Microsoft has announced a Solution Accelerator for Virtualization in advance of the Windows Server 2008 launch. This solution accelerator includes material on Application Virtualization, which is relevant to the Office client products. This is an area of interest that has been increasing in our enterprise customer segment for a while. Virtualization is an important technology as we look toward improving application compatibility issues, deployment planning and other TCO-reduction activity for Office.

Microsoft Application Virtualization offers many benefits, but one which is a favorite of mine: I can use every version of Word on my desktop at the same time… (Several, but not all, are pictured).

This is somewhat tongue-in-cheek of course, I don't need clippy back, and I really don't write things in many versions of Word (having been the Word 2007 product manager, I am pretty satisfied with this version.. J). But if I had a plug-in that my business depended on, I could continue to use that version without stalling the upgrade for the remainder of the suite. Given the impossible number of add-ins and custom extensions we see, this is a great way to put those in a sandbox and keep progressing with the other productivity tools in the products.