Desktop virtualization technology also comes

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Desktop virtualization technology also comes

brake lining manufacturers So-called virtual machine software, which allows a computer to simultaneously run different operating systems and applications, is already having a big impact in corporate data centers. And the leader in virtual software for server computers, VMware, has been a big winner, a hot I.P.O. last summer (current market capitalization: $19 billion), and important enough to attract the wrath of  and competitive salvos from  Microsoft.

On Monday, a start-up with a pedigree that is remarkably similar to that of VMware is introducing its desktop virtual software and management tools. The company, MokaFive, was founded by four Stanford University computer scientists, including Monica Lam, a professor whose office is a few feet down the hall from the office of Mendel Rosenblum, the Stanford professor who is a co-founder of VMware.

MokaFives angel investors and board members include Vinod Khosla, the venture capitalist, and Bill Raduchel, former chief technology officer of AOL Time Warner and former chief strategy officer of Sun Microsystems.

The MokaFive team is trying to bring the benefits of virtualization to desktops and laptops  security, energy efficiency, flexibility and less need for technical support. Several corporations have been sampling MokaFives technology for months in pilot projects. But the Silicon Valley company is announcing on Monday that its software will be commercially available in June.

The company is first marketing its software to corporations to help them improve security and reduce technical support costs on their desktop PCs. But the larger vision, according to the MokaFive Web site, is to offer users freedom from hardware, freedom from spyware, freedom to carry your computing environment as you wish and the freedom to choose the operating system, application and content that is right for you.

The MokaFive offerings include management tools for network administrators and portable LivePC virtual machine software that a user can carry around on a USB thumb drive, iPod or cellphone. The long-term vision is to have service providers maintain this for consumers, explained Bill Demas, chief executive of MokaFive.

In the desktop virtualization market, MokaFive is pursuing a field of with plenty of opportunity, but also increasing competition. Were just beginning to see what this technology can do, said Michael Rose, an analyst at IDC. This is a disruptive technology, and were going to see a lot of growth but also consolidation in the market.

Desktop virtualization technology also comes in different flavors. Some of it is server-based like the so-called thin-client hardware and software offered by vendors like Wyse, Hewlett-Packard and Citrix. Others, like MokaFive, emphasize virtual machines running on desktops and laptops, though managed over the network, when connected. And some big corporate heavyweights are beginning to market virtual PC software that runs on the desktop, like VMware with its ACE offering; Microsoft recently bought a MokaFive competitor, Kidaro.

brake pad manufacturers However the market develops, Natalie Lambert, an analyst at Forrester Research, predicts that in five years or so virtual machine software will be how most personal computing is done. It can be hosted in a data-center cloud, running on a desktop or some combination of the two, Ms. Lambert said.

Personally, I think the greatest potential is for virtual desktop computing hosted in a data center, she said. Imagine Google owning your desktop, and its available to you wherever you are.