This week I visited VMworld in San Francisco to see where VMware is going with their EUC portfolio. In this blog I will report about the most important announcement and other things I’m allowed to share.
Oke, so it was my third VMworld in San Francisco so perhaps the more you get there the more you really watch what is being said. I felt like most of the sessions and most of the booths gave basic information and almost never did a deep dive.
For me as a consultant, a deep dive is what I need, I read all the basic information already, it is for not having Internet on the flight here otherwise I would have read all whitepaper in that 11 hour flight.
So for me they may go deeper than they did, but perhaps I’m just a difficult guy.. I leave you to judge.
Let’s talk about the announcements;

The Thursday before VMworld, VMware bought Cloudvolumes. I blogged about that. So we expected a huge amount of content about Cloudvolumes.
I was mentioned a few times in the keynotes but to my suprise only a few times. Thy demo’ed it also in the keynote but again not to the amount you’d expect them to. The major announcement was on the datacenter side with EVO Rack and EVO on Rails. Which of course is something amazing also for the EUC portfolio.
If you want to know more about Cloudvolumes read my previous blog : link
In short Cloudvolumes gives VMware the means to dynamically deliver applications to a desktop or server by attaching a VDMK to a machine in realtime. You might think so what, but if you think a bit further you realize that with that you can build a virtual machine Just-In-Time and add the VMDK (business applications, user installed application and user settings) when the desktop is being provisioned. That makes a hell of a flexible way of delivering desktops.
Okay while we’re at it, take it a bit further… the discussion has been going on for some time that we should stop doing non-persistent desktops for they cause issues with users wanting to install their own applications. We should only do persistent desktop and manage them as any desktop we did for the past 30 years.
With Cloudvolumes VMware got their hands on a product that might be a game changer in that discussion, because what if you can use non persistent (it has lots of benefits) and still allow the user to have a persistent experience…that would be the best of both worlds, wouldn’t it?
So (my short version of a story is mostly pretty long) in short, with cloudvolumes the delivery of applications and user settings will change, depending on how VMware implements it.
Project Fargo – Forking
On the second day of the keynote Project Fargo was mentioned, this is even more interesting than Cloudvolumes and together they could rock the desktop world.

Project Fargo (who thinks of these names?) is about speeding up desktop provisioning.

So if we look at provisioning these days a lot is happening before we get from a golden image to a virtual machine, it can take up to a few minutes to get it all finished. If we look at competitors this is the same, provisioning takes time and sometimes means a lot of steps to follow to guarantee a working solution.
With Project Fargo they attempt to speed up that provisioning by 10 to 30x, the picture says 30x but in a previous presentation it was 10x. They said it could be up to 30x, they aim for under 5 seconds.
What it does is make a clone of a live running machine and use the memory and cpu of that running machine as shared memory and cpu for as long as nothing changes. The technique is a copy-only writeable virtual machine that uses everything from the parent until something is changed. When a file is changed, those changes will go to the child virtual machine making sure each child is unique.
Project Meteor
Now it get’s really interesting, what if we combine both products? What if we can provision a desktop Just-In-Time and add the business and user-installed application and the user settings while it’s provisioning before the user has access to the desktop, and do this within seconds? wouldn’t that be an awesome user experience and wouldn’t that be something that would rock the EUC world.
VMware is working on that, it’s called project Meteor, and it combines Cloudvolumes and Project Fargo.
Sure you are wondering if they showed any demo or so but they didn’t. Only thing we got was an earthquake and a volcano in Iceland that was threating to erupt. They showed us a graph with two lines, one line the top one is of a current situation creating a desktop pool with VMware Horizon view. The other one is with Project Fargo, I’m skeptical in everything I do so also here, but if the numbers come even close to this I will be a fan, a huge fan.

vGPU – NVidia virtualized grid GPU
With ESX 6 VMware will offer the ability to use a virtualized GPU like Citrix has with XenServer. This is a very important feature that VMware View is lacking and is one of the biggest reasons (im my opinion) Xenserver is still around. Below is picture of all the option available, this taken from Shawn Bass session comparing graphics.
He has been doing testing for some time and has been testing performance of different graphic options for VMware View, Citrix XenDesktop/XenApp and Microsoft RDSH. He showed a preview of the new vGPU coming in 2015 with VMware View. We know him as being brutaly honest so if he says it’s crap, it’s crap.
He told us that he was impressed by the way VMware developed the vGPU sand that it just worked. He told us that it worked like you see with Citrix and in some scenarios even better. I can’t wait for 2015 to arrive and get my hands on it myself.

What’s more to tell?

I covered the major EUC topics at VMworld this year, what more can we expect. I wil share a picture with you for some information can’t be shared, but imagine that you connect from your Airwatch managed device or from your Tesla with a desktop that is provisioned as you connect to it while your applications and settings are available anywhere anytime… that would be something.
I think this picture paints the future… remember this picture and we’ll talk again soon 🙂

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