Citrix aims to woo VMware customers with free migration perks

Citrix is trying to lure VMware customers over to XenDesktop while VMware is holding its annual conference in San Francisco.

Citrix is now offering customers of rival virtualization vendor VMware a steep discount if they migrate platforms.

The short-term offer will give VMware Horizon customers 50 percent off licenses when they switch to Citrix Workspace Suite, which includes the XenApp and XenDesktop virtualization products. Citrix is promising that VMware defectors will experience zero downtime, zero disruption and no productivity loss.

"If you thought migration would be hard and time-consuming, then we have some good news for you," Citrix's director of technical marketing Vishal Ganeriwala wrote in a blog post. "The migration service can help you migrate in less than 15 minutes with almost no downtime if you have a XenDesktop environment deployed. Now, do I have your attention?"

Citrix offered up a few examples of XenDesktop's supposed superiority, such as faster image updates, reduced bandwidth requirement for HTML5 access, and better performance on printing, saving files and launching apps.

While these types of discounts and incentives are common among competing telcos and tech vendors, the Citrix offer is notable because of its timing: VMware's VMworld conference is currently underway in San Francisco.

Citrix has also taken aim against VMware's "one cloud, any application, any device" strategy. The slogan is a central theme at this year's VMworld and encompasses the company's vision for any app, running at all times on any device through a software-defined infrastructure model.

Citrix counters the notion as cloud restrictive and has been tweeting the hashtag WhyOnlyOne.