Citrix Synergy Barcelona video: A look at Citrix Excalibur and the end of XenApp as we know it

One of the first videos we shot from the show floor at Citrix Synergy last week was that of Excalibur, which is the first release coming out of Project Avalon. Announced during the keynote, Excalibur is the unification of XenDesktop and XenApp functionality, among other things, into one package (both installation and management). 

Excalibur also marks the end of some well-known facets of Citrix's offerings over the last decade or so. For starters, it leverages the FMA backend architecture, which means that IMA is no longer in the picture. For many, this is wonderful news, but there are some questions that need to be answered in terms of scalability and zones (Listen to our podcast with Shawn Bass to hear him talk about what he's watching for). Also going away is Web Interface, which has been in a death spiral for at least the last year or so. This release officially casts it aside, although it will still work in some many situations.

What's difficult to get an answer about is what, exactly, the features will be called. XenApp and XenDesktop aren't explicitly called out in any Excalibur conversations. Instead, they're referred to by their generic names, like VDI or session hosts. When asked about naming, I was told the answer was "TBD."

Either way, check out the demo, and stay tuned next week as a flurry of reviews will come in after the Tech Preview drops on November 1. Rene Vester has already started playing with Excalibur and will probably be posting information ahead of schedule.


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Damn this looks great Gabe, thanks for sharing!


Thanks for this coverage Gabe. A great preview of things to come.


Q1: Is there now 1 database serving both Xendesktop and XenApp?

Q2: Is FMA simply a rebranding of IMA?

Q3: Will Citrix add a backend database to Desktop Director?

Q4: When will Citrix have XA/XD functionality for Windows 2012?

Thanks in advance.



Q1. Yes

Q2. No, a true relational DB that is in XD5.x. Good bye to the flat file IMA DB. The XD VDA will be installed on the RDSH servers

Q3. I don't know

Q4. with Excalibur release


Does anyone know the anticipated release date of Excalliber?

Is the new console a MMC console or a web site or something else?

Will the Provisioning Services in part of this new


Thanks again!


How can this solution possibly carry forward FIPS compliance if it does away with the NetScaler requirement? Will this solution work with say PKard reader for IOS or some other form of solution or does Citrix have another acquisition on the horizon to help its future juggernaut product with FIPS compliance.