VMware, Inc. recently made two announcements surrounding its Virtual Desktop Infrastruture (VDI) product–a new certification program for thin client devices, and a suite of services to help implement and manage virtual desktops.
VDI is desktop virtualization software that replaces traditional PCs with virtual machines (VM) deployed from and managed in the data center. This presents a number of potential benefits: all of the information on that desktop VM, is protected from disaster and theft; thousands of VMs can be updated from the data center without touching actual desktops; and employees can also log into their virtual machine remotely.
VMware is not alone in the desktop virtualization space, however. Several vendors offer desktop virtualization products, including Sun Microsystems, Inc., Citrix Systems, Inc. and Pano Logic, Inc.
VMware’s certification program is based on the company’s open standards. Virtual desktop users can expect a consistent experience when using VMware certified thin client devices.
After thin client devices have been certified, they will be listed on the VMware Certified Compatibility Guide. The devices listed in the Guide will have passed VMware’s testing criteria for interoperability and quality assurance .
VMware’s other announcement today is a set of new Professional Services that offers best practices and guidance from virtualization experts. Here is a rundown of what these services include:
*Virtual Desktop Infrastructure Jumpstart: A VMware Certified Professional will train up to five staff in setting up VMware products, provide knowledge transfer and discuss best practices of deployment.
*Application Virtualization Jumpstart: VMware Professional Services offers training on running any version of any application on a single OS without conflict.
*Plan and Design for VMware Virtual Desktop Infrastructure and Application Virtualization: Begins with assessment and analysis of the customer’s objectives and existing infrastructure. VMware Professional Services then builds a blueprint for VDI and/or Application Virtualization deployment
*Remote Office/Branch Office (ROBO) Services Acceleration Kit: helps simplify the process of optimizing customers’ remote and branch offices using VDI.
The list price for Jumpstarts in North America range from $6,000 to $13,500. For education classes, it’s $2995 for the four day class, accoring to a VMware spokesperson.