Managing nearly 600 lab desktops dispersed across a 246-acre campus was a real challenge for the five-person IT department at
Today, the 250-user Phase 1 deployment is more than half-complete, and the benefits of VDI are already apparent. The combination of Dell PowerEdge servers and Dell EqualLogic storage to host virtual desktops, Unidesk® to provision and patch desktops and deliver required applications, and VMware Horizon View™ to provide secure desktop access is exceeding expectations.
“With so many physical PCs spread across campus, it took lot of manpower and time to update our lab software and our 24+ different Microsoft Windows images,” said
Unidesk is enabling SCC to build non-persistent virtual desktops for its student labs, as well as persistent desktops for its faculty and staff. The non-persistent desktops are automatically reset after each use. All customizations are wiped clean so each student has a fresh desktop from which to work. The persistent desktops preserve all customizations through desktop logoffs, reboots, Windows patches, and application updates. Faculty and staff enjoy having a consistent user experience that keeps their user-installed applications, plug-ins, preferences, and data.
With Unidesk, SCC’s decision of whether to implement non-persistent or persistent desktops was based on use case, not storage or cost impact. Unidesk’s patented layering technology stores single instances of Windows and application layers once for many desktops regardless of type, so persistent desktops are as storage-efficient as traditional non-persistent desktops.
“Unidesk’s storage efficiency helped justify the purchase of a new Dell EqualLogic SAN array, which has a much lower total cost of ownership since we can fit three to four times as many desktops on it,” added Strickland. “Each desktop uses only 4-8 GBs of storage, so we expect to scale well beyond our phase one deployment on our existing infrastructure.”
Unidesk integrates with VMware Horizon View to insert its layered desktops directly into View pools. SCC students, faculty, and staff can access their Unidesk-provisioned VMs through the many client options supported by VMware View, including PCs, personal laptops, thin clients, and mobile devices. SCC is replacing the PCs with energy-efficient
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