Altiris VM Now Vista Compatible

Altiris has updated its virtualization software to work with Windows Vista. Symantec, which recently acquired Altiris, announced at Microsoft's TechEd conference in Orlando the release of the latest version -- 2.1 -- of its Altiris Software Virtualization Solution (SVS).

The other major upgrade to SVS is the addition of integrated application streaming, providing on-demand delivery of virtualized applications, according to a press release.

Virtualization and application streaming work closely together. Gartner research is quoted in the release as saying "Application virtualization combines well with streaming technology." Moreover, "Because of the obvious benefits of combining these two technologies, application virtualization is regarded by some users as synonymous with application streaming. The two technologies will eventually become inseparable." Altiris first released SVS in March of 2006. It's trying to become a player in the virtualization market currently dominated by two companies -- Microsoft and VMware.

VMware had almost wholly owned the market until Microsoft stepped in with both desktop and server virtualization products. Microsoft has been working furiously to catch up to VMware, but recently hit a snag when it stripped out a number of key features of the next version of its server virtualization product, codenamed "Viridian", in order to meet its public beta release date in the second half of this year.

All three companies are also racing to get virtualization compatibility with Vista out the door. VMware did it on May 9, with VMware Workstation 6. Earlier this week, Microsoft released a free, virtual image of Vista Enterprise Edition that users can test-drive for 30 days.

SVS 2.1 is available now, starting at $29 per node for the basic product, and $55 per node for the Professional version that includes application streaming.

About the Author

Keith Ward is the editor in chief of Virtualization & Cloud Review. Follow him on Twitter @VirtReviewKeith.