Introduction and Microsoft Partner Solutions Center…

August 23, 2011

Hi I am Michael Kleef, Director of Business Development for Microsoft and Citrix at AppSense. I’m a recent addition to AppSense having spent nearly 11 years at Microsoft with my last role being a Senior Technical Product Manager for depth content and knowledge in Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1 RDS and VDI.

I have had  few interested messages through my email and privately over twitter (@mkleef) asking why I left Microsoft and chose to go to AppSense. Essentially I was really excited by what I saw AppSense doing; transforming the discussion from device centric computing to a world of user centric computing. The interesting thing is that even while I was at Microsoft I was seeing evidence that in addition to Microsoft, many other companies saw great value in AppSense such as inclusion with a number of major players into their reference architectures such as the HP client reference architecture and Cisco VXI. AppSense also won the Citrix Ready Partner of the Year 2010. I did my own due diligence looking at others, though in the end it made it an easy slam dunk move to go to the market leader in the user virtualization space.

Microsoft is obviously a critical partner in multiple areas for AppSense, so it’s important that we are onsite on the Microsoft Redmond campus regularly. To help us support that we are  part of the on campus Microsoft Partner Solutions Center (MPSC).  The MPSC is a facility that showcases some of Microsoft’s partners and their  solutions for business and demonstration purposes. Having been there for almost a year now, we can confirm it’s a great facility with tremendous value to the Microsoft partner ecosystem. We also noticed that RES Software have recently joined the MPSC. The addition of RES Software to the MPSC confirms the importance and relevancy of the user virtualization market that we pioneered which is growing significantly and presenting an exciting challenge to our product leadership.

Demonstration systems on the Microsoft campus are especially important to be able to showcase your product and how it works. I personally developed an integrated Citrix, Microsoft and AppSense demo on the Microsoft campus in Redmond many months ago. It includes Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1,Hyper-V, Windows 7 Enterprise SP1, App-V packaged applications and streamed applications such as Office 2010 all running on top of Citrix XenDesktop 5 and XenApp 6. Overlaid on top of that is AppSense User Virtualization which seamlessly manages the user as they create settings and move in real-time from their XenDesktop managed Windows 7 to a XenApp 6 session. This is available on Microsoft’s corporate network which any Microsoft employee can logon to using their domain credentials making it a very good demo for them to use with existing or potential customers.

We plan to take this demo further forward and place it on the Internet for our partners to also use and see the power of AppSense User Virtualization really delivering value in a variety of Citrix and Microsoft technology scenarios. Watch this space for more on that!

If you have any questions about User Virtualization at the MPSC or would be interested in getting a demo from one of our team in your local area, drop me a line.

Michael Kleef

AppSense Validated on Cisco Virtualization Experience Infrastructure (VXI)

May 25, 2011

Cisco has rapidly emerged as a key player in the desktop virtualization ecosystem through its Virtualization Experience Infrastructure (VXI). VXI brings core desktop virtualization capabilities together with an integrated collection of networking, security, collaboration, and data center technologies to provide a high-performance experience that is optimized for video and collaboration.

Earlier today at Citrix Synergy, we were pleased to announce that Citrix Ready Leadership Partner (case study here) & Citrix Ready Solution of the Year 2010 ,  AppSense User Virtualization Platform has successfully completed Cisco-conducted interoperability testing with Cisco VXI and proved out a number of significant benefits that AppSense User Virtualization brings to the Cisco VXI solution. By combining Cisco VXI with user virtualization technology from AppSense, enterprise customers will see benefits across areas such as:

  • Migration & Upgrades: Faster, more successful rollouts through the removal of deployment barriers to achieve a seamless, consistent user experience, and simplified management.
  • Security: Granular location, role and context-specific policy and application access, including the ability to dynamically elevate or restrict user privileges.
  • IT Infrastructure Optimization: High availability through offline caching, improved responsiveness and optimized performance of the Cisco VXI environment.  Enhanced helpdesk and user management efficiencies are achieved while minimizing total cost of ownership.
  • Mobility: Extend Cisco VXI use through location-based policy and application access.  Enable consistent, seamless user experience regardless of device or connectivity.  Extend data access to mobile devices based on policy considerations.

For a more in-depth look at how the AppSense User Virtualization Platform can be deployed optimally with Cisco VXI, download the newly published white paper, “Cisco VXI and AppSense User Virtualization from the Cisco VXI Design Zone, below is a quote from the paper:

We are extreme proud of the company we keep from a technology alliances standpoint, and our growing partnership with Cisco is yet another example of the growing strategic importance of user virtualization.

