PQR and Unidesk sign a partner agreement

I have been an advocate for Unidesk for a couple of years, I always thought they had a good vision on how we should manage our images. Layering however was not on peoples mind in those days, certainly not in our region.
Times are a changin’ is a well known song from Bob Dylan and with a great cover from Billy Joel. And times did change, VMware did a good job helping the market think about layering. When they acquired Cloud volumes people got thinking what that layering exactly was, with the release of app volumes suddenly all our customers are talking about layering.

So what is layering?

Layering is splitting the operating system, the drivers, the applications into different layers and update them apart from each other while at the end create a single image containing all layers.
So instead of having to update five Windows 7 images because each golden image you created needed a different Java version you now update one Windows 7 layer and add the Java layer to it in the end.
Every application or every group of applications is a different layer that you can combine with a underlaying operating system and a driver layer and so on. You saw the VMware presentations where the application layer are put on top of an operating system, that is how VMware does it, Unidesk goes one step further they also have an operating system layer and a driver layer.

UniDesk, VMware and Citrix

Beginning of this year Unidesk released a new version and I was privileged to talk to them about it. I was intrigued by the enhancement and thought it might be a good idea to see if PQR was interested. We have a lot of Citrix customers that deploy their desktops or servers with Citrix Provisioning server and management of that image isn’t that well thought through by Citrix leaving customer having to figure it out themselves.
Unidesk can be a huge help there so we signed a partner agreement and are ready to show our valued customers how Unidesk and PQR can add value. Management of the PVS images will never be easier.
Perhaps you wonder why I only talk about Citrix and not about VMware. VMware has app volumes, it does layering and depending on the license it would be a difficult talk with a customer to add a 3rd party layering solution. They’d think you’re selling the same solution from another vendor.
Of course that’s not the case because app volumes, as it says already in the name, only does applications and not the operating system, anti virus, drivers etc. From my point of view every customer that is maintaining golden images for a virtual solution should look at layering somehow. If the only difference is the applications and you have one operating system image app volumes will do, any other scenario and Unidesk is the better solution.
What about Citrix appdisk you ask? Citrix acquired Ringcube a while back and created PvD from it. PvD was not the most brilliant product and nearly ever used (at least that’s my perception on the environments I saw). Now appdisk is coming but it still is a tech preview right now, so nowhere close to production ready. We have to see how it will develop, of course in certain scenario’s it is a competitor to both other products but then again Unidesk for one is far more rich in it’s features than both products are or promised to be.
Citrix app disk and VMware app volumes will be delivered with the licenses, it wil be interesting to see which licenses they will be integrated with. VMware put app volumes in the Enterprise license which makes it easier for us to sell Unidesk to customers when we sell the standard license. Don’t know about Citrix but they tend to put everything in the Platinum license.
I’m glad we signed a deal, now we have two and soon three solutions to do layering. Depending on scenario’s and/or licensing we will deploy the more appropriate one.
Let the best one win 🙂
If you are in the Netherlands and interested, I’m sure we have a spot free for in our demo room to show Unidesk.
Beginning of March we have a demo scheduled with Unidesk on-site, if you want to join please contact me. like we say in Dutch, vol is vol… maar dan maken we wel een andere afspraak 🙂

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