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Cellphones

Android Phones Get Virtualization 122

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the do-both-run-doom dept.
bednarz writes "VMware is teaming with LG to sell Android smartphones that are virtualized, allowing a single phone to run two operating systems, one for business use and one for personal use. A user's personal email and applications would run natively on the Android phone, while a guest operating system contains the employee's work environment. The devices would also have two phone numbers."
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Android Phones Get Virtualization

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  • Cool idea (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Kokuyo (549451) on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @09:19AM (#34472938) Journal

    Although I'd appreciate a phone that, for once, did the basic things right first. Like with car stereos, I have yet to find a device that does not have one or more major annoyances.

    • Re:Cool idea (Score:5, Interesting)

      by DigiShaman (671371) on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @09:32AM (#34473128) Homepage

      I have yet to find a device that does not have one or more major annoyances.

      And honestly, you never will. That's not a criticism of you, because I'm willing to bet all but a rare few feels the same way. This is to be expected with developing a single product with mass appeal. You can't make everyone happy or else there wouldn't be a new to constantly re-invent the GUI.

    • I'm guessing that the "smartphone" market isn't for you. It is still deep in "iterate like crazy and see what sticks" territory. One of Nokia's classic candybars might be more your style...
    • Re:Cool idea (Score:4, Insightful)

      by plover (150551) * on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @09:37AM (#34473194) Homepage Journal

      Although I'd appreciate a phone that, for once, did the basic things right first. Like with car stereos, I have yet to find a device that does not have one or more major annoyances.

      Most phones have those annoyances, but our problem is that we constantly shift expectations of what "the basic things" are. Not long ago, basic meant "voice". So if you go back to basic old Motorola phones, the voice was fine but they had clunky speed dial memory schemes. Fast forward a few years, and we had good voice and contact lists, but SMS was awful. Then came Bluetooth and MP3 players, most of which were slow and/or crashed often, but SMS was improved with T9. Now we have phones that do voice, music, Bluetooth, MMS, etc., but web surfing is awful. Or the walled gardens chafe. Or something else is annoying.

      Truly basic phones (large-face screens, number-only buttons, no features to do anything else) sell well with a certain group of people who no longer wish to learn the latest in technology on an annual basis, and they are fine at what they do. But of course that may be "too basic" for average tastes these days.

      • Re:Cool idea (Score:4, Informative)

        by Enderandrew (866215) <enderandrew AT gmail DOT com> on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @10:12AM (#34473642) Homepage Journal

        Though I agree with the OP that even with smartphones, basic things are being overlooked.

        I'd argue the address book has been a basic feature since early cell phones. And yet even on the iPhone 4 (arguably one of the most advanced phones on the planet) I can't manage groups of contacts. I need a third party app to do that for me.

        • by jeffmeden (135043)

          You just aren't thinking at the right level. Basic no longer means "good call quality" or "usable, featureful contact management". It means "can run apps and expose all data via an api". This is good and bad; you can get an app to do exactly what you want but you have to pay for it and you have to trust that the publisher isn't out to do nasty things to your phone. Take the Blackberry as the counterpoint... The RIM-sponsored app market is pitiful because, in part, the phones do almost everything the use

          • by h4rr4r (612664)

            No the RIM phones do not, they just charge so much for the apps no one buys them, thus no one makes more apps.

            • by jeffmeden (135043)

              Sorry, but this is a pitifully dumb retort... The app authors set the price for apps and can even sell apps without involving themselves at all in the RIM "app world" ecosystem. If the price was wrong the authors are to blame and should correct it. The big difference is that on the BB, apps and the "app world" aren't shoved down the user's throat. The phone with stock free pre-installed apps does 95% of what any productive person could want.

              • by h4rr4r (612664)

                I shall start listing things then
                VNC
                RDP
                SSH
                Stay unlocked when phone is at an angle, ie what screeble does
                Google maps, for driving

                Need any more?

                • by jeffmeden (135043)

                  Good thinking. Let me stroll down the hall, asking each BB user (there are a lot) if they even know what VNC, RDP, and SSH stand for...

                  Nope, turns out none of them give a shit as long as it does email reliably, manages contacts easily and makes the occasional phone call.

      • by jeffmeden (135043)

        Truly basic phones (large-face screens, number-only buttons, no features to do anything else) sell well with a certain group of people who no longer wish to learn the latest in technology on an annual basis, and they are fine at what they do. But of course that may be "too basic" for average tastes these days.

        The problem is that they decidedly *aren't* fine at what they do considering the sliding scale of technology. Call quality has not gone up. Usable signal technology has not gone up. Battery life has only marginally gone up. Handset makers are focused on two thigns: 1) keeping up with the iphone, and 2) making a ton of money on super cheap dumbphone handsets. There exists no dumbphone handset that really excels from a perfection perspective, probably because the profit just isn't there.

      • Most phones have those annoyances, but our problem is that we constantly shift expectations of what "the basic things" are. Not long ago, basic meant "voice".

        Basic still means "voice". Ask any AT&T Customer. BA-ZING!

    • by camperslo (704715)

      But officer, I wasn't talking or texting on my phone while driving, I was switching operating systems!

    • by MightyYar (622222)

      did the basic things right first

      I've had two phones that were awesome in this regard. First was the Motorola V360. I could be in a conference call while walking down 1st Ave in NYC, and no one would hear the street noise - and the volume was loud enough to hear the call. The other is a Sony Ericsson TM560, which is not as loud or noise-proof as the V360, but makes up for it by having a pretty good speaker phone. People often don't know I'm on speaker.

    • by hey! (33014)

      I agree. Take care of the basics, first. For example, I'd really appreciate a phone that reduces my sense of personal insignificance. That's a pretty fundamental problem, in my opinion.

      After those kinds of problems are solved, then add some nifty features, like an attachment for resolving ontological disputes.

  • Computing Power? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Halborr (1373599) <HalborrNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @09:21AM (#34472956)
    This actually sounds... Like a great idea to have two numbers reach the same phone. My worry is the battery consumption will go through the roof (on a piece of technology that already doesn't have the greatest battery life times) and that computing resources will be in short supply on a mobile device (which brings us back to power consumption).
    • by multisync (218450)

      That's what I was thinking. Wouldn't "duel booting" make more sense? You could still keep work separate from business, without the overhead of running two systems concurrently.

      • by rootofevil (188401) on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @09:34AM (#34473156) Homepage Journal

        10 paces, turn, and launch your operating system?

        • 10 paces, turn, and launch your operating system?

          There's already enough fighting going on in the cell phone industry (FUD, marketing 'almost not-lies', lawsuits, etc) TYVM.

      • Re:Computing Power? (Score:5, Informative)

        by WrongSizeGlass (838941) on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @09:44AM (#34473296)
        "Dual booting" would mean you couldn't get a call or text on your "personal" number while your phone was booted into "work" mode. It also means you couldn't get a "work" call or text while your phone was booted into "personal" mode (clearly not as bad the the first one but an issue none the less).
        • by multisync (218450)

          So employees wouldn't be taking personal calls on company time, and work wouldn't be encroaching on yours during off hours. Sounds like a win/win to me.

          The issue of company data on employee-owned devices (and vice versa) is an important one, though, and likely to become a bigger one as companies that have deployed tech like BES Express allow employees to activate their own devices on company servers. RIM has said future versions will allow for segregation between company and employee owned data, sort of alo

          • by h4rr4r (612664)

            So then you can't get a call when your wife has a car accident?

            I will not carry two phones, I will carry them one at a time so better not try to call me after 5 in such a system.

            • by multisync (218450)

              I think receiving an emergency call on your company phone alerting you to the fact that your wife has been involved in a car accident would fall under "acceptable use" in most companies.

              Personal calls on company-owned devices are far more likely to be along the lines of "Mom, Bobby won't let me play Guitar Hero and it's my turn."

            • by Moxon (139555)

              I like having two phones, so I can turn the work phone off and leave it at my desk when I go home for the day.

            • by Belial6 (794905)
              I can tell you that if my boss called me at 2 am on a Saturday night and said, I need you hear right now, I would get in my car and drive to the office. On the way there, I wouldn't once think badly of him. I would be wondering what was so wrong that he needed to call me. No doubt, he takes comfort in knowing that he COULD could me on nights and weekends if he has a concern. By the same token, I telecommute, and when my wife is not home, I can have my son with me all day while I work. If I need to take
              • Take a look at Google Voice + Android. All the phone numbers on a single phone that you could ever possibly want, and 'free' if you live in Canada/USA.

                • by Belial6 (794905)
                  I am on my second Android phone, and am looking at a third. I have just have not configured Voice, as there seem to be some choices that will forever be set on your account, and cannot be changed. I figured I would look again after a while, as I expect that will change. Maybe it already has....

                  Although that is a good reminder that it is probably time to look again.
          • by sjames (1099)

            It would be except that soon the phone would end up re-divided between the work/personal partition and the I don't use that anymore partition.

            There are personal calls people NEED to be able to get while at work (child's school, doctor's office, etc) and sometimes it's better to be vaguely available for work calls (on pain of death if it's not actually an emergency) than to be formally on-call or worse, at work.

      • I don't think dual-booting, running a VM or anything like that is necessary. It will just make me sit and wait on my phone. Simply having segregated address books is enough. When I receive a text message, if the sender is in my personal address book, then it is kept seperate.

        • by Culture20 (968837)
          The thing keeping me from using my personal iPhone with my work's exchange server is that I don't want my personal appointments from showing up in the work calendar. Blacklisting the home VM and syncing the work VM would be a nice touch.
        • by natehoy (1608657)

          I don't think a VM is overkill at all for corporate use.

          I currently carry a company smartphone, and there are all sorts of restrictions on what I can do with it. In addition, that device carries company confidential data. There is the possibility that I could install malware on the phone that compromises the data, and yet Corporate doesn't want to be ridiculously draconian about their policies because they understand we use these devices for a limited amount of personal use as well, and as long as it does

          • Its false security though. You are assuming that the apps you install on your side of the phone cant find a way to attack the hypervisor to gain control of it. If you install a app on the personal side of the phone that is malicious, and is tailored to attack the hypervisor then in theory it could get any data it would need... The only true security here is two separate phones.
        • you're thinking only in terms of the phone paradigm. Dual phone numbers are only one possibility.

          Phones now, or shortly, will have 1Ghz, 1GB and dual core.
          Run android as your phone stack but fedora mobile - i.e. Meego when you want to run traditional software by attaching mouse, keyboard, networked fs and hdtv. For a number of scenarios a phone can replace a 'desktop' albeit sans Windows. On one device, simultaneously!

    • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @09:39AM (#34473226) Journal
      Multiple SIM support has been around for years(typically not on US carrier locked stuff; but weirdo Chinese cheapies and retail-unlocked jet-setter devices do it standard, in addition to the slightly shady "16-in-one-SIM" hack/consolidation kits.

      The real trick(though I'm not sure that virtualization is a good answer) is getting the vastly increased amount of user state, some of it either personally or business sensitive, separated in some logical way...
    • by Frankie70 (803801)

      Like a great idea to have two numbers reach the same phone.

      This is really old stuff. In countries which are predominantly GSM, you can buy a Dual SIM phone
      for as less as 50$ (without any subsidy from a carrier).

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dual_SIM [wikipedia.org]

      And even before this, you had hacks to make a single SIM phone accept 2 SIMs.

      http://www.duosim.com/ [duosim.com]

    • IAAMTE ( I am a mobile telecommunication engineer).

      Why do you think the phone number is on the phone or on the SIM ? Having two phone numbers doesn't require dual SIM and/or dual radio stack. In fact, there are solutions available to give roamers a prepaid local number. It doesn't make a lot of sense commercially as roaming fees are a cash cow, so you won't see lots of implementations, but it's quite easy to do.

    • by iamhassi (659463)
      "This actually sounds... Like a great idea to have two numbers reach the same phone."

      You can have that now with Skype on the iPhone. Incoming skype calls will ring just like a regular call but with a different ringtone and it works rather well over 3G but you do have to have a steady 3G or WiFi connection, if you venture to areas that drop down to Edge service then you won't receive Skype calls anymore.
      • by peragrin (659227)

        Edge is for AT&T in Verizon those areas get a randomly slower and slower speed until you get something with half the bandwidth of Edge but it is still labeled as 3G.

        Talk about adding confusion.

    • by h4rr4r (612664)

      I am pretty sure this is far more like openvz than vmware. Meaning the two guests share one kernel.

    • This actually sounds... Like a great idea to have two numbers reach the same phone. My worry is the battery consumption will go through the roof (on a piece of technology that already doesn't have the greatest battery life times) and that computing resources will be in short supply on a mobile device (which brings us back to power consumption).

      Honestly the ability to have 2 phones numbers tied to one device has been around for a long time, well before Android entered the scene. Most phones support a dual NAM configuration that allowed this very feature. The only difference is the text messages, and what line the call was coming in on was not always made very clear. The only thing that is new here is separating the work and play environments at the O/S level. I'm not sure if this is really going to provide any true security...

      • by adolf (21054)

        Honestly, I just use Google Voice.

        It gives me two phone numbers on my Droid (one for the day job, one for everything else), along with a slick voice mail system that catches everything from both, and it's free. Oh, and it's clear which number text messages are arriving at, since each number currently uses a different app for SMS.

        *shrug*

    • I quite like the idea of virtualization on a phone. Plenty of issues like battery and performance among others will of course exist, but I know people in situations where their work requires them to use software that only works on Windows Mobile. Virtualization provides the ability to have the phone they want, i.e. Android, yet still being able to use work software would be brilliant. Perhaps through a layer similar to wine.

      I'm pretty sure this isn't the kind of virtualization that the article is getting at

  • Print version (Score:5, Informative)

    by MortenMW (968289) on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @09:21AM (#34472960)
    I'd appreciate a link to the print version, like this [networkworld.com]
  • by Joe The Dragon (967727) on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @09:23AM (#34473000)

    forced to pay a add a line fee for line 2 + a 2th data plan? Can you have dual os with 1 number?

    • Well, if one of your phone OSes is for business, I'd assume that the business will pay for at least that data and phone plan.

      • by timeOday (582209)
        I can see where somebody who works for themselves wouldn't want to buy two separate plans, but then they have less need to keep things strictly separate anyway. But two virtual phones sharing one number doesn't make much sense either, since you wouldn't know which one should take a particular call.

        I think the best solution would be a new service option for these phones, where you just pay an extra $5/mo to get a second number on the same device. Just as the better ISPs allow you to get a second IP add

        • by nospam007 (722110) *

          'I think the best solution would be a new service option for these phones, where you just pay an extra $5/mo to get a second number on the same device.'

          If you're ok with your bosses carrier only.

          • more like $5-$10 add a line + $30-$60 data plan add a line.

          • by timeOday (582209)
            True, I can't imagine getting any sort of bundling discount if your work environment and personal environment are on different carriers. Still I hope the phones support that configuration (two SIM cards). Unfortunately that sounds like the sort of flexibility that will be available everywhere else BUT the US. Somehow we alone have failed to separate owning a handset from activating it on a given network.
    • The OS should be able to switch profiles automatically. If I receive a call from a contact that's marked as a client/professional contact, then use the professional profile. If it's from my drinking buddy, go to personal. If it's my design partner (professional AND personal contact), then use the time of day or schedule to select - if I'm in a meeting or it's business hours, use professional - otherwise use personal.
  • In the early 70s I bought phones for my group that could have two numbers. As soon as we went to Brazil I opened accounts and the phones worked there on the second number. This was much, much less expensive and less complicated than renting phones and we could receive calls from the US.

  • I think this is a great idea. If your personal phone and work phones are kept separate and only one can be used at a time, you wouldn't be tethered to work 24 hours a day anymore. You can actually have an excuse to respond to emails the next day instead of at 4 AM.

  • by bogaboga (793279) on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @09:33AM (#34473136)

    I wonder whether this capability saves a user from an employer's ability to wipe the user's data remotely. How is this concern addressed?

    • Presumably, the employer would be able to nuke the "work" VM from orbit at their pleasure; but would have no access to the "nonwork" VM...
      • Unless the phone itself was provided by the employer to ensure that the employee had both a business phone so they can be reached, and a personal plan they they themselves pay for. I imagine this is possible because I feel like employers will be hesitant to allow a business phone to be virtualized and run on non vetted hardware.

        In that scenario I could see employers desiring the ability to nuke both the work VM and personal OS at will.

        • by vegiVamp (518171)

          Possibly the contrary: The VM the employer's stuff runs in is not only standardized hardware, but they can also reasonably expect to manage that virtual hardware to the fullest extent, including firewall-like features, and the above-mentioned ability to guilt-free nuke the VM from orbit without worrying about lawsuits about personal data.

  • by bradgoodman (964302) on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @09:34AM (#34473160) Homepage
    Isn't this a little overkill? I mean the only thing that sounded good about it was the whole "two numbers" thing - but you can do that without virtualizaing complete operating systems.
    • by Ephemeriis (315124) on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @09:45AM (#34473314)

      Isn't this a little overkill? I mean the only thing that sounded good about it was the whole "two numbers" thing - but you can do that without virtualizaing complete operating systems.

      Two numbers is good...

      But if you virtualize an entire second phone you can have entirely separate calendars, phone books, apps, all of it. You can keep your personal life genuinely separate from your work environment.

      And when you get a new job, and leave your employer, they can wipe out the virtual environment without deleting everything in your personal environment.

      Sounds like a great idea to me.

      • The point is - for example - on my iPhone I *can* keep separate calendars - which are synchronized from completey different sources - Gmail (for my personal calendar, and my Wife's calendar) - and Exchange for my Work Calendar.

        I also have two Email accounts as such.

        The best part here - is I can optionally display these calendar entries together on one calendar - or turn off calendars for simpler views. So if I want to put an entry on one of my calendars - I have a view that shows me potential conflicts

        • The point is - for example - on my iPhone I *can* keep separate calendars - which are synchronized from completey different sources - Gmail (for my personal calendar, and my Wife's calendar) - and Exchange for my Work Calendar.

          I also have two Email accounts as such.

          The best part here - is I can optionally display these calendar entries together on one calendar - or turn off calendars for simpler views. So if I want to put an entry on one of my calendars - I have a view that shows me potential conflicts on *all* my calendars. If I want to check my email - I have one place to look that shows me *all* my email.

          When I leave my company - my Gmail notes, mail and calendar is all there and ready to be paired up with my new device - or if I keep the device - I just need to disconnect from my corporate exchange server.

          This is vastly superior than having multiple different virtualized environments that are completely separate - requiring me to look through each one any time I want to do something.

          And then your employer uses that handy "remote wipe" feature and wipes out your entire phone - both the business and personal information.

          • by brunes69 (86786)

            ^--- This.

            The people in this thread saying there is no use for this obviously either have never heard of remote wipe, or have not had to accept it to connect their device to their work Exchange server.

        • by Culture20 (968837)
          I have an iPhone, and am interested in the "multiple calendar" feature you mentioned. Is there a way of preventing your personal contacts and calendar events from populating your exchange calendar? I'd rather not have my boss/team know when/where I'm going to be when I'm on my own time.
          • Yes - when you put events into a calendar - they go into a *specific* calendar. You phone can display multiples - but looking from the "origin" of one of the calendars (either Exchange or Gmail, for example) - you can't see the other calendars, because the entries aren't in them.
            • by rrossman2 (844318)

              but what about your phone book?

              • Not sure if/how the iPhone can/cannot do the phone book - but the point is this:

                Isn't this type of method for integrating work and personal usage at the application level better than splitting the entire machine in half?

                Rhetorical question. In reality, there will be very, very little demand for this type of over-engineered niche solution. Simple, well-done, mass-market solutions like the iPhone outsell it a billion to one. Don't debate me on it - just wait and see!

      • by Tim C (15259)

        That's more easily achieved by truly keeping your work and personal life separate, and not using your personal phone for work matters. (And conversely, if you are issued with a work phone, don't use it for personal things).

        • That's more easily achieved by truly keeping your work and personal life separate, and not using your personal phone for work matters. (And conversely, if you are issued with a work phone, don't use it for personal things).

          I do not personally find it easier to carry two physical phones around.

          • Deep pockets!
            I just hope someone continue to make compact devices now SE has eoled my Vivaz. The dimensions of the iPhone and android clones are too big, IMHO - I can't imagine carrying 2 of them in trouser pockets.

      • by bazorg (911295)

        Point taken, I just doubt that this is the simple way to do it instead of using improved applications and a hardware slot for a 2nd SIM card.

    • Isn't this a little overkill? I mean the only thing that sounded good about it was the whole "two numbers" thing - but you can do that without virtualizaing complete operating systems.

      What? You mean something like separate logins for separate users? User accounts with 'fast user switching'?? Like we have on non-cellphone computers??? You sir are a dreamer.

  • Hmm... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @09:35AM (#34473174) Journal
    While, obviously, virtualization is the technology that VMware is going to throw at any use case, since "when all you have is a hammer, etc." It seems like a really hackish approach.

    Virtualization, in my server/workstation experience, has three major benefits: 1. Migration: Assuming a decent SAN setup and some fastish interconnects, your VM can float merrily from physical server to physical server with periods of unresponsiveness under .1 second. Allows you to skip some of the really expensive "zOMG this particular piece of hardware must never, ever, ever die even once in the next decade" add-ons without compromising uptime. 2. Near-perfect compatibility with legacy software: Barring really esoteric stuff that is depending on being right next to the metal of some specific archaic box, all the legacy crapware out there needs to know absolutely nothing about virtualization in order to virtualize. Virtualization aware OSes can make life a bit easier; but there is nothing stopping you from running almost any obsolete crap you need to run on a virtual machine that looks exactly like something from 1995, only with a 3 GHz processor and loads of RAM. 3. Isolation and rollback, particularly for workstations, being able to call up, experiment on, roll back, and delete OS instances makes doing potentially dangerous things safe.

    However, all these things are either irrelevant to cellphones(unless your cellphone has SAN storage and a GB link to the redundant cellphone in your other pocket...) or artefacts of the fact that legacy software largely sucks at things like isolation and versioning. Virtualization, like the AMD64 instruction set, is massively popular because it allows the power of architectures that don't suck without giving up legacy software that runs on architectures that do. With something like Android, though, an almost-totally-new OS is being built from near-scratch to suit a new set of requirements. Virtualization seems very heavy handed compared to something like having isolated namespaces and URI "domains" into which programs can be confined...
    • by rickb928 (945187)

      Actually, Android is built upon a virtual machine tech [android.com] that is pretty close to what you just described.

      Well, close as in free beer. But VMWare is almost layering on VMs to a VM (Dalvik). Interesting. Dual phone numbers are already possible, either with dual SIMS or some CDMA witchery in silicon, and split personalities are something RIM has dabbled in. Android makes this much easier, since it is so close to Linux that work on one can be brought to the other without building from scratch.

      We'll see, but I

    • by netsavior (627338)

      ...Virtualization, in my server/workstation experience, has three major benefits: 1. Migration: Assuming a decent SAN setup and some fastish interconnects, your VM can float merrily from physical server to physical server with periods of unresponsiveness under .1 second. Allows you to skip some of the really expensive "zOMG this particular piece of hardware must never, ever, ever die even once in the next decade" add-ons without compromising uptime...

      Virtualization = What's Single point of failure?

      Now you have a box that can kill 10 servers instead of 1
      Now you have a SAN that can kill 100 servers.

      Virtualization was a corporate directive at my job. Our incident numbers did not change, but the impact of every outage was orders of magnitude worse after virtualization. It has not been very fun :-/. HP sold our executive management on it, so the path is set... But we have 4x as many servers now because we need multi-site and same site redundancy, a

      • by mspohr (589790)
        I think you're doing it wrong.

        The bit you quoted at the start of your post describes how to it can be done right so that you are not dependent on a single machine or storage unit. If you have set it up so that a single machine can kill 10 servers or a disk failure can kill 100 servers then you are not doing it right. If you don't understand how to do this, you should get some training.

        • by netsavior (627338)
          I wish I had control over it, it is all HP contracts. I didn't even get a vote, I just have to support the software on it.
      • by vuke69 (450194)

        If you virtualized everything and ended up with more hardware and worse reliability, you're doing something wrong.

        • by netsavior (627338)
          less hardware more "logical servers" but worse reliability to be sure. Any time we tank the SAN by over utilization or any time out "redundant" SAN controller has to fail over we have massive reboots...
          I understand that it can be done better, but it can also be done worse. I am just whining because all of my servers suck now, as a direct result of the virtualization path that was handed to me. I support the software, which always gets the blame, regardless of the hardware issues.
    • Re:Hmm... (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Abcd1234 (188840) on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @10:24AM (#34473856) Homepage

      Virtualization, in my server/workstation experience, has three major benefits

      And yet you don't mention sandboxing, which is one of the things this article touches on.

      *Many* people around here have advocated VMs as a way to protect your personal data from potentially malicious software, to the point of even suggesting browsers should be run under such an environment. The fact that *you* don't see that as a benefit doesn't mean said benefit doesn't exist.

      • Most people around here have idea how any of these things work beyond the marketing brochure level with pretty layer-cake diagrams. In reality, the only thing between you and "them" is a couple of integer values sitting in RAM and tons of point-in-time incomprehensible logic manipulating them.

        Virtualization in no way increases security beyond what adding any other software layer could. At best, it doesn't hurt security. At worst, multiple systems can be compromised via a simple hypervisor breach. All it t

    • However, all these things are either irrelevant to cellphones(unless your cellphone has SAN storage and a GB link to the redundant cellphone in your other pocket...) or artefacts of the fact that legacy software largely sucks at things like isolation and versioning.

      The legacy software compatibility think is pretty much exactly the use case for this, since it allows the business VM to present exactly the environment that the business organization wants (e.g., a standard, controlled environment for the apps

  • It seems like this is a solution to the problem of corporate policies wiping personal data from employees' phones [slashdot.org]. I wonder if one of the phone numbers can be automatically diverted to voicemail outside office hours.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      there is already a solution to this: DON'T give them access to your personal phone. if your job requires you to have a corporate phone, then the company should be giving you that phone.

  • So... it'll need twice the good stuff(proc, memory) in order to run the same speed as what some of the newer *roid phones do. Means that pricing won't be that wonderful, even on a subsidized plan. Besides that, having two numbers would *still* need an extra sim card, then wouldn't the OS have to be extended in order to recognize another sim slot and disseminate between the two of them? I'd rather see google working on allowing me to have more than one gvoice number on my nexus rather than a sub-par(IMHO)
  • I wouldn't be surprised if this is the sort of tech Sony will use on their phone to keep the gaming portion separate from the android portion.
  • by erroneus (253617) on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @10:04AM (#34473530) Homepage

    I wish I thought of it first!

    Fact is, one of the nicer things about virtualization is the removal of dependency on hardware. The OS, Applications and data can all be packaged neatly in one or a few files that are transportable to other hosts. These can be backed up and recovered. Lose your phone? No problem! Get another one and restore your phone image to it! That virtualization might enable the existence of more than one phone running concurrently is nice and interesting, but having even one phone virtualized is awesome.

  • This sounds like overkill. How about two userids. The employer has the password the user "work" only.

    • Good idea, if you work with technical, competent, managers in a technical industry.

      Outside the tech industry, virtualization is not well-understood. Many managers simply focus on seizing the tangible to obtain control and work from a position of strength and authority.

      Unfortunately, our company was the technology subcontractor to a prime company that got into a dispute with its employees in at *our* location. They sent their security goons to *our* office to take all the smart phones and laptops on or aro

  • Why do they need to virtualize it? Linux has better methods of "virtualizing" with a lot less overhead. OpenVZ and LXC being two.

    From the way it sounds, it runs like a desktop hypervisor - so it's a hardware layer virtualization.

    OpenVZ and LXC run like Solaris Containers and FreeBSD Jails.. OS level virtualization. They're still isolated, but they share the same kernel, so a second kernel doesn't need to run - saving resources and CPU time.

    Why does VMWare need to make it more complicated than it really n

    • Because VMware is looking beyond the Android on Android use case.

      For the guest operating system, VMware and LG gave the example of a second instance of Android running on top of the host Android OS. It remains to be seen whether technical reasons or licensing concerns could prevent IT shops from installing other mobile operating systems as guests on top of the virtualized Android devices.

      On this issue, VMware says: "VMware's strategy with mobile phones will be very similar to our approach in the PC space. Users have the ability to run any supported guest operating system as long as it complies with predetermined licensing guidelines."

      In other words, you might one day be able to run your corporate Blackberry image in a VM on your Android phone. Using something like OpenVZ only works if host and guest are running the same OS.

      I just thought of a use case that would appeal to the geeky, non corporate user type. Run a stock version of the latest Android release as a guest, while the host is limited to whatever three-versions-behind version of Android with a bunch of useless pre

  • Call me strange but I don't want a feature that facilitates my employer putting their crap on _my_ phone.

  • "...The devices would also have two phone numbers." If we talk about GSM, devices have no phone number, SIM card is identified on netwok and associated with a phone number. Unless the SIM card is dual IMSI, there is only one phone number. As far as I know, a SIM is using only 1 IMSI at the time, something is missing or you'll still have to power off a VM and start the other one...
  • VMWare has demonstrated virtualization software for mobile OSes before, but it turned out to be vaporware, maybe things will be different this time...

  • "It is tempting, if the only tool you have is a hammer, to treat everything as if it were a nail."

  • The devices would also have two phone numbers.

    ...As well as six or seven spare batteries.

FORTRAN is a good example of a language which is easier to parse using ad hoc techniques. -- D. Gries [What's good about it? Ed.]

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