Welcome!

Java IoT Authors: Elizabeth White, Pat Romanski, Yeshim Deniz, Liz McMillan, Stackify Blog

Related Topics: Containers Expo Blog, Java IoT, Microservices Expo, Open Source Cloud, Agile Computing, @CloudExpo

Containers Expo Blog: Article

Why VDI? And Why Now?

VDI has reached the tipping point

For most CIOs and IT managers, virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) isn't a new concept. In fact, many of them have dismissed it more than once amid concerns such as ROI, security and user experience.

But it's time to take a fresh look at VDI because a slew of new technologies have eliminated its biggest drawbacks - real and perceived. As a result, VDI - also known as end-user computing and desktop as a service - is now capable of addressing three of enterprise IT's biggest costs and headaches:

  • Management scalability: Today, as the number of desktops in an organization grows, so does the amount of staff and other resources required to manage them. VDI breaks that link and makes managing 1,000 desktops as easy as managing 10. This directly benefits the enterprise's bottom line and competitive position because, for example, IT staff is now freed to focus on revenue-generating tasks.
  • Greater control over security: With VDI, data resides entirely in a secure cloud rather than on a laptop's or desktop's hard drive. That architecture eliminates problems such as a device's theft or loss creating a security breach - and the embarrassment and regulatory scrutiny that comes with it. In fact, that's why, for example, some police departments have built their own data centers to implement VDI.

A cloud-based VDI service enables organizations to achieve the same benefit but without the expense of building and operating a data center. In the process, VDI enhances an organization's ability to comply with laws such as HIPAA and Sarbanes-Oxley, as well as industry-specific best practices.

  • Minimize Mobile's Complexity. Although the D in VDI stands for desktop, the architecture can be applied to tablets and smartphones too, eliminating the need for - and expense of - mobile device management (MDM) tools. These benefits extend to employee-provided smartphones and tablets, giving organizations an effective way to minimize the security risks that are a byproduct of a bring-your-own-device (BYOD) policy.

VDI also gives CIOs and IT managers an effective way to accommodate Google Apps (and Chromebook), Salesforce and other solutions where data resides outside of the enterprise, thus creating security concerns. For example, VMware has built-in Google Apps functionality.

VDI Has Reached the Tipping Point
If VDI has so many clear benefits, why isn't it already as common as cloud-based server services? One reason is the misconception that VDI centers around thin clients that lack the performance and functionality that today's business users require. The reality is that although VDI works very well in a thin client environment, which may be ideal for applications such as airport self-check-in kiosks, it also supports more generalized and even power user requirements using traditional PCs, Macs and tablets.

For mobile workers, smartphones and tablets offer superior performance and functionality compared to thin clients. That use case also suggests that the term VDI is too limited and that the broader "end-user computing" might be more appropriate.

In fact, VDI can provide the ideal environment for the specific task required. For example, if the task is a repetitive one, such as order entry or accounts payable, the virtual desktop can be provisioned with reduced CPU power but more storage. Meanwhile, a power user might be provisioned with more CPU and memory than a typical laptop provides. As a result, VDI has the inherent flexibility to increase employee productivity by overcoming any device limitations.

Connectivity is another reason why VDI is at a tipping point. Even remote offices and telecommuters' homes now typically have fiber, copper or microwave with the high speeds and low latency necessary to provide a business-class user experience. For mobile workers, the wide availability of HSPA+ and the growing availability of LTE make VDI practical from locations such as client sites and airports. In fact, Ericsson predicts that by 2016, 70 percent of cloud access will be over a wireless connection.

Some CIOs and IT managers might be concerned about the cost of that connectivity, especially cellular. That's a reasonable concern, but fixating on it means losing sight of the big picture. For example, consider how VDI eliminates the costs associated with:

  • Managing and maintaining large quantities of desktop and laptop PCs and Macs.
  • Owning and operating an MDM platform.
  • Fines and criminal penalties for breaches that violate laws such as HIPAA and Sarbanes-Oxley.
  • Being sued by citizens of European Union countries under the Safe Harbor directive.
  • Repairing a brand after coming under regulatory scrutiny, perhaps to the point of having a law nicknamed after your company.

