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Event digest: Citrix Synergy Day 1 highlights

Special activities along with key expert interviews engaged Synergy attendees

If the #citrixsynergy lab Twitter feed was any indication, Instructor-led Learning Labs—a preconference event for the first time ever at Synergy—were incredibly successful. The general mood was “stoked” and “excited” in dozens of tweets: “Great NetScaler hands on lab. Looking forward to PowerShell awesomeness tomorrow morning,” @DaGoossen said. “3 hours isn't enough,” @_JasonSamuel tweeted. “I could sit in a #Citrix #NetScaler learning lab all day and be ecstatic the whole time.” And @gcolquhoun tweeted, “Just finished my second lab @citrix #citrixsynergy. Bring on more!” Desktop and app virtualization and networking labs were the most popular, and with the Instructor-led Learning Lab 3 Pack sold out, attendees in the standby lines decided that next year, they’ll be registering early to secure a spot.

It was evident from the hum in room W308 that volunteering is as much fun for the participants as it is rewarding for the recipients. Simply Serve @ Synergy wrapped up another successful event supporting local nonprofit Hands On Orlando with a number of activities designed to promote critical thinking skills among at-risk children and support the dedicated faculty and staff who care for and teach them. One of the most enjoyable? Spelling out fun word messages with Morse code—such as Try Hard, You’re A Winner and Practice Makes Perfect—using beads and bits of string in the necklaces and bracelets that volunteers created. If you missed this opportunity to give back to the local community, or want to do even more to help, stop by the Corporate Citizenship booth, located in the Social Media Hub in Synergy Park—West Concourse, Level II, West Hall C—anytime tomorrow or Thursday to help assemble 1,000 emergency food kits for needy children.

Get the Opening Keynote recap plus exciting announcements—and the Innovation Award winner is…

Citrix president and CEO Mark Templeton opened Citrix Synergy 2015 to a record crowd—with thousands on-site and thousands watching the keynote live stream on SynergyTV from Japan, Australia, South Africa, India, Colombia, Netherlands and beyond—who came to hear the Citrix vision for the software-defined workplace, and how it is transforming the future of IT.

Mark invited attendees to download the new Citrix CubeFree app and showed a demo of Workspace in Your Pocket using his own devices to illustrate the power of the personal workspace for mobile workforces. Workspaces for a born-digital workforce, he explained, must be secure, device-independent—and provide an irresistible experience.

Citrix Workspace Cloud was the big announcement of the Synergy 2015 keynote, with a customer champion and a Citrix partner both joining Citrix vice president and GM of Documents Cloud Jesse Lipson onstage to explain how Workspace Cloud helps to bridge past, present and future technology investments. Availability of Workspace Cloud will be announced in Q3. Interested in a Tech Preview? Contact your partner or relationship manager for details.

Mark also announced updates to Citrix XenServer 6.5 and Citrix NetScaler SDX, as well as an extension of the Citrix XenApp 6.5 lifecycle to 2017—including a new Feature Pack that incorporates Linux Virtual Desktops, HDX Framehawk and the Project Serenity migration tool. He also introduced new products including Citrix Melio storage virtualization, Citrix XenMobile 10, with new tools to move your business into the mobile world, and new HTML5 viewer for Citrix GoToMeeting, enabling attendees to join online meetings instantly.

Finally, the audience was introduced to the Citrix Innovation Award finalists and the tenth anniversary winner: Aer Lingus, the national carrier of Ireland, which uses Citrix technology to connect its islands of technology as smoothly as its global fleet connects North America, Europe, the Middle East and Australasia. For an archive of past Citrix Innovation Award winners, visit

As Mark explained, the purpose of technology is to provide business and human outcomes and drive real value for customers and partners. For more details about the Citrix vision for IT transformation, along with announcements and products unveiled at Synergy, visit the Citrix Newsroom.

Getting social at Synergy

Conversation was buzzing as attendees reconnected with colleagues and discussed the big ideas from this morning’s keynote and the first day’s sessions in Synergy Park. The interactive community at the heart of Synergy, Synergy Park offers a direct look at Citrix both as a company and as an innovator of solutions that enable people to work anywhere within the park featuring Citrix CubeFree, an app provided on-site that allowed attendees to find nearby peers to facilitate a connection.

