

 

A lot of it comes down to level of trust - o365 hit critical mass when people looked around and saw people moving to it and it working well, and no-one getting fired for an outage!

 

That point will come for Citrix - personally I've done more cloud deployments in the last 18 months than on-premises so I don't think we're too far away from that happening - but in the meanwhile you can still mitigate the risks with things like LHC and StoreFront/NetScaler while you build that level of trust. It might only be short term - I have some customers that host their own Access Layer, but have plans to migrate within X months/years. Other's have technical/security reasons why they must deploy in that architecture. 

 

The upside is, at least you can choose rather being pushed into cloud only!

 

Andy

 

  

Thanks Andy,

 

Really appreciate your insight.

 

Having ran Citrix on premise since Metaframe days, the appeal of simplified administration with an evergreen backend is getting difficult to ignore.

 

Apart from LHC, the other issue was controlling access to resources outside the company offices.

 

Now with Citrix FAS on the horizon, I can utilise Azure AD with conditional access to get true SSO with granular access based on security groups.

 

Perhaps I might give Cloud another look again.

 

 

 

 

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