Over the years I have worked with many different makes and models of thin clients. In previous years, the management software of most thin clients left a lot to be desired, particularly from the hardware manufacturers with the largest presence in enterprise IT, I'll let you guess which those are :-) When Douglas Brown joined IGEL Technologies, it piqued my interest. When I saw IGEL were giving away a Tesla at VMworld 2017, it piqued my interest even more! I played around with the IGEL Universal Management Suite with a virtual instance of their UDC3 product (Universal Desktop Converter which you can use to deploy the lightweight IGEL OS to physical hardware. This is great for repurposing outdated hardware). With this I tried the typical use cases for a thin client. I tested with my published applications and virtual desktops. No big surprises there! Everything worked as expected.

There is integration with many enterprise products including XenApp\XenDesktop, Horizon View, RDP and Parallels. Above you see some of the different options, there are many more.

As you may also expect, IGEL integrates with some widely used SSO products like Caradigm and Imprivata.

I was fortunate enough to get hooked up with a couple of IGEL UD pocket devices, which is one of IGEL's newest and coolest products. This device is tiny and perfect when on the go. I can even leave it plugged into my device and then just opt to boot into my regular Windows operating system or boot into my mobile workspace.

The real beauty of the IGEL product suite is the management piece, in my opinion. It's really intuitive and simple to use. I spun up a few virtual instances and two UD pocket devices and deployed configurations and config updates with ease. This was made all the easier with the type of workspace I opted to "deploy".

I created a couple of different browser session configs and pointed one to Frame and the other to Cameyo. If you are not familiar with Frame or Cameyo, that's ok. You'll see why I chose such products by the end of this post and I provide links to further info.

I also have a UD pocket device configured with a browser to Cameyo. What I cover in this post should work just as well with the recent versions of Horizon apps, Parallels and XenApp.

Note: You may need a separate HTML5 access client for full functionality, depending on your product. This was key in my decision to run with Cameyo and Frame. No client is required.

I have configured the browser to launch on start with the Autostart option. Deploying is as simple as clicking Apply and send to thin client, you will have an option to force a reboot or allow the config change to apply at next reboot. This will ensure even if somebody powers off or reboots their device, it will always start right back at the app portal.

The finished product is a desktop which presents applications!

The applications run within the browser using HTML 5. No plugins are required.

Above you can see one of my laptops booted with the UD pocket device and logged into Frame. As you might imagine, you can have a mix of IGEL thin client devices. Some permanent fixtures around the office and these handy USB thumb drives for mobile workers.

Cameyo's portal contains a large range of applications already available publicly. You can also add your own applications and even on-premises servers for a mix of their public apps running on their public cloud service with your own applications running on your servers.

 

Both Cameyo and Frame integrate with cloud storage services. This allows your users to save their files in storage which they can then access from anywhere. They don't require any further clients for full functionality. I really like the drag and drop ability within Cameyo's browser sessions. That may play in less on a thin client but I still think it's pretty cool!

No need to worry about agent software, plugins and convoluted configuration. No need to worry about managing file storage within an SBC\VDI environment. With this setup you have an incredibly lightweight mobile workspace with a versatile range of IGEL thin clients, zero clients and a super simple management software.

You can read my previous posts about FRAME and CAMEYO or try them by signing up at the vendor's respective websites. You can also sign up for an IGEL demo to see the management piece for yourself.

Rory Monaghan

Microsoft MVP in App-V.  Citrix CTA.  VMware vExpert.  Unidesk Certified Engineer.

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