123: The Citrix Session: A look at the future of Citrix with our CTPs

Dec 14, 2022

We recently had a great Citrix Technology Professional (CTP) session where we shared the go-forward plans for Citrix and talked about our vision, strategy, and priorities. The CTPs were happy to connect with the new leadership team headed by Citrix General Manager Sridhar Mullapudi, as well as Citrix veterans Calvin Hsu, Jitendra Deshpande, Bob Schaeffer, Milind Mohile, Sameer Mehta, myself, and others. Citrix is now a business unit within Cloud Software Group (CSG) and has plans to invest, innovate, and grow. You can learn more about CSG and its business units at https://www.cloud.com/.

Host: Andy Whiteside
Co-host: Bill Sutton
Co-host: Todd Smith
Guest: Chris Fleck

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Andy Whiteside: Hi! Everyone! Welcome to episode 123 of the citric session. I’m. Your host andy white side today is December twelfth, 2,022 got a very special guess with us today that a lot of the Citrix folks will know and love but first of all Bill Sutton, Director of Services as Integrity Bill, has it going going great Andy

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Bill Sutton: still, still counting down those Christmas days, getting this presence together.

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Andy Whiteside: scrambling to get it done so. My kids are older. We have a secret, Santa. We have to buy one gift. I think I know what I want to buy my person, but I still don’t officially know, and I’ve got 4 days to do it before we go on family vacation, which, by the way.

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Andy Whiteside: I am spending a ton of money on getting my family ready for a ski trip and paying for lift tickets and flights and hotel rooms, and I still got to go out and buy a present for somebody.

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Andy Whiteside: Hopefully they appreciate it someday, especially when they go to. I have to pay for their own family Christmas vacation, and

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Todd Smith – Citrix: so we have Todd Smith with this. Todd is a director of a sales engineers for Canada. Todd. How’s it going?

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Todd Smith – Citrix: Good! Have you Have you made a cold weather Canada trip yet in your new role

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Todd Smith – Citrix: early September, and it was kind of chilly, but it Haven’t

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Todd Smith – Citrix: meeting up here for the the winter yet. But, we we did have snow up here in Boston over the weekend, so

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Andy Whiteside: I think it’s going to be a a dumper of a year what you guys call it. I i’d call it a dump review. What’s what’s it going to be when it when it dumps on You guys like crazy. It’s a wicked. It’s a wicked blizzard.

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Andy Whiteside: I should have known to get something.

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Todd Smith – Citrix: or nor is the

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Andy Whiteside: well we we talk football a lot on this call. I i’m not a big football. I mean. I love football, but I don’t watch it. It’s on. I’m so busy. But I think Mr. Brady’s coming to visit you. 39. Is that what I saw coming in this weekend? Thursday night

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Todd Smith – Citrix: it’s in that. No, because we’re playing

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Todd Smith – Citrix: we’re playing tonight

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Todd Smith – Citrix: on

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Todd Smith – Citrix: the Monday night football against the Arizona cardinals

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Todd Smith – Citrix: in Arizona. So that’s actually not bad.

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Todd Smith – Citrix: Would be a bad road trip. But yeah, we we’ve got

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Andy Whiteside: yeah, we’ve got a couple of tough games coming up ahead of us. So, but you have the buccaneers this weekend. Is that right?

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Todd Smith – Citrix: I believe so. And

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Andy Whiteside: how will you guys act when Mr. Magic comes on?

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Todd Smith – Citrix: That’s always the Brady showing shows up.

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Andy Whiteside: Yeah.

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Andy Whiteside: should be interesting.

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Andy Whiteside: Well, we have a Chris fleck with us. And Chris I’m. Not even going to pretend to say what your title is. I’ll let you explain it. But you are a legend in the citrus world. Somebody showed me

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Andy Whiteside: a phone the other day.

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Andy Whiteside: accessing a virtual desktop as if it was something new. I’m like, I think I know a guy that’s been talking about that for a long, long time. I’m referring to the Nirvana phone. So I guess first of all, what’s your current role at Citrus. What do you do every day? Yeah. So i’m

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Chris Fleck: technical fellow at Citrix. But, my role now is vice president of product for our ecosystems and verticals. So we’ve

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Chris Fleck: both consolidated what we’re doing around our strategy or for cloud partners and citrix ready and strategic alliances in general. and then

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Chris Fleck: have a particular interest. We’ve created a new focus area for our top 3 verticals being government, health care and finance

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Chris Fleck: and then building out the the the tech community. So the Ctps and the user groups and the customer advisory board, and so basically kind of managing that whole tech ecosystem.

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Andy Whiteside: You said several things that the interest me from a business perspective, especially the one about the verticals, the government and health care. And we were just talking. We we’re doing a lot of work on our gov side with with health care, government health care. that seems to be an area that’s really adopting. Citrix-type solutions. Love to talk to you more about that.

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Andy Whiteside: I like to think that your job is a job I would love to have if I could just go pick a job because what you do and what we do is, you know passion around the space.

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Andy Whiteside: what’s your favorite thing about

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Andy Whiteside: current role?

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Chris Fleck: so that I I probably the favorite thing would be more

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Chris Fleck: This this tech community engagement being a you know where you know I’ve already always kind of been involved. But you know now now it’s a part of my day job, too, so you know, reaching out to whether it’s directly with customers or the the tech community at large.

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Chris Fleck: the Those are fun parts of the job.

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Andy Whiteside: Well, and that times right into the blog that we’re going to look at here. It’s like I. As you were talking, several things came to my Tell us,

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Andy Whiteside: tell us the story around the Nirvana phone. I’m gonna ask you about the Google glasses. And then i’m gonna ask you about provisioning server, and I could ask you about 30 more technologies, but we’ll just those 3 have come up since us on the call here started talking to each other before we hit record

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Andy Whiteside: Google glasses. At 1 point you wore those things everywhere, and I was watching you to figure out if that thing was real or not.

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Chris Fleck: Right?

