VMware (sort of ) previews the protocol that will replace Microsoft RDP

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It’s not a secret that VMware is working hard to drop Microsoft RDP as its remote desktop protocol of choice in VDI environments.

At the end of 2007 the company was already part of the VESA committee trying to develop the new standard Net2Display (that never saw the day of light so far).
And then, at VMworld 2008, the company announced a technology partnership with the startup Teradici to develop a software version of their PCoIP protocol (which only works with dedicated graphic cards).

Last week during the VMworld Europe 2009 (see virtualization.info live coverage of day 1 and day 2), VMware was expected to show an alpha build of that software implementation but instead presented the existing Teradici solution.

Brian Madden and provided a good description of its upcoming features:

  • 150-250ms latency in WAN scenarios with support for lightweight Flash applications, VoIP, remote printing, etc.
  • multiple displays with 1900×1200 pixels resolution in LAN scenarios, with support for full Flash applications, Adobe AIR, Microsoft Silverlight, HD video
  • additional support for 3D CAD, rendering and animations, when dedicated graphic cards are available

Chris Wolf instead saw the software version of PCoIP and reports:

With the default install, PCoIP delivered smooth rendering of flash, streaming video, PDF viewing, PowerPoint editing and presentation viewing, and editing a heavily commented Word document. Warren stated that the goal for the software PCoIP implementation is to maintain quality and user experience at connections with bandwidth as low as 125 Kbps and latency as high as 250 ms. In our test, Warren used a WANem virtual appliance to simulate low bandwidth and high latency. Warren ratcheted up the latency to 250 ms. No problem. I then asked if he would bump down the bandwidth to under 200 Kbps. He took bandwidth down to 150 Kbps and performance remained strong…