Citrix Systems Inc. is integrating its MetaFrame presentation server and its portal application with new capabilities for application sharing and single sign-on.
The company last week said it is combining its flagship MetaFrame XP software with its NFuse Elite portal product into Citrix MetaFrame Access Suite. As part of the announcement, Citrix is renaming NFuse Elite as MetaFrame Secure Access Manager.
Citrix, of Fort Lauderdale, Fla., is rounding out the suite with two new products. The first, MetaFrame Password Manager, provides single-sign-on capabilities to applications accessed within MetaFrame, thanks to technology licensed from Passlogix Inc. The second, MetaFrame Conferencing Manager, allows users to share and edit applications served through MetaFrame.
Ohio Valley Supply Co. has been using MetaFrame XP and NFuse Elite. MIS Manager Shawn Woodward said hes looking forward to having access to more content delivery agents in the upgraded MetaFrame Secure Access Manager product.
“You can custom-build personalized Web sites for departments and small companies,” said Woodward, in Cincinnati. “Its so easy to customize and deliver applications.”
Woodward said another key benefit is being able to provide users who spend a lot of time away from the home office—about 80 percent of Ohio Valley Supplys work force—with a consistent Web-based interface to their applications, even when they dont have access to their desktops.
Woodward said MetaFrame Conferencing Manager will give his organization many of the same benefits of a videoconferencing solution. He foresees the company using it for training seminars.
“It allows you to shadow each other,” Woodward said. “You can go through presentations or look at applications and documents together and combine it with audio conferencing without having to use third-party applications. And you can launch it over low-bandwidth connections; you dont require [a] high-speed [network].”
The products of Citrix MetaFrame Access Suite will ship at different times. MetaFrame XP Presentation Server Release 3 will ship in conjunction with Microsoft Corp.s Windows Server 2003 early next quarter. Conferencing Manager and Secure Access Manager are expected to ship also around that time, with Password Manager slated to ship by June.
Pricing for MetaFrame Server remains at $290 to $400 per concurrent user license. Pricing for the rest of the suite has not yet been determined.
In related news, BackWeb Technologies Ltd. this week will announce the next version of its ProactivePortal product, an infrastructure technology that provides offline access to Web portals and other Web-based applications. ProactivePortal 3.0 goes beyond the read-only capabilities of previous versions by enabling users to update information in applications and resync automatically once the user is online again, said company officials in San Jose, Calif.