In the past several years, virtualization software has been adopted more quickly than many expected possible, and is now prevalent in networks, storage and servers. Virtualization encompasses such areas as autonomic computing and utility computing, and is primarily used to centralize administrative tasks and improve scalability and workloads.
Reap the numerous benefits of virtualization by reading the invaluable expert advice in this guide, which covers virtualization services and how to create a virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI).
This guide is part of SearchCIO-Midmarket.com’s Midmarket CIO Briefings series, which is designed to give IT leaders strategic management and decision-making advice on timely topics.
Table of contents:
Solidify your VDI solution before bringing your own device
CIOs try to accommodate their users whenever it's smart for the business. In the case of the bring-your-own-device (BYOD) trend, CIOs can argue that BYOD will reduce what the company's spending on mobility hardware. Without a solid VDI solution in place, however, such devices really are only viable as mobile email readers. With a VDI solution, an organization can eliminate VPNs and other remote connectivity mechanisms in favor of virtual desktops. Additionally, a virtualized data center can be accessed from almost any device, whether it's a BlackBerry, an iPhone or an Android. It also doesn't matter if users prefer a MacBook or the old, lucky Dell they've been using since college.
In this tip, CIO Scott Lowe details the ins and outs of a VDI, targeting the tough sell in a down economy. He details reasons why this is an opportunity for IT transformation, and gives the critical reasons your CFO will be compelled to greenlight your VDI project. The technology has had the come to the forefront during an economic downturn, but with advances in VDI, CIOs no longer need to pony up a huge investment for their VDI environment. The BYOD trend is driving an opportunity, and Lowe feels that the time is ripe for CIOs to jump on the cost benefits.
Read more in Lowe's full tip.
Videos on the benefits of virtualization and associated technologies
Looking for even more virtualization information? Watch these videos and get valuable tips that will help your organization reap the benefits of virtualization.
Zero clients can deliver ROI -- or empty promises
Virtual desktop infrastructure looks simple on paper. The choices for VDI aren't that easy, however. CIOs have to decide whether to go with thin clients or choose the full load reduction with zero clients. According to expert Jonathan Hassell, while zero-client and thin-client technology might look appealing, they carry some pitfalls that CIOs must be ready to counteract.
CIOs must ensure that zero-client-based products truly use zero-client hardware. Thin clients don't solve the same problems that zero clients do. If CIOs are going to go zero-client, they should get the appopropriate software, Hassell advises. True zero-client software licenses should run about $100 or less per seat. He also advises CIOs to consider bandwidth concerns, and warns against the pitfalls for CIOs in Microsoft shops using Hyper-V. This tip will help you decide which virtualization services are right for your company.
Learn more about the pitfalls of a zero-client VDI.
Terms to know when virtualizing
Looking for more information on virtualization? These terms will help any CIO have a more complete understanding of the process.
The VDI model doesn't have to break the bank
Paul Emmel, assistant vice president in charge of infrastructure at DeWitt Stern Group Inc., faced a common problem: He wanted to move to a virtual desktop infrastructure model without incurring large VDI costs.
Emmel learned that adopting a new VDI model meant building another production environment -- including new servers and storage. Looking to save money on hardware, he came across an appliance that combines storage and compute resources in one box. It removed the need to buy an entire production environment, which would have included two high-end production servers connected through Fibre Channel technology. In the end, Emmel saved his company's bottom line. To find out how Emmel got low-cost virtualization services, and for more tips on getting VDI models on the cheap, read the full story.
Dig deeper into budget-friendly VDI models.
CIO conquers IT systems failure through strategic virtualization
Four years ago, CIO Paul Stokes experienced a complete system failure at his organization, the University of Northern British Columbia. Stokes had 3,500 students and 600 faculty and staff members relying on his department, and he knew that he had to work efficiently to correct the problem.
Now a CIO at the University of Victoria in British Columbia, Stokes took some time to discuss how he got through the ordeal of a system failure. With his advice, you'll be prepared to circumvent a similar crisis.
Read more about how one CIO got through a complete system failure.
Quiz yourself on the benefits of virtualization
As enterprise virtualization strategies evolve, many CIOs are turning to the latest advances in desktop virtualization, virtualized storage, virtual data centers and more.
Have you kept up-to-date with the latest advances in enterprise virtualization strategies? Read some of our recent coverage and take this quiz to find out.