Trend Micro Makes Desktop Virtualization Security Push

In the upcoming version of OfficeScan, Trend Micro is taking aim at protecting and managing virtual desktop environments by addressing resource contention issues that often come between enterprises and security.

Trend Micro has its eye on protecting and managing virtual desktop infrastructures in a new push into virtualization security.

In Trend Micro OfficeScan 10.5, the company has built a hypervisor-agnostic security solution for protecting virtual desktops. The product comes as more enterprises are considering desktop virtualization, noted Punit Minocha, senior vice president of Data Center Solutions and Cloud Computing for Trend Micro. According to a recent study by the Enterprise Strategy Group, 60 percent of enterprises have a desktop virtualization strategy and 45 percent of them will have virtualized 50 percent of their desktops within the next three years.

"Most enterprises today are just dabbling in VDI, running some small POCs [proof-of-concepts] test it out before going full board on it and they absolutely want the ability to be able to manage these different types of solutions," Minocha said.

Enter OfficeScan 10.5. Integrated with Citrix XenDesktop and VMware View, OfficeScan 10.5 identifies virtualized endpoints serializes scan operations and security updates to avoid resource contention issues.

When multiple users start their session at the same time on a VDI host, the security software on those VDI images reaches out for new updates simultaneously, creating the so-called "9 a.m. problem," explained Joerg Schneider-Simon, Global Product Marketing manager at Trend Micro. In addition, when virtual desktops start scanning at the same time they create what are referred to as "AV storms" and raise the CPU load.

"You run into a bottleneck effect here, causing all machines to slow down, causing users to be disconnected from their sessions (and) virtual machines to basically stop working while multiple VMs are performing a scan," he said.

As a result, many organizations had to disable security in their virtual environments, he added. By controlling the number of concurrent scans and updates per VDI host, Trend can limit it to an amount that does not have a critical impact on VDI host performance, he continued, thereby speeding the update and scanning process.

OfficeScan 10.5 also allows for more than 20,000 endpoints to be managed from a single OfficeScan Management Server, enabling customers to manage both their physical and virtual desktops from a single management console.

"Most of our customers have significant virtual desktop initiatives," said Ken Phelan, CTO of Gotham, in a statement. "When building these systems, they often found that many of their traditional management and security tools either did not work at all, or changed the economics of virtual desktops by consuming undue resources...My clients need every possible economic advantage without sacrificing system security and OfficeScan delivers by enabling more than twice the number of virtual machines per host, compared to a non-VDI-optimized solution."

Trend Micro OfficeScan 10.5 is expected to be available in late July 2010.