Today Citrix is announcing the next version of its enterprise mobility management suite, XenMobile 10. It’s been about 8 months since XenMobile 9 came out, and as is typical there are improvements for end users and IT alike. The big part, though, is that the backend device and app management components are finally unified into one virtual server.
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To get the details I met with Manoj Raisinghani. Manoj is fairly new at Citrix, having previously spent many years at HP. He’s now the VP of product marketing responsible for XenMobile, so we should be hearing from him a lot from now on.
Anyway, let’s look at the updates.
The user-facing updates are relatively minor, but of course still welcome. First, there’s a new portal where users can track, lock, or wipe lost or stolen devices. This is good backup for users that don’t activate Apple or Google’s device tracking, and the other good thing about this is that it can quell fears that some users have about IT wiping their personal phones—they know they have a chance to find their phones first. User portals like this are fairly common among EMM products, and actually I’m surprised XenMobile didn’t have one before.
Next, WorxNotes (the note-taking app that’s part of Citrix’s suite of MAM-enabled productivity apps) can now sync notes to Outlook using Exchange ActiveSync (in addition to using ShareFile to sync). This isn’t one of those features that’s going to make headlines, but it is one of those things that people notice when it’s not there. (That’s just part of being a software vendor!)
Like I said, the big part for IT is that MDM and MAM are now combined. These were previously separate servers—the XenMobile Device Manager and XenMobile App Controller, which of course go all the way back to 2012 when Citrix added MAM to CloudGateway and acquired Zenprise for MDM.
But now the Device Manager and App Controller are combined into a single server, simply called the XenMobile Server, which should be faster to set up. There’s a new unified management console for MDM and MAM, which will make it easier to manage and deploy all types of mobile policies.
XenMobile 10 expands FIPS 140-2 support by encrypting connections from the network to the server and connections to the console. (This is in addition to the existing client-side FIPS 140-2 that came with XenMobile 9.) XenMobile now also supports RSA Adaptive Authentication.
Another new feature that Manoj talked about was real-time Active Directory Sync. Changes in policy will now go all the way through to devices immediately (notwithstanding potential delays in the Apple’s MDM protocol itself.
We’ll know for sure once it’s out in the real world for a while, but overall XenMobile 10 promises to be a milestone release for IT administrators.