Citrix GoToMeeting – The best virtual meeting software!

As a Citrix consultant, I have worked with clients based all over the world.  In the modern age, it’s both unrealistic and unnecessarily expensive to require your Citrix support team to travel to your location in order to troubleshoot your Citrix farm.  Thankfully there are several remote access tools available to help you get the job done, and I’m convinced that GoToMeeting is the best for these reasons:

1). GoToMeeting is a Citrix Product.

If you’ve ever had a Citrix troubleshooting session turn into an uplifted call to Citrix Support – then you already know the benefit of using GoToMeeting.  Because it’s a Citrix product, you’ll have no problem getting Citrix support engineers to join your existing meeting.  Some other products like WebEx or Virtual Classroom may or may not work with Citrix Support, so GoToMeeting is the clear choice if there is ever the possibility that you’ll need to bring Citrix support onto one of your sessions.

2). GoToMeeting works through a variety of firewalls.

I’ve used many virtual meeting software packages over the years, and I’ve run into firewall problems left and right.  Depending on what your client is using for a firewall, you may have to get certain ports opened or unblocked, etc.  After several years of using Citrix GoToMeeting, I can honestly say that I’ve never had a single incident where a firewall or networking issue blocked our ability to connect to a client or a GoToMeeting session.

3). GoToMeeting offers an audio bridge line built into each meeting.

This is a convenience that other vendors don’t always offer.  Before I used GoToMeeting, I found myself sometimes having to schedule an online meeting, and also having to call into our audio bridge provider to schedule a matching bridge.  That was cumbersome and tiring.  GoToMeeting allows me to schedule meetings in under a minute, including an audio bridge with each one.

4). GoToMeeting easily allows me to take control of a client’s environment.

When the client joins a Citrix GoToMeeting, I can ask them for keyboard and mouse control with a single click of the mouse.  I can control their environment easily from anywhere in the world without having to worry about traversing VPN access, firewalls, or jump stations.  This is important to a Citrix tech like myself, because it can put me in the driver’s seat of their environment in a matter of seconds.

5). GoToMeeting now has advanced features like Video Conferencing!

Not that I recommend using this feature when it’s 3am and you are on-call in your bath robe, but it is a cool new feature.  You can now schedule a meeting with multiple parties, and each share out your webcam so that you can instantly communicate live face-to-face.  The interface is intuitive, and so quick and easy that I accidentally did click on it once at 3am and had to immediately apologize to a client! (haha).

6). GoToMeeting allows you to record entire meetings!

This is a cool feature that I haven’t used enough until recently.  Because I host so many meetings with Citrix Support, I generally know who the support geniuses are at Citrix these days.  When I get someone on the call who is nice enough to teach me something, or share an unpublished command or best practice – All I have to do is click “start recording”, and I can play back the lesson again when I need to.  This is much easier than taking screen shots, writing down urls, and writing up documentation like I used to do!

7). GoToMeeting interfaces directly with my Outlook calendar.

One nice thing about GoToMeeting is that when I click “schedule a meeting” and choose a date and time, it instantly inserts the reminder into my Outlook calendar.  This saves me a few keystrokes and clicks, and eliminates the possibility of me fat-fingering the access code or bridge information for my clients.  Little features like these are priceless to someone like me, where time is money.

8). GoToMeeting is cheap!

For $49 bucks a month, I basically get unlimited use of this great tool.  I would honestly pay much more for it, because I utilize it many times daily and my clients are very happy with its performance.  Once you deduct the cost of this tool from your taxes, you realize that it’s costing you pennies a day and it is an absolutely priceless resource to have available for interfacing with your clients.

Bottom line is – whether you are a Citrix tech, or simply a telecommuter needing an awesome application to host virtual meetings with your clients.  Citrix GoToMeeting is the best product available, and I highly recommend you add it to your virtualization toolbox!

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