This morning the Windows Business Group announced two new ways to deploy Vista in enterprise scenarios, both of which seem to be targeted at a return to 70’s cool. The first is simply a change in the EULA that allows for Vista to be used on diskless machines. This agreement allows customers to operate Vista on individual machines that access either individual drives or disk images that are centrally stored. The second option has been dubbed Vista Enterprise Centralized Desktops (please update your acronym directories to include VECD), which reflects the growing excitement around virtualization. By deploying this setup, Vista can be operated on server hardware, and then delivered to thin clients or traditional machines. The VECD license will be available on a per-device subscription basis, and also requires being a Software Assurance customer—if you know what that is then please tell us
As Jeremy points out at Ars Technica, this ability to essentially stream Vista is great news for admins, who until now would’ve had to look longingly at *NIX operating systems which boot over the network. While Mary Jo says Wall Street and the Feds are prime candidates for this, the question should be raised around smaller groups of users. New Web-based operating systems are cropping up all the time as Richard points out at Read/Write with Desktop On Demand, and you can’t get anywhere near northern California without hearing about Goobuntu (though I prefer my own term, GooOS). There’s more to be found on Microsoft’s virtualization plans courtesy of Clive Watson’s posting of new whitepapers, as well as Rodney Buike’s post on the Future of the Server Room tour next month.