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Cisco Unveils Virtualization Experience Infrastructure, a Complete IT System to Simplify Desktop Virtualization and Improve Virtual Collaboration Experiences


Cisco (NASDAQ: CSCO) today announced a comprehensive desktop virtualization system and solutions comprising collaboration, borderless networking and data center technologies from Cisco and an ecosystem of leading virtualization vendors.

Named the Cisco® Virtualization Experience Infrastructure (VXI), the system addresses the current state of fragmented solutions which complicate virtual desktop deployments. It also enhances traditional desktop virtualization for rich media and video.

Cisco VXI helps enterprises overcome the principal barriers preventing them from attaining the financial, data security and workforce flexibility benefits offered by desktop virtualization without compromising the user experience or the ability to integrate rich media and video collaboration capabilities. Cisco VXI also reduces the total cost of ownership of desktop virtualization solutions by significantly increasing the number of virtual desktops that can be hosted on each server.

Cisco today also introduced two zero client devices designed to allow users to enjoy all the benefits of desktop virtualization without sacrificing the rich-media collaboration experience inherent with high-powered PCs. Cisco further announced that the Cisco Cius™ business tablet will be enabled to participate in virtualized desktop environments at launch via the introduction of newly designed client applications from Citrix, VMware and Wyse.

According to analyst estimates1, desktop virtualization can reduce per-user PC support costs by 51 percent, an item that accounts for 67 percent of PC-related IT expenses. Virtual desktops also help protect the security of corporate intellectual property by keeping information in a data center rather than on physical devices. End users also benefit by being able to choose their own devices through which to access their virtual desktop. Combining these benefits with the productivity and business agility delivered through rich media and video applications further enhance the value to the end user and the business.


Best-of-Breed Vendors Offer Tested and Validated Solutions for Multiple Cisco VXI Deployment Options

  • Cisco VXI validated design integrates Cisco Collaboration, Cisco Data Center Virtualization, and Cisco Borderless Networks architectures with best-of-breed desktop virtualization software and devices.

  • Among the Cisco technologies validated within VXI are: Cisco Unified Communications applications optimized for virtualized environments and end points including the Cisco Cius tablet; the Cisco Quad™ platform; Cisco ACE load balancing and application delivery; Cisco wide area application acceleration software; Cisco Adaptive Security Appliances; the Cisco AnyConnect™ VPN client; Cisco Unified Computing System™; Cisco Nexus® and Cisco Catalyst® families of data center switches; Cisco MDS multilayer SAN switches, and Cisco Integrated Services Routers.

  • Cisco VXI utilizes Citrix XenDesktop® 5 and VMware View™ 4.5 desktop virtualization software offerings from industry leading vendors Citrix and VMware. The system also supports management and security applications, storage systems from EMC and NetApp and many Microsoft applications.

  • The VXI system supports a wide variety of endpoint devices including Cisco Unified IP Phones, laptops, business tablets including Cisco Cius, and smart phones. Cisco collaborated with industry leader Wyse around hardware and software technologies to ensure that applications attain high levels of responsiveness when using the Cisco VXI system and associated architecture. In keeping with Cisco’s open ecosystem, devices from DevonIT and IGEL have also been validated within the VXI system.

  • The elements of Cisco VXI are designed and tested to work together in multiple deployment options that best meet the needs of customers. In addition to being designed for media flexibility, the solutions support a wide array of end user devices and access methods, giving the users choice and flexibility based on specific application needs and business requirements.

Cisco Introduces Desktop Virtualization Devices Optimized for Rich Media Interactions

Cisco today unveiled two Cisco Virtualization Experience Client (VXC) devices that offer desktop virtualization capabilities in "zero client" form in tandem with Cisco Unified Communications.

  • The Cisco VXC 2100 is a compact device that is physically integrated with the Cisco Unified IP Phone 8900 or 9900 Series, optimizing desk real-estate. It supports Power-over-Ethernet and connectivity with for up to two monitors, and four USB ports for connecting mouse and keyboard as appropriate for a virtual desktop environment.

  • The Cisco VXC 2200 is a sleek, stand-alone, small footprint zero client device which also provides users with access to a virtual desktop and business applications running in a virtualized desktop environment. Designed with the green workspace in mind, the VXC 2200 can be powered via Power over Ethernet or an optional power supply, and is equipped with four USB ports and two video ports to support the appropriate peripherals for a virtual desktop environment.