In a sense, VDI is like VoIP, which was technologically viable for years yet never got any marketplace traction. But as broadband IP networks started to become common, VoIP became a practical and then desirable alternative for enterprise communications. From a network, user need and marketplace perspective, VDI is now at the tipping point where VoIP was a decade ago.

What Makes the Ideal VDI Solution?
When assessing their options for implementing VDI, CIOs and IT managers should focus on services that:

  • Support 100 percent self-service and rapid turn-up. For example, look for VDI solutions that have a portal where customers can create an account, configure their services and have them delivered immediately to their PCs, tablets and smartphones.
  • Enable importing and cloning of existing desktop configurations. Why waste time and resources re-inventing the wheel each time?
  • Give IT managers the ability to create and manage different sets of desktop pools. This should include the ability to add, delete, stop, start, reboot and reimage in real time.
  • Provide redundant, highly available physical infrastructure linked with best-in-class hypervisor virtualization technologies.

These features provide an ideal solution - not just for a particular organization, but also as a catalyst for mass VDI adoption.

SoftBank and VMWare are among the companies that recognize why VDI could have levels of adoption and revenue comparable to those of cloud-based server solutions. For example, earlier this year, SoftBank licensed 8x8's Zerigo enterprise cloud software to create a VDI solution for enterprises in Japan and abroad.

SoftBank's VDI initiative is noteworthy for at least two reasons. First, the company has a history of betting big and presciently on emerging opportunities. Second, SoftBank is a major LTE operator in Japan and is in the midst of buying Sprint to expand its global LTE footprint. VDI gives SoftBank - and other mobile operators - a value-added solution to attract enterprises to their LTE service. That goes back to the point about how bandwidth has evolved from being a barrier to VDI adoption to a catalyst, and it's one more example of why VDI is coming soon to a PC or tablet near you.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


