VMware Extends Desktop Management Reach

Michael Vizard

Recognizing that there is IT life beyond its virtualization borders, VMware today released VMware Horizon Suite, a new suite that combines several existing VMware management offerings into a single product.

VMware Horizon Suite consists of updates to the VMware Horizon View, the new name for VMware existing virtual desktop infrastructure software and VMware Horizon Mirage, the desktop virtualization technology that VMware gained with the acquisition of Wanova in 2012, as well as a new VMware Horizon Workspace offering that allows IT organizations to collectively manage applications, data and desktops on a user or group level regardless of the device actually being used.

The new offering also incorporates file synchronization technology, previously known as Project Octopus, as part of an effort to rationalize the number of management products VMware offers, says Ben Goodman, Horizon lead evangelist for VMware. As an alternative to Dropbox.com, the Project Octopus technology makes it easier for IT organizations to provide a more secure file synchronization capability that is compliant with IT policies, says Goodman.


Goodman says VMware Horizon Suite represents an effort by VMware to extend its management reach beyond the VMware virtual machine. The simple fact is that IT organizations need to be able to manage both virtual and physical desktops, which Goodman says is why VMware acquired Wanova in the first place.

The latest version of VMware Horizon Mirage adds support for integration with more support for VMware ThinApp application virtualization as well as virtual instances of Windows running on an Apple Macintosh system. It also includes a free version of Fusion Professional, the virtual Windows offering for the Macintosh that VMware sells.

Horizon View 5.2 adds support for any HTML 5-capable browser in addition to hardware-accelerated 3D graphics. Horizon View can also be configured to support a new gesture-oriented interface that provides Windows mobile environments with a tablet-friendly user experience.

As the so-called desktop computing experience becomes more diverse, IT organizations need to rethink the entire end-user management experience. Individuals now routinely have multiple devices, which makes trying to manage IT on a device level impractical both for the IT organization and the end user. VMware Horizon Suite is one of many new options that provide a more user-centric approach to managing IT, which at this point is an all but inevitable requirement for managing endpoints regardless of platform or who actually owns the device.

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