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Instant Application Delivery and Activation with AppStream and SVS

Quoting from Juice

AppStream provides on-demand delivery and user-based management for desktop applications. Combined with Altiris SVS, users get instant delivery and activation of virtualized applications, while completely avoiding conflicts between applications, and without altering the base Windows installation.

On-demand applications

Altiris SVS enables the creation of a portable package that can be activated and deactivated at will as a virtualized application on an end-user system. This is an excellent way to protect the target system and minimize support calls. But traditional delivery mechanisms can be a poor match for this very cool, instant-on approach. How easy is it to get these portable packages to distributed systems? How quickly can users get the applications they need? How many IT managers does it take to get an application to a desktop?

In order to provide true instant access to virtualized applications, SVS can now be paired with an on-demand delivery mechanism - application streaming. And although streaming is fundamentally a delivery technology, there are a number of other useful advantages that come along with the technology, like user-based management and automatic license recovery.

Streaming provides a comprehensive back end and delivery platform that is well suited and philosophically matched with the SVS product. Together they deliver ubiquitous self-service access to common application packages, while eliminating the daily burden on IT to manage desktop applications.

The concepts of streaming and virtualization have been intertwined and confused recently, to the point that industry articles have even blurred the definitions. To clear things up, Altiris SVS provides virtualization, defining the way that an application behaves while executing on a system; AppStream provides streaming, the most efficient and flexible way to deliver on-demand applications to the desktop. SVS doesn't deliver, and AppStream doesn't virtualize.

Streaming virtualized applications

AppStream's technology was originally developed specifically to deliver applications to desktops in such a way that there is no difference in behavior, interaction or performance compared to an application that is installed conventionally by CD. This includes normally installed registry entries, dlls and other system and shared files.

Now, when streaming an application virtualized with SVS, it behaves in exactly the way Altiris designed virtualized applications to run. That is, registry entries, etc. remain contained in the appropriate layers, as do any changes to these files. The full functionality and benefits of SVS layers are combined with the instant delivery and license control of streaming. In fact, AppStream's 5.1 release streamlines the whole process of getting users productive faster by automating the process of importing and activating virtual software packages (VSPs) and building core layer functionality directly into the streaming client.

In the diagram that follows, the orange circles represent the discrete steps in the life of a VSP, and the insert shows explicitly how streaming combines with this cycle to streamline the delivery and activation process. With a simple command line, a virtual software archive (.vsa) file is converted to a streamable package. For the end-user, the process is as simple as clicking the pre-populated application icon. This automatically performs four of the standard SVS steps: delivery, import, activate, and run.

Read the entire post from Brian Duckering, here.

Published Saturday, September 30, 2006 9:38 PM by David Marshall
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