Re: Flash... ah!
Or they could have just made a less crap version of the standalone tools, and dispensed with the nine dimensional compatibility matrix from hell of every OS/browser/platform/plugin combo that no-one will ever actually test. (Ever tried the Flash client via Puffin on an iPad? You were probably the first, poor unlucky sod, but you got what you deserved right?)
In the end, the team people who made a crap installable application weren't able to fix it, so management hired a team of web developers to write a new GUI. The team did what web developers tend to do, try to re-write the desktop app as inside a browser, using Flash. That team copied the first teams mistakes, and then added their own. People pointed out that their new Flash GUI was obsolete by the day it was releases. Each release fiddled with a few things but never really addressed the big issues(like the update manager being absent entirely).
In the end, the team people who made a crap Flash application weren't able to fix it, so management hired a team of HTML5 developers to write a new "New GUI". Keep in mind at this point they are still dependent on the installed client for the update manager and other core functionality. They are also maintaining 3 development, test and supprt teams, one for each GUI. So management cuts development of the one working client, the clunky but feature complete installed client. The HTML 5 client is declared by management, but the Update Manager team announces that it's finally done Porting the Update Manage to Flash. Update after update of Vmware is released with only incremental improvements in the GUI problems.
Sounds like the one constant here is the under performance of some project managers, who in a Nokia like fit, squandered a five year engineering lead, and are now promising that, yet again, it will be fixed sometime closer to the end of the year, so when a delay is announced it will be lost on all of the holiday party invitations.