Conventional VDI Wisdom Proves Wrong

Michael Vizard
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When Is It Right for a Business to Consider Desktop Virtualization?

Tips for determining whether desktop virtualization is right for your business.

Conventional wisdom surrounding any type of desktop virtualization holds that end users will resist it because they fear a loss of control over their desktop.

Any yet, the IT team at the Seattle Children's Hospital is reporting that in the wake of a virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) deployment, the employees wouldn't consider ever going back to using traditional PCs.

According to Wes Wright, CTO of the Seattle Children's Hospital, the IT staff has already shifted 2,500 users to Citrix XenApp software and thin clients from Wyse Technology that are accessing Windows 7 application software running on a Unified Computing System from Cisco that are connected to storage arrays from Hitachi Data Systems. Instead of waiting four minutes or more for PC systems to boot up, staff can now move around the hospital and instantly access applications from any location.

None of this happened overnight. An IT team led by Jake Hughes, chief technical architect for infrastructure systems at Seattle Children's Hospital, has been working on virtualizing the hospital's IT environment for the better part of four years. While the hospital's VDI system is a realization of that effort, Hughes notes that VDI in itself is not a silver-bullet solution. It takes years of effort and new equipment that is optimized to run virtual machine software to really make it happen.

From here, Wright says that hospitals will next experiment with creating virtual instances of Google Android applications in order to better support mobile computing devices. That too may take a while to implement. But the one thing that is for certain, says Wright, is that the hospital's staff will no longer stand for traditional PC systems anymore.

Add Comment      Leave a comment on this blog post
Dec 29, 2011 6:45 AM Mike Geubel Mike Geubel  says:

Citrix XenApp is a published desktop, not VDI. Citrix XenDesktop is VDI.

Dec 29, 2011 12:03 PM someone else someone else  says:

You beat me to it, but yeah, this isn't vdi at all.  They also gloss over the fact that in 15 years, XenApp/Citrix Metaframe still hasn't taken over the world.  Why?  Lack of desktop personalization, app incompatibilities, complexity of infrastructure, ect.

The irony is, one of the real reasons for vdi's growing popularity is to work around issues that prevent XenApp from being successful.


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