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Thin Client and Virtual Machines Thread, how to assess application virtualization ? in Technical; I've got a few scenarios to evaluate and assess if the applications my customer requires is able to be virtualized. ...
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    cdm
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    how to assess application virtualization ?

    I've got a few scenarios to evaluate and assess if the applications my customer requires is able to be virtualized. Is there some resource out there that will aid in assessing and evaluating whether or not some applications can be virtualized ? I've got 3 or 4 scenarios from simple to more complex (web colaboration). Not looking to spend money on this though.

    Thanks,
    Chris

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    Basicly if it requires hard real time or direct access to hardware that is not over the the network then it is unlikely that you will be able to virtualise it.

    If you mean a product like appV then I'm not sure.

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    If you are using App-V, Aaron Parker's website is a great place to start. For ThinApp, VMware's Community Portal is really useful too.

    http://blog.stealthpuppy.com/appv-faqs/
    http://blog.stealthpuppy.com/appvrecipes/

    App-V FAQ #7: Is App-V an Application Compatibility solution?
    The short answer to this question is No, when it comes to migrating to newer versions of Windows, the Application Compatibility Toolkit should be an essential component of your upgrade project. The longer answer is – it depends what you define as Application Compatibility.

    Least Privilege
    One of the most common issues with compatibility is running applications with least privilege. Often applications expect to be run with administrative access because they attempt to write to system protected areas such as HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE in the Registry or folders such as \Windows and \Program Files. App-V can assist with these types of applications by virtualising those locations and allowing the application to write to the virtual copies. The write action will then succeed but all changes are kept within the virtual environment. No changes are required to the physical system.

    Remote Desktop Services
    In some circumstances App-V can assist with applications that do no behave correctly in multi-user environments such as Terminal Server or Remote Desktop Services. By virtue of hosting the application in App-V, registry and file system virtualisation can benefit those applications that may store data or configurations in common locations such as HKLM in the Registry and the Program Files folder in the file system. If the application now has it’s own unique view of these locations, it should work when run under Remote Desktop Services (this includes add-on products such as Citrix XenApp or Quest vWorkspace).
    App-V FAQ #9: Can App-V be used to run 16-bit applications on Windows x64?
    No, App-V is not a compatibility solution. App-V does not provide any additional layers that applications can use when executing on different versions of Windows. If 64-bit Windows does not support 16-bit applications, then neither will App-V.
    App-V FAQ #18: Can I virtualise Internet Explorer with App-V?
    No, unfortunately you cannot use App-V to virtualise Internet Explorer today. Other application virtualisation solutions such as VMware ThinApp, Symantec Workspace Virtualization, and InstallFree Bridge can virtualise Internet Explorer, so why can’t App-V?

    There’s no technical reason why App-V can’t virtualise Internet Explorer; however at this time Microsoft’s stance on running multiple versions of Internet Explorer on a single operating system is preventing this from becoming a reality – Running Multiple Versions of Internet Explorer On Single Operating System is Unsupported.

    Quote Originally Posted by cdm View Post
    I've got 3 or 4 scenarios from simple to more complex (web collaboration).
    As Synack said, anything that relies on (kernel-mode) device drivers will not virtualize (although you could deploy the drivers separately perhaps?). A couple of good examples are LogMeIn and TrueCrypt. For ThinApp, VMware list the following as unsupported.

    • 16-bit or non x86 platforms, such as Windows CE
    • 64-bit applications
    • Applications requiring installation of kernel-mode device drivers (ODBC drivers work because they are usermode)
    • Products such as anti-virus and personal firewalls
    • Scanner and printer drivers, some VPN clients

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    cdm
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    Arthur,

    Thanks for the response. I'm thinking, although I don't know for sure, that VMware View and Citrix XenDesktop would be able to virtualize pretty much any
    application out there (but I'm still not convinced) since if you would have multiple virtual machines doing what ordinarily the thick client would do anyway.
    I'll have to keep looking I guess to find out application compatibility for VMware View and XenDesktop to be sure. Thanks again.

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    Whilst the likes of VMWare View and Xenapp may claim they can virtualise any windows application the issue is more likely to be, if so 'is it a good user experience'? and 'what is the required infrastructure?'. If it's a graphically intense application students will get frustrated immediately at the slow response or to overcome that you'll need a huge backend infrastructure to handle it. If you're then in that situation it's almost whats the point of virtualising applications as you're simply moving the power from the pc to the server.

    The benefit of application virtaulisation is that the end machine is doing the work - so you don't need masses of backend infrastructure.

    There are Application Virtaulisation products out there which handle things differently, and remove the limitation that many perceive is common across all technologies in the market.

    AppV from Microsoft and ThinApp traditionally 'isolate' applications - so that prohibts many applications.

    However with a bit of investigation you will find products that offer 'integrated' (basically the bubble/sandbox is taken away). In this area probably about 95% of applications can be virtualised. Moving even further one vendor allows 'configurable' virtualisation (where at a file level you can decide which parts are isolated and which integrated). The latter means that you can virtualise any windows application, even those with plug-ins or those that require a specific version of say .net alongside it.

    I don't mind saying I have a vested interested in this area but I have tried to reply with useful information which helps provide a better learning environment, save instutions money and make peoples lives easier...... rather than give a sales pitch.

    Thanks

    Nick.

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