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Virtual Computer Adds Support for Microsoft Windows 7, Windows Server 2008 and Hyper-V in Latest Release of NxTop
Virtual Computer Inc. (VMworld Booth #1940), the company redefining PC management through virtualization, today released a new version of NxTop that supports Microsoft’s latest desktop and server platforms. Available immediately through Virtual Computer’s NxTop Now! program, the new release enables organizations to begin a seamless migration to Microsoft’s Windows 7 operating system. In addition, Virtual Computer has integrated NxTop Center, its centralized management console, with Windows Server 2008 and Hyper-V. The result is unprecedented simplicity for deploying NxTop while providing Virtual Computer with a platform to accelerate innovation of the NxTop product line.

“With the success of Windows Server 2008 and Hyper-V evident in our customer base and the launch of Windows 7 just around the corner, Virtual Computer has aligned with Microsoft and its platforms to drive innovation into the desktop virtualization market,” said Virtual Computer president and CEO, Dan McCall. “Unlike VDI solutions which are difficult to set up and expensive to deploy, NxTop is a breeze to implement using existing infrastructure. And, with NxTop’s ability to simultaneously run two operating systems on the user’s PC, we are lowering the bar for IT departments to roll out Windows 7 across their user base.”

Windows 7: Instant Upgrade

Organizations have a variety of concerns when deploying a new PC operating system including determining how long the upgrade will take, the near-term impact on productivity, and how to handle user training. By deploying Windows 7 with NxTop many of these traditional concerns are reduced or eliminated.

Point-and-Click Deployment

A simple point-and-click operation in NxTop Center deploys Windows 7 to all or any subset of users. This deployment is non-destructive to the user’s current running instance of XP or Vista and includes features such as:

  • Automatic injection of the user’s profile and preferences from their current version of Windows.
  • “Behind the scenes” preparation of the Windows 7 image while the PC is in use.
  • Notification of successful deployment through NxTop Center’s event logging system.

No Down-Time, Self-Paced Migration

Because Windows 7 is deployed on the same hardware as the current operating system, users experience no disruption to their computing environment. For training purposes, users can run their old OS simultaneously with Windows 7 using a simple hot-key combination to switch between the two environments. Once the user is comfortable with Windows 7, they can move permanently to the new system. Administrators then have the option of removing the old operating system or leaving it in place to handle any application issues that may occur during the transition cycle for their organization.

One Image, Thousands of Users

The upgrade to Windows 7 provides organizations with the perfect opportunity to upgrade their image management capabilities. A core feature of NxTop allows the desktop administrator to create a single master image of Windows 7 and deploy it to all users. Any future updates and administrative changes are performed once on the master image and automatically applied to all users using the same “behind the scenes” model as the original deployment. All operations are optimized for WAN environments, transferring the smallest amount of data possible.

NxTop Now! Thirty Minutes to a Better PC Management Platform

Using Windows Server 2008 and Hyper-V, Virtual Computer has cut the installation time for NxTop Center in half. System administrators run a simple installation wizard on their Windows Server 2008 system that automatically deploys and configures Virtual Computer’s complete management framework. By pairing this step with a simple CD or network-based installation of the NxTop Engine client hypervisor, IT administrators will have an end-to-end desktop virtualization platform up and running in thirty minutes or less. This is a sharp contrast to server-centric virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) deployments, which can take days or even weeks to set up and require large and expensive data-center build-outs prior to deployment.

Centralized Management/Distributed Execution: A Smarter Approach to Desktop Virtualization

Beyond time and cost savings, NxTop’s model of centralized management and distributed execution provides a number of key features that overcome VDI weaknesses.

  • Utilization of local computing hardware for resource intensive applications and user-attached peripherals. This includes high performance graphics and no discernable change to the user’s computing environment when running as a single virtual machine.
  • Support for desktop and laptop computers all running the same master image of the operating system.
  • Minimal data-center investment and the ability to run on current PC hardware in the field.
  • Smooth scalability curve without significant spikes in data center expenses as user thresholds are exceeded.

“The management and security benefits of desktop virtualization were out of our reach before NxTop, since we have a highly mobile workforce, and building out an extensive data center footprint that could only support a small subset of our desktop users was not financially feasible,” said John Cook, systems administrator at Partnership for Strong Families of Gainesville, FL. “NxTop gives us the ability to achieve better management and security for both stationary and mobile users using a standard Windows Server 2008 back-end and the exact same level of PC hardware investment we had budgeted for.”

Published Monday, August 31, 2009 9:54 AM by David Marshall
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