Snow Software helps organizations manage their virtualized assets by providing the intelligence necessary to build a complete and reliable SAM solution. This document describes how Snow Software provides complete visibility and control of the virtualized windows applications of an organization.
Application virtualization is software technology that isolates applications from the underlying operating system on which it is executed. A fully virtualized application is not installed in the traditional sense, although it is still executed as if it were. The application behaves at runtime like it is directly interfacing with the original operating system and all the resources managed by it but can be isolated or sandboxed to varying degrees. Application virtualization separates the application from the operating system to reduce administration cost, patch management and avoids conflicting applications and it can allows incompatible applications to run side-by-side, at the same time.
There are two major types of application virtualization: remote applications and streaming applications.
▪ Remote applications run on a server, and the users access their applications over the Network via a display protocol. The network connection must be constantly maintained for a remote application to function.
▪ When a streamed application is requested by a user (on demand) it is downloaded to and executed on the client computer. Once completely downloaded, a streamed application can function without a network connection. When the application in closed, it can be cleanly removed or kept in cache from the client computer.
The following application virtualization solutions are supported by Snow License Manager:
▪ Citrix XenApp
▪ Microsoft App-V
▪ VMware ThinApp
THE SAM CHALLENGE
Application virtualization can be great from an application delivery point of view, it could create blind spots from a Software asset management point of view. Since the virtual application is not installed locally on the computer where it is run.
THE SNOW SOLUTION
Software usage is used as basis for licensing. The Snow Inventory Client for Windows continuously scans the user computers to meter usage of executed applications. Snow License Manager presents information on applications that have been used virtually, on which computer the applications have been run, and by which user.
INSTALLATION AND PREPARATION
Snow Inventory Client for Windows must be installed on all user computers that will utilize virtual applications:
▪ Support for metering usage of Citrix XenApp, Microsoft App-V and VMware ThinApp virtual application packages are provided in Snow Inventory Client for Windows from version 3.5. The complete package content is not scanned; however, each file being executed is scanned as part of the software metering.
PRESENTATION IN SNOW LICENSE MANAGER
Snow Inventory Client for Windows identifies all applications, both installed locally and used virtually. In Snow License Manager all computers that have used a certain application virtually are indicated by the remark A (“Virtual application”) in Application details. A summary of license requirement and purchased licenses is presented as well.
To get a presentation of all virtually used applications that have been identified, use the standard report Applications per computer with the criteria “Virtual application” set to “Yes” in Snow License Manager. In the example below, the standard report with the added criteria has been saved as the report Virtual applications per computer.
By clicking on the computer name, we can have a detailed look the applications and notice the usage data of the virtualized Snagit9 application indicated by the remark A.