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Citrix and Intel team up on new desktop hypervisor

New solution intended to help reduce desktop management and mobile workforce management costs

Citrix Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CTXS) and Intel Corp.(Nasdaq: INTC) today announced they will be bringing better performance, manageability, scalability and off-network mobility capabilities to businesses’ client virtualization environments with the upcoming release of a Xen-based desktop hypervisor virtualization solution that leverages Intel vPro technology.

Ian Pratt, Xen project founder and vice-president of advanced products for Citrix’s virtualization and management division, says the solution will help businesses optimize the delivery of applications and desktops, which will ultimately lower their desktop management costs.

“Having a hypervisor solution on PCs with vPro enables off-network mobility, image isolation for security, a familiar user-experience, bandwidth-intelligent streaming, near-native virtualization performance, and the ability for users to switch back and forth between personal and corporate machines or the ability to work with them seamlessly together,” Pratt said. “This reduces the cost for enterprises that are managing laptops and desktops because (businesses) can now use this mechanism to distribute applications to thousands of PCs.”

With the new client hypervisor, businesses will be able to stream multiple corporate desktops and applications, directly onto a secure and isolated client-based virtual machine. The hypervisor also enables businesses to partition the system so that if required, personal and corporate machines can be treated as separate entities, or as one in the same. In addition, everything that’s stored on the client device is also encrypted, which helps protect business information whenever it leaves the company.

Gregory Bryant, vice-president of Intel’s business client group and general manager for the digital office platform division, says the new solution will help bring client virtualization-type solutions to the mainstream IT market faster.

“We’ve had great adoption from our OEMs with our vPro technology, so I think our channel will support this great solution,” Bryant said. “From an industry point of view, this solution helps businesses have more control and management over their devices and applications, which leads to reduced cost and risk, without a business having to compromise the user-experience.”

Pratt says the Xen-based client hypervisor solution is aimed to serve as a small embedded, component of a business desktop or laptop and is ideal for both mobile and office users.

Louis Shipley, group vice-president and general manager of the XenServer product group at Citrix, says the target customer for this release is the general marketplace.

“We think this solution will address segments of enterprise markets, but really, our goal is to build a complete solution for the marketplace that all businesses can use,” Shipley said.

The hypervisor virtualization solution will be available to PC original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) and is expected to be available worldwide sometime in the second half of this year.