VMware Unveils New Desktop VDI Clients for Mac OS, Linux

By Chris Preimesberger  |  Posted 2011-12-16 Print this article Print

The formerly Windows-centric View application layer is now enabled with new desktop clients for Ubuntu Linux and Mac OS, in addition to a mobile one for the Kindle Fire tablet.

VMware came out Dec. 15 with five new or updated desktop and mobile device clients to operate its VMware View enterprise virtual desktop software.

The former Windows-centric View application layer is now enabled with new desktop clients for Ubuntu Linux and Mac OS (tech preview at this time only), in addition to a mobile one for the Kindle Fire tablet. The Palo Alto, Calif.-based company also updated its existing clients for Android and iPad tablets.

"These updates are all about improving the user experience in a virtual desktop system using [VMware's] PCoIP [protocol]," VMware Director of End User Clients Pat Lee told eWEEK. "We're adding higher resolutions, the ability to pan in and out of Web pages and documents, for example, and numerous other improvements."

Pixels Only Over the Web

PCoIP (personal computer over Internet Protocol) compresses, encrypts and encodes the entire computing experience at the data center and transmits it in pixels only across any standard IP network to stateless PCoIP zero clients. A user's data never leaves the data center. The PCoIP protocol is implemented in silicon for hardware-accelerated performance and in software in VMware View.

AMD makes chips optimized for PCoIP; Dell has optimized for it in several of its AMD-powered enterprise-level desktop and laptops; and ClearCube provides zero-client software, blade workstations and secure computing packages for virtual desktop environments.

VMware View can scale from a handful of VDI users to tens of thousands, depending on the capability of the central system, Lee said.

Mac and Linux users finally now can obtain a rich virtual desktop experience, Lee said.

"The clients are optimized for Mac OS X Lion and for Ubuntu 11.10. Users can switch between their Mac apps and their View virtual desktop with a swipe on the trackpad. Mac and Linux clients are tightly integrated with VMware View 4.6 and 5.0," Lee said.

VMware View client for Linux will be available in the Ubuntu Software Center around Dec. 23, Lee said. VMware View client for Android will be available in the Amazon Appstore for Android also around Dec. 23, he said.

Chris Preimesberger Chris Preimesberger was named Editor-in-Chief of Features & Analysis at eWEEK in November 2011. Previously he served eWEEK as Senior Writer, covering a range of IT sectors that include data center systems, cloud computing, storage, virtualization, green IT, e-discovery and IT governance. His blog, Storage Station, is considered a go-to information source. Chris won a national Folio Award for magazine writing in November 2011 for a cover story on Salesforce.com and CEO-founder Marc Benioff, and he has served as a judge for the SIIA Codie Awards since 2005. In previous IT journalism, Chris was a founding editor of both IT Manager's Journal and DevX.com and was managing editor of Software Development magazine. His diverse resume also includes: sportswriter for the Los Angeles Daily News, covering NCAA and NBA basketball, television critic for the Palo Alto Times Tribune, and Sports Information Director at Stanford University. He has served as a correspondent for The Associated Press, covering Stanford and NCAA tournament basketball, since 1983. He has covered a number of major events, including the 1984 Democratic National Convention, a Presidential press conference at the White House in 1993, the Emmy Awards (three times), two Rose Bowls, the Fiesta Bowl, several NCAA men's and women's basketball tournaments, a Formula One Grand Prix auto race, a heavyweight boxing championship bout (Ali vs. Spinks, 1978), and the 1985 Super Bowl. A 1975 graduate of Pepperdine University in Malibu, Calif., Chris has won more than a dozen regional and national awards for his work. He and his wife, Rebecca, have four children and reside in Redwood City, Calif.Follow on Twitter: editingwhiz

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