The good folks at NComputing stopped by to introduce me to oneSpace, their cloud-based extension to their current product, vSpace. Both products are based upon operating system virtualization and partitioning as a way to share the resources of a single physical or cloud-based system among a number of clients. Since there is only a single copy of the operating system and other system software in use, this approach can be very efficient and support a surprising number of user workloads. Think of it as today's version of timesharing.
Here's what NComputing has to say about the benefits of oneSpace:
- Unify and securely deliver applications and files as a service to a variety of devices.
- Unify the delivery of Windows, Linux, Web and SaaS applications, plus cloud and on-premises files to a variety of devices at the lowest cost.
- Mobilize Windows applications with a rich user experience: Mobilize Windows apps — including custom applications — and deliver them to iPad and Android tablets with a rich, mobile-friendly end-user experience, without having to re-write them or making costly changes to existing infrastructure.
- Secure, seamless access to existing on-premise and cloud file shares: Offer users unified access to all their files — including access to both cloud and existing Windows file shares — while applying IT security policies and control.
- Embrace BYOD while maintaining IT control: Isolate business applications and files on personal (BYOD) devices via a secure, unified workspace, enabling complete control of business apps and files access while preserving the end users’ native experience and privacy.
Organizations have been looking for a clean, responsive, secure way to deliver today's Windows, Linux, OSX and other applications to the amazing array of devices that staff are carrying around. The challenges are that the mobile devices often have different display hardware, operating systems and application architectures, making delivery of the desktop experience problematic. Suppliers such as Citrix, Microsoft, VMware and HP have long offered different sets of tools that make it possible for a selection of workloads to be delivered to these devices. Usually, their approach is based upon running the workload in a virtual machine and using access virtualization technology to deliver the user interface of the workload out to the remote device.
NComputing is using a similar but different approach. As with the approaches offered by the competition, a form of access virtualization is used to deliver the workload experience to the remote user. Since operating system virtualization can be far more efficient than the broader and more general purpose virtual machine software, NComputing is able to support an impressive number of user workloads on a physical system.
Offering higher levels of efficiency, however, don't necessarily lead to huge market share. NComputing has been building a loyal client base in places where extreme cost reduction is a requirement — education, healthcare and some financial services market segments. It is hoping that offering vSpace via the cloud will simplify customer experience, reduce their overall costs for hardware and software, and win over the hearts, minds and wallets of a new generation of customers. The technology could most certainly support that expansion.
If your organization is considering BYOD initiatives and need to support IOS and Android tablets and a number of other client devices, NComputing should be on your list.