Citrix buys Sanbolic to virtualize storage for VDI, app delivery

Sanbolic's software is designed to make data everywhere available when applications need it

Citrix Systems has acquired storage virtualization vendor Sanbolic in a move that could make it easier for Citrix users to use applications and virtual desktops spread across data centers and clouds.

Sanbolic sells software that lets enterprises treat the capacity in most types of storage infrastructure as a single virtual system that understands the needs of each application. Those capabilities play into Citrix's mission of efficiently delivering virtual desktops to users and making applications fast and always available.

Sanbolic's team will join Citrix immediately, Citrix said in a press release. The companies didn't disclose the terms of the acquisition. Sanbolic is a 13-year-old company based in Waltham, Massachusetts. More than 200 Citrix customers already use Sanbolic's technology, according to Citrix.

Citrix bought the company in a bid to reduce infrastructure complexity, a barrier to deployments of VDI (virtual desktop infrastructure) and application delivery technology. The company plans to use Sanbolic with its XenDesktop and XenApp products to simplify infrastructure and cut the cost of rolling it out and managing it.

Storage, which may be spread across multiple dedicated arrays, integrated into servers themselves and allocated within public and private clouds, is moving toward the kind of virtualization that has already transformed enterprise computing and is starting to change networking. Even major vendors of storage arrays, including EMC, are beginning to emphasize overarching systems over specific hardware platforms. Making the right data available to each application when it's needed should give enterprises more freedom to deploy their IT resources in the most effective way and keep up with changing needs.

Sanbolic's software can manage capacity across hard-disk and flash media in NAS (network-attached storage), SAN (storage-area network), server-based and cloud deployments. With the newly acquired technology, Citrix will be able to develop new products to reduce the cost and complexity of VDI and of Windows application delivery, the company said. Customers will be able to use the new products while keeping their current storage, networking and computing gear, according to Citrix.

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