With so much being said about application virtualization, there’s a good understanding as to the business definition–the technical “how” is now the question mark.

How should you best virtualize applications? It depends.

How should you deliver virtualized apps to users, and better yet, how do you it optimally? It would be so easy if I could provide you with a few if/then statements to determine the best answer. It’s not quite that simple.

Some organizations have just a few apps, and large enterprises typically have hundreds or thousands of apps. A good first step is to determine which apps you need to perpetuate. It’s kind of like cleaning out your office and determining that you really don’t need that Office 2000 media or book anymore. Take a look at your application usage reports within EdgeSight, and you will find that a percentage of your apps aren’t used and don’t need to be addressed.

So long as you’re looking at the app usage reports, look for those apps that have only a handful of users. If low usage is standard for those apps, e.g., usage doesn’t jump at the end of each quarter, then consider an alternative such as desktop streaming, whether App-V or Citrix, or maybe VM Hosted Apps to enable those applications.

By now, you may have shaved down your app list by 10% or maybe even 20%. What about behavior, functionality, and compatibility of these apps? Here’s where it starts to get complex. What do you do with the ugly 16-bit app that just won’t go away? Or the IE6-based app that can’t be used with Windows Server 2008? Can I use App-V without Microsoft Desktop Optimization Pack licensing? Should I use XenApp or XenDesktop technologies to delivery apps?

Back to the original question: how do you deliver virtualized applications optimally? I can provide you with one if/then statement: If you want technical answers about how to deploy applications, then block off an hour to attend the Choosing the Best Application Delivery Options for XenApp and/or XenDesktop TechTalk that will be held on Wednesday.