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By GCN Staff

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Trends to watch: desktop, hardware virtualization

As our feature article this week on server virtualization pointed out, the ability to run multiple instances of operating systems concurrently on a single hardware system is gathering momentum in the government sector.

However, there are other areas, such as desktop and hardware virtualization, that might gain some leverage this year, according to Vic Berger, technologist at CDW-G.

Citrix's purchase last year of XenSource, a provider of open-source software, will boost desktop virtualization, Berger said.

'Desktop virtualization is going to make a dramatic change in how [organizations] can present that desktop environment to the user,' he said. Desktop virtualization allows servers to host desktop environments that can be tailored to meet the needs of specific users.

VMware is also making a big push into desktop virtualization. VMware ACE provides more portability through secure, virtualized desktops that can be carried on a USB thumb drive and deployed on any PC.

'The ability to boot a desktop operating system off a small, external flash drive and be up and operating in 30 seconds' will be a powerful performance booster for organizations, Berger said.

Hardware virtualization, which gives organizations the ability to access and provision a pool of server processing, memory and input/output resources from a single interface, is gaining momentum.

Hardware virtualization is the next step toward true grid computing, Berger said. A company to watch in this space is Egenera, which is working with agencies like the Defense Department's Military Health System and the Census Bureau on server and data center consolidation efforts.

Posted by Rutrell Yasin on Jan 11, 2008 at 9:39 AM


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