If I’m not saving the world at night, I have a regular day time job designing and implementing Citrix environments. During one of those projects, I came across something odd, even for Citrix
The situation: When you use Citrix’s Flash Redirection mechanism (it allows you to play Flash content on a client machine instead of the server / VDI), it works OK. Unless you navigate away from the page that is being redirected (for instance: Youtube). The redirection will still take place on the background, effectively preventing new content to be redirected. If you have audio, you can actually hear the audio from a video still being played.
As usual, I logged a case about this behaviour. Took about two months and a lot of research from Citrix to finally conclude this is a serious Flash Redirection design flaw. Basically the Pseudocontainer process is not able to monitor page/view changes in a browser in the user’s XenApp / XenDesktop session and happily keeps on redirecting the content to the local device. And no, they’re not going to fix it at this point in time or in the future.
This strike me as odd. In the world of today, 85% of all websites still embed Flash in a way or are very dependent on it for delivering content like video and audio. While it is true that HTML5 is being favored for new websites and redesigns, it’s still pretty obvious Flash enabled sites will be here the next 5 years regardless. Take a look at this, dated May 2011:
And this is the chart 10 months later (March 2012):
It looks like HTML5 is gaining some grounds on Flash, but not all-that-much. You could also conclude there is room in the world for both standards at this point, but with Adobe’s lack of proper support of Flash, interest wil waiver as time progresses. At this rate, it would take approximately 60 months to have full HTML5 support in all browsers propelling a growth of the target audience. HTML5 userbase could reach same levels as Flash in approximately 40-50 months.
It really surpises me Citrix is not really that willing to re-evaluate the Flash redirection design at this point, since it will clearly handicap Flash redirection in both XenApp 6.5 and XenDesktop 5.6 and onwards for the next 4-5 years. All I could do is request the issue being delivered to the respective product architects and hope more companies do this, which eventually should lead to a redesign and better support for Flash enabled websites for the years to come.
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