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Scense Makes User-Based SVS Possible

Created: 20 Jun 2006 • Updated: 29 Jul 2010 | 2 comments
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hfranken's picture
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We've invited vendors with products that integrate with or enhance Altiris products to show their stuff on the Juice. Here's an example submitted by the makers of "Scense". -- Ed

Scense is working on an Application Virtualization feature through the integration with Altiris SVS. The purpose of this integration is to offer a centrally managed virtualization solution for desktop applications.

About SVS

Altiris SVS makes it possible to run applications in 'virtual layers'. An application running in such a layer will primarily 'see' its own files and registry keys in its own layer. This principle allows you to run multiple conflicting applications in their own layer, on a single computer.

Centrally managed virtual layers

Scense has proven to be very capable at providing the user with a working environment, including the provisioning of applications the user needs to perform his role in the business processes. With the integration of virtual layers Scense can, even more than before, solve compatibility issues between applications.

Scense is known for its capability of managing applications centrally, and in 'real time'. The combined forces of virtual layers and Scense will provide our users with a high level of application virtualization and isolation, and real-time centrally managed applications.

Managing the application

In Scense, applications are defined in 'application objects'. These application objects contain information about the application and the way it should be advertised, installed and run. This application object now is capable of coupling with an SVS-archive. The added vitualization capabilities enable the administrator to combine multiple types of applications (conventional, windows installer, virtual layers, etc.)

At application level, the administrator can define layer excludes, priorities and whether the layer should be activated at system startup.

The potentially difficult layer priorities are wrapped in a intuitive user interface that should prevent unwanted side effects.

Click to view.

Roaming Users

SVS stores user settings within the virtual layer system, and does not provide any means of making these settings 'portable'. Scense fills this gap with added roaming user support. With Scense, virtual layer applications can be used on several different computers while the users' application settings will follow.

Managing the session

While defining the application is one thing, making it work in the way the user wants, is another...

Scense offers the administrator the right tools to manage the application 'at runtime'. Though Scense will automatically import and activate the virtual layers, this may not be sufficient in some cases. The extensive functionality of the Scense 'Virtual Layer Action', the added virtual layer conditions and the possibility to 'script' the virtual layer system, makes it very easy to do just about anything with these virtualized applications.

The operations supported by the virtual layer action are:

  • Activate
  • Deactivate
  • SetAutoActivate
  • Delete
  • Rename
  • Reset
  • SetPriority
  • ResetPriority
  • Import
  • Export
  • SaveUserData
  • RestoreUserData

The operations can be used in exactly the same way all other Scense actions are used.

Click to view.

If more flexible ways to manage virtual layers are required, the Scense scripting action can be used.

The integrated SVS_programming model enables the administrator to do virtually anything...

In the little sample on the right, the administrator has defined a way to activate all layers in a single operation, while writing the results in the centrally stored Scense executive log.

Click to view.

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fsens's picture

I have seen SVS in a demo by Scense and what I have seen was very good and impressive. This is just what we needed. The only thing to wait for is an integration of the Scense interface with our Altiris Agent and than we can perform complete user-based everything.
Good product with the customer needs in mind.

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erikw's picture

Scense created a very good product. For small companies it is not the way to go, but for companies with over 100 users Scense can do the job.


Regards Erik Dinamiqs is the home of VirtualStorm (

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