AppSense to Join Virtualization Community at BriForum Europe

May 6, 2011

BriForum is nearly here!

Blogger and analyst Brian Madden’s annual virtualization geekfest returns to Europe next week (10-11 May) at the Chelsea Football Club in London, and as with all community events, AppSense is proud to be an event sponsor along with Citrix and Intel.  The AppSense team will be turning out in a big way to take in and contribute to the jam-packed agenda of great virtualization community content.

We’ll dive right into the deep end on Tuesday as AppSense’s Benny Tritsch will put his independent community hat on (not AppSense hat) and join respected independent consultant Shawn Bass to reprise their popular session “RDP, RemoteFX, ICA/HDX, EOP and PCoIP VDI: Remoting Protocols Turned Inside Out.” If the past is any indication, this will likely be one of the most attended and discussed sessions at the event as two of the sharpest guys in the space drill into how graphics and media remoting works and do a head-to-head comparison of the most popular protocols.

Later on Tuesday, our newly appointed VP and CTO Harry Labana and Brian Madden will team up for the other must-see session of the day, “The Future Desktop: What Should it Do and What Should it Look Like?” There is no shortage of new desktop and application delivery approaches these days, and there are even more views and opinions on what is on offer and what best suits specific use cases. Wondering where is it all going and to what degree will IT teams be able to rise to the occasion? You can bet that Harry and Brian will each have some insightful and provocative perspectives, and that neither will hold back from speaking their mind.

On Wednesday, Brian will join AppSense technical minds Benny Tritsch, Simon Townsend, and David Shepherd, as well as highly respected Citrix CTP Pierre Marmignon, owner of and the free (and controversial) Virtual User Environment Manager solution, for a roundtable discussion on the state of User Virtualization. This all-star group will cover the key elements of User Virtualization, the types of solutions available, and how it is being applied in practice today.

AppSense’s Jon Wallace, like Benny Tritsch, will be wearing his non-AppSense, independent hat when he delivers his session “Mandatory and Default User Profile Tuning.” A recognized expert on the Windows registry and user profile architecture and author of, Jon will demonstrate a practical collection of tips and tricks for optimizing log-on speed and usability when using mandatory and default user profiles. These tips are useful regardless of whether AppSense products are being used, so it’s a great opportunity for attendees to tap AppSense’s unmatched Windows profile knowledge.

As an event sponsor, AppSense will also sponsor the Geek Out Game Show, along with Citrix and Intel, on Tuesday at 5:35pm to 6:35pm

Throughout week, the AppSense team will also be manning the Demo Lab, so if you are attending BriForum Europe, be sure to stop by to say hello. It should be a great week!

For a the full agenda on this great event, please visit   

See you all there!

High Demand For AppSense Training Courses Leads ADDITIONAL DATES ANNOUNCED!

April 21, 2011

Due to increased demand for AppSense Specialist Training Courses, I am pleased to announce that as part of our continued support for the User Virtualization Community, AppSense have created additional course dates to try to accommodate all of the booking enquiries.

For those unaware of the AppSense Education, Training and Certifications; The AppSense Education Service course offerings include real world scenarios and the hands-on instruction required to implement and maintain a Virtual User Infrastructure (VUI) solution. The AppSense Certified Professional (ACP), AppSense Certified Specialist (ACS) and AppSense Certified Expert (ACE) certifications provide knowledge and skill validation from the internationally recognized leader in UV technologies.

The additional dates are for the AppSense Certified Specialist course which two-day course is a follow on from the AppSense Certified Professional level and provides in-depth training on advanced concepts, configurations, troubleshooting and detailing monitoring & reporting.  The course includes the following modules:

Module 1 – Installing AppSense Management Center & AppSense Environment Manager
Module 2 – AppSense Environment Manager Components
Module 3 – AppSense Environment Manager Policy
Module 4 – AppSense Environment Manager Personalization
Module 5 – Troubleshooting & Debugging

These new additional dates and locations are:

17th – 18th May 2011
09:00hrs – 16:30hrs

1st – 2nd June 2011
09:00hrs – 16:30hrs

28th – 29th June 2011
09:00hrs – 16:30hrs

Places are limited on this popular course, so please secure your space as soon as possible if you wish to attend. 