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Chris Fleck: Yeah. So

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Chris Fleck: it it’s. You know it. It’s still it’s still coming, you know. I think it’s still gonna happen. I think it’s inevitable that

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Chris Fleck: you know it. We want to be able to engage with the the smallest, more, most pervasive kind of interface. And it’s it’s gonna happen at some point when those glasses

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Chris Fleck: become light enough, and the battery lasts long enough, and they don’t look as weird as Google glasses

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Chris Fleck: and so actually, literally, just Friday. We had a a tech event here in Florida, and it was great we we had Ronnie Abbott’s come talk. He is the the founder of of magically.

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Chris Fleck: And so it was. it was pretty neat to to talk to him again, and get his. You know his story from, You know the actually goes back to like a dorm room and universe in Miami when he came up with the first

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Chris Fleck: orthopedic surgery startup, Which he then sold, and then rolled that into to magic leap. And now he’s working on some, you know, next generation things which arguably could go beyond the Google less augmented reality in terms of you know.

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Chris Fleck: neural link type stuff. But that’s the that’s really getting far out there.

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Andy Whiteside: So other than watches.

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Andy Whiteside: Has any other technology wearable actually taken off?

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Chris Fleck: Well, you you certainly could argue air pods right, you know. That’s that’s taken off for sure, and it it used to be weird right to see people with the the white things dongles hanging out their ear right? but not anymore.

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Chris Fleck: Now, that’s you know that’s completely pervasive right? And and in fact.

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Chris Fleck: you know the the interface as well the fact that ambient

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Chris Fleck: communication, and siri and and Alexa and everybody is, you know, that that’s now mainstream. So expect expect that to to continue as well.

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Andy Whiteside: My wife has a sound machine. I sleep in with it. I put a podcast in that puts me to sleep or a book.

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Andy Whiteside: and I and start thinking about work. I’ll put another one that it’s that’s become so pervasive that I didn’t even think of that as a wearable.

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Chris Fleck: Yeah, that’s right. But but do you remember when they were first came out and full of folks like me that would wear them? They were, you know, the theables for the glass holes. Yeah.

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Andy Whiteside: Okay. So there’s that the phone. I saw something last week. Maybe you’ve seen it where it’s a. It’s a virtual phone that gets presented down to your device, and I don’t think it’s for phone calls, but all the apps that go on your phone. It runs virtually from the cloud aws

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Andy Whiteside: and overlays your phone. but the Nirvana phone concept that you know. That’s I guess that’s 20 years of you and others, including myself, kind of playing with that, and no one is coming. But yet to see it fully invent itself out. Where’s the Where’s that? App.

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Chris Fleck: Yeah. Well, you know it. It’s interesting, right? Because it it effectively is there now, right you it’s there with with both iphone and and certainly the work we did with Samsung and Dex, and that you know you’ve got a good

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Chris Fleck: virtual desktop interface there.

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Chris Fleck: you know. I I guess it. That’s one that

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Chris Fleck: we’ll continue to maybe be a a niche, maybe a growing niche, but it’ll still be a niche, and

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Chris Fleck: you know we’ll, we’ll see

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Chris Fleck: if that takes that that next step up the the obstacle, I think, for

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Chris Fleck: for sure is

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Chris Fleck: the fact that you, the the keyboard and the mouse interface, and some of those things are still obstacles. When you look at you know a an office environment where you know, are those full size, keyboard and mice going to be available.

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Chris Fleck: And then you know, that.

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Chris Fleck: Then you can effectively just do your phone and and have that that virtual desktop environment.

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Chris Fleck: you know, Covid, I think, has

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Chris Fleck: so, has shifted things to where people were going. you know more to this

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Chris Fleck: this hybrid environment, and in the office, and open seating, and so forth. But when Covid hit, everybody got a laptop.

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Chris Fleck: and I think you know, to to a certain extent. That’s a step backwards, right? And probably even impacts then clients and some of those you know, type implementations, because when everybody got a laptop, then that kind of sticks with them for a couple of years. Now, too.

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Todd Smith – Citrix: I think I

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Todd Smith – Citrix: sorry I I I think, Chris, to your point about, you know, when when Covid came around and people went to go work from home.

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Todd Smith – Citrix: they went from being a mobile worker.

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Todd Smith – Citrix: relying on phones and relying on a laptop and things like that to be more of a static

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Todd Smith – Citrix: office worker. The office location just changed right? So you move to

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Todd Smith – Citrix: you. Move from being working out of anywhere to working out of a fixed location almost every single day.

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Todd Smith – Citrix: so the mobility market, I think, probably took a little bit of a a hit there.

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Todd Smith – Citrix: but you know, getting back to the Nirvana phone concept, I mean, you know, if you could have

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Todd Smith – Citrix: a a combination of the phone

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Todd Smith – Citrix: and the Google Glass and some type of virtual keyboard together.

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Todd Smith – Citrix: You know the the the challenge with the Nirvana phone is when you start plugging in all these different devices onto the phone Look like it was on life support.

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Todd Smith – Citrix: in the experience was different. Right? So you have to. You have to prepare the environment where you want to talk the phone into

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Todd Smith – Citrix: but the the technology itself was phenomenal.

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Chris Fleck: Yeah, yeah.

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Andy Whiteside: the used cases and no Brainer and I Won’t Build a comment here, and Todd, if you have other comments about the 2 things we talked about so far. But, Chris, if if apple would just take the iphone and make it a truly dockable where you had a doc and a real keyboard and a real mouse and real proof rules could work right, would it not take off overnight?

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Chris Fleck: Well, you know, maybe

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Chris Fleck: we may see that, you know, when they’re forced to do usbc

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Chris Fleck: right, because that that’s clearly a obstacle like right now. In fact, because I think what’s happening is again, as it relates to organizations that are now

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Chris Fleck: kind of set up, for they’re putting a display on the workstation.

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Chris Fleck: but they and and now displays are, you know, standardizing on Usbc. Which is great.

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Chris Fleck: but you know, with with the when it comes to iphone, you still have to say, Well, I’m not going to carry this adapter around. You know another cable around with me, or, you know, leave it at the workstation at this peers and that kind of stuff right but I I

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Chris Fleck: they they’re They’re getting forced into Usbc. Right? So I think that that will create a a step up function.

