VMworld 2013 Europe was in Barcelona this year, and VMware had a host of updates and announcements to make at the show. I’ve had high hopes about what might be announced around VMware Horizon Suite this week, and I’ve written about VMware’s Horizon efforts previously in my post asking if VMware Horizon Workspace was maturing fast enough. So let’s cover some of what VMware announced this week.
The brand new version of VMware Horizon View was just announced and is offering some nice improvements. VMware is working on improving user experience and offering features to allow customers to overcome roadblocks and accommodate new use cases. Here are some of the new features in Horizon View 5.3:
The Horizon Mobile piece of Workspace is getting a few more devices added to the supported device list, including the Sony Xperia Z1 and Z Ultra smartphones.
I won’t kid anyone here – the big news is that Mirage now supports the ability to manage View desktops. This is something that customers have been asking for since they discovered how cool Mirage can be. I am excited to talk with customers about how Mirage might make some of their user requirements easier to manage. There are also some management updates that include improvements to the Mirage web management portal.
With the announcement of ThinApp 5.0 the ability to capture and package 64-bit applications is now possible. This has not been a huge issue to this point but was something that ThinApp lacked that Microsoft App-V provided. Also announced is the integration with third-part persona management tools, which needs to be explained in more detail, but I’m guessing this will allow these tools to provider more flexibility when it comes to assigning apps to users.
The really big news here is that VMware has announced that it is acquiring Desktone, the Desktop as a Service (DaaS) partner that provides View services to customers. This gives VMware a method of delivering DaaS to customers and there’s already talk about how this will be offered as a service on top of vCloud Hybrid Service. Currently DaaS does not come up in that many customer talks, but with the ability for View to support Windows Server, it helps address licensing concerns.
The big thing that might help Enterprise customers in this news is the ability for Desktone to manage multiple locations or View instances. This would help customers that are trying to create one EUC environment but need to distribute resources in different locations.
Besides the announcements that I have already covered on each of the individual products there are some changes to the Horizon Suite offering itself. The announcement offers details about additional products and features that are included when purchasing the Horizon Suite offering rather than just parts.
The good news is that VMware will now be including vC OPs for View with the Horizon Suite going forward. I think this is a huge win for customers deploying VMware for their EUC environments. Personally, I was never a fan of deploying View without any type of monitoring tools, and vC OPs for View offers customers some of the best monitoring available for View today.
Another piece of good news is that VSAN will also be included to Horizon Suite customers. It’s still in beta, so do not use in product installs. But going forward, as VSAN becomes a GA product this will offer customers an additional option for building storage for their VDI environments.
Overall, I’m glad to see these EUC product announcements, but I’m still disappointed at the lack of news around the Horizon Workspace product. Here’s to hoping for some new Workspace news separately from VMware in Q4.