@ThingsExpo Stories
"MobiDev is a software development company and we do complex, custom software development for everybody from entrepreneurs to large enterprises," explained Alan Winters, U.S. Head of Business Development at MobiDev, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Major trends and emerging technologies – from virtual reality and IoT, to Big Data and algorithms – are helping organizations innovate in the digital era. However, to create real business value, IT must think beyond the ‘what’ of digital transformation to the ‘how’ to harness emerging trends, innovation and disruption. Architecture is the key that underpins and ties all these efforts together. In the digital age, it’s important to invest in architecture, extend the enterprise footprint to the cl...
Data is the fuel that drives the machine learning algorithmic engines and ultimately provides the business value. In his session at Cloud Expo, Ed Featherston, a director and senior enterprise architect at Collaborative Consulting, discussed the key considerations around quality, volume, timeliness, and pedigree that must be dealt with in order to properly fuel that engine.
Two weeks ago (November 3-5), I attended the Cloud Expo Silicon Valley as a speaker, where I presented on the security and privacy due diligence requirements for cloud solutions. Cloud security is a topical issue for every CIO, CISO, and technology buyer. Decision-makers are always looking for insights on how to mitigate the security risks of implementing and using cloud solutions. Based on the presentation topics covered at the conference, as well as the general discussions heard between sessio...
IoT is rapidly becoming mainstream as more and more investments are made into the platforms and technology. As this movement continues to expand and gain momentum it creates a massive wall of noise that can be difficult to sift through. Unfortunately, this inevitably makes IoT less approachable for people to get started with and can hamper efforts to integrate this key technology into your own portfolio. There are so many connected products already in place today with many hundreds more on the h...
No hype cycles or predictions of zillions of things here. IoT is big. You get it. You know your business and have great ideas for a business transformation strategy. What comes next? Time to make it happen. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jay Mason, Associate Partner at M&S Consulting, presented a step-by-step plan to develop your technology implementation strategy. He discussed the evaluation of communication standards and IoT messaging protocols, data analytics considerations, edge-to-cloud tec...
Announcing Poland #DigitalTransformation Pavilion
Digital Transformation is much more than a buzzword. The radical shift to digital mechanisms for almost every process is evident across all industries and verticals. This is often especially true in financial services, where the legacy environment is many times unable to keep up with the rapidly shifting demands of the consumer. The constant pressure to provide complete, omnichannel delivery of customer-facing solutions to meet both regulatory and customer demands is putting enormous pressure on...
CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO are the world's most influential, independent events where Cloud Computing was coined and where technology buyers and vendors meet to experience and discuss the big picture of Digital Transformation and all of the strategies, tactics, and tools they need to realize their goals. Sponsors of DXWorldEXPO | CloudEXPO benefit from unmatched branding, profile building and lead generation opportunities.
DXWorldEXPO LLC announced today that All in Mobile, a mobile app development company from Poland, will exhibit at the 22nd International CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO. All In Mobile is a mobile app development company from Poland. Since 2014, they maintain passion for developing mobile applications for enterprises and startups worldwide.
The best way to leverage your CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO presence as a sponsor and exhibitor is to plan your news announcements around our events. The press covering CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO will have access to these releases and will amplify your news announcements. More than two dozen Cloud companies either set deals at our shows or have announced their mergers and acquisitions at CloudEXPO. Product announcements during our show provide your company with the most reach through our targeted audienc...
@DevOpsSummit at Cloud Expo, taking place November 12-13 in New York City, NY, is co-located with 22nd international CloudEXPO | first international DXWorldEXPO and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world.
Everything run by electricity will eventually be connected to the Internet. Get ahead of the Internet of Things revolution. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Akvelon expert and IoT industry leader Sergey Grebnov provided an educational dive into the world of managing your home, workplace and all the devices they contain with the power of machine-based AI and intelligent Bot services for a completely streamlined experience.
DXWorldEXPO | CloudEXPO are the world's most influential, independent events where Cloud Computing was coined and where technology buyers and vendors meet to experience and discuss the big picture of Digital Transformation and all of the strategies, tactics, and tools they need to realize their goals. Sponsors of DXWorldEXPO | CloudEXPO benefit from unmatched branding, profile building and lead generation opportunities.
22nd International Cloud Expo, taking place June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and co-located with the 1st DXWorld Expo will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud ...
In his keynote at 19th Cloud Expo, Sheng Liang, co-founder and CEO of Rancher Labs, discussed the technological advances and new business opportunities created by the rapid adoption of containers. With the success of Amazon Web Services (AWS) and various open source technologies used to build private clouds, cloud computing has become an essential component of IT strategy. However, users continue to face challenges in implementing clouds, as older technologies evolve and newer ones like Docker c...
JETRO showcased Japan Digital Transformation Pavilion at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo® at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. The Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) is a non-profit organization that provides business support services to companies expanding to Japan. With the support of JETRO's dedicated staff, clients can incorporate their business; receive visa, immigration, and HR support; find dedicated office space; identify local government subsidies; get...
Dion Hinchcliffe is an internationally recognized digital expert, bestselling book author, frequent keynote speaker, analyst, futurist, and transformation expert based in Washington, DC. He is currently Chief Strategy Officer at the industry-leading digital strategy and online community solutions firm, 7Summits.
Bill Schmarzo, author of "Big Data: Understanding How Data Powers Big Business" and "Big Data MBA: Driving Business Strategies with Data Science," is responsible for setting the strategy and defining the Big Data service offerings and capabilities for EMC Global Services Big Data Practice. As the CTO for the Big Data Practice, he is responsible for working with organizations to help them identify where and how to start their big data journeys. He's written several white papers, is an avid blogge...
Bill Schmarzo, author of "Big Data: Understanding How Data Powers Big Business" and "Big Data MBA: Driving Business Strategies with Data Science," is responsible for setting the strategy and defining the Big Data service offerings and capabilities for EMC Global Services Big Data Practice. As the CTO for the Big Data Practice, he is responsible for working with organizations to help them identify where and how to start their big data journeys. He's written several white papers, is an avid blogge...