Sentillion, Parallels Partner on Desktop Virtualization

 
 
By Jeffrey Burt  |  Posted 2006-10-30
 
 
 

When Sentillion rolls out the next version of its desktop virtualization technology in November, its partner will no longer be virtualization powerhouse VMware.

Instead, the Andover, Mass., company will be using technology from Parallels, a vendor that made its name with a product that lets users run Windows and OS X simultaneously on a single Apple Mac that is powered by Intel.

Sentillion on Oct. 30 is announcing that it will embed Parallels Workstation for Windows product into its own vThere 2.0, which is due for release at the end of November.

Sentillion also is announcing that it will use Amazon.coms Simple Storage Service as the storage backbone of its new hosted Web site.

The moves are designed to make vThere an enterprise-level product that is easier to use and deploy, said Paul Roscoe, president of Sentillion vBusiness, a division of Sentillion.

"By embedding Parallels Workstation as the virtualization engine, we could allow our customer to deploy this very simply," he said. "We wanted to make the experience for the nontechnical user more simple. … The products before have been too technical."

Sentillion is using vThere as a way of growing beyond its roots as a company that make remote access technology for the health care industry.

The company in June unveiled its first version of vThere, which essentially virtualizes the desktop image and VPN (virtual private network) connection for remote users.

The desktop environment is secure and isolated from the physical PC its running on, and remote users are given the same access to applications theyd have if they were working on-site.

Sentillion was leveraging VMware technology for the first version, but with that company continuing to push its ACE desktop virtualization product, "we were starting to see VMware more as competition to vThere," Roscoe said.

Virtualization to this point has for the most part been concentrated on the data center, particularly on servers, though there is growing interest in the virtualization of other components, including I/O and storage.

Some also are taking a look at desktop virtualization, such as VMware with ACE and IBM with its Virtualized Hosted Client Infrastructure, which marries its BladeCenter blade servers with VMware technology in a server-based computing environment.

Read more here about IBMs Virtualized Hosted Client Infrastructure.

Benjamin Rudolph, marketing manager for Parallels, in Renton, Wash., said the partnership with Sentillion is a way for his company to make a move into the enterprise space.

The alliance includes not only sales and marketing cooperation but also joint development of future products.

Another enhancement to the Sentillion offering with vThere 2.0 will be the rollout of the companys hosted Web site, www.vthere.net, where users will be able to provision their vThere images to remote users.

Currently the images—which are full software environments that include the VPN—are distributed via a disk. The new site will make it easier for businesses to provision their vThere environments.

To handle the storage requirements of the site, Sentillion will use Amazons Simple Storage Service—also known as Amazon S3—from Amazon Web Services.

With the new site, corporate users will be directed to the vThere.net site, where an image will be downloaded automatically from Amazon. The storage system will hold the vThere images.

Roscoe said that when the company was developing the idea for the Web site, the issue of storage was a key concern.

Sentillion could either develop the technology itself or opt for a third-party solution, and Amazons made the most sense, he said.

"I saw this as a fantastic opportunity to quickly get to market," he said.

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