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Chris Fleck: So that’s curious to me when you say they’re being forced in Usbc. I don’t know that story. Is it someone actually forcing them, or just the technology path is driving on there? No, i’m. Not sure the days. But yeah, the European regulatory groups are forcing it.

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Yeah.

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Andy Whiteside: he Bill. Anything we’ve covered that you want to ask Chris about. I know your technologies like the rest of us.

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Bill Sutton: No, I I think it’s interesting that the concept of the the Nirvana phone. I I think that to some degree

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Bill Sutton: the the the the creation of the ipad pro is kind of taken. The tablet

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Bill Sutton: form factor and kind of started to mix it with the laptop form factor. So I think that that was kind of a shift towards some sort of leveraging of apple related technology or tablet technology to to create. You know I in something that you could carry with you much more, much easier. But certainly

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Bill Sutton: they haven’t gotten that far with the phones. Not yet, Anyways, it’ll be interesting to see where that goes going forward.

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Chris Fleck: So one, you know, maybe we we’re gonna circle back to like currently in Citrix. But before we get there what we’re talking about

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Chris Fleck: the future anybody listening? if you haven’t tried it yet, and you probably have seen it, or maybe so, a headline, or a tweet or something

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Chris Fleck: I would recommend going out and kicking the tires on Chat Gpt.

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Chris Fleck: just Google it. You’ll find it if if you haven’t seen it or heard of it. It’s a you know a a

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Chris Fleck: open AI, one of the AI initiatives that actually Elon Musk was one of the co-founders. He’s off doing, you know different things now, but it’s incredibly

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Chris Fleck: scary. Good. so okay, here we go. so I put it up on the screen for those that watch the video later. But i’m i’m trying to figure out what this thing is, what I think I got exposed to this without knowing it the other day. What is it?

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Chris Fleck: So it it’s basically a

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Chris Fleck: a new chat service that is augmented or artificial intelligence machine learning base that has it. It’s not real time.

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Chris Fleck: You know it. They they basically it read the entire Internet up until 2,001, and it can create

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Chris Fleck: really, unbelievably realistic text. and you can say, write us, write an email, write a poem, write a song, but guess what it can also write code.

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Chris Fleck: And so you can say, and I was doing it the other day like, write a a power shell

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Chris Fleck: script for publishing, for published content with Citrix.

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Chris Fleck: and it did it.

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Chris Fleck: and it created the power shell script.

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Chris Fleck: it can go off and do queries. It can literally write

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Chris Fleck: just it’s just phenomenal, what? So not only it can write original content, and it can also like, in the case of code. If If you’ve got a bug, if you got something not working, you can post the code and say, Find what’s wrong.

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Chris Fleck: what’s wrong, or you could take. You could take an essay

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Chris Fleck: and say, make it better.

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Chris Fleck: and it fixes the grammar for you.

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Chris Fleck: So, anyway, yeah, that’s a a bit forward, looking but incredibly

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Chris Fleck: insightful in terms of or impactful. When you look at like how this may impact the future.

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Chris Fleck: I’m i’m not sure whether you impressed or scared

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Chris Fleck: what i’m. Sure it’s. It’s only been a week old, and i’m sure there’s like thousands of kids doing their homework with this. Now, you know, like writing book reports and essays and college admissions. It’s just like

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Chris Fleck: incredible.

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Chris Fleck: So, anyway, let’s circle back to

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Andy Whiteside: Here’s Here’s the hyperi thing that I mentioned. Where it’s a phone that gets presented down to your phone. That looks like a phone.

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Andy Whiteside: but it keeps you. It allows people to use their personal phone or, you know, have security. I don’t know if you’ve seen this. No, it’s pretty

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Andy Whiteside: pretty cool. Check out.

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Chris Fleck: Good. Sorry, Chris. Go ahead.

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Andy Whiteside: Well, let’s go One more trip down Memory Lane for something that did work. And Israel when you and I and Todd and Bill jump on the call we started talking about this thing called provisioning services, which is time, seemed unbelievably impossible as well. That’s how you and Todd got to know each other. You wanna you want to tell that story, and how that turned out.

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Chris Fleck: Sure. Yeah, that that’s fun story in in a lot of ways one. So so

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Chris Fleck: when when we

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Chris Fleck: first announced, and and jumped into the Pdi space right? So we that that originally came about, if if your call and some of the May listeners may you know, Vdi was first announced to the world. It was a 3 way joint venture offering with Citrix Vmware and Ibm so that that was that that came out and

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Chris Fleck: became, you know, pretty much a a new industry standard right beyond just the multi OS kind of multi-user OS. It was like, okay, everybody gets their own virtual machine. And what became obvious to me because we my team we were building.

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Chris Fleck: you know, early versions of that, and creating solutions, using it internally. And it became really obvious that, like storage was going to be the limiting factor.

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Chris Fleck: you know, just just both in terms of the amount of storage, and then the

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Chris Fleck: the manageability of

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Chris Fleck: you know, giving everybody at the time 20 days, which sounds like nothing, but even that headed up to a lot. And then we gave him 40 gigs, and that’s how you know. So it was obvious that that was going to be come a a really limiting factor, and that’s what prompted me to, you know, like, Go, go, look at okay. How do we solve that next limiting factor which was going to be storage. And in fact, that’s where came across ardent

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Chris Fleck: and decided to. you know I I got it initially as soon as it was described to me. you know, it’s like, yeah, this is really relevant. and as a matter of fact, before this even goes back before this time, which is I I did a startup

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Chris Fleck: before Citrix. Between Ivo and Citrix. I did a startup. There was a spin up from Ibm, where we had virtual storage. We we had a a blade server and a virtual disc.

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Chris Fleck: and you could drag and drop virtual disks. And it basically was an advanced version of Pixie that allowed you to do discussed booting. And and one of the things I I never got the chance to do, but I wanted to separate the hardware from the software, and you know, take it further.

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Chris Fleck: but when I saw Arden, so I was like, Wow! This is what I want. This is what I was looking to to actually do to have that flexibility from a storage standpoint, and so I I went up and met with the with pardons and met Todd, the the team, you know the artists team

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Chris Fleck: and at the time, you know it was funny. They were kind of given me the pitch.

