Citrix, IBM team up for business continuity

Citrix Systems launched its annual technology conference Monday by unveiling plans with IBM for a business continuity product to be used by workers after natural disasters and other emergencies.

The product, code-named Project Kent, includes a USB device that works with laptops or other computers to find employees who can no longer work in an office location and to gain access to applications for collaborative efforts, officials from the companies said. A worker could establish connectivity from wherever a network could be reached after a fire, flood or some other disruption.

Pilot testing of the Project Kent product will begin next year, said Russ Lindburg, director of business continuity and resiliency services at IBM. The Citrix device will be offered as a part of IBM's Virtual Workplace Continuity Service, he said. The Citrix IForum Global 2006 conference is being held in Orlando.

In addition to Project Kent, Citrix Monday announced its Dynamic Desktop Initiative with 12 business partners, including IBM and several Windows PC and server manufacturers. The dynamic desktop concept allows a company to refresh and manage its desktop PCs from the data center, which can lower management costs and improve performance and flexibility for each user.

Citrix announced an initial software product for the new Dynamic Desktop initiative called Desktop Broker, which runs on its Presentation Server 4. A trial version of Desktop Broker will be available online on Nov. 6. Meanwhile, Citrix said it will build a comprehensive desktop management product line early in 2007.

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