For years, we’ve done business with small-to-medium sized Citrix shops who need a view into XenApp and XenDesktop performance data. Why? Many of these company server admins have struggled with the way Citrix phased out “traditional” Citrix Edgesight in favor of Citrix Director and Netscaler HDX Insight.
Let’s look at a few of these sticking points in depth to find out why they’re turning towards our Remote Desktop Commander Suite as a viable Citrix Edgesight replacement or Citrix Director alternative.
The Citrix Director Performance Data Set is Not Granular Enough
Yes, Citrix Edgesight was always a bit of a bear to get running, and even more of a bear to maintain. But when it worked, it was great at providing in-depth analysis and reporting of how individual user activities could impact server performance and health. Citrix Director was more of a help-desk – a lightweight monitoring tool first and foremost. Therefore, as Citrix has integrated Edgesight features into Citrix Director, admins are finding that some of the historical session data they liked to examine went missing or is much harder to drill into.
Moreover, as we’ll see in a minute, you can only get this more granular historical session data if you are a Citrix Platinum customer. And for most small-to-medium sized organizations, that’s a very expensive proposition!
With our Remote Desktop Commander Suite, we capture historical session data with our agents, and can do so with whatever level of granularity you want. The default is every 30 seconds, but this can be increased or decreased based on your database storage capabilities.
Citrix Director Only Provides Limited Data Retention for Non-Platinum Customers
Another big gotcha is that even if the non-Platinum, non-Edgesight Citrix Director monitoring data sets are enough for an organization, they cap your length of time for data retention. Believe it or not, Citrix is not the only vendor in this space that uses this technique upsell more expensive licensing tiers.
Previously, we wrote a detailed blog post on why most RDS/Citrix monitoring tools’ licensing models are bull$h!+ , and “pay for extended data retention” is at the top of our pet peeve list.
We don’t play those games over here. As long as you have available storage on a Microsoft SQL Server in your network, you can retain detailed Citrix session performance data for as long as you like.
Citrix Platinum Licensing – To Get Citrix Edgesight Granular Performance Data – Is Hella Expensive
This simple fact, which has been true even before Citrix integrated and overhauled the Edgesight product into Citrix Director, has done more to single-handedly create the market for third-party vendors that do this type of monitoring. And there are a ton of them in this space, as they all attempt to capitalize on that nearly $300 per concurrent user delta in pricing from Citrix Advanced Edition to Citrix Platinum. These third-party vendors’ feature sets and reporting depth are varied, as is their cost of implementation and ongoing upkeep.
At RDPSoft, our focus has been on delivering the top 60% of reporting and monitoring features that 100% of Citrix and RDS shops need, while we couple the most affordable price point in the industry with the most flexible licensing model.
Certainly, there are vendors in the space that offer thousands of out-of-box reports with super sexy graphs for management. And if you want to pay $50 to $200 per concurrent user for that luxury – plus consulting packages to install and integrate their tools, that’s your call.
It really is difficult to justify the cost.
And, You Have Options . . .
With RDPsoft’s Remote Desktop Commander Suite, you can easily stand up a Citrix monitoring and reporting solution that will quickly track:
- User session performance
- User activity monitoring / idle time
- Application and concurrent user licensing trends
. . . All with the ability to record session screenshots alongside active session management tools. The cost is only $9 per XenApp server monitored per month / $1 per XenDesktop virtual desktop monitored per month.
Remote Desktop Commander Suite is simply your best play in the market.
Add Remote Desktop Commander to your existing Citrix Director monitoring platform as an overlay, or use it in lieu of those tools. Either way, based on our customer feedback so far, we think you’ll be quite satisfied.
Updated: December 2020.