Poll: Which would yuo put your money behind?

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Hardware Thread, 30 "computers" to install, what would you go for in Technical; Just an interesting straw poll... we've got a few extra rooms being refurbed over the next few months and probably ...
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    gshaw's Avatar
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    30 "computers" to install, what would you go for

    Just an interesting straw poll... we've got a few extra rooms being refurbed over the next few months and probably PCs to go in there. Based on what's out there at the moment, cost, user experience (vital that it's completely standard) and green-ness would you go for...

    - standard PCs, looking for low power consumption models
    - nComputing-esque solution (but licensing issues?)
    - thin clients (out the window almost straight away due to multimedia issues)
    - something else?

    All our fleet are standard desktops running a neat and tidy Windows XP install, GPOs and mandatory profiles so everything is completely identical across the board. Multimedia is fine, DVD writers available for multimedia couses (adult ed so no need to worry about vandalism!) etc.

    I still have the gut instinct that the other solutions to standard Windows boxes either need too much investment upfront or don't meet the user experience as well as a desktop would. We won't be changing wholesale to any new solutions until something really rock solid and proven is out there but would be good to save on power etc in the meantime. Your thoughts?
    Last edited by gshaw; 27th May 2010 at 04:24 PM.

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    Depends what your existing infrastructure is like, but something like the new Wyse Xenith with XenDesktop would give you full HDX (i.e. full screen HD video) with zero client functionality.

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    what do you want these machines to do?

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    Quote Originally Posted by gshaw View Post
    Multimedia is fine, DVD writers available for multimedia couses
    If you want each workstation to have a DVD writer then I'd go for Acer Veriton-style small form factor PCs.

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    what about a compromise lowish spec pcs that run specific software locally but most from a terminal server?

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    gshaw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FN-GM View Post
    what do you want these machines to do?
    It's just general classroom use really but no compromises in user experience in terms of speed or features

    We're on 100Mb to desktop, 1Gb fibre uplink per 24-port switch. No terminal services at all as it stands. The Veriton looks similar to the Lenovo M58 USFF we bought for admin staff recently, as it stands that's leading the way... Core2Duo E7500, 2GB RAM should do the trick nicely and they're not bad on power either.

    I've seen nComputing in action which looks nice and the 4:1 saving of PCs is even nicer but I don't like the look of the licensing issues or some people saying Windows updates can break the system! Then there's the "if one crashes you lose 4" scenario, which could be a bit of an issue in the evenings when there's no-one here...

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    dhicks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gshaw View Post
    I've seen nComputing in action which looks nice and the 4:1 saving of PCs is even nicer but I don't like the look of the licensing issues or some people saying Windows updates can break the system!
    There's a whole other long, tedious thread about nComputing and similar systems, but the licensing issue has been solved - simply buy Windows Multipoint Server 2010 and the correct number of CALs and away you go. You can buy nComputing (or other) multi-seat hardware to run it on (nComputing do nice, compact video/sound/etc 5-lots-all-in-one cards and you can now get snazzy monitors with nComputing recieving hardware built in) or simply use a multi-headed graphics card and some USB hubs, Multipoint will work with either.

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    gshaw's Avatar
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    Ye I was reading that yesterday, seems as if it all ends up a bit messy and probably won't save us that much in the end by the time we've bought the extra software, CALs and so on?

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