Kevin (who I enjoy reading) over at his blog
as a recent post on Terminal Server or Citrix. He quotes Vlad which I would guess is the Vlad of SBSShow
who mentions that the advantages of Citrix in Small Business is none and very minimal in midsized businesses.
Well guess I have to disagree. I might be slightly slanted as I have used Citrix for many moons and am a certified Engineer on it, however I think the business benefits can be big. Especially for mid sized businesses but the small business that has a niche it can really be good. Now are the margins, so to speak shrinking? You bet they are. However let's speak about the here and now.
Web Portals: Sharepoint is good. MetaFrame Access Manager is better. If Sharepoint had Terminal Services built in then it would be just as good. However even perhaps a very small business might have a need for clients on the outside to have access to just one application that gives the client exactly what they need and nothing else. You won't get that with Sharepoint but with Access Manager you can launch the app that is line of business and give it in such a way that they don't have to worry about messy installs or failed .dll's and the like. This is big in both Medical and Manufacturing Industries, both of which our company is big into. Also another example is a local Mortgage company. They use Citrix strictly from the web portal giving access to the Loan Application Program just to those officers outside the office that need it and nothing else. Sorry can't do that with Terminal Services or Sharepoint as of yet. Now Citrix even has a plug in for Sharepoint to give you that complete portal with Sharepoint that you might want.
Application Sharing: I touched on it a little above but not until the Longhorn edition of Windows will users get Application Sharing with Terminal Server. This really is a big item even in Small Business. Administration overhead can be big for perhaps a company with as little as 10 users on a server, one server at that. By limiting what can be accessed, administration is lowered and cost of ownership is lowered as well.
Printing: Printing can be hazardous in a Citrix/Terminal Service environment. OK got that out of the way. However it is easier with Citrix. It includes a Universal Printer Driver that simplifies this process.
Well that's only a couple of items but hopefully that shows that there is some value to Citrix in the SMB Environment.