Microsoft takes major steps in the client virtualization space

The Redmond-headquartered tech giant has taken two major steps in the desktop virtualization and application virtualization spaces.

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Client Virtualization Market

Microsoft Corp. will offer a native desktop virtualization service for Windows 10. This will be a part of the release of the operating system that is expected arrive early 2019. This technology will be released under the name Sandbox. Users can open an unknown or a suspicious application in the virtual environment and it can be kept separate from the operating system. Once Sandbox is closed, all the applications will be shut down and all changes will be reverted without making any change on operating system.

There are certain differentiating factors that makes Sandbox stand out from the conventional desktop virtualization products. It is equipped with principles related to software containers. This is a resource-efficient alternative to the traditional virtualization. Many enterprises have been adopting this alternative rapidly. Hardware resources of the machine are split into abstracted environments to operate different workloads in the parallel manner. The software container can execute the tasks with the less overload. The virtual machine acts as a self-contained computer and key operating system components are shared by a container with other instances.

Sandbox creates instances in which the files are shared with the underlying operating system. On the other hand, virtual machines use Windows 10 image. With Sandbox, there is no need to utilize an entire Windows 10 copy for each virtualized application and this approach reduces load on considerable hardware resources. There will be another security feature known as Tamper Protection in the Windows 10 release. With the inclusion of this feature, the Windows Defender Antivirus can restrict the changes in security settings.

The decision of Microsoft to include software containers in the upcoming release aligns with its emphasis on the server side. The firm collaborated with Docker Inc. for developing an efficient way to run the technology on Azure platform and on-premise data centers. The firms have been adopting containers in massive amount for ease in deployment of applications on different infrastructure environments in an efficient manner.

Microsoft also took a step in the application virtualization space. It acquired a venture-backed virtualization startup FSLogix Inc. The software for virtual desktop infrastructure is offered by FSLogix. VDI assists companies in setting up workspaces on the basis of Windows 10 or other operating systems at the central hub and distribute them on the physical devices of employees. Administrators are able to manage the desktops of the entire workforce in one place.

One of the striking benefits of FSLogix is the cost-effectiveness. To set up a VDI environment, companies need to purchase the same number of Windows 10 licenses as that of number of users. However, FSLogix Apps provides support to multiple users through installation of a single Windows. Applications and folders are configured in a virtual environment for users to see the specific assets they require. This creates different workplaces on a single machine. The company claimed that this technology would lower the licensing costs and eases up the management operations.

Security and efficiency are two major factors on which market players have been taking major steps. The market for the client virtualization is booming. There is a market competition for Windows Virtual Desktop with the market leaders such as VMware Inc. and Citrix Systems Inc. FSLogix also supports the solutions provided by these market players. According to the research firm Allied Market Research, the global client virtualization market is projected to reach $10.11 billion by 2025, growing at a CAGR of 11.8% from 2018 to 2025. Data security and cost saving benefits related to client virtualization solutions drive the market growth.

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