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Chris Fleck: and it’s like I get it. I get it. I get it. You know it’s like I understood it entirely. but it was still awesome. I still remember you guys had this big wall of Pcs. where you were able to. you know, reboot everything and display you know, within seconds all the the same image on how many, how many images. Or Pcs. Was that type. So we had 255 physical devices, because we wanted to be able to show that we could.

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Todd Smith – Citrix: We could boot an entire class, c. Address space

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Todd Smith – Citrix: from a single image, and then

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Todd Smith – Citrix: be able to quickly flip that image over to, you know, in in the video shows us going from

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Todd Smith – Citrix: windows 7 to windows, 8 or vista.

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Todd Smith – Citrix: and then being able to take the same thing and slip it over. Eventually we were able to flip over to a Linux environment as well as a Server-based OS:

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Chris Fleck: Yeah, that that’s awesome I mean Demos Demos are killer right? They still are right, and that was that was killer for me. So I it’s like I understood the the concept going in, but just seeing that wall of displays was, it was awesome. And so yeah, what?

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Chris Fleck: What I also kind of discovered through that meeting was

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Chris Fleck: I wasn’t the only one or Citrix, you know we weren’t the only ones interested in I could. I could kind of figure read the tea leaves that. That there were other quarters interested in the company and the technology.

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Chris Fleck: And I still remember walking out in into the parking lot and

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Chris Fleck: calling Mark Templeton on on his cell and saying, Mark, we gotta buy these guys and we gotta do it fast.

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Andy Whiteside: You guys bought them other people licensed it for a while. I remember that story correct.

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No.

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yeah.

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Andy Whiteside: And and I love what you guys just about with the demos. That’s what I love about our space more anything else, I mean, really smart guys doing routing and switch. But you can’t demo that stuff the way you can the end user technologies that we’ve been playing with all these years, and and I use the word play. I I literally mean play it’s just fun to play with.

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Yep.

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Andy Whiteside: Yeah, I’m sure.

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Andy Whiteside: I’m sure. Bill remembers first time he booted into ardent’s, which became provisioning services, and was like, this isn’t possible. But I like what he’s doing.

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Bill Sutton: and the company I was working for at the time sent me up to what is it?

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Bill Sutton: And I spent a few days with Todd and company up there, getting trained on it, I think, right after, or very shortly after Citrix had acquired them because we were a company I worked for was a platinum partner, and so we got on the train very quickly.

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Todd Smith – Citrix: going and visiting a couple of customers with Bill and

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Todd Smith – Citrix: you know, it was a variety of different use. Cases, too. It was classroom environments. It was health care workstations. It was a variety of other

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Todd Smith – Citrix: other great use cases that was. That was the big benefit of of the technology. Was. It was adaptable.

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Todd Smith – Citrix: And we could. We could solve a lot of problems that way.

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Bill Sutton: Yep.

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Chris Fleck: today. Right? I mean it. Yes, is, you know it’s just become standardized with so many customers. you know they they they won’t. Give it up, and you know that’s

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Chris Fleck: that’s been like an obstacle to some of the the ones that that want to go to the cloud. But they’re they’re committed to to Pbs and the benefits there. So you know the the fact that we got that now working in in the clouds has made a big opportunity for for those kind of customers as well.

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Andy Whiteside: My thing for everything about provisioning services is the bridge that created between the physical and then the virtual world. While we were all still trying to figure out how to do that disk layering stuff so the Mcs could be a reality. It created a bridge that was so good that it’s still in existence to the point where you’re even having to move it to the cloud, because some people just won’t Give it up.

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Todd Smith – Citrix: Yeah.

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Andy Whiteside: Well, Chris, thanks for joining us today. The the blog that you wrote us says a look at the future of Citrix with our ctps. I thought this would give us a great opportunity to have you explain what’s going on at Citrix and explain your conversation you had with the ctps, the Citrix technology professionals and and what the cloud software group. And this is just a really good chance for some real sits right. Everybody on the phone here on the call. Call here the podcast to really kind of vet out what’s going on over there, and what we should expect

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Andy Whiteside: into the future so we can. We can walk through the blog, or we can just use this as an opportunity to talk to you about what you talk to the ctps about.

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Chris Fleck: So you know one of the things that that

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Chris Fleck: became obvious, as as we, you know. So everybody knows, I think, at this point right? So we’ve gone private. So we went from a public company to a private company. and now we’re owned by 2

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Chris Fleck: private equity companies that are effectively. They’re kind of acting as our board, but we’ve we’ve also got a a new CEO. So there was consternation about

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Chris Fleck: you know what’s the strategy who’s left? The people are looking at Linkedin and seeing people leave the company, and you know. So it it became obvious.

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Chris Fleck: in in talking with some some customers as well as you know, some of the folks in the in the Ctb. Kinda like the tech community, you know, not just ctps, but in general the the folks that engage with us and and our solution providers like like yourself, that you know there, there’s some concern out there like you know what’s what’s happening with Citrix? And we’re seeing people leave, and you know, are they going to continue to best? Are they going to continue to innovate?

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Chris Fleck: And

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Chris Fleck: you know what it started to get this message out like the the people running Citrix now. So Citrix is now a business unit within a cloud software group. So a cloud software group is now kind of the Umbrella company.

