Citrix Receiver for Windows & Mac

2017-07-27T00:01:11+00:00 April 5th, 2010|Uncategorized|

On-demand applications from any Windows & Mac device

Citrix Receiver for Windows and Mac is a lightweight software client that runs on laptops, desktops, Macs and netbooks – turning any device into a powerful business tool to access virtual applications and desktops. With Receiver installed on a device, IT can rapidly deliver virtual applications and desktops people need to do their jobs. Receiver for Windows and Mac, along with its innovative console, Merchandising Server, enables faster roll-out of virtual applications and desktops, simplified client management and update, and a single unified user experience for everything Citrix.

Flexible Client Software Configuration
Built with a browser-like ‘plug-in’ architecture, Receiver for Windows & Mac enables flexible client software configuration ideal for every user in your organization.  IT administrators can select from plug-in functions for hosted applications, secure VPN access, communications services and self-service applications with Citrix Dazzle.  Receiver also supports 3rd party plug-ins to further simplify client software management.

Safe, Secure, High Definition Experience
Receiver includes built-in HDX technologies to bring a high definition user experience for virtual applications including document-oriented, data-intensive, graphics-rich and multimedia applications – on any network connection.  Receiver supports high performance, standards-based encryption security for all data from the datacenter, over the network to users anywhere.

Zero-Touch, Silent Updates
Receiver allows the use of enterprise computing services without the need to understand or worry about the underlying complexities. Installs are a simple point and click, and once Receiver is installed, it’s pretty much ‘lights out’, with zero-touch, silent updates from there forward.

Auto-Updating with Targeted Deliveries
Receiver is completely under centralized administrative control to allow the entire Receiver setup, including plug-ins, to be kept up-to-date, with scheduled automatic download to users based upon user preferences for update checks, or IT-controlled mandatory updating.  Receiver enables IT to deliver client software updates to users using a rules-based system based on group credentials, IP addresses, machine names, login IDs, or operating systems. This provides the flexibility to ensure plug-ins are delivered to only appropriate, authorized users.

Receiver for Windows & Mac is free and is available immediately for any Windows or Mac-based device, including PCs, Laptops, Macs and Netbooks. Receiver is also available for smartphones and iPad.

Microsoft’s – Remote Desktop Services

2017-07-27T00:01:11+00:00 April 5th, 2010|Uncategorized|

Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI)

Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) is an emerging architectural model where a Windows client operating system runs in server-based virtual machines (VMs) in the data center and interacts with the user’s client device such as a PC or a thin client. Similar to session virtualization (formerly known as Terminal Services), VDI provides IT with the ability to centralize a user’s desktop; instead of a server session, however, a full client environment is virtualized within a server-based hypervisor. With VDI, the user can get a rich and individualized desktop experience with full administrative control over desktop and applications. However, this architecture, while flexible, requires significantly more server hardware resources than the traditional session virtualization approach.

Key benefits of VDI are:

  • Better enablement of flexible work scenarios, such as work from home and hot-desking
  • Increased data security and compliance
  • Easy and efficient management of the desktop OS and applications

VDI Standard Suite and VDI Premium Suite

Microsoft provides two suite offerings to purchase and deploy VDI: Microsoft Virtual Desktop Infrastructure Standard Suite (“VDI Standard Suite”) and Microsoft Virtual Desktop Infrastructure Premium Suite (“VDI Premium Suite”). These two suites make it simple for customers to purchase the comprehensive Microsoft VDI infrastructure and management software, while providing excellent value amongst competing VDI offerings.

