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Thin Client and Virtual Machines Thread, VDI solutions. Microsoft, VMWare View, Citrix XenDesktop, etc? in Technical; Hi All, As the title says: VDI solutions. Microsoft, VMWare View, Citrix XenDesktop, etc? About 6 years ago we had ...
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    wagnerk's Avatar
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    VDI solutions. Microsoft, VMWare View, Citrix XenDesktop, etc?

    Hi All,

    As the title says: VDI solutions. Microsoft, VMWare View, Citrix XenDesktop, etc?

    About 6 years ago we had Citrix and to be honest, while it meet basic needs - anything above Office was shocking. Now a days, TS (and the newer VDI) has moved on quite a bit and (I believe) can meet our needs. Added to this I have to reduce our overall operating costs (this includes power, rolling replacements, vandalism, etc) as well as re-organise workloads (from fixing vandalised equipment and reimaging PC's to more proactive tasks).

    Price wise the order for us would be: Microsoft, VMWare then Citrix. However while price does play a big factor into things, that's not the only thing we have to consider.

    So my question for you guys/gals who have already gone thru this process are...

    1. What did you end up going for?
    2. How was it/how is it going?
    3. How easy/hard was it to set up?
    4. Any other info regarding this can you give?

    Thanks

    -Ken

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    ASJ
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    We went XenDesktop a couple of years ago. 900 desktops.

    If you want to pop over and have a look see let me know, but you know that cos I said the same on Certforums

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    wagnerk (21st February 2011)

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    Quote Originally Posted by wagnerk View Post
    Now a days, TS (and the newer VDI) has moved on quite a bit and (I believe) can meet our needs.
    As discussed here:

    Server spec out for potential virtualisation project

    With thanks to localzuk, a server and graphics card combination capable of using Microsoft's RemoteFX might be an idea - run traditional TS (Remote Desktop) sessions but with server-accelerated graphics. I think this is available in Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1, which I think was made available a few days ago. You'll need clients capable of a reasonably recent version of RDP (7.5? So an rdekstop Linux-based solution isn't quite going to work) - I think there's a recent RDP client available (for free) for Windows XP, so you could actually use older workstations as RDP clients. However, you'll probably get best performance out of reasonably modern clients with some sort of reasonably modern local graphics capability, at which point I'd wonder what the point of worrying about server-rendered graphics performance is and just use the server for running MS Office and have the local client run a web browser.

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    wagnerk (21st February 2011)

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    we also went xendesktop 18 months ago having realised that TS would not give our users what they needed . initial learning curve was steep with a few set backs ( following so called expert advice) but we got ther last september and havnet looked backed since . Now using a combination of Xendesktop and Xdenapp to virtualise apps.

    Again any members wishing to come take a look just ask

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    wagnerk (21st February 2011)

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    Quote Originally Posted by dhicks View Post
    You'll need clients capable of a reasonably recent version of RDP (7.5? So an rdekstop Linux-based solution isn't quite going to work) - I think there's a recent RDP client available (for free) for Windows XP, so you could actually use older workstations as RDP clients.
    It is very unlikely that Microsoft will release an RDP 7.1 client for XP SP3. The latest available is v7.0 (KB969084) which means no RemoteFX.

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    dhicks (21st February 2011)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Arthur View Post
    It is very unlikely that Microsoft will release an RDP 7.1 client for XP SP3. The latest available is v7.0 (KB969084) which means no RemoteFX.
    Thanks - clears that question up. I assume there's an RDP 7.1 client available for Windows 7?

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    There is. It's called SP1.


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    The possibility of VDI is the one thing that's making me feel slightly paranoid about going for VMWare for my server project... don't really want to be paying $$$ for View if RemoteFX and Hyper-V will do that job well. On the same front we're looking at 3 x DL380s to give us plenty room for expansion and maybe 20-30 VDI clients at some point but it looks as if they won't take the graphics cards from what I'm reading.

    Predicting the future makes life a lot more difficult!

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    What sort of server requirements are there for a full VDI system, compared with a TS system?

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    Quote Originally Posted by localzuk View Post
    What sort of server requirements are there for a full VDI system, compared with a TS system?
    The numbers I hear being put about are about 7-8 VDI users per core, 2GB memory per VM for Windows 7

    As for disks, that's where it will hurt depending on how you set it up as you need enough IOPS to get decent performance. One other thing I hear people mentioning is boot storms if 20-30 VMs all start up at once, particularly over iSCSI.

    As it stands VDI sounds nice but it still costs too much in terms of hardware and licenses required to make it the definitive choice... lower TCO is very nice but if you have to put large amounts of money down at the start it makes it a lot less compelling, especially with budgets as they are at the moment...

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    Quote Originally Posted by gshaw View Post
    The numbers I hear being put about are about 7-8 VDI users per core, 2GB memory per VM for Windows 7

    As for disks, that's where it will hurt depending on how you set it up as you need enough IOPS to get decent performance. One other thing I hear people mentioning is boot storms if 20-30 VMs all start up at once, particularly over iSCSI.

    As it stands VDI sounds nice but it still costs too much in terms of hardware and licenses required to make it the definitive choice... lower TCO is very nice but if you have to put large amounts of money down at the start it makes it a lot less compelling, especially with budgets as they are at the moment...
    The number per core really depends on what they are being used for. We normally plan on 10 as a guideline on Oracle VDI and VMware View, Hyper-V slightly lower as it does not handle the resources quite as well at the moment (it is catching up). RAM 768 for XP and 1.5 for Win 7 is a good guide but again.................

    Disks, again depends on what they are doing, 10 VMs per spindle (7200 SATA) is a base planning number. The faster the spindles the more you can run. You can also complement the spindle count with cache. The Sun S7000 series can use RAM and SSD for cache. If you are using iSCSI as the storage connection, the more RAM the better.

    Initial capex is high for VDI.........Storage costs are the big killer.......We are working on it

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