Symantec SVS Ships Pre-Installed on HP Business Desktops
Today, the world's largest PC manufacturer, Hewlett-Packard, began shipping its Compaq dc7900 series business desktop PCs globally. The hottest new feature? Symantec SVS, in Runtime Mode! HP is the first desktop PC manufacturer to ship an application virtualization technology pre-installed as a feature.
"This is a key milestone event in the evolution of application virtualization as a concept," says Ken Berryman, Symantec VP of Endpoint Virtualization. "Application virtualization is no longer an emerging technology. It has arrived. Application virtualization is now mainstream."
HP selected Symantec SVS to virtualize the Mozilla Firefox Web browser. Mozilla Firefox for HP Virtual Solutions ensures that employees can utilize the World Wide Web productively, while keeping business PCs stable and easier to support. It is initially offered only on the new dc7900 series and will be offered pre-installed on all subsequent business desktop releases from HP, worldwide. Support for the virtual Firefox browser is provided directly by HP.
With Mozilla Firefox for HP Virtual Solutions, changes made to a PC while surfing the Web are contained in a “virtual layer” and do not permanently alter the machine.
Symantec SVS was selected by HP over competing application virtualization options for multiple reasons, including Symantec's ability to support a broad education and training program around virtualization for HP channel partners. Also key to the selection of Symantec for this initiative was the ability of SVS to virtualize Firefox while allowing other products -- for example, the ProtectTools security solution that HP also pre-installs -- to interoperate with the browser, without special development efforts.
In addition, "SVS allows us to provide a solution that lets the end user 'reset' the browser -- instantly taking it back to a factory image state," says Lance Stevens, Software Product Marketing Manager with HP's Personal Systems Group. "SVS was the only virtualization product that gave us that functionality while preserving user settings across a reset."
Other Ways HP May Use SVS
With SVS Runtime pre-installed on its business desktops, HP will have the ability in the future to bundle other virtualized software, or even to provide add-on software to customers in the Symantec Virtual Software Package (VSP) format.
"Delivering application software virtually has huge advantages for vendors," says Kirk Godkin, Manager of HP Business PC Product Management for North America. "Bypassing conventional install routines means a better customer experience and a massive reduction in the support burden for the vendor." Depending on the type of product, as much as 80% of a software vendor's support costs can be around the initial installation process. "But with virtualization, it 'just works'. And it will stay working as long as the customer needs to keep the application in service, no matter what other software is on the computer."
"Further," says Godkin, "we like the fact that with Symantec we can potentially add application streaming to the story. Streaming means that the correct version of any application can be made available to an end user where and when it's needed. And with Symantec Streaming, both the application vendor and the customer have assurance that use is compliant with the software license agreement."
Symantec SVS has the largest install base in the hot application virtualization market, with over three million nodes in production. This arrangement with HP will significantly extend Symantec's lead.
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