Today, Liquidware Labs has announced a specific focus upon assisting with the migration from either Windows XP or Windows Vista to Windows 7. This focus applies to all of the possible resulting deployment scenarios for Windows 7 (physical desktop, client side hypervisor, centralized VDI, or layered). The announcement is that ProfileUnity can be used to harvest the existing OS and applications settings, and then to migrate these settings to Windows 7 and potentially the newer version of the applications that might come along with the Windows 7 installation. Key benefits of the ProfileUnity approach are that it does not require the installation of any software on the end user’s desktop, and that it can either be removed after the migration, or retained to provide ongoing profile management.
ProfileUnity_Screen

The migration to Windows 7 is likely to prove to be very challenging for many organizations – especially the majority of whom have not migrated off of Windows XP. The migration from XP to Windows 7 is likely to be particularly difficult because there is no in-place upgrade option from Windows XP to Windows 7. This means that the user’s application data and customizations need to be removed from the PC, then the PC needs to be replaced or rebuilt (disk formatted and OS installed from scratch), and then applications and data need to be added back to the PC.  Some organizations will be forced to upgrade to newer versionschoose to move to newer versions of applications (or be forced to due to compatibility issues) as a part of the move to Windows 7 and will be faced with capturing and re-deploying custom application settings.

Many organizations are (and should) look at the problem of how to migrate to Windows 7 as an opportunity to virtualize at least some of the desktops via a centralized virtual infrastructure (VDI).  Additionally, some organizations are looking to ensure that their resulting end user computing environment is more manageable than was their existing environment. Tools that layer the OS, the OS settings, the applications, the applications settings and the end user data are all being considering in this regard. This includes offerings from AppSense, RTO Software, LiquidWare Labs, Tranxition, Wanova, Symantec, MokaFive, RingCube, Install Free, Virtual Computer, Neocleus, and as soon as they ship their product, Unidesk. For an article on how all of these products could help a migration to Windows 7 please see our post on Desktop Virtualization and Windows 7.

The complete Liquidware Labs announcement is included below:

Liquidware Labs Inc. (LWL), the leader in User Experience Management for next generation desktops, today announced immediate availability of enterprise scale Microsoft Windows 7® migration support in Liquidware Labs ProfileUnity.

With Microsoft’s launch of Windows 7 this month many organizations are grappling with the challenge of getting existing enterprise desktop data from Windows XP to Windows 7. With so many unfocused, confusing, or inconsistent options for migration in the market today, ProfileUnity provides an intuitive solution with consistent and reliable results to the user and data migration problem facing the industry. ProfileUnity seamlessly harvests native Windows user personalization data, email, and documents from Windows 2000 and XP and places it in Windows 7, all with zero end-user touch.

ProfileUnity Windows 7 Migration benefits include:

  • Windows native format – User profiles and data remain in Window’s native format. No additional Windows shell environment is needed.
  • Granular control – Administrators can control which portion of the user’s profile is migrated.
  • Optional management after migration – ProfileUnity can be removed from the environment or left as a powerful management tool to manage and make profiles portable to other Windows desktops.
  • Compatibility – ProfileUnity supports heterogeneous Windows environments with profile portability after migration. Users can log onto any Windows desktop OS post migration; XP, 2000, Windows 7, VMware View, Citrix XenDesktop, etc., and their profile is instantly made available.
  • Application-level settings migration – ProfileUnity ports popular application-level settings data to the new environment while keeping it backward compatible. Seamlessly upgrade users from Office 2003/XP to Office 2007 and retain custom application-level settings including MAPI profiles and Outlook signatures.
  • Low impact – ProfileUnity requires no agent in the OS — before or after migration. Users simply login to their new machine and user settings are quickly obtained.

LWL delivers additional User Experience Management solutions that are also integral to organizations migrating to Windows 7. Liquidware Labs Stratusphere boasts comprehensive assessment fitness rating features that provide data to right-size an organization’s desktop infrastructure for its next generation desktop such as Windows 7, VMware View, or Citrix XenDesktop. Stratusphere’s UX (User Experience) features deliver powerful metrics and help desk alerts that ensure users are receiving the best possible desktop at any point in time — before, during, or after a migration.

“Organizations have waited for the stability that Windows 7 offers Microsoft desktops,” said Jason E. Smith, vice president product marketing, LWL. “What our sales channel and customer base are finding is that Microsoft is leaving the decision as to which data migration strategy to use up to the administrator, and there are so many products that address only part of the challenge of migrating users to Windows 7. ProfileUnity is a zero end-user touch migration solution that harvests data from the current environment, stores it to a network share, and pulls it in instantly upon logon to a new machine. This innovative approach to profile migration, management, and portability is resonating with customers.”

“The task of migrating application and user data from existing Windows XP and Vista desktops along with deploying newer versions of legacy applications on the new Windows 7 operating system platform is a major challenge facing all organizations worldwide”, said Joe Jessen Desktop Virtualization analyst for The Virtualization Practice. “This new release of Liquidware Labs ProfileUnity allows enterprises to seamlessly migrate profile based operating system and application settings from the user’s existing Windows desktop to their new Windows 7 environment – irrespective of whether Windows 7 and its applications are physically or virtually deployed. This will significantly accelerate the Windows 7 migration process for many organizations.”

ABOUT LIQUIDWARE LABS INC.

Liquidware Labs™ (LWL) is the leader in User Experience Management for next generation desktops including VMware View, Citrix XenDesktop, and Microsoft Windows 7. The company’s Stratusphere™ and ProfileUnity™ solutions have been described by analysts as the industry’s first “On-Ramp to VDI” by providing complete methodology and software that enable organizations to cost-effectively plan, migrate, and manage their next generation desktop infrastructure with best practices in mind. LWL’s comprehensive solutions provide Assessment, Personalization Management, User Configuration, and Service Level Assurance. LWL products are VMware and Citrix certified, and are available through a global network of certified partners. Visit www.liquidwarelabs.com for further information.

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Joe Jessen (13 Posts)

Joe Jessen is an Analyst for Desktop Virtualization and End User Computing. Joe has extensive practical experience in enterprise solution implementation, system integration, network architecture, and security. Joe was formerly Chief Solutions Officer for Gotham Technology Group's Office of the CTO, Manager of Citrix Consulting Services and Global Director of Server Based Computing for FutureLink an international Application Service Provider

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