To learn more and/or confirm you place: please email or telephone +44 (0) 1928 793 532

To learn more about the AppSense Professional Services and Education courses available, please visit the AppSense Education Services webpages here

Many thanks.


Ovum Webinar – Understanding the Role of AppSense User Virtualization in ANY Desktop Strategy

April 19, 2011

Some of you may already be aware that Ovum, an independent industry analyst firm, recently published a Technology Audit on AppSense  User Virtualization (available to download here).  In that paper, Ovum positions AppSense as the leading User Virtualization solution and recommends that all enterprise organisations could benefit from this technology with Roy Illsley, Principal Analyst, saying:

 “Ovum considers that AppSense has developed a solution which enables the end-user organisation to deploy the type of desktop strategy that suits its requirements, rather than deploying a compromised, one-size-fits-all approach.”  In addition,  “many organisations are currently assessing how they manage Windows migration, transferring from Windows XP to Windows 7, or from locally installed applications to virtualised applications such as Microsoft Application Virtualisation (App-V). This is a really hot topic at the moment, and the AppSense approach is a cost-effective and viable option.”

The paper goes on to explain, that as User Virtualization covers all desktops, not just a single type, it could well be bigger than VDI itself:

 “AppSense User Virtualisation will span all desktops, not just VDI (Virtual Desktop Infrastructure), meaning that the market potential for User Virtualisation covers physical desktops, virtual desktops, and server-hosted shared desktops. Based on current AppSense growth, the User Virtualisation market could very well be bigger than the VDI market.”

So at this point you may be thinking, Virtualization bigger than VDI?!

The answer is yes.  User Virtualization helps with major desktop projects across physical, virtual and cloud hosted platforms – this is one of the main drivers behind the record growth AppSense are experiencing leading to being ranked 12th in list of fastest growing profits – detailed in one of my previous blogs –  The Sunday Times Profit Track 100 – AppSense Ranked 12th Firm With Fastest Growing Profits )

Anyways – back to the webinar!. 

Moving forward, in addition to the paper, Ovum are kindly hosting a webinar to learn how ‘The Role of User Virtualization in any Desktop Strategy’ can help you move from a device centric to a user centric computing model.

Thursday 12 May 2011 – 14.00 BST
14.00 – 14.10 Welcome & Introduction: Roy Illsley, Principal Analyst, Ovum inc Butler Group
14.10 – 14.20 How user virtualisation can help: Roy Illsley
14.20 – 14.35 Case study of a deployment, what went right, the benefits, and the learning’s
14.35 – 14.50 How AppSense can help – solutions and some more detailed info on the what it is and the technologies it works with: AppSense
14.50 – 15.00 Questions and Answers
15.00 Close

For many organizations the term server hosted desktops (SHDs) or virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) is synonymous with any current desktop strategy, which is in reality replacing the PC with a virtual equivalent. However, Ovum considers this focused approach as an over simplification of the future of any desktop strategy. In fact even the term desktop is becoming an anathema, as most users will not access corporate services from a traditional desktop PC or even a corporate owned or mobile device.

This webcast will consider the re-positioning of IT thinking about the desktop, which Ovum believes is move towards a user-centric position, rather than the device-centric position we take today. By taking this user-centric position, IT are able to make decisions about how corporate assets such as applications and desktops are delivered; even introduce corporate and personal accessing devices into the organization, without disrupting the user experience. The user-centric view requires a ‘universal user manager’ to provide a seamless and secure user experience.

User virtualization is that universal manager; it enables a multi-technology solution to delivering the ‘desktop’, while also turning the concept of a user-centric approach into a reality. The approach is simple: ‘decouple’ the user from the desktop, ‘manage’ the user independent of the desktop, ‘deploy’ the user personality back into the desktop on-demand. The result? An environment where users receive a seamless, personal and compliant working experience, regardless of platform, delivery mechanism or accessing device.

More agile, lower cost IT management, with thousands of satisfied users…..sounds too good to be true?

In this webinar you will learn:

    • What user virtualization is, and how it can be used in any desktop strategy, and why the user-centric approach represents the future direction of any desktop strategy.
    • Hear from an end-user on their experiences of using user virtualization and the positive impact it has had on their desktop migration and management projects.
    • Learn from the industry’s leading vendor on user virtualization about how it takes a technology agnostic approach to delivering a universal desktop strategy.

You can register for the webinar here!

Look forward to seeing you there!