MDOP 2013 R2 Now Available

Delivering on Microsoft’s commitment to provide businesses with powerful, flexible solutions to manage the devices and applications employees use every day, we are excited to announce the broad availability of Microsoft Desktop Optimization Pack (MDOP) 2013 R2 for download. MDOP is a suite of virtualization, management and security technologies available as a subscription for Software Assurance customers that helps maximize the benefits offered by Windows.

In addition to support for Windows 8.1 and virtualization of Office 2013, today’s release includes the launch of Microsoft Application Virtualization (App-V) 5.0 SP2 and User Experience Virtualization (UE-V) 2.0, which make it easier for customers to personalize, deploy and manage virtual applications across devices. MDOP 2013 R2 also offers enhancements to the Microsoft BitLocker Administration and Monitoring tool (MBAM 2.0 SP1), including multi language support.

Not only does MDOP offer business customers access to all of their desktop and internal line-of-business applications, as well as personalized Windows environments, from anywhere, the technology suite offers a significant, long-term cost savings. IDC recently estimated that when MDOP solutions are fully utilized, the increased productivity and automation of systems can save an average company nearly $200 per PC per year. That’s a 36% reduction in annual cost. Coupled with productivity gains and elimination of third-party software, hardware and additional software licensing costs, operational savings can top $500 per year per PC.

Due to these factors, MDOP’s popularity with our customers continues to grow, recently increasing to over 50M customer licenses worldwide. One of those customers is Eastman Chemical, a Tennessee-based, specialty chemical manufacturer that relies heavily on applications to create innovative products. After deploying App-V, Eastman saw a significant productivity increase across its 13,000 employees. Further, the company was able to drop delivery time of an application from two months, to just two days. That’s a 95% decrease which means employees are able to work more efficiently and deliver solutions more quickly. App-V’s Shared Content Store additionally saves Eastman a vast amount of storage, and associated costs, each year. “The implementation of App-V’s Shared Content Store eliminates nearly 16 TB of storage across our 4,000 VDI images,” said Sarah Bastian, Systems Analyst at Eastman Chemical Company.

Eastman didn’t stop there, however. The company is also working to integrate UE-V into their IT pipeline to further enhance employee customization, usability and flexible device choice. “The combination of App-V and UE-V are helping us meet our goal of being device agnostic,” explained Bastian. “The seamless delivery of virtual applications and user settings promises to provide our users a consistent experience whether they utilize a virtual machine, tablet or PC.”

World renowned IT consultants and Microsoft Partner Convergent Computing agrees with the combined capabilities of MDOP 2013 R2 toolsets. “We’ve scaled MDOP support to thousands of users across multiple industries, and due to capabilities of tools such as App-V 5.0, have seen over a 60 percent decrease in application support efforts across the enterprise,” said Convergent President Rand Morimoto. “Moreover, the combination of App-V 5.0 and UE-V 2.0 provides complete flexibility in virtualized desktop and application deployment, management and user consistency, which allows IT operators to keep up with the growing demands for multiple device-types and mobile work environments.”

So what, exactly, does MDOP 2013 R2 offer?

  • Microsoft Application Virtualization (App-V) 5.0 SP2
    App-V makes it easier for IT departments to deploy applications across a fleet of devices by allowing anywhere access to virtualized applications on any authorized PC without requiring that the application be installed directly on said machine. App-V 5.0 SP2 builds on this, offering an even more powerful experience through several updates, including support for virtualization of Office 2013 under volume licensing, enhanced right click functionality (shell extensions) for virtualized applications and simplifications to the overall application virtualization process.
  • User Experience Virtualization (UE-V) 2.0
    UE-V is an on premise solution that captures and centralizes application and Windows settings for the user. This enables users to change devices without reconfiguring their applications or settings. Furthermore, UE-V offers a simple and versatile way for IT Pros to set parameters around which applications should have their settings roam, and then easily deploy those boundaries across the organization. UE-V 2.0 continues to deliver on this focus on control, personalization and versatility with several updates, including support for Windows 8.1 and the ability to roam user settings for Windows Store apps. We have also made updates to our settings synchronization engine, enhancing the user experience across virtualized desktops and offline scenarios. Additionally with the new Company Settings Center UI, we have given users optional control of how their own settings roam.

In addition to these key feature updates, MDOP 2013 R2 offers Windows 8.1 compatibility for Advanced Group Policy Management (AGPM) 4.0 SP2, Diagnostics and Recovery Toolset (DaRT) 8.1, and Microsoft BitLocker Administration and Monitoring (MBAM) 2.0 SP1, which also offers multi-language support.

Finally I would also like to announce the availability of App-V 4.6 SP3. This release provides support for Windows 8.1 for customers as they make the transition to App-V 5.0 SP2.

For additional detail on MDOP 2013 R2 and these new features, please check out the Springboard Blog. If you already own MDOP, then you can download MDOP 2013 R2 from the Volume Licensing Service Center.  MSDN and TechNet paid subscribers can also download it from MSDN or TechNet.

I encourage you to take a look at MDOP and see how it might be able to help your company work more efficiently.