This article is part of the Microsoft Application Virtualization 5 FAQ series.

Microsoft Application Virtualization (App-V) is an application delivery solution that enables applications to be delivered to and executed on a Windows instance without being installed.

App-V doesn’t change where an application is executed - applications still run in the same location. A Windows instance can be on a local physical device, a virtual desktop in running in the data centre, or a Remote Desktop Session Host.

Application Virtualization provides a number of benefits:

  • Reduces the amount of time it takes to deliver applications to users - in many cases application delivery times are reduced to minutes. Removing the need to install an application simplifies delivery by reducing conflicts and avoiding reboots.
  • Allows applications that might normally conflict to run on the same instance of Windows by provide a layer of isolation between Windows and applications delivered with App-V
  • Helps to simplify gold images by enabling applications to be streamed to Windows desktops

App-V has 3 main components:

  • The App-V Sequencer - the Sequencer enables an IT professional to capture the installation of an application and turn that into an App-V package
  • The App-V Client - the Client enables App-V packages to be delivered to Windows desktops where the applications contained in those packages are executed, just like they would be if they were installed
  • The App-V Server - the Server is enables the delivery of App-V packages to Windows desktops where the App-V client is installed. The App-V Server consists of a number of components that allow for the publishing and authorizing of users or desktops to stream App-V packages. There are a number of ways to deploy App-V packages, so the App-V Server is an optional component of App-V

Designing and implementing App-V requires understanding your application portfolio, your method of delivering Windows desktops to users and understanding how the different delivery mechanisms for App-V will fit within your environment.

Additional Resources

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