To introduce myself, I am Sridhar Mullapudi from the Presentation Server product management team. I want to talk about our upcoming Mac ICA Client release and also request participation in a Beta program to give us some feedback. If you are interested, send a mail to Mac-ICAClient-Beta@citrix.com. As a Mac person myself, I am excited about this long awaited release. The main features in this release are

  • Universal Binary Client – This client will run natively on Intel and PowerPC based Macs
  • Seamless Windows – Ah! Finally. I guess I don have to explain what this feature is
  • Session Sharing – Multiple application sessions from a user can share the same session. This means faster application launch times for subsequent applications.
  • Improved file transfer speeds (at least twice as fast as before). You will see a big difference when you transfer files over a high latency link
  • Session Reliability – This will let users reconnect automatically to the application(s) when connection is lost without displaying annoying dialogs
  • Pass-through authentication – This is now enabled using Kerberos (the local machine and the PS environment should be set up to enable Kerberos)
  • SpeedScreen image acceleration – This helps improve user experience when viewing web pages that have images etc.
  • SpeedScreen Progressive Display – This is a cool feature introduced in PS 4.5 that dramatically improves (provides a local experience) when accessing 2-D applications etc
  • SecureICA – This is not a new feature but we dropped it in the last client release and are introducing back due to strong customer request. Though Citrix strongly recommends using SSL for the ICA encryption needs, customers still use and like the simplicity of SecureICA and hence this support will be maintained for a while.
  • Printing enhancements – Any printer available to local Mac application will be available for PS delivered applications. Users can also pick and choose their printer (not just relying on their default printer) and can change page sizes, layouts etc
  • Keyboard Pass-through This will give the user an option of using Mac specific keyboard shortcuts that can be applied to the ICA Client itself (without passing it to the server application)

Mac OS 10.5, 10.4 and 10.3 versions will be supported with this client (though the recommended OS versions are 10.4 and 10.5)

Mac ICA Client is a high priority for Citrix and we will constantly innovate on this platform (we have already started planning for the next release). Some cool things we are thinking for the future are, ability to subscribe to applications (so you can put just the apps you need on your doc or desktop and can always have a one click access to them), much better integration with local desktop (use application icon instead of Citrix icon for the app on the dock, spotlight integration, simpler file type association etc). If you have any suggestions, feel free to share it with us.