Friday Notebook, January 17: Citrix ADC/Gateway vulnerabilities; Appdome hybrid apps

Also: Windows 7 and the era of Windows 10 modern management; Citrix Summit; VMware Workspace ONE Digital Assistant; Siri in the enterprise; Mosyle; and more!

This is our weekly log of desktop virtualization, enterprise mobility, and end user computing news.

Our blog posts

Kyle: VMware Workspace ONE Intelligent Hub Virtual Assistant is out, here's how to get started. With IBM Watson integration, Workspace ONE Intelligent Hub Assistant provides more intelligence than just a normal chatbot.

Jack: January 14, 2020: Windows 7 has hit end of life, but it will live on. Windows Virtual Desktop is the most interesting way for those of us in the desktop virtualization space, but Microsoft has also made Extended Security Updates more accessible following Windows 7 end of life.

Jack: January 15, 2020: It’s time for Windows 10 modern management! Now that Windows 7 is (mostly out of the way), this is the next big Windows project.

Kyle: No one ever talks about Siri in the workplace. Does Apple’s assistant have a place? Digital assistants keep making more and more appearances in platform software.

Industry news

Citrix Summit was this week, and one of the headlines was the general availability of Citrix Analytics for Performance. This was announced back at Synergy, and looks at metrics around both user experience and infrastructure. Citrix also announced the Citrix Developer Program for Workspace, to support developers building micro apps. The program includes a free, sandboxed testing environment.

Summit took place in the shadow of a vulnerability in Citrix ADC and Gateway (NetScaler). If you’re a Citrix admin, you’ve been dealing with this for the last month. If not, you might be wondering what all is going on. My TechTarget colleague Michael Heller has a full rundown over at SearchSecurity.com. Essentially, Citrix received multiple reports of the vulnerability around the same time, so there was risk of an uncoordinated disclosure (i.e., the opposite of when a single researcher finds a flaw, tells the vendor about it, and then waits until the vendor has a patch out to talk about it publicly). Citrix released mitigations as soon as possible back in December, though some people were upset about how Citrix communicated it. The full patches are due out through the rest of this month. This makes for a trial by fire for Fermin Serna, Citrix’s CISO who came in just two months ago.

Mary Jo Foley reported that Microsoft is planning to move away from the Windows 10 Store for Business. Last year, Microsoft told Mary Jo that they were looking for a way to indicate to users that apps were trusted and recommended, and to me, an app store is just that. So, this strikes me as a missed opportunity. Anyway, I’m still most excited to see what MSIX app attach can do, as it can also deliver some of the promises of the app store and modern app model.

Mobile app management and security vendor Appdome this week announced a new product for the creation of hybrid mobile apps. That is, you take a web app, put it inside a mobile web view, and then package the whole thing up as an iOS or Android app. As you’d expect, Appdome can add in MAM and security features. Customers will also be able to create a customized navigation UI, so that instead of seeing the URL bar and back button and all the other standard browser elements, users will see a neat menu that can take them to administrator-defined URLs within the app. Appdome is calling this “SecurePWA,” but don’t get confused—that’s a marketing term, not a technical term. True progressive web apps have some important differences; most notably, that they’re not distributed as packaged mobile apps.

VMware App Volumes 4 is now generally available. Here’s what’s new in this version, which is considered to be way better than before, thanks to all the app packaging options.

Mosyle announced that they signed on 2,000 customers for Mosyle Business, their enterprise Apple device management product that launched just a year ago. This is on top of their existing customers for their education-oriented products. It really is a huge time for Mac management, with growth and launches all over the place. I just got to know Mosyle last year, and in December I profiled Kandji, the most recent entrant in the space. 

Other reads, news, and notes

Here’s Steve Sinofksy’s very handy overview of the 2020 Consumer Electronics Show. If you only read one article about CES, this should be it.

Google has updated the Android Enterprise security white paper.

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