Sychron OnDemand Desktop 3.0 - another take on desktop virtualization

Although the industry's attention has largely be focused on server virtualization and consolidation, there is a very dynamic market for desktop virtualization as well. From time to time I have the chance to speak with executives of companies focused on this market.

Although the industry's attention has largely be focused on server virtualization and consolidation, there is a very dynamic market for desktop virtualization as well. From time to time I have the chance to speak with executives of companies focused on this market. This time, I had the chance to chat with Paul Sexauer, VP of Sales and Marketing for Sychron. I've spoken with different folks from Sychron over the years and have always thought that their technology was very interesting.

This time, the conversation centered on creating a desktop environment that helps achieve the organization's required service levels using goal oriented management and the creation of user groups, called habitats by Sychron.

What Sychron has to say about OnDemand Desktop

Sychron, the virtual workspace management company, announced the release and general availability of OnDemand Desktop 3.0, the latest version of its flagship desktop virtualization software. In a move that will completely change the virtual desktop user experience, Sychron customers will be able to provision virtual desktops up to 20 times faster and make updates 4 times faster than with any other available product. Customers – especially those with a high frequency of users accessing virtual desktops, such as hospitals, libraries, and educational environments – will benefit from dramatically reduced provisioning times and ease of installation and operation.

The ultimate benefit to an organization using OnDemand Desktop 3.0 is that users may never again have to wait to access their work and IT administrators can update the definition of the virtual desktop quickly and easily and have the changes be reflected immediately.

While other virtualization providers must struggle to provision new virtual desktops in 8-30 minutes, Sychron’s OnDemand Desktop is able to complete the same set of tasks in 15 seconds.  With Release 3.0:

  • Secure updates are 4 times faster
  • Provisioning is up to 20 times faster
  • Reduced usage of server resources (for a 100 virtual machine environment, OnDemand Desktop uses just 4% of the disk space needed by other players)
  • Users automatically get the latest version of a virtual machine as specified by IT
  • Updates are automatically and seamlessly put into service

With this latest release, Sychron increases its cross-platform coverage by supporting Hyper-V, Microsoft’s hypervisor technology.  Sychron’s support means that customers using Hyper-V environments can now deliver and manage fast and cost-effective virtual desktops using OnDemand Desktop.  Sychron has already been providing robust virtual desktop brokering, rapid and goal-oriented provisioning, scalable load balancing and system management on VMware ESX, Microsoft Terminal Services and Microsoft Virtual Server, and now offers the same capabilities on Hyper-V.

Snapshot analysis

Sychron faces a number of competitors who are doing their best to the be vendor of choice for desktop virtualization. As with other areas of the virtualization technology market, each is offering a different mix of technology and capabilities. Some are focused more an access virtualization, others lead with application virtualization products while others focus their attention on processing virtualization.

Of the group focused on processing virtualization, some, such as Neocleus and Virtual Computer, focus on supporting a number of virtual desktop environments running on a single client system.  ClearCube and Pano Logic take that one step further by offering Blade PCs and thin client produccts.

Others, such as HP's Neoware, NEC Sun and Wyse, focus more on supporting the virtual desktops on a local or remote blade server that can be accessed either by a PC runing special software or by a thin client.

Another group, including Citrix, Microsoft and VMware, are happy to support all of these environments one way or another.

Sychron appears to be more focused on managing and provisioning  environments hosting virtual desktops on servers (blade or general purpoase systems) running VMware ESX or, in the near future, Microsoft's Hyper-V.

If we consider recent announcements, Sychron will find itself competing most with Virtual Computer and Sun's VDI.  All are offering different types of well thought out management environments not merely support of virtual desktops all by themselves.

Sychron must really focus on creating brand awareness to win against the competition. I believe that developing strong relatationships with system suppliers and suppliers of enterprise services will help quite a bit. Sychron must also present a service of customer success stories in a number of vertical markets and geogrpahical areas to win.

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