What is ICA Citrix?

What is ICA Citrix?What is ICA Citrix? : With Citrix announcing that the release of XenApp 7.6 and XenDesktop 7.6 are scheduled for September 2015, businesses are now in a dilemma as to whether they should immediately migrate to the new version, wait for some time or opt for a new tool. In this context, it is important to understand Citrix products, components, network protocols and architecture to make an informed decision. This article gives an insight into the pros and cons of one of its components, ICA Citrix.

An Overview of ICA Citrix – What is ICA Citrix ?

ICA or Independent Computing Architecture is Citrix’s alternative to Microsoft RDP or Remote Desktop Protocol. This protocol is designed by Citrix to specifically deliver graphical-display data along with input commands of mouse and keyboard over the network. This proprietary protocol provides specifications for data being transferred between servers and clients while not being bound to any platform. It listens on TCP port 1494. You can also encapsulate it in CGP (Common Gateway Protocol) on TCP 2598.

Initially, WinFrame used this protocol to run Windows applications on suitable Windows servers where client devices were able to access them easily. XenApp and XenDesktop are more recent products that use ICA Citrix. From XenDesktop 3.0, this protocol’s capabilities evolved into HDX suite in 2009. Just like RDP, ICA is not bound to any platform, thereby allowing Citrix Receiver Client devices running on any platform such as Linux, Unix, Mac, iOS or Android to remotely access server resources.

Limitations with ICA Citrix

Network latency and performance are the two most important considerations while using ICA Citrix protocol. For instance, if you try to deliver a graphics-intensive application over a slow-bandwidth network, it does not offer a rich user experience; you need to compress and optimize for it to become usable by the client. If the client device runs on a different platform, the server has to deliver the actual bitmap data over the network.

Microsoft RDP vs. ICA Citrix

There are other protocols such as Microsoft RDP and VMware’s PC-over-IP (PCoIP) that are normally used in remote networks. Initially, RDP delivered lower performance on graphics delivery when compared against HDX/ICA. However, Microsoft came out with RemoteFX which delivers a rich graphical end-user experience, even on low-bandwidth networks. Moreover, Windows is still the most used OS and RemoteFX is a preferred choice by many. However, RemoteFX officially supports only Windows and Mac clients. While HDX supports multiple platforms and OS, the cost factor and complexity in installation and deployment is a concern. Therefore, in this regard, Parallels Remote Application Server provides the best solution.

Parallels Remote Application Server Makes a Difference

Parallels Remote Application Server leverages Microsoft RemoteFX technology to provide enhanced RDP performance over any OS. As RDP is built into clients on all major devices, it makes it easy for businesses to quickly configure and run virtual networks. Parallels RAS is easy to deploy and use. Using this tool, you can quickly build secure remote networks and publish remote desktops and applications from a centralized location. Additionally, it supports second level authentication and offers a full set of features such as load balancing, device redirection, reporting, etc. Furthermore, it supports all major hypervisors, OSes and platforms. By overcoming the limitation of RDP, Parallels RAS takes your published resources to any device. Most importantly, Parallels RAS comes at a fraction of the cost of Citrix solutions.

Gain all the advantages of ICA Citrix while reducing cost and complexities with Parallels RAS.



What is ICA Citrix? : Independent Computing Architecture | Wikipedia

What is ICA Citrix? :Citris ICA Virtual Channels Overview | Citrix

What is Independent Computing Architecture (ICA)? | Domsoft

What is ICA? What opens a ICA? | WhatIsTechTarget

What is ICA Citrix? : ICA | Webopedia

What is ICA Citrix? : Independent Computing Architecture (ICA) | Brianmadden

Comparing remote display protocols: RemoteFX vs. HDX vs. PCoIP | TechTarget

What is ICA Citrix? Citrix HDX technologies for optimizing the virtualization experience | Citrix


Parallels Remote Application Server