The mobile-cloud era challenges businesses to provide support for an increasingly mobile and diverse workforce while securely managing an ever growing range of applications and devices. At this past VMworld 2015 in San Francisco I met with Courtney Burry, Senior Director Product Marketing at VMware to talk about VMware’s latest developments in several different areas of end user computing.
First we talked about Project A2 (pronounced A-squared). Project A2 is essentially the combination of VMware’s AirWatch enterprise mobile management (EMM) and VMware App Volumes their application delivery technology. Airwatch provides device enrollment and App Volumes enables you to push out applications. Project A2 can work with physical and as well as virtual machines and VMware has partnered with Microsoft to enable it to deploy Windows 10. There is no need for Windows domains or other more complex application deployment technologies like System Center Configuration Manager. Project A2 is currently in tech preview.
Courtney shared how VMware Horizon had leap frogged past Citrix for the first time in Gartner’s Virtual Client Computing Magic Quadrant. Some of the new Horizon features that she explained were Client Drive Redirection for VDI and RDSH, support for Windows 10, NVIDIA vGPU 2.0 support, and rapid cloning with linked clones. Integration with VMware SDDC and all-flash Virtual SAN 6.1 enables double the number of Horizon users.
VMware Identity Manager is an Identity as a Service (IDaaS) offering that’s hosted on vCloud Air. It provides application provisioning, self-service, conditional access and Single Sign-On (SSO). Courtney explained how one of the most important new features in Identity Manager is support for Office 365 SSO. Device enrollment is provided by Airwatch and hooks for Office 365 enable SSO.
Project Enzo is a new hybrid cloud-scale technology that is designed to combine the economic benefits of cloud-based VMware virtual desktops and application deployment. Project Enzo decouples management from infrastructure. With Project Enzo the control plane for your virtual desktops is initially in the cloud and from the cloud it enables you to manage your virtual desktop infrastructure. It provides support for Instant Clone which can clone a running VM in as little as one second and App Volumes for real-time application delivery.