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Old 9th March, 2009, 07:23 PM
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Microsoft Says Desktop Virtualization Is Costly, Inappropriate for Most

Written by Daniel
Monday, 09 March 2009

Microsoft's vested interest in fat clients puts it at odds with many in the virtualization business
Jason Mick (Blog) - March 9, 2009 1:00 PM
DailyTech


Many in the tech community believe that virtualization is the wave of the future. It allows for hardware consolidation, power savings, legacy support – this all adds up to potentially increased productivity and cost savings. However, some are not wholeheartedly on the virtualization bandwagon. [Front page...]
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Old 9th March, 2009, 08:34 PM
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What's that!? Did some one just throw in the towel? ":O}
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Old 9th March, 2009, 10:07 PM
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I use it fairly regularly in my work, probably in time more people will get used to it as well. When you use linux full time and occasionally need to use strange windows apps that don't work well in WINE, like the ATO Tax return software, or you need to test something under windows, virtualbox is a lifesaver.
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Old 11th March, 2009, 11:43 AM
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I have never personally used Microsoft's variant. However, I love VMWare it saved me many a time from having to a time consuming reload of a 500GB image to an IDE hard drive.

Gives you as an admin (or a basic user) much more variety in what is available to complete various tasks.
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Old 11th March, 2009, 01:57 PM
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How many people use desktop virtualisation (as opposed to server virtualisation) and have to support it? Desktop virtualisation is where users only have thin clients, and there's a server farm where applications actually run. You can think of it as a bit like presenting applications via VNC or RDP, where your entire desktop comes via VNC/RDP.

Does it work? Yes, but if you get it wrong it is a huge drain on resources. You have to have a network that is close to flawless - interruption of connectivity means no-one can work. Limited bandwidth means that people's screens redraw slowly, and they get upset...
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Old 11th March, 2009, 02:27 PM
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We considered using it for programmers, as many of them need access to different OSes, kind of figured we'd have virtual desktop environments on the server for them to connect to, such that we'd only need a couple of Windows licenses to serve a larger number of people that use them sporadically and whatnot. Whole network is gigabit and fairly understressed so it would have worked, but in the end it was just as easy to buy each linux dev a windows xp home oem license to use inside virtualbox on their local machines.

One could argue though that many of the google app based netbooks are exactly this, although not using virtualization per se, they're thin clients in every sense connected to the cloud.

Server virtualization by contrast, I get a massive amount of use out of. The ability to set up an important client in a virtual server within a cheap high availability xen cluster, with the ability to live shift it from datacenter to datacenter even between countries, and upgrade its underlying server hardware completely with zero downtime is a big thing.
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Old 12th March, 2009, 06:33 PM
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I take advantage of it extensively for software development, as it lets me have practically instant access to multiple different OSen for testing. For the home user, I can't see it having that much benefit. For the corporate user, as Áedán points out, how useful it is rather depends on how it is implemented.
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