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Chris Fleck: and so the that we we, we we we got a good use now of cloud.com the domain. So check out cloud.com as kind of this this uber level umbrella company but we’ve merged with Tipco, but we’ve also now

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Chris Fleck: kind of identify. What are the primary business units that will be effectively managing their their own business per se, and and investing and and growing after the segment that they’re best suited for and for Citrix itself. So we’re keeping the

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Chris Fleck: the the brand and keeping the the product set. but I think most importantly, if you look at the top line, so you know we’ve got shred our

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Chris Fleck: Mola Poly, who’s been with Citrix for 22 years I think we’ve got Calvin, who’s been here 20 years we’ve got you. Andrew’s been here over 20 years. I’m hitting 20 years next month. So the the folks that are in the leadership positions at at Citrix. you know, we’ve got lots of experience, and I think you know pretty good engagement right with the the customers and the the solution providers and the

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Chris Fleck: the the the tech community at large. And we’re we’re we’re the ones now that are

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Chris Fleck: given the the responsibility to to take citrix forward, and and invest and grow. And that’s our mission, you know. So our mission is is exactly that like Go take care of our best customers. Take care of. you know the the not only the legacy we would build, but also that sector of delivering secure manageable applications out to whether it’s virtual desktops or mobile apps

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Chris Fleck: or web apps. It’s like that’s that’s our core value. Prop. It’s been our core value, prop and and and we’re getting the investment we need to. to pursue that. So that’s kind of like. The top level message is like literally, we’re we’re

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Chris Fleck: you know we’re we’re in good shape, and we’re investing and growing. you know the the that that we think are strategic

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Chris Fleck: and and not only from a product standpoint, but also some of the you know the the guidance not only guidance, but even, you know, resourcing that that we’re effectively planning for now, like the whole 23 is things like

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Chris Fleck: tech support and simplification.

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Chris Fleck: I think we’re a lot of our customers, and maybe you know resellers as well, and solution. Providers, you know, have have found

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Chris Fleck: complexity in terms of you know, just the programs and the skews, and you know, entitlements and what goes with what? And then some of those things are kind of recognized obstacles that we’re we’re now

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Chris Fleck: gonna prioritize to improve and make it easier to do business with Citrix, make it easier to engage with us.

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Chris Fleck: and quite frankly do a better job with tech support and be more responsive, and, you know, provide the the level of support that our our customers, you know, expect and and deserve. So you know we’re we’re really looking to.

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Chris Fleck: double down on on the customers that and the segments that that we’re going after.

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Andy Whiteside: I mean to me that that all sounds perfect right. I don’t. I don’t think I could have asked for anything better. Todd, what’s your take on

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Andy Whiteside: the changes that you know about that? Chris is articulating here.

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Todd Smith – Citrix: Yeah, I i’m really excited about it. I mean, I think there’s

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Todd Smith – Citrix: you know, some some great folks being put into leadership positions on the product side, as well as on the

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Todd Smith – Citrix: all of the rest of the company’s core

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Todd Smith – Citrix: or roles. I I think there’s a couple of things right? So the Chris just mentioned right focusing on

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Todd Smith – Citrix: servicing our existing customers and making sure that they get the best products out of us being able to grow

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Todd Smith – Citrix: into areas where it’s going to add value or open up new

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Todd Smith – Citrix: spaces for us and our customers to solve those problems. And the biggest thing is, you know, kind of getting back into a technology leadership role.

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Todd Smith – Citrix: in the industry.

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Todd Smith – Citrix: I think those are critical things. I’m really excited about that

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Bill Sutton: bill. Any comments. Yeah, I I would echo what Todd said, and and I agree with you, Andy. I mean, this is I don’t really have much to come in on. I’m really in happy to see things moving forward, and then the

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Bill Sutton: and the right folks look like they’re in the right places in the organization. You know, Sridar. I’ve known for a number of years, and he’s a he’s a really sharp technologist, and I think he’ll he’ll he’ll do very well in that role, and and i’m glad that he’s still a part of it as well as the other folks there as well.

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Andy Whiteside: Yeah, Chris, I’ll. I’ll make this comment. You know it. It started to feel like the sales starting to lead to company. It was almost the tail wagon. The dog. It feels like you guys are getting back to the the technology, driving the company for good technologies, which I believe you’ll drive everybody forward with a little bit of help from

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Andy Whiteside: marketing and and partnerships like that or something.

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Chris Fleck: Yeah. Well, you know, the reality is we You know we we’re shifting right, the the the resources. And we we will be

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Chris Fleck: spending less a lot less on traditional marketing, you know. Kind of like that blanket, you know. High level market marketing kind of initiatives.

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Chris Fleck: and we’re going to shift to more of the technical marketing and peer to peer.

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Chris Fleck: And again, that’s like Why, now, I I own some of that right with the user groups. And you know, with the the technical folks that are out there in the community. And we really want to, You know pretty much. I think. You guys.

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Chris Fleck: you know you help Foster. This right, is there’s a lot of our our existing customers. They have citrix champions, right? They’re citrics champions all over the industry. but we have to do a better job kind of feeding them right, giving them you know what they need to to get their job done getting them what they need to.

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Chris Fleck: whether it’s doing demos to their business leadership right to show. You know. Here’s how this new feature could help the the organization. Further. you know it. It’s kind of that. The guerrilla marketing aspect of getting technology in the hands of of the folks that can make a difference. And so that’s what we’re gonna be putting, You know, resources as opposed to kind of like the high level

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Chris Fleck: message conventional marketing you’ve seen in the past.

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Andy Whiteside: and and I could be wrong here. But I think the addressable space is still very big. For example, if I were to go to a survey of clients out there who own citrix, I wonder if they have just as many VPN licenses as they do citrix licenses. Maybe i’m close. Maybe it’s one way or the other, but it’s not all that the spirit between the 2, and I don’t know about you. But customers should not be connecting through VPN at this point when they don’t have to

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Chris Fleck: a perfect example. Yep, right. They they’ve got there’s still lots of VPN’s out there. They’re still

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Chris Fleck: you know. There’s there’s

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Chris Fleck: laptops right that are not necessarily being optimized the way they could be. there’s consumer browsers being used when they could be using an enterprise browser that’s got the controls that. That that put them in a better security posture and and part of

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Chris Fleck: you know, the again the strategy is we don’t need high-level marketing

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Chris Fleck: to reach the same customer that we’re in already. What we need is to better educate and better engage with the the tech community. that’s already in place at those customers. But we we’ve gotta, you know. Give them the compelling

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Chris Fleck: reasons and the compelling demos and and pilots to show. Here’s how we can do a better job than a VPN. As a example, and there’s so much that we, the Citrix people don’t I literally. I just did it.

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Andy Whiteside: I just went to my citrus workspace app right clicked on it, and one of the options was, Citrix, a browser, secure browser or something, and I did not know until that moment that it was there. But as you said that i’m like crap, i’m using the consumer grade Browser.