The Microsoft VDI Standard Suite is a complete VDI offering which offers the following features:

Desktop Delivery:

  • Basic connection broker to deliver personalized and pooled virtual machine-based desktops in low-complexity environments
  • Web-based remote access and full-fidelity end user experience

Application Delivery:

  • Separation of application layer from image with app streaming
  • Reduces app-to-app conflicts and need for regression testing
  • Easy application life cycle management via policies

Virtualization Platform:

  • Reliable, micro-kernelized hypervisor with small footprint
  • Supports live migration

Management:

  • Integrated, end-to-end management
  • Dynamic provisioning of apps to physical, virtual and session-based desktops
  • Rapid VM provisioning with cloned VHD’s
  • Support for failover clustering and storage migration
  • Patching, updating and monitoring of physical VDI host

For customers that want additional functionality, the Microsoft VDI Premium Suite is a comprehensive desktop centralization offering: It includes all the features of the VDI Standard Suite, but it also leverages the full capabilities of Windows Server Remote Desktop Services to provide greater flexibility for desktop and application delivery. Specifically, it offers the following desktop and application delivery features and benefits on top of the VDI Standard Suite:

Desktop Delivery:

  • Single brokering, discovery and publishing infrastructure for VDI and session-based desktops and applications
  • Higher user density with session-based desktops than with virtual desktops

Application Delivery:

  • Separation of hosted applications from the image
  • Isolation of incompatible applications and consolidation of Remote Desktop Session Host server silos

In order to enable the above mentioned features, the Microsoft VDI Suites incorporate a package of specific use rights of the following Microsoft infrastructure and management products; please contact your Microsoft licensing specialist for details:

  • Remote Desktop Services Client Access License (RDS CAL)
  • Microsoft Desktop Optimization Pack (MDOP) including App-V
  • System Center Virtual Machine Manager (SCVMM) Client Management License
  • System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM) Standard Server Management License
  • System Center Operations Manager (SCOM) Standard Server Management License

Both the VDI Standard Suite and the VDI Premium Suite are licensed per client device that accesses the VDI environment, and thereby allow for flexibility of server infrastructure design and growth. The subscription based license will ensure that customers always have access to the latest versions of software. The VDI Standard Suite and the VDI Premium Suite are designed to complement the per device subscription model of VDA, further simplifying the buying experience for Microsoft VDI customers

VDI is best suited for contract and offshore workers and for users who need access to their work environment from home, including from a non-company owned PC. For complex deployments which require enterprise-level VDI capabilities, Microsoft is partnering with third party vendors such as Citrix Systems to provide a complete and scalable end-to-end solution to customersMS RMD Chart

 MS RMD Diagram

Remote Desktop Services’ RemoteApp virtualizes a processing environment and isolates the processing from the graphics and I/O, making it possible to run an application in one location but have it be controlled in another.

Remote Desktop Services makes it possible to remotely run an application in one location but have it be controlled and managed in another. Microsoft has evolved this concept considerably in Windows Server 2008 R2, and renamed Terminal Services to Remote Desktop Services (RDS) to better reflect these new features and capabilities. The goal of RDS is to provide both users and administrators with both the features and the flexibility necessary to build the most robust access experience in any deployment scenario.

To expand the Remote Desktop Services feature set, Microsoft has been investing in the Virtual Desktop Infrastructure, also known as VDI, in collaboration with our partners, which include Citrix, Unisys, HP, Quest, Ericom and several others. VDI is a centralized desktop delivery architecture, which allows customers to centralize the storage, execution and management of a Windows desktop in the data center. It enables Windows and other desktop environments to run and be managed in virtual machines on a centralized server. RDD and VDI addresses all these challenges with the following features:

 
For both virtual and session-based desktops, the quality of user experience is more important than ever before. Windows Server 2008 R2 Remote Desktop Services improves the end user experience significantly for VDI and session virtualization (fka Terminal Services) through new Remote Desktop Protocol capabilities. These new capabilities, enabled with Windows Server 2008 R2 in combination with Windows 7, provide for a richer user experience and improve end user productivity. Microsoft RemoteFX, a new set of remote user experience capabilities being developed by Microsoft for Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1, will enable a full-fidelity, local-like desktop environment for virtual and session-based desktops and applications. RemoteFX will complement the enhancements made to RDP in Windows Server 2008 R2 Remote Desktop Services and will extend the benefits of a rich remote desktop or application to a wide array of client devices, from the most powerful PC to low-cost thin clients and other access devices.
  • Extends Remote Desktop Services to provide tools to enable VDI
  • Provides simplified publishing of, and access to, remote desktops and applications
  • Improved integration with Windows 7 user interface
  • Multimedia Redirection
  • True multiple monitor support
  • Audio Input & Recording
  • Aero Glass support
  • Improved audio/video synchronization
  • Language Bar Redirection
  • Task Scheduler

