Virtualization Tutor

Why free Citrix Xen Server might be best for SMBS

Posted In Virtualization - By admin On Tuesday, February 14th, 2012 With 0 Comments
In our earlier post we compared the free features of VMWare’s free Hypervisor solution called VMWare ESXi free and discussed its advantages for virtualization startup companies. In this article we will compare another bare-metal Hypervisor solution from Citrix for SMBs. The three top players today in Virtualization Infrastructure market are VMWare, Microsoft and Citrix. Citrix has got the least virtualization market share, and this in my opinion is just because of poor marketing. Citrix is in fact the most powerful and attractive Hypervisor for entry level customers into the virtualization market. In this post we will talk about the advanced features that the free Citrix XenServer offers and why it might just be the right option for entry level Small and Medium Businesses (SMBS)
Citrix Free XenServer

What makes Citrix Xen Server free attractive for SMBs:

Citrix’s free baremetal Hypervisor is called the Citrix XenServer and it offers some very powerful features for free, which its competitors like Microsoft Hyper-V and VMWare vSphere line offers for a huge cost. Lets go through some of the features that Citrix Xen Server offers for free, out of the box.

Advanced features offered by Citrix XenServer compared with other virtualization solutions:

– Enterprise grade virtualization with its baremetal 64 bit Hypervisor

– Create both X86 and X64 based virtual machines

– Offers 8 way CPU virtual support

– Centralized management of all its servers (this feature is not included with the free version of VMWare or Microsoft Hypervisors, ESXi or Hyper-v)

– Citrix XenServer offers Live Motion, by which you can move virtual machines from one host to another. This feature again is not available in any of the free offerings from VMWare or Hyper-V

– Citrix XenServer let you use Virtual Machine Templates so that you create virtual machines quickly with a standard configuration

– Centralized Config and Patch management for all XenServers, this feature again is exclusive to Citrix’s free Hypervisor offering, both VMWare and Microsoft charge for this feature and its not a part of their free Virtual Infrastructure products

– Hot Swap NICS and Storage, this feature is a very cool one again and is both VMWare and Microsoft charge for it in their virtual infrastructure

Easily obtain advanced virtualization features with Citrix XenServer:

There are many more advanced features of Citrix XenServer that do not come with the free edition. However obtaining these features (such as lab management, dynamic provisioning and HA ) can easily be added  to the free edition of Citrix Xen Server by buying an Essentials Pack from Citrix for the Hypervisor.

Summary: Why is the free Citrix Xen Server the best choice for entry level virtualization customers:

In all, there is no doubt that the free version of Citrix XenServer is the best choice for Small and Medium Businesses (SMBs) because it offers so many premium grade features which other virtualization vendors charge a big amount for. In addition, if an organization did want to go for advanced virtualization infrastructure features such as HA (high availability), lab management, VDI or dynamic provisioning, they can very easily upgrade their free setup using an essentials pack from Citrix

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