Note: It’s sometimes confusing to recognize the differences between desktop virtualization and shared hosting. With CloudLinux, NetHosting’s virtual hosting options isolate your data so it isn’t affected by other websites sharing the same server.

Project Avalon hosts desktops and applications in the cloud so they can be used anywhere.

Desktop virtualization is becoming a standard in offices and organizations around the world. The service hosts personalized desktop configurations in the cloud, so employees can sit down at any workstation, log into their desktop in the cloud, and not be tied down to a particular computer or location in an office. It’s also incredibly helpful for companies that allow telecommuting. A manager can ensure that an employee has all the tools necessary to accomplish a task because those are the same tools available to an employee physically in the office.

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The same principle applies to applications in the cloud. An employee can log into a cloud infrastructure anywhere to access apps that are being hosted somewhere else and use them to complete tasks, no matter if that employee is at home, on the road, or in the office. That also means system administrators don’t have to redundantly install the same set of apps on every workstation in the office. Instead, one set of all the apps run from the cloud.

Because this has become such a vital part of businesses today, it’s only natural that companies have become developing these services to offer to companies. Citrix, for example, has released what it is calling Project Avalon, which by the company’s own statement “enables enterprises to transform some of their more important workloads, Windows desktop and Windows applications, to run on cloud infrastructure.”

Note: Windows is the most popular operating system in use today, and a staple in the tech industry. NetHosting offers Windows Virtual Hosting to ensure our customers are able to operate in an environment they’re most comfortable with.

Previously, Citrix Systems had the XenDesktop product to virtualize desktops and other enterprise architecture. Through Project Avalon however, XenDesktop has been transformed to run on Apache CloudStack (rival to OpenStack) and a cloud hosting infrastructure. CloudStack is now headed by Sheng Liang, who founded cloud.com which has since been bought by Citrix.

Just on Wednesday, in addition to buying cloud.com, Citrix also purchased Virtual Computer. The goal with Virtual Computer is to use the newly-purchased resources to improve the company’s XenClient hypervisor. Finally that will result in a better XenClient Enterprise edition. The bread and butter of XenClient is that it can provide virtualized desktops without a network connection.

Citrix’s product isn’t proprietary to its own cloud however – the service will run in any public, private, or hybrid cloud. The company has assured users that the service will be able to scale to accommodate one million users. All of this was publicly announced at the Citrix annually Synergy show. The official announcement came by way of Sheng Liang on Citrix’s company blog.

However in a separate blog post, head of the company’s strategy and development Joe Vacarro pointed out that companies expecting an effortless and quick transition to a cloud hosted environment or even a hybrid cloud environment will be disappointed. While the transition to a desktop virtualization will take some time for many companies, Citrix has tried to make the path as smooth as possible with easy-to-follow instructions.

CEO of Citrix Mark Templeton discussed the BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) phenomenon that has begun to take over the IT industry. Again, the idea pairs with desktop virtualization in that employees can purchase whatever hardware they want because their office-issued desktop is always available in the cloud. In response to this new trend, Citrix has also released CloudGateway. The product is an embedded browser, allowing iOS and Android apps to be downloaded and installed for single-use applications or internal resources.

The bottom line is that virtualization is becoming the norm in the majority of the tech industry, and with good reason. The benefits cater specifically to the new nature of work in the 21st century which involves a lot of telecommuting and travel all over the world.

If you’re interested in reading more about virtualization, particularly in hosting, check out our blog post explaining the benefits of CloudLinux.