 New RemoteApp & Desktop Connection (RAD) feeds provide a set of resources, such as RemoteApp programs and Remote Desktops. These feeds are presented to Windows 7 users via the new RemoteApp & Desktop Connection control panel, and resources are tightly integrated into both the Start menu and the system tray. The improved RemoteApp and Desktop Connections features in Windows Server 2008 R2 and Windows 7 provide the following improvements:

Improved RemoteApp and Desktop Management

 

While RAD improves the end-user experience, RAD also reduces the desktop and application management effort by providing a dedicated management interface that lets IT managers assign remote resources to users quickly and dynamically. Windows Server 2008 R2 includes the following RAD management capabilities to help reduce administrative effort:

  • RemoteApp & Desktop Connections control panel applet
  • Single administrative infrastructure
  • Designed for computers that are domain members and standalone computers
  • Always up to date
  • Single sign-on experience within a workspace
  • RemoteApp & Desktop Web Access

Improved RemoteApp and Desktop Deployment

 

Administrators faced with larger RAD deployment scenarios will also find additional management features in Windows Server 2008 R2’s Remote Desktop Services aimed at improving the management experience for all existing scenarios previously addressed by Remote Desktop Services as well as the new scenarios available via RAD. These improved management features include:

  • PowerShell Provider
  • Profile Improvements
  • Microsoft Installer (MSI) compatibility
  • Remote Desktop Gateway

 Source: Microsoft

Citrix – HDX Ready Thin Clients

2017-07-27T00:01:12+00:00 January 18th, 2010|Uncategorized|

The most frequent question IT managers ask Citrix regarding Thin Clients is: “Which devices do you recommend with XenDesktop and XenApp?”  Citrix established the Citrix Ready framework to answer this question.  Citrix Ready is a verification program for partners to demonstrate interoperability between their products and Citrix products. The Thin Client category of Citrix Ready allows partners the option to test their devices to achieve basic Citrix Ready status or the more stringent HDX Ready status. These options are designed to address market needs based on end user segments and useHDX_right_131x100r experience requirements.

What is an HDX Ready Thin Client?
The HDX Ready designation is reserved for thin client devices that have been verified to work with all of the XenDesktop and XenApp HDX features.  HDX refers to High Definition User eXperience – a term coined by Citrix to describe capabilities in XenDesktop that optimize the user experience when accessing hosted virtual desktops and applications. The HDX Ready category assists IT managers to easily identify thin client devices that deliver the best possible high definition user experience with XenDesktop and XenApp.  

What is a Citrix Ready Thin Client?
There is a trade-off between a thin client’s cost and its capabilities. Not all users require the functionality of all of HDX features of XenDesktop or XenApp.  Devices that are not deemed HDX Ready may still be useful for certain user types and use cases, generally at a lower price point than HDX Ready devices.  The Citrix Ready thin client designation exists for those devices that support connectivity to XenDesktop or XenApp but only a subset of HDX functionality.  Information regarding HDX feature coverage by a particular thin client device is available on the Citrix Ready website.

