Sunday, December 4, 2011

Using native applications remotely

Wouldn't it be nice if you could run applications like OpenOffice in the cloud and access them from anywhere? During the past six month I've created a software solution to access native applications that are running on a remote host.

Loading player...

This demonstration shows a Windows desktop and the windows of OpenOffice. The application is not running on the same local machine, but on a virtual machine in Amazon's Compute Cloud. The user agent running on the Windows machine seamlessly integrates the remote windows to make it feel as if the application was installed locally. Elements like pop-up, menus and tool-tips are all treated as individual windows. They can extend beyond the borders of the window they belong to (go to position 01:02). Remote windows can be moved and positioned arbitrarily and independent of the real application running in the virtual machine, which is a big advantage over traditional remote desktop solutions.

Considering that it is the first version of the system, it already shows a decent performance. The window content's are currently compressed using H264. There are still many features missing and I didn't do any optimization yet. For instance, there is a lot of potential to decrease the latency further.

Let me know what you think.