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Got Questions on Desktop Virtualization? You’re Not Alone…

Got Questions on Desktop Virtualization? You’re Not Alone…

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As I've written many times in this blog, virtualization is much more about how and why you use the technology than what it can do.  Desktop Virtualization is a great example of the promise (and the potential pitfalls) that virtualization offers customers. I'm sure for many of you, when it comes to understanding what role desktop virtualization can play in your environment, you may have more questions than answers. Some of the questions I've heard when I've talked to people about virtualization include:

  • How does desktop virtualization fit into my overall desktop management strategy?
  • How can desktop virtualization technologies accelerate my Windows® 7 deployment?
  • What are my options for Desktop Virtualization, including solutions like Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI)?

I've always said that each customer IT environment is unique.  With that in mind, Microsoft wants to work with you to provide the best virtualization solution, not just a one size (solution) fits all offering.  When it comes to addressing your specific Desktop Virtualization needs, we provide a range of options, a suite of modular solutions, that can be tailored to meet your needs and deployed together or separately to meet your specific goals and requirements.   As regular readers of this blog know, I'm an evangelist for management being the key to virtualization.  When it comes to Desktop Virtualization, that concept is just as important.  Our approach with the System Center management suite is to provide a single management experience for your environment; physical to virtual, desktop to datacenter. 

In the solutions that Microsoft offers in Desktop Virtualization, we have broken the dependencies between the OS, Application, and Data and User Settings. By having virtualization solutions in each of these areas, we can offer you the best solution, optimized for your individual needs.  Just as Server Virtualization broke dependencies between the OS and hardware, separating these other desktop objects is the key to Desktop Virtualization.  Desktop Virtualization is not simply applying Server Virtualization concepts and capabilities to the desktop. 

By taking this approach to Desktop Virtualization, we can help you streamline your migration to Windows 7 as part of a broader IT management strategy. This means greater flexibility and simplified PC management-all while preserving and capitalizing on your existing IT investments for lower TCO.

As with many of our solutions, we work closely with our partners to deliver a holistic and comprehensive set of solutions, to offer the best possible configuration for your needs. For example, the Microsoft alliance with Citrix provides a comprehensive and cost-effective VDI solution.  Many people I've talked to want a better understanding of how Citrix and Microsoft work together on VDI.  I would strongly recommend that everyone watch this video that details the joint Microsoft -Citrix VDI solution and learn more about two limited-time offers from Microsoft and Citrix.  This video gives a clear summary of what Citrix and Microsoft are doing in the Desktop Virtualization space.

Click here to play this video


Still, our solutions are not limited to just Citrix.  We also have a number of other Microsoft partner solutions, including:

To learn more about these solutions, click this link.

In addition to the partnerships listed above, you can also benefit from our Virtualization Deployment partners. These partners are system integrator and value added channel partners that offer specialized resources, industry knowledge, and best practices to help you assess your business needs as well as plan, build, and deploy an integrated virtualization solution.


Hear What Others Have to Say

There has certainly been a lot of discussion and opinions around desktop virtualization, making it hard to find a resource to use to get started about Desktop Virtualization.  The Microsoft Desktop Virtualization Hour, which features a full-length, on-demand video of the Microsoft Virtualization Summit webcast, is a great place to get started on Desktop Virtualization and see what Microsoft can do for you.

Click here to play this video


You can listen to customers such as Expedia, Holland America, and Group Health, along with executives from Microsoft and analysts from Gartner, explain how desktop virtualization can help reduce TCO, improve flexibility, and ease management across the desktop environment. The discussions from both customers and industry experts provide insight and best practices around using Microsoft virtualization solutions to simplify your migration to Windows 7.  You can also watch a behind-the-scenes video with executives from Microsoft and Citrix to get their perspective on where virtualization technology is heading and what it could mean for your organization.

Take the Next Step

So, I know this is a lot of information.  Where should you start on your Desktop Virtualization journey?  I would recommend working on developing your desktop virtualization strategy today.  This means researching and understanding what impacts virtualization can have on your desktops and what the advantages and disadvantages of each solution can be.  Click on the thumbnail below to explore the Microsoft Desktop Virtualization Hour Web site.  And if you are ready to get started with Desktop Virtualization or even if you are already deployed with Desktop Virtualization, you should take advantage of some special, limited-time offers from Microsoft to kick start your VDI implementation or replace your VMware VDI licenses.



As always, if you have any questions or comments, you can leave them here or reach out to me via E-mail or Twitter.  The links are in my signature below.  Thanks again and good luck!



Edwin Yuen 

Director - Virtualization



Related Links [sidebar]

Press Release-Microsoft Accelerates Desktop Virtualization

Microsoft Desktop Virtualization

 IDC Report on Client Virtualization


  • Desktop virtualization must be done right if it is going to be done at all.  We actually just completed a Citrix XenDesktop reference design for a school district that was based on Hyper-V (can be found on my site). One thing that always gets people who go from server virtualization to desktop is that they don't understand how the desktop workload is different. It is.  Most organizations don't require the High availability options.  Most don't require all of the fancy features.  A desktop is a desktop. It isn't as critical as a server, but it does require a user experience.  That is the key

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