Feature Thin Clients HDX Ready
Thin Clients
HDX Broadcast
Out of the box Integration  
HDX Plug-n-Play:USB 2.0  
HDX Plug-n-Play:printing  
HDX Plug-n-Play:True Multi Monitor Support  
HDX Plug-n-Play:Smartcard Support  
HDX Plug-n-Play:Isochronous USB 2.0 (Webcam)  
HDX RealTime:VOIP on LAN  
HDX RealTime:Client Audio Recording  
HDX MediaStream:CD Quality Audio on LAN (Server Rendered)  
HDX MediaStream: 480×360 Quality Windows, Flash, QuickTime & Silverlight video on LAN (Server-Rendered)  
HDX MediaStream: 480×360 Quality Windows, Flash, QuickTime & Silverlight video on LAN (Client-Rendered)  
HDX MediaStream: 1280*720 Quality Windows, Flash, QuickTime & Silverlight video on LAN (Client-Rendered) – Optional

Citrix Dazzle 1.1 – Empowering Users

2017-07-27T00:01:12+00:00 January 18th, 2010|Uncategorized|

 

 Citrix Dazzle — the first self-service “storefront” for enterprise applications gives corporate employees 24×7 self-service access to the applications they need to work. Dazzle offers a rich, intuitive user experience that requires no training. If you’ve used DirecTV or Apple iTunes, you already know how to use Dazzle. Dazzle makes self-service IT a reality for the first time ever, giving users simple access to apps and IT services, and bringing the economics of the web to enterprise IT.

Empowering Users with an Enterprise App Store
It’s easy to choose exactly what you need, when you need it – apps, your desktop, or any IT delivered service. Simply browse or search for the app or IT service you need. Subscribe or unsubscribe with one click. Organizing selected apps into user-defined “playlists” is easy and intuitive. Users decide the folders that appear in their Start menu (or, in the future OSX Dock). Simply click to create, then drag and drop any app or IT service.

Self-Service Storefront for XenApp
For the more than 200,000 enterprise customers already using Citrix Delivery Center products like XenApp and XenDesktop, Dazzle effectively acts as a storefront to their existing delivery infrastructure. IT is in control, instantly and easily advertising the existing offline and online Windows applications and Web applications with XenApp’s “app publishing” interface. Adding, updating and removing apps and IT services takes minutes – not days, weeks or months.

Zero-touch install and configuration
Dazzle is fully integrated with Citrix Receiver, so getting users started is easy. IT just loads the Receiver plug-in for Dazzle into Merchandising Server, schedules it for delivery, and it’s silently pushed to every PC or Mac that has Receiver installed. When users launch Dazzle, the store will be fully stocked with all the apps IT has to offer. It’s that easy.

565x322_ReceiverDazzle

One-click live help
Users get one click to talk to a service agent that can remotely assist them with any enterprise IT service question allowing IT to provide a “first call resolution” service at low cost that keeps users productive and satisfied. GoToAssist – the industry’s gold standard for remote support – can be fully integrated with third party trouble ticketing systems such as Remedy.

Source: Citrix

Endpoint Virtualization for Healthcare Providers

2017-07-27T00:01:12+00:00 January 15th, 2010|Uncategorized|

It’s one of the more vexing challenges in healthcare.CB051669
Every day, doctors, nurses, case managers, and other hospital workers need quick and reliable access to key applications. And because they’re continually on the move, they need to be able to go to any workstation or kiosk to call up a particular application. But all too often they can’t get access because of problems inherent in the delivery of specific and proprietary healthcare applications and complexities managing the client system environment.
What if applications, and even the entire desktop, were able to follow these roaming users and be accessed from virtually any device? What if there was a much easier way for users to work in an increasingly digital environment, where Computerized Physician Order Entry (CPOE) and Electronic Medical Records (EMR) are becoming commonplace?
This article looks at how centralized data management and endpoint virtualization can help physicians and clinicians, as well as IT staff, work more productively and securely.

The frustration factor

The access challenges that physicians and clinicians routinely face today can be daunting, to say the least.

  • Password problems: It’s easy to forget which passwords to use for which applications, and when to reset passwords. Calling the helpdesk for assistance can take up valuable time.
  • Application access and printing confusion: When using another workstation, or returning to the kiosk they were using earlier in the day, doctors and other users have to find the right application and navigate back to the place where they left off. This can be frustrating and time-consuming, particularly if the user moved to a different workstation that has a different user interface. Printing can also turn into a hassle for roaming users. They may not know which printer is used by a particular workstation. Or a printer may not be located nearby.
  • Remote access issues: When working remotely, users may not be able to reliably connect to the network and access the applications they need. And when they connect, the desktop may be different from what it is at the hospital. Even more frustrating, remote connections are often unreliable, dropping users in mid-session.
  • Inability to use computing resources: Some guest users, such as candy stripers and vendors, can’t use computing resources for basic functions because they aren’t authorized for the corporate network.

