In my next assignment I plan on diving into all things protocol. From Citrix’s ICA protocol and the HDX wrappers that make that protocol outstanding, to the VMware/Teradici PCoIP protocol, which I have a lot of intimate experience with (full disclosure I used to work for Teradici), and I plan on covering RemoteFX and potentially Oracle’s ALP/AIP protocols.
I’m interested in this paper because I have wanted to do a deep dive into these protocols for awhile. Each of these protocols are very similar yet majorly different, but who knows the reasons for the differences? Are these differences important? Obviously, I think so or I wouldn’t be devoting so much time to write a paper up about it. What I hope will be interesting for my readers is how I look at protocol, and how I separate the protocol itself, ICA/PCoIP/RDP from the wrappers that strengthen the protocol, HDX/RFX. Notice there are no PCoIP wrappers? Why is that? Is that important? Well, to know if it’s important we need to understand what the wrapper is and what it does.
In this research I will go beyond the age old “who uses more bandwidth” argument, and instead focus on the wrappers that surround the protocol to make it better. A couple questions I’d like to get answered:
- Why did VMware support MMR in older versions of View but not newer versions?
- How does NVIDIA’s VGX card, and its ability to send a native h.264 stream, affect all of these protocols?
- What is HDX? How many features does it support? What are those features? Why do they matter? How do you determine if your client even supports these features?
- What were the major changes in Microsoft’s RDP version 8? Is RemoteFX a protocol, a wrapper, or a hypervisor technology?
- Is HTML5 important to the protocol conversation? What about H.264?
- Why is UDP being used more prominently these days? Is TCP the wrong transport protocol for remote desktop/applications?
While the majority of desktop virtualization deals today go to VMware and Citrix, I’m predicting a major uptick from a more Microsoft focused solution via Dell (but I could be wrong, they could be planning to make vWorkspace a major contender), either way my gut is that Dell is in it to win some major market share and as vWorkspace’s protocol was an enhanced version of RDP its safe to say RDP8 (RemoteFX) will be their protocol of choice.
Other than the many articles I’ve seen comparing bandwidth utilization, I’ve never read anything that really focuses on what the protocol does, and what gives it isn’t wings. I’m very excited to start that research today, but I’m wondering: am I the only person out there that is interested in this stuff? What are you most interested in regarding how protocols differentiate? Do most people believe that the protocol wars are over?
Comments are appreciated.