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Andy Whiteside: Why am I doing that? And then boom there it was, and and I. You know I live this stuff every day. I went to the Amazon Conference last week or 2 weeks ago, and the amount of people that are just now discovering the concept of remoting protocols and desktop, and at virtualization it’s unbelievable. How many people I’ve been in the dark all this time!

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Chris Fleck: Right right. Well, i’m, i’m happy you. You discovered that the browser and so another thing we’re doing to try to simplify per se is, you know we we kind of

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Chris Fleck: probably messed up when we, with the the name, the the secure browser, which got conflated with Well, there’s a secure browser service, which is the hosted kind of version of a browser. And then there’s this new thing that we called workspace browser, which was the local thing. But

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Chris Fleck: when people say secure browser. You weren’t sure what they talking about. Are they talking about the hosted thing, or the local thing? and lots of folks the majority of folks I even know we have a local thing right? but so what we’re doing now is is again

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Chris Fleck: helping simplify. And so we we’ve renamed the the the local

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Chris Fleck: browser, citrix, enterprise, browser. So this is a enterprise worthy browser, that gives you many of the same kind of security manageability.

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Chris Fleck: features that you get with a virtualized version of a browser, but without quite frankly, the overhead without the servers, and without all

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Chris Fleck: of the infrastructure required. But you can do things like control, copy and paste and print and manage. You know exactly what’s happening inside that browser, and then you can. You can deliver it with our secure private access feature, so that you don’t need a VPN anymore.

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Chris Fleck: And so that’s a I think, a killer

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Chris Fleck: opportunity for any solution. Provider Anybody inside a a citrix environment where you’ve got see that today? You can now do this? and so yeah, that’s a that’s a big one, and then what we did is we were renamed the hosted version

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Chris Fleck: to

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Chris Fleck: the remote, remote browser isolation, Rbi, which is kind of what the industry has already been calling it so. So basically you’ve got enterprise browser and remote browser isolation, and and they can work together or independently. And so those are those are 2 big pieces again, of our initiative going forward, because.

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Chris Fleck: you know, the reality is web apps. Keep growing. Sas apps. Keep growing it in terms of adoption. but we don’t think the legacy apps are disappearing. We think they’re still there, especially for big companies. but being able to put them all together in the same place

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Chris Fleck: is, you know, really valuable for for end users for sure, but also for it.

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Chris Fleck: and so that’s actually, you know, another change that we’re making here.

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Chris Fleck: and I think it’s in here someplace. But and that is storefront, right so on prem storefront. Chris, Could I highlight real quick? I just want to make sure if I heard you on prem something in this case storefront

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Chris Fleck: go ahead.

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Chris Fleck: Yeah, so let me go deeper there, right on prime anything, right? So what’s the last time you heard a citrix marketing person talk about on-prem. Anything

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Andy Whiteside: any any cloud coming? I I do a lot of presentations, and I talk about on-prem for you in my data center and in the cloud. If i’m not helping you understand all the above. Then I’m not really helping you. I’m just driving you towards what I want you to do, so I can make money off of you. It needs to be an open conversation, right right? And so

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Chris Fleck: part of our our strategy shift is, as you probably know, you know the last couple of years we we pretty much went.

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Chris Fleck: you know, all in on cloud. from the the perspective of the the product investment. and we let

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Chris Fleck: features like storefront effectively. You know we’re supporting them, but we weren’t adding features to them. We’re having all the you know, the new inventions, and so forth to to the cloud versions, with the intent to try to encourage, You know, customers to go there.

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Chris Fleck: but as we’ve kind of done a reset, and we’ve done this reset over the course of this year, and you know, not only reset the organization, but also looking at the product, and the reality is

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Chris Fleck: that that our customers are continued to tell us that even as they move to the cloud, most of them, especially the big ones, are not gonna go all in. They’re gonna go hybrid. Many of them are hybrid already. And so we we realized, and we’re shifting now to say.

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Chris Fleck: All right. how do we best serve those customers? That are, you know, and in some cases, even like the government scenario on Prem is still the right story, even if it goes into a you know, a a private cloud or a Gov cloud it’s still the on prem, you know, version of effectively of the software stack. And so we are.

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Chris Fleck: we’re going to be adding features to critical components like storefront that that are, that that we think will be very useful for our our customers. And yes, you know the storefront, General and then there’s specifically. For example, storefront

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Chris Fleck: with with netscare scalar, and and the Enterprise browser, and being able to, you know, provide a solution there. that that doesn’t have

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Chris Fleck: some of the potentially obstacles for adoption. You know that that we that we saw and and we’re effectively learning from.

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Bill Sutton: Well, obviously, I you know, being a technical guy, I want to. I want to see the details and put it my lab and all that, as as most of us do, but it certainly is encouraging

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Bill Sutton: to see. see Citrix taking. You know kind of struggling back to those customers that

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Bill Sutton: that do have an on-prem presence. I mean about to provide them with the same the same level of of technology that that is offered

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Bill Sutton: today to a large degree in the cloud. So I I like

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Bill Sutton: what they said in this. What Chris said in this article about meeting them, meeting them where they are, because I, you know, like you said, a lot of customers are are hybrid cloud, or they’re even all on prem, and are starting to dip their toes in the cloud. And Obviously they need the goodness of the cloud on Prem right now, and it looks like Citrix is

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Andy Whiteside: taking a step towards helping them meet that goal. So i’m going to tweak your words slightly where they currently are also meeting on where we think they’re going to have to go. There’s that the all the time about skating to where the hockey books going to be, not where it is. And I think we’re all going to see a a world where the right companies are going to be there when you need to fall back a little bit, or or change what you’re doing from your cloud strategy, which

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Bill Sutton: there’s going to have to be a lot of people that are at the very least going to have to change their strategy

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Andy Whiteside: Todd thoughts.

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Todd Smith – Citrix: Yeah, I think it’s, you know, for for the past couple of years I think customers have

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Todd Smith – Citrix: really been responding back to us with the fact that

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Todd Smith – Citrix: you know they’re not ready

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Todd Smith – Citrix: to go to the cloud a 100%, or they’re restricted as to what they can do. So you know the the fact that we’ve

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Todd Smith – Citrix: they were

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Todd Smith – Citrix: returning to the message of You know we’ve got your back, and we can adapt towards whatever your demands are, what your deeds are.

