Thursday, October 4, 2007

Replace All Your Company Computers with Toasters!

Back in the day, thin clients connected to mainframes to display session information on the screen. Some companies still run these legacy applications, but the advent of Microsoft Terminal server and Citrix Presentation server along with new thin clients like Wyse and Neoware have brought Microsoft Windows sessions back to the terminal.

When Microsoft added a PCAnyware type of capability to their Windows product line, it was used for remote connectivity, administration, and some used it for delivering non-distributed applications to their employees and customers. Now, the capability has expanded with increased quality of service on the network to use office applications, sound transmittion and even video capabilities.

So why do you care? Support costs! How much time is envolved in supporting failed hard drives, a bad driver, a virus, and network connectivity to name a few.

As well, centralizing data and backups are major concerns for companies. How do you keep all your data on your network. This allows much better trackability of your company data and allows for one set of servers to backed up.

Now lets add a few more technologies to make life even easier and to answer a few commonly asked questions.

SANs allow you take all of that data we just talked about and store it on a detached central data store. In the event the terminal server(s) develop a non-recoverable issue, you simply reinstall the system drive and reattach the data store. Plus, storage has become robust enough to create quick replicas and snapshots so you can build that into your solution.

How about the argument that if the terminal goes down, then all my users are down. VMWare will reolve this issue by quickly creating a new virtual terminal server, you can be back up in minutes, if not seconds. VMWare can also handle load balancing issues by autocreating new sessions to take over when a session gets overloaded.

Neoware makes an excellent Thin Client appliance with a management interface that's easy to use. Implement Neoware and you can send users to a new terminal server automatically with the click of a button thus substantially lowering your distributed support costs and centralizing IT management at the access layer.

I could go on forever about how you can save money and aggravation by switching to a terminal environment. If you would like to know more, contact your DSW representative today to schedule a no cost consultation.
Ryan Peterson
Director of Intelligent Facilities

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