Parallels, Inc., maker of award-winning desktop virtualization solutions for Windows, Linux and Mac OS X, announced the Parallels Technology Network (PTN) - an online community for users, as well as developers using Parallels virtualization technology to deliver their software in self-contained virtual appliances.
Via the PTN, which is available online at http://ptn.parallels.com, users and developers will have access to a wealth of information related to Parallels virtualization technology. In addition, developers can make their software available to Parallels users as virtual appliances.
"We're taking ease of use to another level by facilitating the availability and adoption of virtual appliances that run on a PC or Mac regardless of the operating system," said Benjamin Rudolph, Director of Corporate Communications, Parallels. "Parallels Virtual Appliances are the ultimate in hassle-free technology, as they give our users access to pre-configured applications running self-contained in pre-built Parallels virtual machines."
Virtual appliances (VA) are self-contained software modules, usually built using Linux open source software, that perform specific functions. VAs are an excellent, low cost way to ensure that every computer user has access to critical software, regardless of which operating system they choose to run on their host computer. Because VAs are isolated from the host machine, they are a very secure way to run software, and because they are self-contained, they can be easily backed up, restored, or deleted without compromising the host system.
"Virtual appliances are the easiest way to consume software," said Brett Adam, VP of Product Development, rPath. "For software providers, rPath's platform for quickly building and easily maintaining Parallels Virtual Appliances and the new Parallels Technology Network delivery model enable entry to markets that will not tolerate complex application setup and maintenance procedures."
An example of one virtual appliance available from the Parallels Technology Network is an OpenOffice VA running the popular open-source software suite with Microsoft Office-like word processing, spreadsheet and presentation functions. Users can simply download the VA and run it, without any manual configuration or setup, on any Mac or PC powered by Parallels virtualization.
"The Parallels Technology Network presents us the opportunity to deliver our software to millions of Parallels users worldwide in a way that wasn't economically feasible in the past," said Kimbro Staken, chief technology officer, JumpBox in Tempe, Arizona. "JumpBox applications are pre-configured and can be deployed without modification to a PC or Mac."
"Working with Parallels to provide Freespire and Linspire virtual appliances through their Parallels Technology Network affords millions the benefit of a tested, secure, easily-managed virtual appliance for Freespire or Linspire." said Kevin Carmony, CEO of Linspire. "We're delighted to be working with them on this great solution, as well as responding to our customers' demand for having Parallels available through CNR technology in the near future."
Part Research Lab, Part Community Forum
The Parallels Technology Network is a combination research library, development lab and community forum that is divided in the following sections.
Knowledge Base - This area contains a wealth of information related to Parallels virtualization software, including product guides, white papers, datasheets, Parallels Virtual Appliance documentation, product FAQs, as well as product trial downloads.
Virtual Appliance Directory - All independently-developed virtual appliance software running on Parallels is listed and organized by category.
Community Forums - This includes two separate areas. The first, "About Parallels Virtual Appliances," corresponds to the Virtual Appliance Directory and facilitates discussion about individual appliances and their users. The second, the "Parallels Technology Network Discussion Forum," is an open venue where any registered user can post messages about Parallels virtualization software.