The Virtualization Practice

Application Virtualization

Application Virtualization covers application layering and application delivery approaches like streaming applications, and local application virtualization. Infrastructure as a Service focuses upon isolating the operating system from its underlying hardware and allowing multiple instances of operating systems to share that underlying hardware. Application Virtualization focuses upon isolating application from their underlying operating systems. ...
This make it unnecessary to install applications into operating systems, makes it easier to update new versions of applications, and breaks the dependencies between versions of applications and the specific versions of operating systems. Popular application virtualization offerings include Microsoft App-V, VMware ThinApp, and the XenApp Plugin for Hosted and Streaming applications.

Enterprises and mid-sized businesses (SME’s) face two significant challenges and opportunities with respect to the end user desktops in the next two years. The first opportunity and challenge is how to replace the aging Windows XP installed base with the recently released Windows 7 platform. The second is how to end up with a desktop environment that is inherently more flexible and manageable than what is in place today.

VMware’s “No OS” Application Platform Strategy

VMware’s SpringSource acquisition will result in VMware directly implementing the SpringSource Java runtimes in a VMware Guest. VMware will also work to allow other open source application frameworks like Ruby on Rails, Python and PHP to run directly in VMware Guests. VMware will provide value added API’s to these run time frameworks, that will make deploying and managing applications built to these frameworks and run on VMware easier. This will put pressure on Microsoft to allow .Net to also run in this manner – potentially setting the stage for the dis-intermediation of Windows as an applications platform.

The Microsoft TS CAL has become the Microsoft RDS CAL. The change is not only in name, but in functionality and price. The most important new offering is the inclusion of an App-V license. This will make introducing Application Virtualization in Presentation Server more cost effective and may also impact on the choice of Application Virutalization for the desktop.

It was only a matter of time before VMware decided that if it was going to be an applications platform company, and really take on Microsoft, that it would need a presence in the business of building applications, and in providing the run-time infrastructure for applications. Acquiring SpringSource is a brilliant move because it leverages the open source community to devalue and dilute Microsoft standing in the applications tools and platform markets.

Rampant Innovation in Desktop Virtualization

While server virtualization has largely settled down into a slugfest between VMware (vSphere), Microsoft (Hyper-V) and to a lesser extent Citrix (XenServer), and Red Hat (KVM), the desktop virtualization field remains wide open, and is being targeted by numerous startups with highly creative and appealing solutions. While VMware (View), and Citrix (XenDesktop) certainly represent the large players in the field, startups like Install Free, MokaFive, Virtual Computer, SlickAccess, Unidesk, Kavisa, and Ringcube all bring unique and differentiated solutions to the table.