One of the things that just about everybody agrees on is that virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) can be overly complex. Of the many IT organizations that have tested VDI, many complain about the cost of setting it up and managing it, while even more users complain about performance.
These issues can stem from both the underlying virtualization technology being used to bring VDI to the enterprise and the relative fragility of the networks and storage systems being used to deliver VDI.
In addition, there's a fair amount of internecine vendor warfare over hypervisors that leads to concerns about being locked into one vendor for VDI. And just to make matters more interesting, there are now a raft of mobile computing devices that are all going to have to be eventually included in a VDI solution.
In fact, when you think about VDI, an IT organization is essentially trying to deploy a private cloud that shares infrastructure assets across a large base of end users. If that's the case, then the folks at Desktone are arguing that IT organizations should just start out by putting VDI in the cloud.
For the price of a dollar a day per user, Desktone provides a VDI in the cloud solution in partnership with Rackspace. The company recently released version 3.0 of the platform, which now supports VMware, Xen and Microsoft Hyper-V hypervisors, as well as mobile computing devices such as the Apple iPhone and iPad.
According to Dave Grant, vice president of marketing at Desktone, a cloud service approach allows an IT organization to take advantage of all the promise of VDI without all the installation costs and management headaches currently associated with VDI deployments.
That approach may not be for everybody. But Desktone is betting that after a few pilot VDI projects, a lot of IT organizations are going to be open to the idea of making VDI somebody else's problem.