Microsoft acquires another virtualisation vendor

The software giant buys desktop virtualisation firm Kidaro to boost its optimisation offering for its Software Assurance programme.

Microsoft late yesterday announced it had acquired another virtualisaton vendor, this time in the area of desktops.

The acquisition, for an undisclosed sum, is intended to integrate the desktop virtualisation management software developed by Kidaro into the Microsoft desktop optimisation pack for software assurance, the software giant said.

The Microsoft toolset package for managing enterprise desktop estates includes application virtualisation, asset inventory service, advanced group policy management, diagnostics and recovery toolset and system centre desktop error monitoring.

Israeli software developer Kidaro offers management technology aimed at making it easier for enterprises to deploy, use and manage virtual PCs through a platform that integrates the management of delivering virtual machine applications to end user machines. Its management server handles configuration assignment, security policy administration, monitoring and reporting, along with encryption and firewall components.

Shanen Boettcher, general manager of Windows product management at Microsoft, said: "Virtual PCs can help businesses address a number of challenges around application compatibility, mobility and business continuity."

But Microsoft will be looking to Kidaro's technology to help minimise compatibility issues between virtualised applications and its operating systems, and so accelerate migration to Windows Vista. It also said Microsoft Software Assurance customers will need to subscribe to an add-on service to access the Kidaro capabilities.

In a posting to its Windows Virtualisation team blog, Microsoft said Kidaro's three founders will join the company and that it will keep Kidaro's research and development group in Israel.

The acquisition follows closely on from Microsoft's purchase of Calista Technologies, a graphics technology developer for accessing Windows desktops remotely from a server.

The software giant also recently released its own virtualisation hypervisor to capitalise on an already burgeoning market. The Hyper-V technology was released in beta last year. At that time, Microsoft said it would be publicly released within 180 days of Windows Server 2008, which was launched last month.

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