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Thin Client and Virtual Machines Thread, Your VDI adventures - good or bad, please share. in Technical; Originally Posted by Axel You're quite possibly being "oversold" product by who ever is guiding you here (you mention cost ...
  1. #16

    fiza's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Axel View Post
    You're quite possibly being "oversold" product by who ever is guiding you here (you mention cost being a factor) - you can do all the above with generic Microsoft, connecting to virtual machines via RemoteApp, and home-users logging in securely via Microsoft's Gateway protocol (which uses SSL, and if you need additional security you can add in client and server certificates)

    In that scenario any device with a browser should be able to connect remotely and securely over the internet.

    So MS RDS is another option? I have never looked at that so thank you. If its a cheaper option then we will be looking at it. We still need to kit out the 6th form and I was led to believe that thin clients were cheaper.

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    Quote Originally Posted by pcstru View Post
    I'd agree with almost all of that. Whenever I've looked at VDI, even the cost savings were highly optimistic. However, I think the idea of providing a standard school desktop to students from any device anywhere is a different issue and potentially very powerful. The problem we then run into is hugely complex and expensive licensing - particularly Microsoft.
    Its all horses for courses and everysite will be different, but companies have come in before for tendering and pulled out after I said if your system cannot handle 64 concurrent connections of Adobe CS5 per two classrooms with no lag then we don't want to know. I have to think of how much heartache the teachers here have gone through the last 3 years with the previous system. I have just now repaired teachers confidence in teaching with in these classrooms and to throw the dice again only on the possibily of doing something slightly cheaper or more "trendier" then that's quite a big gamble!

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    Also bear in mind you will be doubling your IP addresses too when effectively using 2 NIC's to log 1 user on!

    @pcstru I agree regarding the cost savings. Do these costings include:

    The extra labour/cost required to 'nurse' and replace older 'thick' clients that have long fallen out of warranty? Sooner or later, those PC's are going to start failing.

    The extra hours put in by ICT support staff to support VDI, which back end wise does seem pretty labour intensive. Some applications which work perfectly fine in a physical environment need lots of tweaking to get working in VDI.

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    Axel's Avatar
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    You only have to follow the posts on here to see many unsatisfied VDI users...

    By contrast you hear about very few unhappy terminal services/Citrix users...

    Make of that what you will....!

    VDI is very fashionable right now - and the "industry" loves selling it as it means big bucks and high consultancy fees. (No one is scared of managing a terminal server - but a new VDI installation....?)

    I've been in the thin-client industry for 15 years - not much happened in the first 12 years (W2000, Citrix, W2003, W2008 etc) thin clients were seen as low cost, low maintenance devices for industries such as call centres and point of sale, data-entry and in many cases replacing dumb ascii VT type terminals.

    They were never billed as PC replacement devices - rather they filled a sizeable niche under "power" PC level requirements.

    Now it seems people are buying into all the benefits (easily done), jumping in with both feet, but not fully understanding the limitations, so end up disappointed.

    To make the disappointment more acute, some thin clients now cost as much as PCs, use same chipset & O/S, so essentially are PCs, so contain all the problems thin clients were initially supposed to address - so its gone full circle, but now the PCs have a server in the middle...

    Ultimately its all about setting and matching expectations, running a pilot and not believing everything you read/hear.

    I hope this doesn't sound like a rant - it's not meant to be - I just find it annoying when resellers exaggerate thin-client's abilities and cause unnecessary negative feeling
    towards what in the correct environment are very effective devices on many levels....

  5. Thanks to Axel from:

    andyturpie (1st March 2013)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Axel View Post
    You only have to follow the posts on here to see many unsatisfied VDI users...

    By contrast you hear about very few unhappy terminal services/Citrix users...

    Make of that what you will....!

    VDI is very fashionable right now - and the "industry" loves selling it as it means big bucks and high consultancy fees. (No one is scared of managing a terminal server - but a new VDI installation....?)

    I've been in the thin-client industry for 15 years - not much happened in the first 12 years (W2000, Citrix, W2003, W2008 etc) thin clients were seen as low cost, low maintenance devices for industries such as call centres and point of sale, data-entry and in many cases replacing dumb ascii VT type terminals.

    They were never billed as PC replacement devices - rather they filled a sizeable niche under "power" PC level requirements.

    Now it seems people are buying into all the benefits (easily done), jumping in with both feet, but not fully understanding the limitations, so end up disappointed.

    To make the disappointment more acute, some thin clients now cost as much as PCs, use same chipset & O/S, so essentially are PCs, so contain all the problems thin clients were initially supposed to address - so its gone full circle, but now the PCs have a server in the middle...

    Ultimately its all about setting and matching expectations, running a pilot and not believing everything you read/hear.

    I hope this doesn't sound like a rant - it's not meant to be - I just find it annoying when resellers exaggerate thin-client's abilities and cause unnecessary negative feeling
    towards what in the correct environment are very effective devices on many levels....
    Wise words indeed!

  7. #21

    RabbieBurns's Avatar
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    We are looking at VDI as being a solution to BYOD.

    Students bring whatever device they like - ipad, macbook, wintel, etc, and are all able to use the same desktop experience.

    Got a demo of citrix in and it seems to work pretty well with the connector and ios/android etc.

    What other providers are there?

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    There is a VMware version and HyperV can do it, basically the 3 usual suspects.

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    Part of the problem with RDS or VDI in a Microsoft solution is always going to be office.

    Using office via VDI/RDS on your ipad? Then that's a CAL, RDS/VDI license and an Office license you'll need to get somehow.
    Use the same on your android phone, well you may be covered with user CALs for RDS/VDI with your ipad above, still need another office license though...

  10. #24

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    how does the CALs thing work with EES when you only license per full time employee?

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    Quote Originally Posted by RabbieBurns View Post
    how does the CALs thing work with EES when you only license per full time employee?
    IIRC you need to use the student options for machines that are either owned, leased to or primarily used by an individual student. OVS-ES only covered "pooled" machines - laptop trolleys etc with the standard cost.

  12. Thanks to DMcCoy from:

    RabbieBurns (1st March 2013)

  13. #26

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    so the idea that a student owned device will 'save' money, will actually cost the school more in licensing costs?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Axel View Post
    VDI is very fashionable right now - and the "industry" loves selling it as it means big bucks and high consultancy fees. (No one is scared of managing a terminal server - but a new VDI installation....?)
    Maybe its fashionable for those who need to justify their employment with major projects?
    Last edited by superatticman; 1st March 2013 at 12:34 PM.

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    Yes, pretty much. But your student could use Office 365 as an alternative.

    All our VDI devices etc are owned by the school.

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    Where are we with VDI?

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    There is a VMware version and HyperV can do it, basically the 3 usual suspects.
    Make that four.

    We are using RHEV.
    Basically we setup a machine to our liking then replicate it into a 'pool' of virtual machines. Give the students access and they log in as administrators. Reboot the machine and it goes back to its original config.
    The SPICE protocol offloads some of the work onto the local machine, so server load isn't too bad (about 40 VM's per server) and it costs around £600 per server per year plus about £200 per year for 25 licenses.
    No IoS or Android connector though.

    Quote Originally Posted by DMcCoy View Post
    Using office via VDI/RDS on your ipad? Then that's a CAL, RDS/VDI license and an Office license you'll need to get somehow.
    Use the same on your android phone, well you may be covered with user CALs for RDS/VDI with your ipad above, still need another office license though...
    No MS Office saves us a fortune!



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