The IT challenges

Now let’s look at access from the point of view of the IT department. Since hospitals never close, IT has to ensure continual, reliable access every hour of every day. And there’s no shortage of challenges in making that happen:

  • Desktop management: Clinicians often share workstations in a kiosk-like fashion, and it’s not unusual for a single workstation to be used by dozens of people in a single day. Many times, hospital workers also need to access applications and patient data from different client devices. To enable device-to-device roaming and kiosk capabilities, IT must apply the highest-common denominator to every workstation. This means setting up and maintaining each workstation with all of the applications users might need, and making sure each workstation has the computing power to handle all of these applications. That’s not an efficient use of resources.
  • An inundated help desk: When a user doesn’t know how to find the local printer, it means another call to the help desk. And when users can’t remember their passwords or haven’t reset them, the help desk has to walk them through the process. To save time, people end up using other workers’ passwords instead of contacting the helpdesk. Shared passwords not only violate HIPAA mandates, they also hinder identity management initiatives.
  • Remote access issues: Enabling remote access is a must for most healthcare facilities, but addressing VPN connectivity issues can become a time-consuming chore for the IT staff.

The promise of centralized management

Symantec believes that many of these challenges can be addressed by taking a centralized approach to the management of data, which makes information more easily accessible to both healthcare providers and IT personnel. With a centralized management approach, care providers in different geographical locations can access the same applications and information simultaneously no matter where they are. This increases efficiency and productivity, while enabling providers to respond more quickly and improve quality of care.

By employing centralized management, hospitals can reduce IT costs and response times while increasing user satisfaction and security. Password management is easier, and password security is actually increased, for example, as is reporting and auditing for regulatory compliance issues. Access to patient information does not rely on the availability of a single workstation. When a particular endpoint becomes unavailable, the information remains accessible elsewhere.
Centralization also strengthens data security procedures for healthcare providers and networks. Hospitals typically use an open architecture in which users who are not employed by the hospital are constantly entering and leaving the environment. Although each endpoint may have security measures installed, the responsibility for updating and maintaining those measures today lies with the owner of the endpoint. Central management of data and applications strengthens this model by ensuring protection regardless of any security measures implemented on endpoints.

The promise of endpoint virtualization

There is an additional technology solution that can streamline the way healthcare organizations provide access to key applications: endpoint virtualization. While many organizations are already familiar with server virtualization, endpoint virtualization may be a new concept for them.

Endpoint virtualization in this context refers to the ability to provide a portable computing experience across a broad range of computing environments. The promise of endpoint virtualization lies in improving the end-user experience while helping to lower the cost of managing endpoint devices.
For clinicians, endpoint virtualization offers access to the user’s personalized workspace (desktop and applications) from any device (networked or remote) via a single authentication method. If physicians are able to authenticate to a network with a single sign on, rather than authenticating from each endpoint they use throughout the day, they can access applications from any networked or remote device.
Endpoint virtualization supports a clinical work environment by allowing the shared use of devices through rapid desktop switching and the ability to roam from one device to another while maintaining the active state of the desktop. Users can print locally even when roaming, eliminating the hassle of tracking down printers. And for physicians working remotely, their personalized workspace looks and acts exactly as it does when they’re in the hospital.
For IT professionals, endpoint virtualization enables IT to centrally manage all users, workstations, and applications, simplifying IT efforts to provision applications and updates to users. By intelligently allocating computing resources based on user class profiles, IT can optimize these resources. IT staff no longer need to apply the “highest common denominator” to every workstation.
In addition, by centralizing control of password management and enabling single sign on, IT can more quickly and easily resolve password issues when they arise.
The bottom line: IT can reduce costs and response times while maintaining a high level of user satisfaction and security.

