Yesterday I received an email from a Citrix customer asking for my help on his quest to deal with Citrix. His email to me (paraphrased):
We are currently using XenApp 5.0 on Windows Server 2008 (both 32-bit and x64) for 250 apps worldwide. We have 35 servers with 1100 CALs of XenApp Enterprise, all renewed. We also have tech support which we pay for yearly.
Our issue is that the standard support for XenApp 5.0 ends in January, so we have to move by the end of the year or pay for extended support. Unfortunately extended support is crazy expensive, so now we're scrambling to see if we can trust 7.5 yet and get our migration done in the next six months.
The reason we're still on 5.0 is because originally we were not ready for x64 across the board, and we didn't want to have two farms if we couldn't share our licenses. Then by 2011 when we were comfortable with x64 and ready to move to XenApp 6.0, Citrix announced XenApp 6.5, so we didn't want to go through the pain and expense of the migration to 6.0 if another new version was right around the corner.
Then in 2012 Citrix announced that the end of life for 6.5 would be in 2016—only a year after 5.0—so again we didn't want to go through that migration pain and upgrade expense just to buy us a year.
Now it's 2014 and XenApp 7.5 is out. To us this is the only "real" migration from 5.0 since all the 6.x products had such short lifespans. Unfortunately as we're looking at 7.5 now, we're finding that it doesn't seem like it's ready for prime time. Not only is it missing a lot of features, but even though it's been out for months, the documentation, white papers, and training is very limited. (In fact even our 3rd party support company isn't supporting XenApp 7.5 yet.)
So we don't feel like 7.5 is an option for us now (again due to the expense and the immaturity of the product), which brings us back to the extended support option for 5.0.In discussing this with our Citrix sales rep, they provided some ridiculous option like moving to 6.5 now (for an upgrade cost of course), but again that would be a major product which would only buy us a measly 18 additional months. After that we'd have to pay another upgrade fee and go through the pain of migrating all over again.
What do you recommend? Should we pay the hundreds of thousands of dollars for the extended support (or "last resort," as I call it) and stay on 5.0? Do we migrate to 6.5 and then do this all over in a year? Do we trust 7.5 and go there now even though it doesn't seem like too many others are using it? Do we just stay on 5.0 without support?
What should we do? What would you do?