Hampshire County Council has gone live with the latest version of the Citrix thin client platform as part of a five-year, £40m IT transformation project that is saving the council £4m a year in IT costs.
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The deployment will allow the council to bring more users onto the Citrix system and extend it to mobile workers, giving them access to SAP and other core applications.
The council completed an SAP installation for more than 9,000 users earlier this year (Computer Weekly, 14 March).
The new users who access the Citrix/SAP infrastructure will come from shared services projects involving Portsmouth District and Borough Councils and local NHS organisations and schools.
NHS staff will mainly use the Citrix/SAP system to access social care systems, and the Portsmouth councils will use it for highways management and road maintenance systems, said Dave Reynolds, technical services manager at Hampshire County Council.
Hampshire County Council went live over a single weekend in June with Citrix Presentation Server 4, Windows Server 2003 and Office 2003.
The move went “exceptionally well”, said Reynolds, who described pre-implementation stress testing, which took place over a six-month period, as the greatest challenge.
“It does not matter what sorts of stress testing tools you have, having a definitive answer on whether we can accept a certain number of users on the system is difficult. It is hard to mimic what 11,000 users will do at any one time,” he said.
The council has been using Citrix thin client technology since 1997 and supports 11,000 users at 8,000 desktops across 400 sites.
Citrix to improve apps centralisation
Citrix is expected to outline enhancements to its products, which centralise applications for delivery over a network, at its user conference in Edinburgh this week (3-5 July).
Among the organisations speaking at the Citrix iForum will be online gambling firm Betfair. Thomas Wythe from Betfair will discuss how the organisation has deployed Citrix’s application optimisation technology, Netscaler, across multiple application servers.
Betfair said the system has cut bandwidth costs and downtime, and has increased scalability.
Andrew Hewison from GB Oils will describe how the oil distribution company implemented Citrix Presentation Server to enable it to deliver its main business applications to a dispersed workforce in 52 UK locations.