Symantec and endpoint virtualization

Thanks to its extensive portfolio for managing virtual workspaces and providing a portable computing experience, Symantec can help organizations better secure and manage their endpoint data and applications. Symantec’s strategy is to help enable a truly dynamic endpoint, where applications and information are delivered to any computing environment in a seamless manner.

As hospitals continue to automate and add applications, providing convenient access to these applications for physicians and clinicians while maintaining security and patient data privacy will prove to be a challenge. But increasingly, hospitals will discover that centralized data management and endpoint virtualization can help address these issues.

Forbes – The Death of the PC??

2017-07-27T00:01:12+00:00 December 18th, 2009|Uncategorized|

image

Great article about the dramatic swift from the traditional corporate PC to a “Virtual Workspace”………..

Throughout the computer industry companies of all sizes, from garage startups to Microsoft, are bracing for the possibility that their future will be in the hands of people like Sean Whetstone.

The head of computer operations for Reed Specialist Recruitment, an employment service with operations on three continents, Whetstone recently upgraded his company’s 6,000 desktop computers. Chief information officers order new Dells or HPs all the time. But the computers Whetstone brought in for his employees aren’t the traditional metal boxes that sit next to desks or under monitors. They are “virtual” computers. Each employee has a keyboard and a screen, but the processors making the calculations and deciding what color goes in each pixel are far away, inside a big computer at Reed’s main data center in London

In the science fiction staple of virtual reality, people live not in the real world but as ciphers inside a computer somewhere. That’s analogous to what happens with the virtual desktops at Reed. To the user, Microsoft Windows looks just as it does coming from a PC. But the electronic desktop doesn’t exactly reside on the desk. (more…)

VMware Leverages VMware vSphere(TM) Platform, New PCoIP Protocol and Rich Partner Ecosystem to Deliver Complete Desktop as a Managed Service Solution

2017-07-27T00:01:12+00:00 November 9th, 2009|Uncategorized|

vmware_logoVMware, Inc. (NYSE: VMW), the global leader in virtualization solutions from the desktop through the datacenter and to the cloud, today announced VMware View(TM) 4, enabling rapid adoption of virtualized desktops and establishing a desktop as a managed service model. VMware View(TM) 4 is the industry’s only purpose-built desktop virtualization solution, setting a new quality, cost and scale standard for desktop virtualization environments. Built on VMware vSphere(TM), the industry’s leading virtualization platform, VMware View 4 is a complete desktop virtualization solution featuring a rich, flexible desktop user experience while delivering dramatic efficiency, security, performance, scalability and management improvements — all while reducing desktop total cost of ownership by as much as 50 percent.

Desktop virtualization has long remained a top IT goal because of the added security, manageability and compliance capabilities delivered. Adoption, however, has been limited due to high acquisition costs, insufficient user experience, scalability issues and limitations on the use cases that could benefit from virtualized desktops. With VMware View 4, VMware and its ecosystem of partners eliminate these barriers, enabling broader, mainstream enterprise adoption of desktop virtualization. (more…)

Twelve Money-Making Reasons for Workspace Virtualization

2017-07-27T00:01:12+00:00 October 28th, 2009|Uncategorized|

symantec_logo tranDesktop virtualization is the second-fastest growing of all virtualization technologies. According to EMA research, around 26 percent of respondents had adopted or were planning to adopt desktop virtualization in 2006; but that number has almost doubled to 46 percent by 2008.

For institutions, the technology has valuable applicability: fault tolerant endpoints for the trading floor; single sign-on application access for the call center; easy desktop management for branch and remote workforces; productive workspaces for telecommuters and mobile workers; and guaranteed anywhere access for disaster recovery applications.

