I was chatting with a Kusnetzky Group client about the role access virtualization can play and why organizations in some market segments are eager to adopt this technology.
What is access virtualization?As I pointed out in the post Sorting out the different layers of virtualization, access virtualization can be defined in the following way:
Access Virtualization — hardware and software technology that allows nearly any device to access any application without either having to know too much about the other. The application sees a device it’s used to working with. The device sees an application it knows how to display. In some cases, special purpose hardware is used on each side of the network connection to increase performance, allow many users to share a single client system or allow a single individual to see multiple displays.
Why should anyone care?There are a number of reasons organizations might find a deployment of access virtualization technology attractive. Although certainly not a comprehensive list, here are a few points which should shed some light on the subject.
- Cost reduction - If one considers the true costs of an IT-based solution, it often is the case that staff-related functions of installation, administration, updating, training and the like are the major areas of actual cost. If client software was actually running on systems in the datacenter rather than on systems close to the users, those staff-related costs would be quite a bit lower than before.
- Security - if users were allowed to access IT-based solutions but, weren't allowed to upload software (operating system updates, games, program add ons and the like) it is very likely that the entire environment could be made more secure
- Better control of the environment - applications and data could be maintained much more easily if these components of an IT-based solution resided in one of the organization's datacenters rather than roaming freely about with the user.
- More flexibility - with the appropriate choice of access virtualization technology, applications and data could be accessed from a broad selection of mobile devices, laptop computers and dare I say it, even personal computers. The organization would not have to worry quite as much about software compatibility, updates or file incompatibilities.
Is your organization using this technology? What beneifts has it seen that can be attributed to this technology?