Apptimized is introducing Application Packaging as a Service (APaaS) for Software as a Service (SaaS) providers, which creates an innovative solution for application virtualization.
For those who have been involved with virtualization for any length of time, it quickly becomes clear that applications are indeed the most complex part of this aspect of IT. In 2006, when Microsoft acquired Softricity, the industry was led to believe that the new App-V would finally address all application-related hurdles. The concept of virtualizing all apps into unique packages and spaces was certainly appealing, but it didn’t prove to be realistic. One initial downfall was the Microsoft infrastructure that was required in order to create App-V packages, but this has since changed. Today, some organizations App-V some of their apps some of the time.
Solutions that analyze applications also attempted to address this need. AppDNA, which was later acquired by Citrix, touted its ability to provide in-depth analysis of tested applications. The output revealed information such as whether an application can be virtualized as is, configuration changes that may be required, and barriers to application deployment success. One of the downfalls of AppDNA is that the output reports are largely generic and not as accurate as expected. The AppDNA acquisition was expected to address a competitive gap, because VMware had already acquired ThinApp (formerly Thinstall) in 2008.
Further, Flexera’s AdminStudio Suite is well known in the application virtualization industry and can both analyze and package applications. Thus, the existing application virtualization solutions can output EXE, MSI, and App-V ready packages.
All of the various application forensic and packaging solutions have existed for some time, but Apptimized is a new player in the market, and it is taking the final step in application virtualization.
Based in Europe, Apptimized not only outputs application packages to MSI and App-V packages, but it does so as a service. That means that use of Apptimized is structured as “pay as you go” and available without an up-front commitment to software or infrastructure. Because there is nothing to install in your data center, there is no disruption: no requirement to create virtual machines, no storage space, no change control, no lab resources—nothing.
To use Apptimized, install the application through the web site. After browsing for the installation media files, it’s simply a matter of clicking through the installation. Thus, within just a minute or two, the virtual installation is complete, and the outputted package is quickly made available for download.
If, for any reason, the application cannot be successfully packaged in this automated fashion, Apptimized specialists will tackle the project manually. While this premium level of service comes at an additional cost, if the Apptimized specialists cannot successfully package your application, you do not pay for it. That’s impressive!
One bonus of using Apptimized is that a runbook installation document is provided as part of the project. Many people have no love for creating documentation, and this added bonus enables you to quickly put a check next to the documentation item on your project list.
Apptimized is innovatively poised to address a major pain point associated with virtualization. While Application Packaging as a Service is a new concept, Apptimized has packaged itself as a unique solution.