As I wrote in the post MokaFive launches version 2 of its MokaFive Suite desktop virtualization (the combination of access virtualization, application virtualization and/or processing virtualization for client-side deployment) has not gotten the intense industry attention that its cousin, server virtualization, has and yet, a number of suppliers have pegged their hopes and dreams to that nascent market.
MokaFive is one of those suppliers. I’ve posted about MokaFive on a number of occasions and have been overly creative with the company’s name (see Moka5 - a different take on application virtualization and Mokafive Version 1.) The good folks at MokaFive and I finally found a time for me to see a demonstration. It was very impressive.
Snapshot analysisAs before, the company presented the difficult position IT administrators find themselves in whenever they want to lock down desktop systems to assure security, asset management and a consistent application environment (all of the necessary patches are updates are applied).
For some reason or another, staff members and executives have come to see the desktop systems supplied by the company as their own personal property and want to personalize them, add whatever additional pieces of software they feel they need to be productive, add media players and content, and whatever games they want to play while enjoying a coffee break. Some organizations have environments in which the desktop or laptop system being used by a staff member is actually the staff member's property. So, it has been very difficult for IT administrators to get ahead of the game.
If these administrators attempt to manage the environment properly, they find themselves involved in a range war with the end user community. In the end, even if they win that battle, they lose in other ways. Angering senior management that manages the IT function is always a lose. Angering highly technical, computer savvy staff members just ignites a world of creative work arounds that, in the end, allow the staff members to do what they wish to do anyway. The adversarial relationship makes it difficult to make the environment manageable, reliable and secure.
Several suppliers, including MokaFive, Citrix, HP, Neocleus, VDIworks, Virtual Computer, VMware, Wyse and a number of others, have developed ways to allow both a locked down environment and a staff member's own sand box to be running on the same machine at the same time. MokaFive and Virtual Computer appear to have developed the most granular approaches to management. Both allow operating system images, application images, user personalization and user data to be provisioned and managed from a central location.
The demonstration MokaFive presented showed a very easy-to-use, powerful approach. It appears that those interested in these types of solutions should carefully examine MokaFive's suite.