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VMware Buying Wanova To Bolster VDI Offerings

VMware on Tuesday announced that it plans to acquire privately held Wanova Inc. for an undisclosed amount.

The move will add to VMware's virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) technologies, including supplementing its VMware View 5.1 solution, which was announced earlier this month, with availability planned for this quarter. Scott Davis, VMware's end-user computing CTO, sees Wanova's Mirage technology as "highly complementary to View use cases." He added in a blog post that Wanova's technologies will extend VMware's VDI to offline use cases via synchronization.

"Wanova Mirage also completes our vision of extending VDI to locally executed and offline use cases, enabling seamless two-way replication of managed Windows images, applications and persona between the data center and physical laptops, as well as delivering them for execution as VMs on Windows, Mac with VMware Fusion and Linux," Davis explained in the blog post.

Davis added that Wanova's technologies will help support using VMware Horizon to deliver software as a service as Microsoft moves its applications to the cloud.

"As Windows evolves into a runtime environment for Windows applications delivered from the cloud, the Wanova Mirage technology presents a great building block for delivering Windows Applications as a Service through VMware Horizon and enabling managed service provider offerings from the cloud," Davis wrote.

A Wanova executive has claimed that the company's Mirage technology is "the complete opposite of VDI" because of its layering and synchronization technologies that enable local client execution. Moreover, it's not the same as desktop virtualization since it doesn't necessarily require a hypervisor to deliver a virtualized desktop. However, Mirage does enable single-instance management of applications on a remote server, which is similar to VDI.

Wanova Chairman and CEO Sebastiano Tevarotto issued a supportive statement regarding the acquisition by VMware. He also characterized the options enabled by Wanova's technology.

"We're excited to join VMware in enabling a more intelligent desktop infrastructure by providing centralized image management, but enabling those images to run where it makes sense for the user: in a VDI session, on a client hypervisor, or natively on a PC," Tevarotto said, in a released statement.

VMware's proposed buy of Wanova will increase VDI competitive pressures on Citrix, according to Elias Khnaser, CTO at Sigma Solutions, in his Virtualization Review column. It could compel consolidation in the VDI space, perhaps by prodding Citrix to buy Unidesk, according to Khnaser. He also suggested that it was high time for VMware to acquire a company with a type-1 client hypervisor, which, in combination with Wanova's solutions, "can become a lethal combination against any and all competitors" in the VDI space.

About the Author

Kurt Mackie is senior news producer for the 1105 Enterprise Computing Group.

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