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Monthly Archives: September 2011

UPDATE: View 5’s User Experience on an iPad Compared to Citrix XenDesktop

Posted by Cyndie Zikmund and Jia Dai, End User Computing Technical Marketing

 The demand for corporate IT departments to support tablets is on the rise.  According to IHS iSuppli tablet sales are expected to grow from 60 million units in 2011 to 275 million in 2015 with the Apple iPad accounting for 74% of the market in 2011 and 43.6% in 2015:

Screen shot 2011-09-28 at 3.33.17 PM

Businesses will increasingly rely on virtual desktops to provide business applications from the PC-world on the more flexible mobile tablets.  When considering a virtual desktop solution, there are several key factors related to end user experience to be compared: 

  1. Performance,
  2. User responsiveness,
  3. Quality

The best way to find out which virtual desktop is right for your end user environment is to see them in action. To demonstrate the distinct advantages that VMware View 5 has over Citrix XenDesktop in an end user environment populated with iPad clients, we set up this test bed:

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ThinApp, the Taskbar, and Start Menu Pinning

Recently I was asked if there was a way to pin ThinApp packages to the Start Menu and Taskbar in Win 7. Well, depending upon what your desired outcome is, there are both long and short answers.

Let's dig into them here…

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Windows 8 is Going Our Way!

Posted by:
Brian Gammage – Chief Market Technologist, VMware End-User Computing
Scott Davis – Chief Technology Officer, VMware End-User Computing

With details beginning to appear about Windows 8, we’ve been giving some thought as to how this future operating system (OS) release will affect our customers, our products and our vision of the journey to the Post-PC era.

On the basis of what’s been seen and described so far, we know Windows 8 intends to:

  • Embed (support for) a version of the Hyper-V hypervisor
  • Run on both x86 and ARM platforms
  • Provide a new user-interface, Metro, designed primarily for touch screen devices
  • Implement a new and proprietary application framework for tablets, Metro and HTML5

These points together tell us that Windows 8 will be a multi-faceted OS. The different machine architectures, combined with the new user interface (UI) and application framework imply incompatibilities between the Windows 8 versions. This means applications will initially run on the ARM version or the x86 version, but not both. Moreover, new applications that embrace the new user interface mechanisms, such as Metro UI and touch gestures, are unlikely to translate well to traditional desktops and vice versa.  Windows 7 and earlier applications that were built on older Windows frameworks will remain tied to x86 and so will not be available natively on tablet form factors.

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What do customers think about VMware View 5

Having worked on the View 5 launch over the last few months and as a day-to-day user of a View 5 desktop, I can spend hours telling you about what’s awesome about it. From the bandwidth improvements in the PCoIP protocol, protocol session statistics, 3D graphics support, Unified Communications integration and Persona Management, there are lots of enhancements to make my experience better while also making it easier for VMware IT to support me.  Also, with PCoIP continuity services I can step into an elevator and be connected as I step out, because my View desktop is intelligent enough to automatically reconnect my session in poor network areas.

But don’t take my word for it… What is more meaningful to you is what customers, companies like yours, have to say about View 5. We did some research with TechValidate to our View 5 beta customers to capture their feedback and share what they had to say.

Here are some examples:

  • “VMware View has allowed us to do more with less, and specifically in a time where money is tight.”
  • “VMware View allows smooth roaming of session for clinicians, which improves efficiency by eliminating the need of repeatedly signing into systems while moving from workstation to workstation.”

See what more customers are saying about their return on investment using View – some achieved an ROI of 100-300%! Understand the business cases that drove your peers to adopt our desktop virtualization solution and maybe it will also be applicable to you.

Are you already using VMware View? Tell us what you think!

VMware View 5 PCoIP & Build-to-lossless

Reposted from the VMware Vroom! blog. By Lawrence Spracklen, VMware

We have talked in previous posts about the ability in View 5 to disable build to lossless (BTL). When BTL is disabled, PCoIP rapidly builds the client image to a high quality, but lossy image — by default, if the image remains constant, PCoIP would continue to refine the image in the background until it reaches a fully lossless state. Stopping the build process when the image reaches the "perceptually lossless" stage can deliver significant bandwidth savings — for typical office workflows, we are seeing around a 30% bandwidth reduction.

Furthermore, in many situations, the difference between fully lossless and perceptually lossless images can be virtually impossible to discern. During our VMworld presentation, we used the following image to emphasize the quality of perceptually lossless:


In this qualitative comparison, we present a zoom-in of two small images. For both images, View fully lossless and View perceptually lossless (no BTL) images are shown side-by-side for comparison — hopefully conveying how difficult it is, even when zoomed, to find differences.

