VDI – is it a mature technology?

Some of you might think I am a little mad with the title but I was prompted to come up with the title after a conversation with a potential customer. I was trying to convey the virtues of the VRTX and explained that it was a great VDI solution Cloud Connectsupporting up to 500 seats. To this they replied “we are not looking at VDI yet as it isn’t mature enough yet”. To be honest I was a little taken aback and did not come up with the right response.

Mature enough? I was involved in the management of a 400 seat call centre back in 2002 that used VDI extensively for system delivery. Surely some things have moved on in 12 years? I am not even sure how it would need to move on as it was an extremely robust and effective solution even back then.

Now coming right up to date we have all sorts of services and offerings. Whether it is full blown graphic intensive systems utilising virtual GPU’s or the rather simple and elegant Cloud Connect solution, I believe VDI has come a long way.

Dell is uniquely positioned as the only vendor who has the complete solution from the VDI environment, vWorkspace, to dedicated client devices.

So let us look at one of these devices, Cloud Connect, first. This simple device looks like something similar to a whole host of usb sticks that are currently available, that enable you to connect to a monitor or TV and get straight into some form of android environment. At first glance this does appear to be true and it does enable you to connect to the Google Play store and get your favourite apps but that is where the similarities end. The reason being that whether or not you can connect to Google Pay will be dictated by your IT department who will manage the device through the Dell Wyse Cloud Client Manager software-as-a-service (SaaS).

Your IT department can control access to the device and enable secure delivery of work and personal files, presentations, applications and other content from your business or home.

I already have plans to use one of these devices to run all our external events. Can you imagine the ease of use of simply turning up to a venue and plugging in to a screen or TV.  I can imagine using one from home as a substitute for booting up my laptop when i need to get on to the corporate network.

Some solutions are not so straight forward and demand a little more umph or a lot more umph as is the case with the Equallogic PS6210XS. This storage unit forms the backbone to a VDI solution that supports up to 2000 seats with a single array and utilising the Horizon View VDI platform.

Who would want that? Some organisations want to be able to support “Bring Your Own Device” (BYOD) but still deliver a full suite of enterprise applications in a secure and protected manner. It also frees them from having to maintain skills in multiple devices or operating systems. They simply maintain the image that in turn enables the IT department to roll out changes to the client in a very simple manner.

There are other variants too that enable point solutions for single applications. This can be extremely effective in maintaining a legacy system that has not moved with the times. This may be a proprietary application developed in-house that does not justify the development cost of porting to a modern OS. I can tell you that using an application like this does work very well, just don’t try to open it on an tablet. There is only so much pinch and zoom can do and you will only come away with a complex about how big your fingers are.

Final thought on this subject that I will leave you with is my personal favourite, the VRTX. This is, in my view the perfect infrastructure for delivering a relatively complex environment but don’t take my word for it. The folks over on the Search CIO (Tech Target) site would seem to agree.


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