Cisco Collaboration Applications Extend Capabilities of Virtual Desktop Devices

  • Available today, the Cisco family of Unified Communications clients brings instant messaging, visual voicemail, employee directory, communication history, video, Web conferencing and enhanced presence-enabled collaboration to virtual desktops. Cisco Unified Communications clients include the Cisco Unified Personal Communicator, Cisco Unified Presence, and the Cisco Quad enterprise collaboration platform.

  • When running on Cisco Cius or Cisco Virtualization Experience Clients these applications, virtualized in the data center, extend access to communications applications to virtual desktops.

Services and Availability

  • Cisco VXI is available immediately from Cisco and select Cisco Data Center and Unified Communications Authorized Technology Provider Partners.

  • Cisco will additionally provide VXI professional services including strategy, planning and design. Strategy services help enable IT leaders to build a comprehensive, financially viable business case and understand operational readiness for a virtual desktop infrastructure implementation. Planning and design services will help IT professionals design an end-to-end desktop virtualization solution and develop a plan for rapid migration with minimal business risk.

  • The Cisco Virtualization Experience Clients and Cisco Cius are scheduled to be generally available in March 2011. At that time Cisco Cius which uses the Android OS will support Citrix Receiver™, VMware View, and Wyse PocketCloud.

Supporting Quotes

  • Manny Rivelo, senior vice president, systems and architectures, Cisco:
    "IT and business leaders recognize the significant benefits of desktop virtualization, but they also face the reality of having to integrate specialized IT investments in video and telephony applications with their new virtualized customer workspaces. Rather than deploy a parallel IT infrastructure to support virtual desktops, Cisco VXI helps businesses take advantage of current investments by unifying data center, collaboration and networking architectures into one system."

See commentary from Cisco VXI partners.

Live Internet Broadcast and Q&A Session.

Cisco Senior Vice President, Systems and Architectures, Manny Rivelo, and Cisco Senior Vice President, Voice Technology Group, Barry O’Sullivan will host a press briefing on Cisco VXI together with executives from Citrix, VMware and Wyse.

WHEN: Monday, Nov. 15, 2010, 08:30 a.m. Pacific Standard Time (11:30 a.m. ET / 16:30 UTC)

WHERE: To attend the live broadcast, please visit http://event.ciscowebseminars.com/r.htm?e=264748&s=1&k=C69BFA35BE710E1804D99DB16A2E0625. Minimal registration is required. A replay of the event will be available shortly following the event at http://newsroom.cisco.com.

Cisco, desktop virtualization, VXI, VDI, collaboration, unified communications,Cisco Cius, UCS, Unified Computing System, Nexus, Catalyst, AnyConnect, virtualized experience infrastructure, VXC.


  • Cisco Virtualization Experience Infrastructure Validated Design
  • Cisco Advanced Services for Desktop Virtualization
  • Cisco Virtualization Experience Clients
  • Cisco Cius: www.cisco.com/go/cius
  • The Cisco Collaboration Experience
  • Cisco Unified Communications
  • Cisco and its global community of specialized partners offer customers a full suite of services to optimize their collaboration solution.
  • Cisco Capital® offers special financing that allows businesses to acquire Cisco Unified Communications and Cisco TelePresence® solutions.

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About Cisco
Cisco (NASDAQ: CSCO), the worldwide leader in networking that transforms how people connect, communicate and collaborate, this year celebrates 25 years of technology innovation, operational excellence and corporate social responsibility. Information about Cisco can be found at http://www.cisco.com. For ongoing news, please go to http://newsroom.cisco.com.

Cisco, the Cisco logo, Cisco AnyConnect, Cisco Capital, Cisco Nexus, Cisco Quad, Cisco TelePresence, Cisco Unified Computing System, Catalyst and Cius are trademarks or registered trademarks of Cisco and/or its affiliates in the U.S. and other countries. A listing of Cisco’s trademarks can be found at www.cisco.com/go/trademarks. Third-party trademarks mentioned are the property of their respective owners. The use of the word partner does not imply a partnership relationship between Cisco and any other company.

1 According to the Gartner Notebook Total Cost of Ownership Study of 28 Feb 2008, The majority of savings from virtual desktops come from avoidance of end-user break/fix costs which include activities such as downloading software, fixing interoperability issues between software installs and end-user downtime during PC repair. Gartner estimates these costs at $5,473 per year per user for a traditional PC and at $2,689 for a virtual desktop user, a reduction of 50.8%.

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