Q&A with Prediction Madness winner John Whaley of MokaFive

By John Whaley (Profile)
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Tuesday, May 3rd 2011
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VSM: Congratulations on becoming the top prediction author in VSM’s Prediction Madness. How do you & MokaFive feel about the win?

JW: Thank you very much. I’ve enjoyed writing for Virtual Strategy Magazine for the past few years and coming out as the top prediction piece is definitely an exciting win. I was pleased to see the positive feedback from the readers because I was up against a lot of other great prediction pieces. It was very exciting and quite flattering to see the votes coming in day-after-day for MokaFive.

VSM: Were their specific challenges that you experienced in 2010 that influenced your thoughts on the upcoming year?

JW: 2010 was the first year that companies tried to deploy VDI in earnest, and time and time again we saw VDI projects struggle with cost, management and user experience. There has been a lot of hype around VDI and when they started to implement it, they got a big dose of reality around the costs and challenges with server-based VDI deployments. However, the original drivers for VDI are still there and there is plenty of value in VDI deployments, especially in alternative forms of VDI such as leveraging client-side execution.

VSM: I know that we are only a few month’s into 2011, but do you feel the industry is on track so far with what you predicted?

JW: Yes, so far I do. With Type-2 hypervisors, we are seeing continuous traction in organizations adopting the model of “Bring Your Own Computer” (BYOC) and work-from-home scenarios because of the need to save in hardware costs.

So far in 2011, there has been a lot of buzz around type-1 client hypervisors, but not a significant number of deployments. XenClient continues to improve their technology and will get closer to an offering that is actually deployable, but I still believe it will take a few more years for this to really take off.

VSM: Is there any sort of update that you want to share with the readers?

JW: As customers get more comfortable with desktop virtualization and start to move away from expensive server-based execution models, I see more and more organizations wanting to take advantage of client-side virtualization to manage their corporate-owned desktops and laptops. To that end, this quarter we are releasing MokaFive BareMetal, a client hypervisor that eliminates the host OS and allows you to manage the entire system. BareMetal is a great solution for managing corporate-owned desktops and laptops because you get full control from the management console, plus you can manage and update a single image and deploy it to any number of desktops or laptops.

VSM: You mentioned in your prediction that VDI trials to date have been too small in scope. What kind of action is necessary from providers of VDI management in order to jumpstart larger corporate projects?

JW: In order to jumpstart larger projects, VDI vendors need to realize that the solution they are offering is bewilderingly complex and requires expensive servers, network upgrades and SAN storage. As far as scalability is concerned, VDI comes with specific capacity limits and requires organizations to overbuild for peak capacity.