November 4, 2009 - Sven Huisman

Bloggers-Battle: Desktop Virtualization is THE way to go!

Before I start my first post in the VirtualFuture.Info Bloggers-Battle, let me first respond to Matthijs’  first post. And let me remind the readers, this is a Bloggers-Battle. Matthijs and I are trying to convince each other and the readers that one product is a better choice than another, just for this Battle. As consultants solving customers’ challenges, we always choose products that fit the customer needs best. There are more options to choose from when it comes to Desktop Virtualization (Quest vWorkspace for example) but for this battle we choose VMware View 4 and Citrix Xendesktop 4, which will bothbe released this month. That having said, here is my respond to Matthijs’ article.

Matthijs is saying 2 things in his first Bloggers-Battle post:

  1. VMware is pushing VDI because it’s their only way to get in to the desktop-market
  2. VDI is just an add-on in the Citrix portfolio. It’s just another way of getting the applications to the user

To respond to these 2 points, let me first tell you what I think about VDI. Like Matthijs, I also don’t like the term VDI. I rather use “Desktop Virtualization” because I believe VDI is more than just remotely connecting to a desktop virtual machine running in the datacenter. Desktop Virtualization is also running a Virtual Desktop on your local PC, with or without a client hypervisor. Desktop Virtualization takes advantages of virtualization in general: isolation (secure), encapsulation (manageable), hardware independence and compatibility (flexible), not to mention all the other advantages of virtualization (business continuity, energy efficient, etc, etc…, you know the drill ;-)). If I take a (little) leap into the future, I think Desktop Virtualization will be THE way to go. Simply put, It can be like this: The desktop will be a single Virtual Machine instance that needs to be managed and that VM will be used to deploy the rest of the desktop VM’s. The desktop can be delivered as a VM running in the datacenter or on the user’s physical desktop, depending on the needs of the user. No more limitations on the type of applications that the users need. 

And now to respond to the 1 point of Matthijs, VMware is not pushing VDI to get in to the desktop-market. VMware is pushing VDI because VMware KNOWS virtualization. Like I said, Desktop Virtualization takes advantages of virtualization in general and VMware (re-)invented Virtualization 10 years ago. It’s true that Citrix knows the game of application delivery, but when it comes to virtualization, they are behind VMware (but that’s another Battle). Did you know that 95% of Xendesktop deployments run on VMware?

That brings me to the second point Matthijs is making that Citrix is selling Xendesktop as an addition to their portfolio. Matthijs, did you visit the Citrix website lately? Xendesktop is all I can see. “Citrix Fuels Virtual Desktop Revolution for Millions of XenApp Users”, “Citrix Drives Mainstream Adoption of Desktop Virtualization with XenDesktop 4”. In fact, Citrix is offering customers to trade-in their XenApp licenses to Xendesktop licenses: “As a special, limited time offer, Citrix XenApp customers who are ready to step up from standalone app delivery to full desktop virtualization, will also have an opportunity to trade their existing XenApp licenses for new XenDesktop 4 licenses on a 2-for-1 basis”. And I’m not even talking about the FUD Citrix is spreading about VMware View. Xendesktop 4 and VMware 4 will both be released on November 16th, but Citrix is comparing Xendesktop 4 to VMware View 3 on their website. How uncool is that?

In conclusion, Desktop Virtualization is THE way to go (together with Application Virtualization). My job in this Battle is to convince this blog-readers that VMware View 4 is the better choice, and that’s what I will be doing in the next blogpost.

VDI Blog Battle / Virtual Desktop Battle / Citrix / Desktop Virtualization / VMware / VMware View 4 / XenDesktop 4 /