PC sales are declining, as per recent IDC reports, a real worry for the Redmond giant. But that’s not entirely surprising. Computer geeks have long panned the Windows OS with its glitchy performance and perennial vulnerability to all sorts of malware and security problems. While update patches come out regularly, they simply serve to simply confirm an immature product. Microsoft also gets your dollars for a sinful Vista that is just an interim OS when the real OS to wait for was the Windows 7. And once you get the Windows 7 that corrects many of these sins, what could possibly compel you to upgrade to Windows 8?
You might find the latest iteration of the forthcoming next generation Windows worth your upgrade money. It uses Hyper-V 3.0, Microsoft’s virtualization hypervisor layer that runs on the core OS rather than simply guesting on it. You can access it in its Control Panel. Right now, Hyper-V is only available as an application on the Windows Server. Designing it as part of the next Windows desktop OS core just might change everything about it for a server running virtual machines.
This could strike a more optimized solution for Windows desktop virtualization than what you can have today. The current practice is to use a client-server VDI (Virtual Desktop Infrastructure) where client PCs run their virtual machines from the server. But while you get centralize security features, the set-up eats precious server resources, network bandwidth and requires unhampered connection between the client PC and the server to the exclusion of mobile computers.
On the otherhand, a client hypervisor as could be implemented on the Windows 8 Hyper-V runs a virtual machine at the client level. That means no need connecting to the server and users can bring their Windows virtual computing environment on a laptop or tablet. There is still centralized security but only its server component does the work which involves backing up of files and client PC configurations rather then running the entire virtualization.
Other benefits include multiple virtualization personalities with little computer resource overheads, allowing users to run older legacy apps along with Linux and Mac OS on the same machine. In addition, servers need not manage the entire virtualization centrally leaving it to manage just components of the software when needed. Great idea, hopefully Windows 8 will get it right.