If you want to understand the differences in remote desktop solutions, you are probably most interested in Amazon Workspaces and Citrix.  However the exact specifications can get lost in the some of the marketing speak so here is a simple table to explain the differences:

FeatureCitrix HDXAWS Workspaces on PColPAWS Workspaces on WSP
Clients SupportedWindows, MacOS, Linux, AndroidWindows, MacOS, Linux, AndroidWindows & MacOS only
Clipboard RedirectionYesYesYes
Browser Content RedirectionYesNoNo
Audio Output RedirectionYesYesOnly on Windows
Audio Input (Mic) RedirectionYesNoYes
Webcam RedirectionYesNoYes
MS Teams AV OptimizationYesNoNo
Local Printer RedirectionYesWin & Mac OnlyWin & Mac Only
USB Drive RedirectionYesNoNo
Smart Card RedirectionYesNoYes
Security WatermarkingYesNoNo
GPU SupportYesYesNot Yet
Max Latency (RTT)<300ms<100ms<250ms
Average Bandwidth100 kbps100-500 kbps“broadband”

* In the coming months we will expand this table to include Microsoft Azure Virtual Desktop

There are a couple of features here that you may not be familiar with if you live in the Microsoft world, like we do:

What is Citrix Browser Content Redirection?

Browser Content Redirection is an really impressive feature from Citrix that is the rough equivalent to split tunneling in the network world.  The idea is that when you are on a Citrix desktop session whatever pages you are surfing are actually coming from your desktop and not Citrix.

citrix browser redirection - windows 11

The Citrix client downloads the content on your local computer which also performs any rendering or decoding, and then seamlessly uploads it into the Citrix session.

This means that your local computer is chewing up its own bandwidth and your local CPU & GPU are handling any rendering work.  That saves the backend Citrix server an enormous amount of effort (CPU & bandwidth) which both saves money and improves the user experience.

What is Citrix Watermarking?

Citrix Watermarking allows a semitransparent graphic to be placed over the content on a Citrix session.  Much like companies that sell stock graphics will let anyone see their images but with a very light branding overlay (unless you have paid for them) making them useless for production use.

what is a citrix watermark

Citrix Watermarking is handy for those very security sensitive companies that want to strongly deter their staff from taking screen shots or recording the screen.  If staff were to take a screen grab it would show the watermark which likely tells anyone looking at the screen capture where it came from and possibly who took it.


 


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