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XenSource on desktops?



We know that Xen is moving slowly. We know that all the other guys (MS, Redhat, Novell et al) are "standing behind" the Xen folks. But if I see this discussion

Programmers have released a new version of Xen with a graphics feature that makes the virtualization software more useful on desktop computers.

Xen lets a single computer run multiple operating systems simultaneously, which is useful today as a way to replace servers with one, more efficiently used computer.

On a desktop system, Xen virtualization promises to keep separate zones for test, work, personal and management software. So far, however, that promise has been hampered by a major weakness: the inability to display multiple graphical user interfaces for these "guest" operating systems.

Xen 3.0.4 changes this. By including what's called a virtual frame buffer, Xen's controlling "host" operating system can capture video data written to a specific part of memory and then send it to the display. The technology lets users see virtual machines through a graphical interface, a feat competitors such as EMC's VMware can already accomplish, rather than the text-based command line suitable chiefly for the technically proficient.

Virtualization promises to significantly change how people use computers. But before it can become mainstream, average computer users must be able to deal with it. Xen's user-friendliness is still unproven, Pund-IT analyst Charles King said.


then my fear of "pushing the not yet ready market development in top gear" by a low cost rival might come true. This would obviously bring virtualization truly to the masses. Imagine not anymore some phreak developers or even over enthu-managers but a typical HR lady switching to her dirty desktop from her clean desktop! This actually happened at our place before we went for holidays. This lady from HR was working on the "very important spreadsheet" when our automatic provisioning software (LANdesk) started rolling out the XP service pack and rendered her work totally useless. She was pissed and the desktop was prep'ed for the new image. Had this been done with virtual appliances, her "production desktop" could have been ready for the patch while her work would have been saved in her "dirty appliance". Then she'd be happy like this lady...




So a lot of disruptive activities to continue in the coming 2 years or so.

I hope VMware is doing enough to address the deveopment in the desktopization land as well. Check out the thread here or the Original News at ZDnet by Shankland.

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