To further emphasize the perceptually lossless quality, it’s also interesting to examine quantitative data — for example, PSNR (peak signal to noise ratio) and RMS (root-mean-square) error data. For a fairly complex image — a fall-colors landscape with significant fine detail in the background tree colors — comparing the perceptually lossless build to a fully lossless build (RGB space), yields a PSNR value of 45.8dB, and RMS error value of 1.3! This clearly illustrates how little loss in quality is associated with perceptually lossless images. For instance, consider the RMS error of 1.3: for 32-bit colors, each rgba component has 8-bits of precision, with values ranging from 0 to 255. For this image, perceptually lossless is introducing an average error of +/-1.3 to these values — fairly negligible for most use cases!!

[While PSNR ratio obviously varies from image to image, I'm seeing ~45dB much of the time]

VMware View 5: PCoIP and More – Performance and Best Practices @VMwareView

By Banit Agrawal, Rishi Bidarkar and Sunil Satnur, VMware

We continue to see lots of excitment and interest in desktop virtualization with VMware View 5.  One of the hot topics coming out of VMworld 2011 in Las Vegas are the many performance improvements found in View 5.  Last week we shared a presentation from VMworld on PCoIP performance and best practices.

So, we want to share the slides from a VMworld session we hosted on all of the new performance improvements in View 5, including PCoIP WAN improvements, vSphere 5.0 platform improvements along with the best practices.

We will be posting more details later in the form of a whitepaper. So stay tuned!




Gainesville State College Supports 9,600 Students, Faculty and Staff with VMware View Desktops

Located in Gainesville, Georgia, Gainesville State College (GSC) offers higher education to the population of Northeast Georgia. The college also values its role as a service organization that responds to the economic and educational needs of the community and reaches out to the citizens of its home region.

Since most of GSC’s students live off campus, GSC several years ago faced the question of how to best provide students with easy access to software for both campus based and online courses. Before desktop virtualization, this desktop environment was difficult to maintain and did not provide remote access or around-the-clock availability. Students installing software on home machines ran into compatibility problems. The answer was desktop virtualization with VMware View.


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@SlideRocket: How I Landed My Dream Job with a Présumé

A few months ago, I started my job search and went down the usual route:

  • I set up my profile in as many job sites as possible
  • I scoured craigslist and LinkedIn
  • I tailored my resume, spell checked it twice, and emailed away
  • I interviewed with recruiting agencies to get to the top of the resume pile

The result? I received a number of phone calls and interviews, but not a single call back. It was discouraging. I felt vulnerable and defeated but another part of me didn’t want just another job. Each time I thought of punching in and out, busying myself with status meetings, ending my day just to start all over again – well, it just made me tired.

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Better End-User Computing

The End-User Computing Journey – Part 11

Posted by Brian Gammage
Chief Market Technologist, VMware End-User Computing

With attention to devices and operating systems no longer crucial, IT organizations will finally be able to focus on the things that really matter in end-user computing (EUC): on making sure that applications work as needed, that corporate information is adequately secured and that users have what they need to maximize productivity.

The decisions that organizations need to make for EUC will once again seem straightforward. They will have escaped to the cloud and the journey, for now, will be complete.

Let’s finish this sequence of posts by summarizing how the EUC environment has changed for the better in the eyes of all parties involved.

For the business, EUC is no longer an impediment to change, growth and transformation. Mergers and acquisitions can be concluded more rapidly, offices can be opened (or closed) at much lower cost and return on investment measured directly.  With the greater granularity of control afforded by the cloud services platform, there are also dramatic improvements in the secure-ability of EUC assets and the auditability of user transactions.

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The best way to run Windows 8 on your Mac – @VMwareFusion

Microsoft decided to piggy-back on the excitement generated by the launch of VMware Fusion 4 and VMware Workstation 8 by announcing the Windows 8 Developer Preview yesterday. Microsoft's preview has seen plenty of coverage on-line and the VMware Personal Desktop team is in Southern California to learn more about the future of Windows.

VMware Fusion 4 is a great choice if you want to try Windows 8 for yourself. Many users are running both OS X 10.7 (Lion) and the Microsoft Windows 8 Developer Preview on their Mac. By running in a virtual machine you can isolate the new code from your documents and other Windows applications. You can even use the new snapshot viewer to experiment, then roll-back to a known good state, if something goes wrong.

VMware Fusion 4 is available today, download your trial from vmware.com.

Windows 8 on Fusion