The computer revolution, which began more than 60 years ago, is far from over. On the other hand, organizations are rightly concerned about the endless replacement cycles, high maintenance expenses, security vulnerabilities, and high energy costs that plague traditional networked PCs.
Virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) promises to reduce the issues associated with traditional PC deployments, allowing IT infrastructure to be more agile, secure, and give a better user experience while lowering the total cost of ownership (TCO).
What Is VDI and How Does It Work?
VDI is a type of desktop virtualization technology in which end-user desktops are operated on virtual machines (VMs) hosted on a centralized server in a data center. The virtual desktop image, which includes the operating system, programs, and data, is provided to endpoints over the network. End users can interact with the OS, its apps, and data as if they were on a local system as a result of this.
Virtual desktops can be accessed via various endpoints, including standard PCs, thin clients, and mobile devices. To connect to the remote server, each endpoint must run an HTML5-based session or install a client program that uses the proper remote desktop protocol.
Citrix’s Independent Computing Architecture (ICA), VMware’s PC over IP (PCoIP), and Microsoft’s Remote Desktop Protocol are all standard remote desktop technologies (RDP). Hypervisor, connection broker, and clients are the three major components of VDI.
A hypervisor is VDI software that allows you to create and run virtual machines on a centralized server. It divides the server hardware into numerous virtual machine instances, each with its operating system, applications, and data. Each VM instance acts as a standalone desktop that authenticated users can access.
Broker of connections
A connection broker acts as a go-between for customers and the virtual machine instances on the centralized server. It has the following functions:
Validates users for on-demand VM instance access
Monitors the level of activity of a virtual machine instance and changes its state to active or inactive.
Administrates access to numerous VM pools for authorized users.
After a user has disconnected, this command reassigns a virtual machine.
Clients give end-users access to virtual machine instances. A client can be any device in a VDI system, such as a PC, thin client, or mobile device, and it should allow users to access virtual desktops on any platform.
What Are the Advantages of Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI)?
VDI provides a plethora of economic and operational benefits to businesses. In this section, we’ll look at a few cases.
Consolidation of data centers
Managing fewer, higher-capacity servers is more cost-effective than managing a large number of under-performing servers. IT administrators can use VDI to split and combine many servers, allowing them to better use those already in place. Organizations will be better able to quickly provision resources to new users, workgroups, or departments in this manner.
IT management made more manageable.
IT administrators spend a lot of time and effort patching operating systems and apps on PCs in various devices and locations. VDI makes this work easier because everything is managed from a single location. Instead of installing a new version of an OS or program on hundreds or thousands of endpoints, you may simply add it to the main desktop.
It is valid for maintenance and troubleshooting as well. It’s simple to set up new employees—just deploy the golden image containing the operating system and the programs they’ll use, and you’re ready to go. If an endpoint fails or is misplaced, you may quickly spin up a new VM instance on a different device, saving the user time and enhancing productivity.
Efficiency in terms of costs
The price and resources required for PC refresh cycles can be overwhelming for a company. VDI moves to compute away from endpoints and onto a centralized server, allowing users to view their virtual desktops from low-end devices like thin clients. Virtual Desktop Infrastructure eliminates upgrade or hardware acquisition expenses associated with PC refresh cycles by extending the current hardware’s end of life (EOL).
VDI also cuts down on the costs of managing endpoints. Instead of doing these actions on individual end devices, you can quickly patch, update, or upgrade the centralized desktop image and deliver it to thousands of endpoints around the enterprise. It helps you accomplish your bottom line by saving you countless IT hours.
Working from afar
Employees can log in to their virtual desktops and applications from any device or location using VDI. As a result, people can work from anywhere in the world at any time, increasing the productivity of a firm.
VDI frees up IT managers to focus on other critical responsibilities by centralizing end-user administration and maintenance. End users will not be slowed by system updates or security issues because administrators can handle such problems nearly instantaneously on the central server.
What Are the Benefits of VDI for Security?
Some of the most challenging challenges for IT managers are keeping PCs up to date with OS and software upgrades and ensuring that the data center has the latest anti-malware. IT administrators must guarantee that updates, which occur regularly, are delivered on various devices, in addition to testing the updates to see whether they can cause problems with existing setups.
It can be a problem, especially if some PCs only connect to the central server regularly. It’s also impossible to know if the anti-malware software on end devices is up to date. Because of its centralized management model, VDI can improve security in such systems.
All endpoints are updated when the central VM instance is patched, updated, or upgraded. And, as long as the master image contains the most recent security updates, all endpoints in a VDI environment are protected. If you discover that malware has infiltrated a virtual machine, you can quickly delete it and spin up a new one in a matter of minutes.
Furthermore, nothing is saved on the end devices that connect to the VDI platform. Instead, all company information and applications are stored in the data center. You don’t have to worry about business files and programs being corrupted or falling into the wrong hands if the device is lost or stolen because they can be quickly found in the data center.
What Are the VDI Disadvantages?
Despite its many advantages, VDI has a few disadvantages. First, because Microsoft treats VDI licensing differently, transitioning from decentralized to centralized licensing may be costly for an enterprise. As a result, before jumping on the VDI bandwagon, you must first evaluate your requirements. This guarantees that you only use the technology that is most appropriate for your needs. You can also solve this problem by ensuring that staff keeps their old PCs following the VDI transfer.
Second, as compared to a standard PC environment, managing individuals with special needs might be complex. An enterprise-grade VDI service can assist you in overcoming this obstacle. An all-in-one VDI solution, such as Parallels® Remote Application Server (RAS), for example, provides all of the tools you need to supply and manage resources from a single interface.