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Thin Client and Virtual Machines Thread, VDI / Terminal services in Technical; Originally Posted by glennda Not always - the reduced management overhead can bring the price TCO down a lot! Out ...
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    Quote Originally Posted by glennda View Post
    Not always - the reduced management overhead can bring the price TCO down a lot!
    Out of 800 PCs and 200 laptops which range from Optiplex 745s to 390s and more recently the lenovo M72e, L420s each year we get 3-4 failures (mainly from the older machines which are out of warranty) ie approx 0.4% failure rate. Re-imaging using system center 2012. Some areas of school I havn't visited in 2-3 years. Hardly excessive management overheads.

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    AButters (16th January 2014)

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    glennda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave_O View Post
    Out of 800 PCs and 200 laptops which range from Optiplex 745s to 390s and more recently the lenovo M72e, L420s each year we get 3-4 failures (mainly from the older machines which are out of warranty) ie approx 0.4% failure rate. Re-imaging using system center 2012. Some areas of school I havn't visited in 2-3 years. Hardly excessive management overheads.
    I pressed submit before I had finished, but that is a very good hardware failure rate.

    VDI isn't a fit for everyone I will agree that but it can be very good - but it can also be completely wrong.

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    I think i have read through your experiences of VDI before. im guessing a SAN based solution with expensive disk with low IOPS. the atlantis ram disk takes away IOPS and disk costs (we have a SAN) but would never consider VDI with a SAN as the IOPS are jsut too low for the amount you spend.

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    You're very lucky with those figures. We average around 10 machines a year that need some form of physical repair. Then on top of that, re-imaging and deploying software etc... to a much higher percentage.

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    Quote Originally Posted by funscott View Post
    I think i have read through your experiences of VDI before. im guessing a SAN based solution with expensive disk with low IOPS. the atlantis ram disk takes away IOPS and disk costs (we have a SAN) but would never consider VDI with a SAN as the IOPS are jsut too low for the amount you spend.
    Which sans have you looked at? I wouldn't say that TBH, SAN's are a must for VDI IMHO but the correct hardware is a must.

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    Quote Originally Posted by funscott View Post
    i agree initial costs are higher (about £65 per box)

    however I would expect a 50 -60% drop in electricity costs (17w vs 30 -40w)
    life expectancy of vdi client an extra 2 -3 years so purchase costs drop off dramatically after 5 years (from 60k per year to around 15 -20k)
    saving in staff costs (support staff time to fix hdd etc)
    flexability for users, internal / external access (with netscaler)
    end device is irrelevant so enhances end user experience (happy customers = happy IT)

    we have also made a saving on potential server hardware (3k) so overall slightly less than £65 per box

    we are a private boarding school so remote /external access is important.

    I see this fitting very well within education, fits ours anyway as we have very little locally installed applications (we use APPV for 95%)

    printing solution also works as we use virtual printers (with papercut) so dont need to worry about geographical location of device
    Think you'll find the energy saving is not as high as you imagine if you factor in the backend consumption.
    Life expectacy - we are still running dell 745s which are years out of warranty and are still good after 6 years and as I mention in my original post who wants an IT solution that lasts that long. Things will have moved on.
    Staff support time - we spend 0.4% of our time on fixing EU machines not a big cost saver.
    External use - yes it's good for that but why not just use a terminal server or Ericom? Hundereds of times cheaper. We use VMWare View for external access for staff and it's very good for that. If we need to make it available for students we'll just get an external connector terminal server license and use that.
    We use AppV and ThinApp and they cover some apps (definitely no all) and papercut.

    In short I am struggling to see the justification for spending this amount of money on a solution that has limited ROI and applicability

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    AButters (16th January 2014)

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    We have a hp eva4400 (fiber channel disk 15k disk x 48)

    we will be using Dell r910 in a cluster using hyperv (initial 2) increasing to 3 in year 3

    server specs will be quad 8 core (32 cores)
    512gb ram
    10gb nics
    the SAN will be used for CSV

    but the desktop will be pooled running in ram so no IOPS to worry about

    netowrk is being upgraded to 10gb,


    comes down to end user experience, zero clients instead of thin clients (doesnt look good), TS old tech limited end user device access (published through UAG) we require vendor neutral access.

    it also comes down to how our POC delivers if its not as good or better than our current end user experience it will be getting canned.
    Last edited by funscott; 15th January 2014 at 03:05 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by funscott View Post
    i agree initial costs are higher (about £65 per box)

    however I would expect a 50 -60% drop in electricity costs (17w vs 30 -40w)
    life expectancy of vdi client an extra 2 -3 years so purchase costs drop off dramatically after 5 years (from 60k per year to around 15 -20k)
    saving in staff costs (support staff time to fix hdd etc)
    flexability for users, internal / external access (with netscaler)
    end device is irrelevant so enhances end user experience (happy customers = happy IT)

    we have also made a saving on potential server hardware (3k) so overall slightly less than £65 per box

    we are a private boarding school so remote /external access is important.

