In its first appearance at VMworld, the Mississauga, Ontario–based company Sphere 3D looks poised to create a whole new technology classification with Glassware 2.0, a hyperconverged cloud client app hosting appliance.
We’ve discussed the fact that VDI appliance makers were making good progress simplifying adoption of a virtual desktop infrastructure. An appliance-based route to market can be seen as win-win: being designed both to reduce cost and complexity of implementation (for the customer) and shorten sales cycles (for the vendor). So goes the theory. To understand this theory further one VDI appliance vendor, Pivot3, commissioned Dimensional Research to survey global IT in order to get real-world insight into the state of VDI.
The survey showed that over 80% of respondents had VDI in their current strategy. Over 50% of those deploying VDI would utilize new hardware. What was perhaps more interesting was that traditional stall points of VDI, hardware complexity and security, took a back-seat in a list of concerns. The appliance model was undoubtedly popular, but if that problem is solved – what were the main concerns of organisations?
I originally arranged to interview V3 systems CEO Peter Bookman at VMworld in San Francisco back in October. However, we weren’t able to schedule the time until the final day, by which point we were both so tired that we never got past the “talking about cars” stage. I finally caught up with Peter last week, and this time we managed to get past the “talking about cars” stage. I tried to limit myself to just asking questions rather than sharing my opinion, and I’ve made a couple of edits for clarity and tidied up product names etc. where appropriate, so any errors in the transcript are mine. Continue reading Interview: V3 Systems CEO Peter Bookman
VDI is expensive and complicated; at least it used to be. Cost is no longer the issue that it was with the cost of data center hardware falling from over $1,000 per desktop a couple of years ago to a fraction of the cost of a budget PC today. Complexity however has been rising as multiple third-party components have been integrated into the mix to bring the price down. As cost falls so VDI becomes more attractive especially to budget conscious SMB customers, at the same time though as complexity has increased, the willingness and ability of these new customers to successfully deploy and maintain VDI has fallen. This has proven to be a boon for DaaS providers who can abstract the complexity of VDI behind a simple to consumer service, and are as a consequence seeing significant increase in traction. Continue reading Appliance Makers Simplify VDI Adoption
Citrix’sXenClient Enterprise 4.1 is the first full release since Citrix’s acquisition of Virtual Computer in May. What is new? Is there anything more substantial than a fresh smell of paint? Citrix XenClient had a reputation for being a niche use-case solution, with a limited hardware compatibility list. Does Citrix XenClient 4.1 change that? Citrix’s market dominance has been in delivering remote access to applications – where does XenClient fit a thinner, desktop-PC-lessening world?
Obviously, I’m not going to sit here and laud it that I was right when Citrix actually did acquire Virtual Computer. Because I also said it’d take 12-18 months for integration and here we are, barely 25% of the way through that and a release is out of the door. Like when you bet on Italy in the final of an international soccer competition sometimes you win, sometimes you lose.
Far more importantly, if you’re considering introducing virtual desktop into your enterprise desktop strategy are client hypervisors a tool to consider? What is the competition for XenClient now that NxTop has been subsumed?
Toronto based start-up Gridcentric, is developing a technology that it refers to as Virtual Memory Streaming that has the potential to reshape the economics of VDI, and deliver the holy Grail of a VDI desktop for less than the price of a PC. It should come as no surprise to hear that the single biggest performance challenge that all large VDI environments face is the boot storm. The Windows boot and logon processes generate many times more IOPS traffic than steady-state user operations. So much so that in poorly specified systems a boot storm will overload the storage infrastructure, starving Windows of resources and leading to excessively long start-up times. Continue reading Gridcentric aims to shakeup VDI with Virtual Memory Streaming