But the real business case lies in the impact workspace virtualization can have on an institution’s top- and bottom-line. Here are 12 reasons that should make this IT investment a done deal for financial institutions looking to thrive (not just survive) in a tough economy

1. On-demand access to applications from any location.
With streaming technology, users can access their workspaces and applications from anywhere, anytime. That access drives user productivity and is a direct contributor to the top line.

Business Impact:
A Day in the Life of a Power User – In the virtual reality, a user isn’t tied to her desk to be productive. Take Kelly, for instance, who is stuck in Aruba on a vacation gone awry – with no chance of getting home in time to finish an important business plan for this quarter’s board meeting. She finds her way to a local Internet café and logs in to the portal. Her workspace is waiting for her there, just the way she left it in the office. She has instant access to all the applications and data she needs. Instead of taking precious time to install specific applications, she’s productive from minute one. Kelly completes her plan and forwards it to the board members. She might not make the meeting, but her plan will.

2. Save time with delta-only updates.
Less downtime has its own impact on the top line. Delta-only updates ensure that users always have the right version of the right application, without surrendering their systems for upgrades—so they’re always ready to work.

3. Proactive license compliance.
A streaming platform manages application licenses and user authorizations. That means institutions will always be in compliance, avoiding surprise license consumption come end-of-year inventory.

4. Reduce license costs by eliminating unnecessary deployments.
For even deeper cuts, institutions no longer pay for licenses that may never be used. By deploying only icons, applications are only installed when they’re actually used.

5. Optimize license costs.
Additionally, institutions can proactively recover licenses for unused applications. If an application goes unused for an unusual amount of time, that unnecessary cost can be recouped.

6. Instant endpoint configuration based upon domain login.
As users move from endpoint to endpoint, the system configures applications based on their login. That means a common OS image can be used across the masses for untold IT efficiencies.

7. Increase the stability of endpoints.
Application virtualization separates applications from other applications and the OS so there are no dependencies or conflicts, resulting in greater availability of the workspace and less downtime for users.

8. Save time by eliminating pre-deployment testing of new and updated applications.
Pre-deployment testing is a necessary albeit time-consuming task that can delay installs or updates. With virtualization, there are no conflicts, so testing isn’t required, and installs and updates happen instantaneously to free IT resources and users alike.

9. Allow for instant application repair without redelivery.
Broken applications are a huge drain on IT resources with tasks like troubleshooting, testing, remediating, and redeploying software. Virtualization can reset applications to their “known good state” so folks can put those fixes behind them and get to work.

10. Central management of users, applications and workstations.
A desktop connection broker can dynamically allocate traditional and virtual computing resources like information, user profiles and applications to the endpoint regardless of device—thus reducing IT workloads.

11. Use Single Sign On to simplify and secure user access.
User access can be a one-step process, leveraging various authentication methods. They don’t have to re-authenticate as they move from application to application, so they’re more productive.

12. Simplify endpoint management.
A single, centralized management system is used across all platforms—local or remote, virtual or not. There’s one setting per user, per application no matter the endpoint, yielding much less resource-intensive management and huge cost savings.

Info/Security Impact:
A Day in the Life of an IT Staffer – Virtual workspace management frees IT resources from the many challenges that plague traditional desktop environments. Consider Steve, a harried IT guy who is hit with a particularly nasty virus that’s corrupting Microsoft Word—a popular application that can potentially impact all employee workstations, local and remote. In the old world, Steve would have had a busy morning, traipsing from desktop to desktop reinstalling the application. But in virtual reality, Steve sits back and in a matter of a couple of keystrokes he reverts Word back to its last known working state—on all 350 workspaces. Crisis averted, and his users remain unawares.

“Security can be a tough sell, regardless of the economy,” concludes Enterprise Management Associates’. “And risk management is not always a top priority.” But when you consider the impact that workspace virtualization has on an institution’s top- and bottom-line, as outlined in these twelve sound business points, then you might agree: A well-managed workspace is a secure workspace. And what price do you put on that?

