Cross-compatibility, simplicity and flexibility are at the heart of a new desktop virtualization offering recently announced by EMC and Citrix, marrying the former company's enterprise virtual storage products to the latter's XenDesktop.

The companies, which also incorporated Cisco Systems' Unified Computing System into the new product, said that the new hybrid solution would greatly improve the ability of users to manage and deploy virtual desktop systems throughout their organizations.

According to EMC vice president for solutions Parmeet Chaddha, the technology is designed to scratch business users where they itch.

"EMC is laser focused on developing and delivering solutions that address our customers' most pressing requirements. Our new solution for Citrix XenApp and XenDesktop demonstrates EMC's virtualization leadership because it is an optimized, simplified and high-performance architecture which seamlessly leverages the advanced functionality inherent to Citrix and EMC VNX unified storage platform," he said in a statement.

The new solution provides the benefits of EMC's FAST suite, as well, according to the statement. That product has posted impressive test results, the company said, including a client startup time of five seconds even in the midst of a 1,000-user login storm, and similarly positive marks when subjected to other tough load conditions like patch application and anti-virus installation.

Flexibility is another key quality of the hybrid product, Citrix and EMC said, in particular the ability to scale a virtual implementation up or down on demand. This is possible thanks to the use of advanced new flash technology in the management tools provided.

That centralized management console is a third important advantage provided by the system. Thanks in large part to Citrix' XenApp technology and its successful integration into EMC VNX, users can optimize their storage use through compression and replication techniques, as well as manage all pertinent applications from the same place.

Management technology for virtualization, experts say, is likely to prove a decisive factor in the success of enterprise deployments. The increase in complexity accompanying the use of more extensive virtualization in an organization can be difficult or impossible for IT departments to handle without the assistance of automation in provisioning, monitoring and maintenance. The most powerful systems can be rendered useless by a lack of the kind of functional streamlining and simplification provided by the new EMC product.



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