One of the prevailing thoughts is that customers are wrestling with whether to deploy Windows 7 on the desktop or to embrace desktop virtualization.
But at Wanova, a provider of desktop virtualization software, the right answer is both. At the VMworld 2010 conference this week, Wanova showed off an approach that automatically handles the migration of a Windows XP system to Windows 7 as part of desktop virtualization deployment.
Wanova's offering doesn't rely on hypervisor at the end point to create a virtual desktop. Instead, the company's Mirage software uses a Distributed Desktop Virtualization architecture that captures the contents of a user's desktop on a server, then distributes application workloads to any designated end point. The Mirage approach optimizes the network bandwidth by only sending changes to the user content back to the server.
At the show, it also previewed a data deduplication capability it plans to add soon. Wanova's approach, used with version 1.5 of Mirage, allows its server to capture the content and personal setting of a Windows XP system, then export that data out to a Windows 7 system. Wanova is one of several companies vying over the best approach to deploying desktop virtualization. But for companies that want the best of both Windows 7 and desktop virtualization without having to wait for Microsoft to fully commit to desktop virtualization, Wanova offers an interesting alternative that doesn't come with as much weight as most of the first-generation desktop virtualization offerings.