Source: Symantec.com

The Windows Optimized Desktop

2017-07-27T00:01:12+00:00 October 27th, 2009|Uncategorized|

windows-7-logoWith the Windows Optimized Desktop, Microsoft has created the single client infrastructure framework that will empower the new diverse workforce by supporting the execution and administration of multiple desktop and worker scenarios.

The building blocks of the Windows Optimized Desktop are:

Windows 7

The next release of Microsoft’s venerable desktop operating system, Windows 7 is faster, more reliable, and features better performance. It boasts an intuitive, easy-to-navigate user interface, including the enhanced Windows Taskbar, and offers new scripting and automation capabilities based on Windows PowerShell™ 2.0.

Windows Server® 2008 R2

The latest version of Microsoft’s time-tested 64-bit server operating system, Windows Server 2008 R2 supports network-oriented management frameworks such as Active Directory® and the .Net Framework. Windows Server 2008 R2 incorporates tried and-true management capabilities such as Microsoft System Center as well as Hyper-V™ virtualization hypervisor, which facilitates desktop virtualization.

Microsoft Desktop Optimization Pack (MDOP)

A suite of best-of-breed desktop management and virtualization technologies, MDOP is an integral part of the Windows Optimized Desktop. It includes Microsoft’s exciting new Application Virtualization technology, App-V, and Enterprise Desktop Virtualization technology, MED-V.

Other MDOP tools are Microsoft Asset Inventory Service for centralizing desktop inventories, Advanced Group Policy Management for managing administrative rights, Microsoft Diagnostics and Recovery Toolset for identifying desktop problems, and System Center Desktop Error Monitoring to enable proactive problem management. 

System Center

A set of server-based technologies, System Center helps IT administrator’s aggregate information related to infrastructure, processes and policies. Using System Center, they can better manage systems and automate operations, which helps reduce cost, improve application availability and enhance service delivery.

Forefront™ Client Security

A client-server application designed to view and manage security settings and configurations across an enterprise, Microsoft Forefront Client Security provides unified virus and spyware protection, simplified administration and critical visibility and control. From an administrative point of view, the Windows Optimized Desktop is both a blueprint and a toolset intended to help technology managers address issues related to desktop productivity, security and manageability.

Source: Microsoft.com

Variety In Desktop Virtualization

2017-07-27T00:01:12+00:00 October 26th, 2009|Uncategorized|

dell_ultra_small_desktopWill one single type of desktop accommodate the needs of this complex workforce? Simply put, it can’t. These workers require a multitude of desktop experiences. That means either a plethora of desktop products, or a single framework that can be configured and extended to support a variety of workplace scenarios.

A powerful technology that affords flexibility and manageability, and can enable these new workforce scenarios to come to life, is virtualization. Most IT managers are aware of the power of virtualization technology, specifically as it applies to servers and consolidation. However, many may not be aware of how virtualization can be applied to the desktop.

There are four areas of virtualization that enable flexibility at the desktop level:

1. User-state virtualization separates an end user’s data and settings from a specific desktop machine. This enables IT to store those user elements centrally and at the same time make them accessible to other PCs in the organization. It enables a user to employ a variety of PCs (or mobile devices) as if each were that person’s unique PC.

2. Microsoft® Application Virtualization (App-V) turns an application into a self-functioning entity. It allows IT administrators to store an application centrally and stream it to a desktop based on user access privileges. It isolates applications from each other, allowing them to run in concert even if they require the same resources from the OS.

3. Microsoft Enterprise Desktop Virtualization (MED-V) decouples the location of the user interface from where the application is executing. This allows the execution of a desktop environment at one place (a server) and presentation of that environment or user interface at a different location (a desktop or mobile computer).

4. Microsoft Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) centralizes virtual PCs inside the datacenter while allowing users to remotely access their desktops. Being server-based, it requires hardware and storage that can be costly. Before you start evaluating VDI, rationalize your VDI deployment, outline your VDI scenarios and explore the licensing implications.

Microsoft has incorporated powerful virtualization technology as a key element in its strategic blueprint, the Windows Optimized Desktop.

Source: Microsoft.com

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