The day kicked off early as select Synergy alumni hosts welcomed first-time attendees for the First Timers’ Breakfast at the Hyatt Regency Orlando to share insider tips on which activities are not to be missed, along with guidance on how to make the most of the Synergy experience.

It’s been an incredible day, and there’s no better place to talk about the insights you gained than at the Welcome Reception. It’s happening right now at the Solutions Expo—join your colleagues for some networking! We’re here until 9:00 p.m. The Welcome Reception is a relaxing event designed to help you build relationships, connect with experts, and talk with counterparts from other companies to share your successes and challenges. You’ll also have a chance to see the latest offerings from IT vendors whose complementary products and services enhance Citrix solutions.

Many attendees took advantage of the comfortable meeting space in the Event Connection Lounge in Synergy Park, which was the place to be for the launch of the first-ever Match.Geek program. If you haven’t already, make a point to stop by and book a meeting with the lounge host to talk business at a table or in one of the new semiprivate conference rooms, or book in advance through your My Synergy Account.

Use Synergy’s online and on-site tools to network with new contacts and old friends!

Special industry programs show Citrix solutions in action

Attendees in key industries—including healthcare, education, financial services and government—have been learning how technology is driving innovation in their industries through a number of special programs that are happening all week at Synergy.

Lunch Table Tech Chats—Grab your lunch, head to the Solutions Expo and choose a table for these small-group, informal discussions led by industry experts.

Sessions—Citrix customers in key verticals are sharing the spotlight with industry experts in technical breakouts and special sessions, including 20-minute Fireside Chats with innovative leaders from customer organizations.

Solutions Demo Sandbox—The Sandbox engineers were busy answering questions and showing off the technology today. Don’t miss your chance to get hands-on with the latest Citrix solutions: head to OCCC Level 1, The Underground area.

Citrix Real World Pavilion—Get a glimpse into how mobility is benefitting your industry peers in this “day in the life” showcase located in The Citrix Booth Experience, Solutions Expo. Stop by for a realistic, hands-on environment showing how Citrix and partner technologies are being used to transform everything from patient rooms to classrooms.

Birds of a Feather—These customer-only, moderated roundtables are enabling frank discussions among customers about their successes and challenges—and the Q&As afterward give you a chance to get unfiltered answers from your peers. Healthcare and Education were featured today; don’t miss tomorrow’s Government and Financial Services sessions.

There’s still time to take advantage of these industry-focused programs; check the conference schedule for times.

Wednesday must-attend events

Tomorrow’s schedule is packed with valuable content. Be sure these highlights are on your radar:

Day 2 Keynote

Hear leading experts talk about exciting new technologies that are shaping the way companies are approaching their business mobility strategy. This dynamic series of Tech Talks will feature cool demos directly from Citrix CEO Mark Templeton.

Women in Technology Luncheon

Get ready for some lively discussion and one-on-one networking with an impressive global group of professional women as they welcome author and founding member of Fast Company magazine Polly LaBarre, a provocative and inspiring voice on business and innovation. This luncheon does require you to preregister, but you may stop by the sign-in desk at the Orlando Ballroom, Hyatt Regency Orlando, to see if you can “fly standby” and slip into a seat that may not have been claimed by the 11:45 a.m. confirmation time.

The Citrix Booth Experience

The two segments of The Citrix Booth Experience combine for a unique view of Citrix, including live demos of how Citrix technologies are enabling new ways of working from the trading floor to hospital corridors and from coffee shops to dorm rooms.

Solutions Demo Sandbox

The Solutions Demo Sandbox is a playground for experiencing and evaluating new Citrix solutions. It’s open all day tomorrow and Thursday, so make some time in your schedule to stop by The Underground, OCCC Level 1: you’ll have full admin rights to Citrix servers and all the tools you need to structure your own mobile workspace.

Self-paced Learning Labs

Deep dives don’t get any more convenient than these self-paced, on-demand labs that cover topics from introductory to advanced in just 90 minutes. Self-paced Learning Labs are available through Thursday at 5:00 p.m., and you can start early or work late depending on your schedule. Remember to bring your own Windows or Mac laptop and a power cord, and drop in to The Underground, OCCC Level 1—no reservations required.