Microsoft virtualisation 'one-third the price' of VMware

Following its announcement that a stand-alone version of its Hyper-V product would be available as a free download, Microsoft executive Bob Kelly discusses virtualisation.


Is it realistic that you'll be able to convince a customer who has already implemented VMware on the server side to take on your desktop/app virtualisation solutions?

We will have interoperability with existing VMware environments. And over time, you will see us start to migrate those customers over to Hyper-V for two reasons. One, with System Center, you can manage physical and virtual environments. Second, VMware is ridiculously expensive. We are at a third of the price. So we think customers will deploy us side by side with VMware, and then, because of the price, you'll see customers move to us.

Can implementing virtualisation inadvertently cause users' environments to become less secure or less stable?

It's not a security issue. It can be stability. Customers are deploying server virtualisation because of unmanaged server sprawl. Virtual machine sprawl is just as bad. It can have an adverse effect unless the customer has a very strong management strategy. That is why we've invested so heavily in System Center.

You have a certification program for third-party apps running with Hyper-V. Will you create a similar one for App-V? We don't have any plans, and I don't see why we would, actually. There's nothing you need to [do] but sequence your application. It's really the same as building an MSI package.

How do you change the perception that virtual desktops and app streaming are only for companies that want to tightly control their employees' IT usage?

[Laughs.] That is a political problem and not ours. But really, it's not about control, it's about management benefits. For instance, App-V can enable your apps to be rolled out more easily.

With your emphasis on virtualisation, what is the future of Terminal Services?

Terminal Services is growing rapidly for us. We'll see it side-by-side with App-V. It's not a question of us wanting to move a customer a certain way; it's a matter of providing choice to the customer.

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