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Todd Smith – Citrix: it’s still consume and and deliver using our technology. I I think that’s going to be critical message to get out there.

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Todd Smith – Citrix: And once again this is something that the community has been asking for.

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Todd Smith – Citrix: almost since we the day we made the announcement that we’re we’re moving to the cloud.

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Todd Smith – Citrix: So this on prem requirement is is not something that. And and here’s the thing. The oftentimes the customers aren’t the one making the decisions about this movement to the cloud or not.

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Todd Smith – Citrix: It’s regulatory. It’s by.

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Todd Smith – Citrix: you know. the government

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Todd Smith – Citrix: regulations. So it could be banking regulations. It could be a variety of different reasons why they’re doing it that are completely out of their control.

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Andy Whiteside: Yeah. And and new new reasons could pop up tomorrow or a year from now. Whenever.

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Andy Whiteside: yeah.

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Andy Whiteside: I think that’s just a sign of Citrix letting the the technical guys, you understand business. Run the company, and, you know, going back to my tail wagon. The dog thing it. The customers and partners felt like it. It kind of over rotated, and it’s good to reset it here.

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Andy Whiteside: Chris. One more on the product side. Citrix endpoint management coming back or maintaining. You explain that one to us. Sure. Yeah. Well,

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Chris Fleck: again. We probably over Rotate it on this one.

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Chris Fleck: and what what you know we had been going down a path to

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Chris Fleck: and the life it. But we had so many of our customers basically object and say, hey, you know, we we’re using it. It’s working for us. It’s working great and and don’t

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Chris Fleck: don’t let it. you know, go into life, and we listen quite frankly. You know we we said All right. and again, some of this. Some of those customers are again big customers that are using the the on-prem versions of of of that, and

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Chris Fleck: they it it’s just doing a really good job there. So we’ve we. We looked at that decision and and shifted accordingly. So you know we’re we’re now gonna continue. That’s not only support, but again we’re make sense to add features. we’ll, we’ll do that, too.

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Andy Whiteside: Yeah, I think that’s another evidence of our evidence that you guys are listening to and seeing what’s really going on, I mean, no matter if a company goes all in on cloud, or what they’re still going to be in points to manage, and probably multiple endpoints per user to manage it’s a very addressable space. It just doesn’t go away.

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Yeah

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Andy Whiteside: Todd. Get Chris on the hook here. Anything you would like to ask him while we still got him for another minute.

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Todd Smith – Citrix: So so yeah, in Chris, I I think the last point you made about the bringing back the the more of the technical community focused

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Todd Smith – Citrix: events and marketing events. But it’s absolutely critical. I’ve been a huge proponent of this such a user group community before they actually became the Cgc’s.

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Todd Smith – Citrix: it’s our way to get back

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Todd Smith – Citrix: in front of the folks that are asking the technical questions and doing a technical work

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Todd Smith – Citrix: as a way to embrace them, and

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Todd Smith – Citrix: you know, help support them and what they’re what they’re doing on a daily basis, and you know they’re sharing information. They’re sharing best ideas, best practices, and more importantly, it is a sense of community. So i’m. I’m grateful to you. You know that’s fallen under your your sphere of influence.

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Chris Fleck: Well, thanks for the plug there. so yeah, I Anybody listening, I would definitely encourage you to to just if you haven’t been to one, or if you know any.

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Chris Fleck: you know, in the nearby towns go, check it out. Then listen in or participate. And and if you think you have a critical mass in a particular location that you’re at, we will help you in terms of get a user group started. So as as Todd said, I think it’s a great way to share info, and and that you know that really is going to be our Our strategy. To to engage with with our customers is to have that the folks doing the work, you know.

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Andy Whiteside: learn from each other, and and and get up to speed that way. So, Chris, I want to take that one specifically, and maybe follow up with you as the Citrus user group thing. There’s so much potential there. But you run into a situation where there might not be the right

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Andy Whiteside: Ctp. In a market, or maybe that Ctp is not the most.

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Andy Whiteside: but then have the biggest personality and the markets where you have them. It’s great. The markets where you don’t have them. It’s a struggle. I I would love to talk to you more about how to get Citrix more involved. Quick example. I just let a citric user group here. The day is great event. We did have another enough of tennis, but great event. But the one I went to. Just before that I walked in, and the citric salesperson was presenting the technology. Why, a sales engineer stood over in the corner and didn’t say a word. I want to work with you to fix that.

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Chris Fleck: I’m the guy now. So well, my team, but you know, feel free to reach out to me. and we need to. We need to fix that and by and it doesn’t have to be, You know, a lot of them are connected to Ctv. But, by the way, anybody from a user group that’s interested you doesn’t have to be a Ctp. To be part of that. That just happens.

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Chris Fleck: A lot of them are active. But yeah, I’m definitely open for ideas on improving the the user group, both in terms of quality and and reach

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good.

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Todd Smith – Citrix: and I think the important part here is, you know, get involved. Get go out to my cgc.org

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Todd Smith – Citrix: and sign up there’s a variety of local user groups. But then it is also a a ton of virtual events that are going on

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Todd Smith – Citrix: everything, from discussion boards to virtual webinars, to special interest groups as well. So

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Todd Smith – Citrix: once again, if you go out to my Cg. Cgc. Or

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Todd Smith – Citrix: register, and start participating.

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Chris Fleck: Yeah, thanks for pointing that out. You’re right Doesn’t have to just be local. It’s you know that. That’s one thing. The Covid, you, you know, did positively. It it kind of forced the that that infrastructure, or, you know, engagement to to go virtual one, make it available.

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Andy Whiteside: That’s what i’m excited about here. I think, Chris, you can nationally influence that with a local effect.

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Andy Whiteside: with with using your

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Andy Whiteside: place in this.

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Andy Whiteside: with a true technologist, is what i’m getting at

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Andy Whiteside: and that should help us overcome

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Andy Whiteside: the kind of stigma that the citrus user group has been tagged with in many places, not all, but in some places a lot of places these days

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Chris Fleck: perfect. But we we we need the feedback, good, bad, or ugly, to to to make it better.

