The move gives Google a much needed push into the corporate remote access market while its Chrome operating system gets ready for the big league.
At the moment Chrome has bugs and driver problems which have prevented it getting into the mainstream market, at least until next year.
Citrix plans to use Chrome OS in 2011 to support Citrix Receiver, a software client for application and desktop virtualisation.
Its employees will be able to bring Chrome OS netbooks into their office and get immediate access to their enterprise apps through Receiver.
Gordon Payne, senior vice president of Citrix Systems, has shown Citrix Receiver running Microsoft Excel on Chrome OS, with the document actually hosted in the company’s data centre. It also runs the Solid Works CAD app and the Hyperion business intelligence app running the same way.
Payne claims that Chrome OS lends itself nicely to Citrix techniques of linking users’ business apps from their PCs to corporate data centres, and running them on different computers inside and outside the central office .
He said that with centralisation and delivery of enterprise and business apps as a service, there is a natural partnership with Chrome OS and Chrome notebooks.
From Google’s point of view it means that it has a rounding thumbs up from an important customer for its unproven computer software.
Citrix’ also has 250,000 global customers which might also be drawn into Google’s OS plans.