    I see this fitting very well within education, fits ours anyway as we have very little locally installed applications (we use APPV for 95%)

    printing solution also works as we use virtual printers (with papercut) so dont need to worry about geographical location of device
    In the end you have to ask yourself (and you really do have to be honest here) is this an effective use of your school's money or would spending a third of the budget to get standard PCs laptops etc (to the same effect) and offering the remaining money to other areas of the school budget be a better way to go? If I was a governor at the school with that level of investment I would want some buy in from staff, not just IT staff trying to convince me, but general teaching staff who have tried the solution (yes for that level of expenditure I would expect that it had been extensively trialled) and can recommend it. And following a review of the implementation after I year if there were concerns I would sack the person who proposed the solution on the spot.

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    dont worry our POC will be 6 months minimum with staff having access to zero clients throughout the school. in different locations / uses. we are at a cross roads. do we want to continue spending 60k a year on PCs or look for a more efficient technology which give the same / better performance with the bonus of vendor neutral access and more flexability. centralized management and potential power saving costs. the POC will cost about 5k (got a great deal on a used R910 for testing) We wont be getting sacked if it all goes wrong as we arent jumping in with both feet and spending 100k+.

    ps we ruled out vdiinabox as it is a good idea but the IOPS were very limiting and we viewed a full production setup.

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    Quote Originally Posted by funscott View Post
    dont worry our POC will be 6 months minimum with staff having access to zero clients throughout the school. in different locations / uses. we are at a cross roads. do we want to continue spending 60k a year on PCs or look for a more efficient technology which give the same / better performance with the bonus of vendor neutral access and more flexability. centralized management and potential power saving costs. the POC will cost about 5k (got a great deal on a used R910 for testing) We wont be getting sacked if it all goes wrong as we arent jumping in with both feet and spending 100k+.

    ps we ruled out vdiinabox as it is a good idea but the IOPS were very limiting and we viewed a full production setup.
    If you're spending £60K pa on PCs that, by my estimation, equates to about 200 PC per year. I assume you don't allow machines to go out of warranty. Here's a thought why not keep the machines for a couple of years beyond warranty and cut costs by 40%-60%? Our experience is that machines last up to 2 years beyond warranty (we take 5 years on PCs/laptops purchased in the last 3 years). That will reduce your refresh costs by around £20K!

    Interested in this vendor neutrality. What thin clients are you going for? How long are you expecting them to last? How long are the warranties on the thin clients?

    When you have this in place I would be interested in seeing it in action. If nothing else to restore my faith in this technology, which of you hadn't guessed already, is at rock bottom.

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    4 -5 year cycle. 100 - 110 PCs per year and 10 laptops.

    I agree with you about laptops, pain in the neck.

    dell wyse xenith pro 2 (zero client not thin client)

    I will be starting the POC in a couple of weeks s will update how we are getting on with it but if all goes well feel free to come take a look.

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    Quote Originally Posted by funscott View Post
    4 -5 year cycle. 100 - 110 PCs per year and 10 laptops.

    I agree with you about laptops, pain in the neck.

    dell wyse xenith pro 2 (zero client not thin client)

    I will be starting the POC in a couple of weeks s will update how we are getting on with it but if all goes well feel free to come take a look.
    We have 100 of the (now Dell) Wyse V10L s with Thin OS. They work fine with both terminal services, which runs on half of them and VDI which runs on the other half. If I could improve the VDI experience then that would be a move in the right direction.

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    Quote Originally Posted by funscott View Post
    We have a hp eva4400 (fiber channel disk 15k disk x 48)

    we will be using Dell r910 in a cluster using hyperv (initial 2) increasing to 3 in year 3

    server specs will be quad 8 core (32 cores)
    512gb ram
    10gb nics
    the SAN will be used for CSV

    but the desktop will be pooled running in ram so no IOPS to worry about

    netowrk is being upgraded to 10gb,


    comes down to end user experience, zero clients instead of thin clients (doesnt look good), TS old tech limited end user device access (published through UAG) we require vendor neutral access.

    it also comes down to how our POC delivers if its not as good or better than our current end user experience it will be getting canned.
    What are the requirements on the hosts? If you are running 50 VMs per host at say 2Gb memory per VM and a 30Gb VM HD how much memory would you need when running the Atlantis solution?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave_O View Post
    In short I am struggling to see the justification for spending this amount of money on a solution that has limited ROI and applicability
    This. And also - if you think the Support time required will be significantly lower for a VDI/RDP set up then you may find out 3 years down the line that you were mistaken.

    At a risk of making a huge generalisation (im going to do it anyway) people who are REALLY really eager about VDI/RDP often tend to be people who have not actually used it in anger yet? Once you use it in anger over a long period I garuntee you will not be as impressed as you were and you will find yourself dreaming about fat clients in your restless sleep

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