The Friday Notebook: June 16, 2017

This week is another big one, with entries on Intel, iOS 11, Microsoft, VMware, Citrix, MobileIron, Ericom, nComputing, a new DaaS startup, GeekOut 365, Zimperium, Ping, and Vista.

Here’s what happened in end user computing, desktop virtualization, and enterprise mobility in the week leading up to June 16, 2017.


Intel has been hinting that it will defend itself against x86 emulation, presumably because Microsoft is touting their x86 emulation on ARM functionality. The big question here is: if Microsoft is emulating in software what Intel has done in hardware, can Intel prevent that from happening based on their patents? Intel has a history of firing back legally on competitors like AMD and Cyrix, but even Cyrix won a battle or two on the grounds that they arrived at the same instruction set via different means. This could get very interesting.

On the Microsoft front:

There were a few EMM product updates this week:

  • VMware announced Workspace One updates: First, the Workspace One app is getting an updated UI. Second, VMware is launching an app called VMware PIV-D Manager, to support virtual smart cards / derived credentials, and it works with Purebred, XTec, Entrust Datacard, and Intercede.
  • On a similar note, Citrix XenMobile’s virtual smartcard/derived credential support, first mentioned at Synergy 2016, is coming soon. Another highlighted announcement from Synergy 2017 is the ability to overlay personal calendars (i.e. data from the system calendar framework) over the work calendar in XenMobile Secure Mail. This got a lot of cheers on Twitter.
  • MobileIron announced MobileIron Core 9.4, an update to their on-premises platform. Highlights include support for iOS 9.3 education features, iOS 10.3, and Android Enterprise. (Remember, MobileIron also has a cloud product which receives faster updates. In February, they said about 6,000 of their 13,000 customers use the cloud version.)

Last week, Ericom announced a new version of Ericom Shield. Shield is a secure browsing platform that leverages desktop virtualization concepts to run potentially dangerous websites in a datacenter, instead of on a user's desktop. Users access the secure browser via their local browser, which then uses Ericom's HTML5 client to connect to the secure environment. Conceptually, this is like Citrix Secure Browser Service, but if you're not a Citrix customer this could be very appealing to you. In this new version, it sounds like the infrastructure is a bit different, so we're planning to learn more soon.

Earlier this year nComputing announced that they’d acquired VERDE Workspaces, formerly of Nimboxx and Virtual Bridges claim to fame. This week, nComputing released version 8.1 of VERDE, which is similar to 8.0, but it’s been re-branded. VERDE VDI guest support includes Windows 7 to Windows 10, Windows Server 2008R2 and 2012R2, and Ubuntu 14.04 and 16.04. It also features an HTML5 client and remote office deployment and management capabilities.

News crossed our desks that another gaming oriented DaaS startup, called Shadow, just raised $57 million. It sounds like they have quite a few inherent challenges—you need fiber, they need to build out their automation, and they only have 3,500 users.... plus $57 million equals high investor expectations! Hopefully this goes better than OnLive.

Interesting things we read this week

Citrix posted a blog explaining GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) for people that haven't really had to focus on it yet. GDPR is a huge deal in Europe, but that doesn't mean we won't be affected by it here. The problem is that if you have customers or offices in Europe, you'll also have to adhere to GDPR.

Just one of many interesting takeaways is that GDPR is a set of requirements around data security and protection, but how you meet those requirements is left up to each company. In other words, each company has responsibility for complying and can be held in violation of GDPR, but there isn't a guideline or checklist to get you there. In fact, there is no "there" to get to, because one of the requirements is that your design must be state of the art and future-proof, which means your GDPR-compliant platform is constantly evolving.

Mary Jo Foley looked at 13 new investments made by Microsoft Ventures, which itself was created a little over a year ago. Looking at the list, there are a lot of hot new technologies, and as Gabe noted recently, one of those is Frame, a DaaS provider.

What really happened with Vista, from a technical perspective.

Our blog posts

Guest contributor Jo Harder: XenApp/XenDesktop + Office 365: Citrix’s data on optimal user experience. Jo Harder looks at Citrix’s data on how to get a high-quality user experience from Outlook on XenApp/XenDesktop when using Office 365.

Jack: Apple WWDC 2017: Here are the enterprise management updates for iOS 11. iOS 11 has some great new features, but the MDM wonk in me wonders if Apple missed an opportunity to improve BYOD management.

Gabe: GeekOut 365 update: Launch date, topics, sponsors, BriForum videos. We have more details to share about GeekOut 365, which launches on July 18th with 11 new videos and every BriForum session from 2012 through 2016.

Jack: Enterprise mobility can face “legacy” app problems, too. Enterprise mobility admins have a lot to keep up on: OSes update frequently, users expect the latest experiences, and now iOS 11 drops support for 32-bit apps.

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Jack - VERDE was never owned by Nimble storage, i think you meant to say Nimboxx.  :)
Yes, that was a typo—thanks for catching it!