Yes. Under the previous lifecycle policy, General Support for View 4 (including View 4.6) ended in November, 2012, (3 years after the General Availability of View 4.0). The lifecycle policy effective July 2012 has been retroactively applied to View 4, so its General Support phase has been extended to November 2014. VMware will continue to provide 4.6.x maintenance releases as needed up until that point. Two years of Technical Guidance will follow General Support, as per the current policy.
Critical bug or security fixes for Clients will only be supplied via an update to the latest Client version; it should be noted that some Clients are only available through device-specific App-Stores, and maintenance of older client versions on such devices is impossible.
Will all the features of a new client release be available when running it against an older server version?
No. When an existing client is updated to a new version, it will remain compatible with older server versions that are still within the General Support phase. However, new client features may be disabled while connected to an older server. For example, a client that is updated while VMware View 5.1 is available will still work with a server from VMware View 4.6, but a feature that was newly introduced in VMware View 5.1 will not necessarily be expressed in the client.
Server backward compatibility for new client types is provided at VMware’s discretion. When a brand new client type is released, it will be compatible with the latest shipping server version. VMware will not necessarily support running that new client against older server releases. For example, assume a brand new kind of tablet device (not iOS nor Android based) was released by a hardware vendor; if VMware created a brand new client type for the new device while VMware View 5.1 was available, client compatibility would be supported against VMware View 5.1, but not necessarily VMware View 5.0 or VMware View 4.6 versions.
When a new minor release comes out, how long with updates continue to be shipped for the preceding version?
Within the General Support phase, access to server, and guest OS updates, bug and security fixes will require a software update to the latest minor release version if said minor release has been generally available for more than 60 days. For example, if a critical bug is discovered in VMware View 5.0 and VMware View 5.1 has been available for more than 60 days, the fix for said bug will require an update to VMware View 5.1 or a subsequent 5.1.x maintenance release.
How are minor and maintenance releases affected when General Support ends for their associated major release?
When General Support ends for a Major Release, it also ends for all Minor and Maintenance releases within that Major Release family. For example, VMware View 4.0 was released in November 2009. Under this policy, General Support for the VMware View 4 family ends in November 2014. As of July 2012, VMware View 4.6.x maintenance releases may still be supplied to address critical bug and security issues. However, as of November 2014, the entire VMware View 4 family will move from General Support to 2 years of Technical Guidance and no additional VMware View 4.6.x maintenance releases or 4.6.x derived hot-patches will be supplied.