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The Inside Scoop on PCoIP Ultra

June 12, 2019
Teradici

Teradici is the creator of the PCoIP remoting protocol technology and Cloud Access Software, the leading solution for a cloud-ready future. The company, founded in 2004, is focused on its core mission of seamless delivery of workstations and applications for end-users.

With much excitement, the PCoIP Ultra protocol enhancements were made available via Cloud Access Software (version 2019.05) back in May. PCoIP Ultra helps advance market-leading performance for graphics-intensive applications in multicloud environments and I caught word that its launch was just the start of many more significant enhancements to come.

As someone who likes to binge-watch Netflix, of course I wanted to know what was coming. So I tracked down Mirela Cunjalo, Teradici Director of Product Management, to see what more she could share with readers. As one of the nicest people I’ve ever met, Mirela graciously sat down with her Tim Horton’s double-double and spared 30 minutes to talk.

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Q&A with Teradici Director of Product Management, Mirela Cunjalo

Hey Mirela, why are the PCoIP Ultra protocol enhancements so remarkable?

This particular release delivered a big jump in performance capabilities. Those producing 4K video content, 3D animations, visual effects or any sort of complex graphics can now do more with the extra advantages the PCoIP Ultra protocol enhancements provide. These enhancements include CPU efficiency optimizations, support for much higher frame rates for 4K/UHD resolution workloads, and option to offload encoding to a GPU with support of third-party codecs, specifically H.264 (NVENC).

Second point – we also continue to innovate. The release of Ultra is actually the start of a “multi-release” of enhancements. We’re working hard to support more use cases for customers by delivering additional feature sets using a regular cadence… or schedule.

In fact, whether or not you enable the PCoIP Ultra features, we are continuously enhancing and improving our PCoIP protocol 

Regular cadence… can you elaborate?

Our release schedule is every 3 months (for all products in fact). Customers using Cloud Access Software with the PCoIP Ultra protocol enhancements can expect updates on this timeline – with the next release in August. Whether it be new features or fine-tuning, we work hard to be very responsive to customer requirements and following the Agile development methodology helps with that. 

Also, once new features are released, others move up the line into beta and technical preview. Features in beta are a couple of months out from launch, and technical preview includes features that are approximately 6 months out. If you use Cloud Access Software, you can try features in beta today by visiting our support site to download this version. You can also provide us feedback on features in beta by opening up a ticket with our support team.  

You may also check out our technical preview program by registering here. I actually recommend checking the Cloud Access Software page in our support site to keep tabs on the latest features to try.

You mentioned that those working with graphics intensive workloads benefit from the PCoIP Ultra protocol enhancements. Why is that exactly?

Today, many of our customers have graphics intensive use cases, for example in media and entertainment, and require the best user experience to effectively work on a remote workstation. The remote workstation experience needs to be as good or better than a local workstation under their desks. PCoIP protocol enables this by providing the highest image quality, lossless, color accurate and distortion free reproduction of the remote workstation that is also highly responsive. Remoting your workstation comes with many business benefits (including security, improved productivity, cost savings and more), and when in addition to that it “feels” like its right under the desk, no-one has to compromise (including the artists creating the content).

The “big jump” in performance that Ultra provides broadens the uses cases and offers advantages for those users requiring high frame rate support when working with high-resolution content (i.e. 4K/UHD), including creative design applications with dynamic wireframes; video editorial suites; and animation tools. Additionally, for host CPU constrained use cases we have added support for the H.264 codec enabling encoding offload to NVIDIA GPUs, i.e. with NVENC. The NVENC feature is currently in beta.

So, for customers that can benefit from PCoIP Ultra, how do they access the enhancements?

PCoIP Ultra is included in Cloud Access Software version 2019.05 but the latest version is in our public beta for version 2019.08 (and as the version indicates, this is expected to release in August). New customers can purchase licenses through our estore or channel partners. The protocol enhancements can then be turned on by following the steps outlined in our guide posted in the customer support site.

But before purchasing, we first suggest familiarizing yourself with our intro videos, then contacting our sales team for a demonstration.

Can you share other benefits of remoting workstations with Cloud Access Software?

Cloud Access Software is also a compelling solution for reasons beyond performance, even though the Ultra enhancements elevate it further. Remoting a workstation enables higher security because data is not in the local workstations but secured in the data center or cloud.  PCoIP encrypts and transmits only pixels to the end user and not the actual data. We also designed our software so that it is easy to deploy and manage – saving IT valuable time while ensuring the flexibility needed to support a wide range of customer business needs.

Can you clarify “flexibility”?

I’m referring to how it enables secure remote access to virtual workstations on-premises, in public clouds, a mix of the two, and even multicloud environments Cloud Access Software is also compatible with both Windows and Linux, several different hypervisors and use cases with and without GPUs.

What’s next in this multi-release of enhancements?

Lots! To name a few, we’re soon releasing the multi-codec architecture to support third-party protocols, NVIDIA NVENC (currently in beta), support for 10-bit color, and with almost every release we continue further optimizations to provide the best user experience, including expanding our support for Wacom tablets.

 

Gosh, 30 minutes flew by quickly and there were still many more questions to ask. We’ll continue flagging the product team down to share more insight so don’t forget to subscribe to this blog to catch future posts.

Learn more about PCoIP Ultra from Teradici's Technical Marketing Principal, Ian Main

 

Teradici

Teradici is the creator of the PCoIP remoting protocol technology and Cloud Access Software, the leading solution for a cloud-ready future. The company, founded in 2004, is focused on its core mission of seamless delivery of workstations and applications for end-users.