What would compel a company to make the move to virtual desktops you might ask?
there are many solid business reasons in fact, including:
- Modifying or eliminating your Hardware Lifecycle (moving to a predictable cost model
rather than irregular capital expenditures)
- Vastly simplifying your Software Upgrade cycle; (ease of implementation, standardization,
- Increased & automatic Data Privacy & Security;
- Cost-Savings (energy usage, management cost, physical cost)
- Mobile Computing - access your desktop anywhere, anytime from any device!
Let’s back up a little bit though to get some perspective. One of your single largest expenses
and headaches as a small- or medium-sized business (SMB) owner is business technology
- both the hardware itself and the costs to keep it running smoothly. One particular frustration
is your fleet of everyday desktop computers (and growing list of mobile devices such as
smartphones, tablet PCs, etc). The constant need for new hardware and software upgrades
makes budgeting (both in terms of time and capital expenditures) difficult to moderate. When
you factor in increasing corporate concerns for security & data privacy you can see how the
desktop market is ripe for change.
This is where a move to cloud computing makes perfect sense for today’s SMB. With it, you
can stop buying PCs, stop struggling to keep them up-to-date, secure and trouble-free. In
keeping with The Utility Company’s philosophy of getting more utilization from your existing
technology, you can even extend the life-cycle of aging desktops you currently own by converting them to virtual desktops. The move to a virtual desktop infrastructure means a move
towards flexibility, affordability and predictability in your everyday technology.
What is a “Virtual Desktop”?
When you first heard the term Virtual Desktop, you may have had futuristic visions in your head
of holographic user interfaces being projected into thin air and users controlling them with
swipes of their hands. Or you may have had antiquated notions of connecting to a mainframe
somewhere with a ‘connected box’ and barely being able to run routine commands on it. While
the sci-fi version hasn’t become a reality for business computing (yet!), we’ve progressed a long
way from the other vision. Today, a virtual desktop actually refers to the ability to centrally push
a complete operating system & necessary applications onto a variety of devices and access
them wherever, whenever, over the internet.
With a Virtual Desktop solution such as our Connected Office Virtual Desktop all of your
major infrastructure, computing, data storage and security can be shifted to a SAS 70 Type
II-certifi ed data center. Your desktops and data storage are then hosted ‘in the Cloud’, so there
is no possibility of a breach that would compromise your data. Once your company’s desktops
are hosted in the Cloud, they can be securely accessed from anywhere – home, office, hotel
business center, etc. This means your employees will have remote access to their main
desktop from any device, anywhere, without having to worry about the security of the device
they are using to access it.
Businesses that move to a virtual solution can also be confident that they are automatically
getting the most up-to-date and secure versions of business-critical applications and operating
systems while freeing themselves of the monotony and difficulty of network and system
upgrades. You can have the desktops you want, when an where-ever you want them. You can
stop worrying about:
• your hardware needing replacement,
• your O/S and software becoming outdated,
• the need to manage,update, repair and backup all your desktops
• regulatory compliance issues in terms of data protection for you and your clients
Benefits of moving to a Virtual Desktop solution include:
Desktop Provisioning - Create and manage pools of virtual desktops in just minutes with a few simple clicks without
needing to include other groups. IT administrators can defi ne pools, create custom policies for usage and allocate pools
to user groups. All pool creation and provisioning is done without requiring any knowledge or experience in dealing with
the underlying infrastructure.
Device Independence - Users can leverage nearly any device to access their personal desktop. End-users can launch
their desktop allows users to access from an iPad, iPhone, home PC or Blackberry. End-users can also use thin clients,
with a smaller carbon footprint and near stateless characteristics, to access their desktops. Alternatively, users can
extend the life of their current PCs for cloud access.
Easy Access - Users can create, activate and manage their virtual desktops without relying on a system or desktop administrator.
Desktop Flexibility - You can confifi gure different virtual desktops for different use cases or different desktops by line of
business. Options to look at when choosing a solution include performance, OS, features and remoting protocol (i.e. RDP
or RGS as a remote connection protocol. RGS requires more bandwidth, but is better for multimedia usage.)
Desktop Management - Virtual Desktops look and act as part of your corporate IT environment, though they are running
at a secure remote data center. This is because the desktops are connected to your corporate IT environment through a
private network connection.
Secure Scalable Platform - A reputable Virtual Desktop service would be hosted in a secured and trusted world-class datacenter like ours are with Rackspace. This also means first-class monitoring, highly secure facilities and a support
team of certified experts.
Backup & Disaster Recovery (BDR) - Although not available on all Virtual Desktop solutions, with The Utility Company you
can build in BDR solutions to your infrastructure to automatically protect all your corporate and client data.
End-User LIVE Helpdesk Support - With CO Virtual Desktop you can give all your end-users access to certified Level 1
and Level 2 technicians who can answer any questions your employees might have, take remote support of your systems
to teach them visually and even provide training on commonly used office productivity software and line of business
If you already have internal IT resources, a move to virtual desktops will free them to work on strategic projects rather than tiresome end-user fixes. If you don’t already have an internal IT person or team you will no longer have to call technicians in
to fix problems whenever something breaks or needs updating - it will happen automatically and you’ll have a LIVE helpdesk
at your disposal for any of your employee questions or requests. You’ll also have the comfort of knowing “THIS is the fixed
amount that I am paying each month for all my IT management”, nothing more.
In today’s climate of ever-increasing personal data privacy, small- and medium-sized businesses are exposed to significant
liability with the storage and protection of their client data. Those clients could be insurance clients, accounting clients or patients – all industries are feeling pressure (whether they are already regulated or soon to be) to have better network security.
Large companies can afford to invest in the required
security and personnel to protect it effectively, but your
average SMB typically does not have the same resources
available to it. Without the proper budget for hardware,
software, personnel and training, and when you add in
protection for mobile users or multiple locations, it is next
to impossible for the smaller business to properly secure
themselves. Given the stacked odds against the SMB, it is
only a matter of time before a breach occurs.
Moving to Virtual Desktops is the simple solution to level
the playing fi eld by giving SMBs the ability to meet these
requirements in an affordable, ever-evolving solution.You can simply stop buying PCs, stop struggling to keep
them up-to-date and ensure they remain secure, fast and
trouble-free. Simply subscribing (moving from a CAP-EX
to an OP-EX model) becomes a flexible but locked-down,
secure IT environment that rivals the capabilities of
enterprises. So, is your business ready to “Get into the Cloud”?
Download & print this article as a White Paper >
To learn more about Virtual Desktops or assess their practicality for your company, please attend one our Let’s GO sessions (daily) by registering HERE >