VMware Expands Partner Certification Program To Desktop

The new VMware Ready Desktop Solutions program features hardware solutions for compute, storage and network resources that are validated by VMware and its partners, including guaranteed service level agreement (SLA) for support, said Mason Uyeda, director of desktop technical marketing at VMware, in an interview.

One of VMware's goals with the program is to certify a range of solutions aimed at specific desktop virtualization use cases. The first two VMware Ready Desktop Solutions come from HP and Force3, a Crofton, Md.-based government VAR, and they're both designed for U.S. government agencies that need to meet the terms of the Telework Act of 2010.

The legislation, which President Obama signed into law last December, requires federal agencies to revamp their IT Infrastructure to enable employees to telecommute when possible, and virtualization technology will go a long way toward making this feasible.

The new VMware-certified desktop virtualization offerings from HP and Force3 are designed to meet stringent government security requirements. In addition to networking, compute and infrastructure, they also meet Telework Act of 2010 requirements that extend to the user's home computing environment, including end point devices and security products, Uyeda said.

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"We're taking a look at that end-to-end infrastructure, and then in conjunction with partners, validating that the infrastructure performs as expected," said Uyeda.

VMware Ready was previously limited to vSphere, but VMware is broadening its focus in recognition of the fact that desktop virtualization deployments require a specific skill set that encompasses a range of third party technologies and services, according to Uyeda.

VMware expects other partners to get their solutions certified in the VMware Ready Desktop Solutions, but Uyeda said the goal isn't to build a large collection of partners, but rather, to bring in those that have the specific skill sets needed to deliver desktop virtualization solutions.

Many of these will be large VARs, but there are plenty of smaller partners that possess the necessary skill set, he added.

"We think the program will succeed because we're defining the assessment, planning, deployment and operational aspects partners will go through to ensure success," said Uyeda. "And once they have that expertise, they'll be able to replicate it."