So I normally do not regurgitate generic technical information that you can find on one of a thousand different blog sites and podcasts unless I feel that there is unique significance to the EDU community. If you attended MMS 2008 or paid attention to the announcements and press releases announced during the Summit, there were three major things and one 'quiet but intriguing thing' that I think will have a HUGE impact in EDU. The three major announcements (and one 'quieter' announcement) were:
- Beta Availability of Operations Manager 2007 Cross Platform Extensions: So an ugly and long title but to put it simply, we are planning to introduce OpsMgr client agents for non-Windows systems including RHEL, Sun Solaris, SLES, HP-UX, and AIX. This is definitely a first and not just for the Management division but for Microsoft as a whole as we will be including actual agents for non-Windows based systems AND these are based on the OpenPegasus initiative which means the agents will be open-sourced. Yes, you read that correctly (read again, if you need to - I know I had to!). Beta 1 of these agents are available now off of the Connect site. For more information on how to obtain these, go here:
- Beta Availability of Operations Manager 2007 Connectors: This one may not be as shocking as the above as you may have seen this coming when we acquired Engyro a little over a year ago and have since made the Engyro Connectors available 'for free' to licensed OpsMgr customers to connect OpsMgr to their HP OVO, Tivoli management systems and the like. What is significant is that we are basing the connector on the same OpenPegasus stuff and will be open-sourced. Like the extensions above, the beta is publicly available at the same link above.
- Beta Availability of Virtual Machine Manager 2008: Not as big of a surprise as we have been talking about the v.Next version of VMM allowing for management of Hyper-V and VMWare hosts, but very nice to see we are right on track with the public beta availability of this next version. Access to and information on how to get at the bits can be found here: http://www.microsoft.com/systemcenter/scvmm/default.mspx
- Kidaro First Look: Although the acquisition at the time of this writing was not quite complete, there were a few breakout sessions and more detail around the technology that this acquisition will bring. Kidaro will become yet another technology provided to those customers that subscribe to the Desktop Optimization Pack (with no extra price increases planned, BTW) and will allow customers a way to deliver and control virtual OS's to clients via physical media (USB key, DVD, etc.) and/or streaming technologies with complete integration with the end client. Think of it as the best of virtual machines, terminal services, and virtual applications without any of the downsides these technologies have. IMHO, the Kidaro 'stuff' (we still have not picked a formal name for it yet) will solve MANY problems in EDU by allowing you to have a controlled set of OS images complete with your supported applications that can be seamlessly run and delivered to unmanaged machines - such as a student or faculty member's personal machine. Is this VDI? No - it is MUCH, MUCH, better... I am sure more information will be forthcoming once the acquisition is complete but here are some links to check out today: