Ever since their acquisition of Softricity, Microsoft has had high plans for Softgrid. Another key component of the Microsoft strategy in our marketspace is System Center. In Q4 of this year Microsoft is planning to release a “product” that embodies the integration of these to key technologies: Windows Installer Application Virtualization Extension (WIAVE).
WIAVE is a utility that will package SoftGrid virtual applications into an MSI file including metadata describing the application. This MSI can then be added to SMS and SCCM and deployed through their normal channels, except when the MSI runs, it simply imports the application and publishes the shortcuts. These virtual applications will also be viewable by the SMS and SCCM inventory as well. Furthermore, a hotfix for SoftGrid will be released that will allow the importation of applications without an interactively logged on user, so the virtual applications can be loaded behind the scenes when a user is away from the system.
WIAVE will replace the current SoftGrid SMS Connector. This is a good thing because the current Softgrid Integration in SMS kind of sucks… Supposedly Microsoft pullled the SoftGrid SMS Connector as of… well now. The current SoftGrid SMS Connector The WIAV Extension will be an integral part of SoftGrid 4.5. For earlier versions, WIAVE will be available as a free downloadable utility. It will require an update to 4.1/SP1 or 4.2 SoftGrid client but no changes to sequenced applications or to the sequencing process.