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Yeah.

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Andy Whiteside: yeah.

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Andy Whiteside: All right. Well.

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Andy Whiteside: Bill.

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Bill Sutton: anything you want to ask, Chris, while we still get him on here. Well, I just I’m just pleased to see that the programs, you know, C. You Gc. In particular, of course, but also the Ctp. And Cta programs. We we work. We had Z integr work with the several of the ctps. We have one that’s that’s a contractor for us regularly. And

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Bill Sutton: so I see the value. I know the value of those folks, and and the knowledge that they that they possess, and the ability to share that knowledge effectively. So very glad to see those programs continue. I think they’re valuable for Citrix for partners and for the customers. and obviously, C. You, Gc: the the only thing I would add to what Todd said is

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Bill Sutton: Cgc. Is a good source of blogs as well. I I know that I’ve had several of them shared with me recently from my team, saying, hey, check this out this this this new way of doing something, so those are are very welcome as well.

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No

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Chris Fleck: good, great feedback. Thanks.

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Chris Fleck: So, Chris. Your chance. Anything that we haven’t brought up here that you want to get out while we’ve got listeners listening. Yeah, Well, I would say, the the big one is yeah, and you you brought it up. The fact that you discover there’s a browser hidden inside workspace app like Go try it out. Try out the

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Chris Fleck: the the Enterprise Browser. because i’m sure I guarantee everyone listening here as end users using web apps.

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Chris Fleck: you know. They probably both internal guaranteed with Sas apps as well. and this is a way to add security and to pull it together with your existing virtual apps. and do it, you know seamlessly. So? that that’s my one. Ask is, try out the the enterprise browser, and give us feedback. Give me feedback, it’s. I think it’s a a really strategic, you know initiative for citrics, and

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Andy Whiteside: want to see that succeed. Here’s a dumb question for you. Can I PIN that thing to the start? Board or task? Bar both

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Andy Whiteside: the browser.

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Chris Fleck: yes. Now what you can’t do yet, but coming is launching it separate from the the

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Chris Fleck: works based App.

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Chris Fleck: Now it’s You’ve got to be in workspace app, but we’re we’re the path we’re on is to to make that more and more of a a primary ui. So we’re very, very in tune with security conversations here internally and with our customers. I would love just to take all the browsers out of my OS

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Andy Whiteside: and just

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Andy Whiteside: use the secure browser.

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Andy Whiteside: Both the enterprise browser from Citrix, but still, like the secure browser service name. But whatever it’s called, I would like to just have those, and that’s it. That’s all you could use on a Z integr or owned machine. That would be awesome.

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Chris Fleck: Yeah, that makes sense, right. It it makes sense, and it puts you in control, and you can have a combination of whether you’re running a local or running a virtually. And you decide based on the kind of the the security requirements and the features you need.

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Chris Fleck: Yeah, he’s the thing chromium-based what’s the under.

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Chris Fleck: you know. So we we added our own IP on on top of that. But, the fact that it’s premium based means that you kind of inherit the compatibility

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Chris Fleck: that that you get from from Chrome in terms of you know all the the web apps that are out there

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Chris Fleck: because of that chrome and Monday underpinning, and you know one of the questions that comes up is, Well, what happens when you get a vulnerability? You know a cbe against you know, chrome or premium, and we’ve got we. We’ve got an answer for that as well to to do a a rapid update.

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Andy Whiteside: So here’s one for you guys. real quick, so I don’t put chrome on my devices anymore. It’s in my virtual desktop my team. Put it in there. Can I can I uninstall

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edge.

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Andy Whiteside: Remember when you could uninstall internet explorer, can you uninstall edge?

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Bill Sutton: I’m pretty sure the answer is, yes, because on most new OS’s you have to install it. I mean, like I know, on server OS’s, and I know on windows 10. You typically have to go out and install it, because by default it puts either the old edge or or

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Bill Sutton: there. I say, ie. On there.

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Bill Sutton: So I know that you can. You have to install it on there, so I presume you can uninstall it on when there’s 11. I don’t know.

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Bill Sutton: Yeah, so I think it’s native to win this 11.

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Andy Whiteside: Well, I’m gonna be trying that today, and if I can I started to type. I explore in the search window edge comes up. I don’t know if it’s an explorers, even still in this thing.

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Chris Fleck: But i’m gonna go looking around. I’m gonna see if I can rip out all the browsers and just use that one and see how it goes Great! I’d love to hear the the outcomes.

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Yeah.

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Andy Whiteside: Well, Chris, thanks for joining thanks for going through what was in the the blog with us, and glad to see Citrix coming back to its roots.

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Chris Fleck: Great? Well, thanks for the feedback and the encouragement, and looking forward to to working with you and teams to to not only, you know, get the message out, but also, you know, Help Help your your customers, you know, manage their environments.

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Andy Whiteside: So I I just thought of this one hopefully. Doesn’t put you on the spot. I know you can’t officially answer it yourself. But we would love to have synergy back

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Andy Whiteside: any thoughts on that one.

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Chris Fleck: Yeah, Personally, I would as well.

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Chris Fleck: And you know what I mean next year. I’m not anticipating it. We will be doing some regional events but not the the big full scale synergy. you know I look beyond next year, you know. I i’m, i’m hopeful because it really is.

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Chris Fleck: You know. There, there’s something about the the in real life kind of engagement that you get

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Andy Whiteside: with, especially with a global kind of audience that my quick thoughts on that I would combine the synergy road shows with Cgc. Excel, and maybe it would breathe life into the Cgc stuff.

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Andy Whiteside: and you’ll get kill 2 birds, one stone kind of thing.

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Andy Whiteside: and and try to, you know. Use the 2 to to bounce off each other

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Chris Fleck: right? Right? Yep.

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Chris Fleck: so yeah, that that’s a current discussion that we had Friday and going to continue at this week

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Chris Fleck: looking at the schedules there.

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Bill Sutton: Well, Chris, thanks for the time. I’m sure you got other things to go, do we? We appreciate it, and we look forward to talking to you again down the road.

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Todd Smith – Citrix: Thank you, Chris. On top, bye.