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Virtualization trends from BriForum 2015 center on mobility

DENVER -- Some of the biggest trends at BriForum 2015 were mobility-focused, such as virtual mobile infrastructure and app refactoring.

There were nearly 30 vendors at BriForum 2015 last week. The end-user computing conference gave attendees a look at the latest advancements that virtualization vendors have to offer, and highlighted how the market is shifting to focus on enterprise mobility.

"We've always struggled with how mobile fits into desktop [virtualization]," said conference namesake and keynote speaker Brian Madden.

"Now, we're seeing different technologies that allow Windows desktop applications running behind the scenes to be transformed and refactored and delivered."

The ability to reform applications for use on mobile devices isn't new: Citrix's Mobile SDK for Windows Apps has been around for years. It lets developers mobilize Windows apps in XenApp and XenDesktop, but it requires access to source code. Shops that want to use the Mobile SDK approach also need personnel in-house who know how to code legacy applications. New refactoring approaches can make applications available on mobile devices without accessing the source code, said independent industry analyst and blogger Gabe Knuth, who is also one of the primary organizers of BriForum.

"To see all these vendors here that can do this on the fly, I think is going to breathe life into these legacy apps," Knuth said.

In this video from the show floor at BriForum, Madden and Knuth discuss the evolution of the conference from its beginnings covering VDI and Remote Session Desktop Host, to more recent virtualization trends, including virtual mobile infrastructure (VMI).

Along with VMI, Knuth and Madden also discussed topics such as app layering, delivery and management, and which vendor products caught their attention.

"App layering is coming back," said Madden, mentioning Liquidware Labs' FlexApp as one example.

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Has mobility affected how you approach desktop virtualization?
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Desktop virtualization has primarily been about making sandboxes for test environments, and being able to roll back to previous states. To that end, Mobile isn't part of that equation, and at the moment, we do not virtualize apps for use on mobile in this fashion. Instead, we make smaller purpose apps we can download and run. 
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