Virtual Computer Unveils NxTop – Massively Scalable Desktop Virtualization for Mobile PCs
New Technology Marks the Beginning of the End for Management Agents in Windows
Las Vegas, Nev. September 15, 2008 — Virtual Computer today announced NxTop™, a next-generation PC management platform, which makes it as easy to manage thousands of PCs as it is to manage one. NxTop’s patent-pending technology isolates the PC’s critical components -- hardware, operating system, applications, and user data -- allowing each to be managed independently in a highly-scalable fashion without a persistent network connection. The technology effectively lowers the cost of PC deployment and maintenance and improves PC reliability and security without compromising the end-user computing experience. Virtual Computer will demonstrate NxTop, a bare-metal PC virtualization engine and full-featured central management console at VMworld 2008 at Booth #562 (Sept 15 – 18, Venetian Hotel).
“PC management is out of control,” said Dan McCall, president and CEO of Virtual Computer, “with so many agents and point solutions, IT managers are forced to make compromises that affect security, performance, and the end-user experience. NxTop is the only solution that integrates the core elements of PC management into a single, unified architecture.” With so much energy behind Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) for stationary environments, Virtual Computer is focusing on the fast-growing mobile and remote work force. NxTop, however, also integrates easily with existing VDI deployments allowing corporations to cover their entire base of end-users with centrally managed virtual machines.
“IDC considers desktop virtualization to be a high-growth market, and NxTop's technology has an opportunity to further drive that market by fully virtualizing the endpoint device,” said Michael Rose, research analyst at IDC. “NxTop is the first desktop virtualization product I have seen that delivers extensive manageability and rigorous security benefits while respecting the individual business needs of mobile users,” said John Christly, manager of Information Technology Security and HIPAA security officer for Memorial Healthcare System of Miramar, Florida. “My department is managing a large number of laptops and as a healthcare organization, security of these laptops and the data on each of them is a top priority. In the past few years, we’ve read of too many companies that have experienced data loss or security breaches. We are always seeking new and innovative methods of system and data security. Therefore, I welcome a product like NxTop, which will fill a market need that has been unmet for quite some time.” “The desktop hypervisor is a critical element for securely extending virtualization technologies to desktop devices,” said Chris Wolf, a senior analyst with Burton Group. “Desktop hypervisors allow IT organizations to partition desktop and laptop systems into both personal and work environments, thus giving users the flexibility to install personal applications, and the IT staff the isolation and control of the work environment required by the organization. Desktop hypervisors will clearly play a significant role in redefining what users expect of their desktop and laptop systems.”
How NxTop Works
NxTop includes the NxTop Engine, a bare-metal PC virtualization platform and NxTop Center, a feature-rich management console used by IT administrators for central management of their NxTop-enabled PCs. NxTop Center allows administrators to create a single master image of their operating system and core applications and publish it to any or all of their end-users. The master image is maintained through a Web console from which IT administrators can install additional applications, patch various components or update policies and then publish just the “deltas” to their users. NxTop utilizes an innovative mechanism that enables large-scale, system-level patching without disturbing end-user data and settings. The system also integrates with leading application virtualization technologies for independent management of applications residing outside the core image.
NxTop Engine Features
- Sophisticated control plane handles all aspects of management and execution of end-users’ Windows desktop.
- Policy enforcement, maintenance and security from outside the Windows operating system.
- “No-compromise” user experience, including multimedia graphics and audio, high-performance disk and networking, and better system reliability.
- Support for multiple concurrent virtual machine environments, each with independent policies and settings.
- Transparent data backup, including consistent and optimized backup for open files such as Outlook data files.
- Tamper-proof boot, full disk encryption, and preferred architecture for antivirus scanning and root kit detection.
- True hardware and operating system isolation for enhanced security and optimal performance.
NxTop Center Features
- Massively scalable through distributed virtual machine execution and module system architecture.
- Single, integrated-environment for IT with full compatibility with Microsoft virtualization and PC management tools.
- Single virtual system image for all users with one-to-many provisioning and patching, including version control and the ability to rollback software to any previous version.
- Granular policy controls for each user’s virtual machine, allowing for remote activation/deactivation, time-based expiration, on-demand remote disablement, and hardware access control (e.g., USB port filtering).
- Seamless integration with leading application virtualization technologies for application persistence.
- Stand-alone solution that can be integrated with a broader suite of third-party management tools.
NxTop Usage Scenarios Unlike existing desktop virtualization solutions, which often focus on task-oriented workers, NxTop can support a wide range of scenarios including:
- Full support for mobile workers including disconnected operation.
- Isolating the use of corporate and personal computing environments on single PC.
- Securely and inexpensively supporting contractors on non-company hardware.
- Providing a secure, remote-access environment to corporate resources via Web browser or other remote terminal technology.
- Running concurrent Windows XP and Vista environments for application compatibility and ease-of-migration.
NxTop Center runs on any Windows or Linux Server and can be distributed as a virtual appliance or a stand-alone application. NxTop Engine will manage Windows XP and Vista on business-class machines using Intel’s Virtualization Technology (VT) or Virtualization Technology for Directed I/O (VT-d). Virtual Computer is now accepting applications for Beta testers for a November 2008 release at www.virtualcomputer.com/beta. General availability projected for first quarter, 2009 with pricing based on a per-user model with both subscription and perpetual licensing options.
About Virtual Computer, Inc.
Virtual Computer was founded in 2007 to improve the manageability, reliability, and security of personal computers by isolating the four main elements of a personal computer: hardware, operating system, applications and user data. NxTop, the company’s flagship PC management product, helps IT teams reduce the costs of deploying and supporting mobile and remote workers while protecting their PCs against data loss and theft and providing a more enjoyable computing experience. Privately held, Virtual Computer is headquartered in Westford, MA and is accessible at www.virtualcomputer.com.
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