At Citrix Synergy I had the honor of hosting a CTP style fireside chat in the community area of the expo hall. There we had an engaging conversation about Citrix Cloud on Azure considerations. The talk was based up a POC that I did for Citrix Cloud, and we discussed the architecture and some of the cost considerations at play.
Laying the Groundwork
The goal of this POC was to ensure cost and performance were in check for a server hosted application using Citrix Cloud. This environment would be collapsed when the POC was done and a new environment would be built. Here is what was learned. In addition to the Citrix Cloud license it was quickly realized that the foundation would require so much more. The server hosted application would require Office 365 and a memory intensive application that I will call “CustomApp” for the purposes of this post.
As can be seen below RDS User licenses are also needed, they are not included with Citrix cloud. The custom application was also installed and deployed in Azure so, the webserver and app repo (aka backend application) server was also deployed and considered below. Over and above Citrix Cloud will automatically create 2 Cloud Connector servers for communication between Citrix Cloud and the Azure environment. Azure virtual machines also were needed for the RDS license server and user profiles.
It doesn’t end there though, Azure will also have cost implications. Things such as Azure site redundancy, virtual network usage charges, network bandwidth, VPN Gateways, Azure Backups (or similar option), Azure Patch Management, Monitoring, and in this case Service Now integration was required. No small list of systems to setup for 1 server hosted application.
While I do not share the cost breakdown here; because every configuration will be slightly different, in this case the cost was just over $1,000 per user for the year. The basis was on usage for 25 users. So as this scales these numbers could change dramatically. Any application you run could change the outcome of the numbers as well.
Integration of Citrix Cloud on Azure is actually a relatively straightforward process, but don’t discount the fact that there is an architecture design that will need to be considered and other costs that you may not have thought of. Just because you aren’t racking and and stacking the servers, there is still plenty to implement. Cost can also be quite competitive when architected with thoughtfulness.
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