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Virtualization Alliance Aims For The Desktop

VMware and partners want to offer virtual PCs from servers, rather than subdivide desktop machines.

VMware, known for its virtualization of servers, sees opportunity in the thousands of PCs connected to those servers. But it doesn't want to subdivide your desktop computer. Instead, it has formed an alliance to generate virtual PCs on servers and deliver application services to desktops. That lets IT staffers support desktop users from the data center rather than walking to the desks, and users in branch offices can be upgraded without the IT staff traveling to those locations. Just assign them a new virtual machine.

Alliance members like Citrix Systems and Altiris specialize in managing multiple desktops using the server system, while Softricity offers software for virtualizing Microsoft apps. IBM, HP, and Sun also are on board. "Every x86 hardware vendor has joined the virtualized choir," notes Charles King, analyst at Pund-IT. And they're hoping for the sweet sound of sales.

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