Welcome!

Linux Containers Authors: Stackify Blog, Automic Blog, SmartBear Blog, Liz McMillan, Elizabeth White

Blog Feed Post

Wakefield and District Housing at home with IGEL for Virtual Desktop Infrastructure

Reading, UK May 19, 2014 - When WDH (Wakefield and District Housing) wanted to deploy a new virtual desktop infrastructure to speed up log-on times, improve manageability and cut costs, the company turned to IGEL Technology. WDH is responsible for more than 31,000 homes in the Wakefield district.

WDH's desktop solution published applications from Citrix XenApp to 900 standardised Dell Desktops. The IT and Business Systems Change team began considering changing to a Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) because the organisation was facing a number of business challenges.

A major difficulty was the log-on times for people working at remote sites. Although geographically bound within Wakefield, the organisation has 75 different locations, 48 of which are Independent Living Schemes (formerly known as sheltered accommodation), which had 1MB ADSL connections into the IT infrastructure.

"When someone logged on to the system, they would have to download their profile over the connection and this could take anything up to 30 minutes at a time," said Andrew Howard, Project Manager at WDH. "Our teleworkers, who work from home and offer call centre support to our tenants, were also suffering the same difficulties."

In addition, WDH was in the process of mobilising more of its workforce. With changes in legislation and housing associations operating in a new way, it was important that employees calling on tenants should have information at their fingertips. As a result, these employees were being issued with tablets for their work. "Mobile workers in the past had also experienced problems logging onto the network and with the increase in mobile workers, we needed a different desktop solution," explained Andrew.

The organisation first virtualised all its servers using VMware, making large savings on electricity and hardware. The team then turned its mind to the desktops and built a detailed business case. "With our VDI we wanted speed, performance, flexibility, mobility, and manageability," said Andrew. "Manageability and access were key, and we needed to make sure that we weren't paying any more than for our current desktop solution."

WDH looked at five potential thin clients and quickly narrowed this down to three manufacturers, which included IGEL. "We invited each manufacturer in with an engineer to set up the devices, and looked at their technical knowledge and competency. While on site we observed how they escalated issues through their organisation and evaluated what tools and systems would be required," said Andrew. "For the end users, the devices work in much the same way but the IGEL Management software was far superior. The ease of use and flexibility blew all the competition out of the water."

The IGEL Universal Management Suite software (UMS) can be used to set up, maintain and upgrade all IGEL thin clients from a central location using a policy-based graphical interface. It is a simple-to-use management tool, which can have thin clients up and running in minutes. Intuitive to use, secure and scalable up to 100,000 thin clients, the IGEL UMS drastically reduces management time for IT administrators.

"To get the competitor thin client solution working took five days and it was just two hours for the IGEL devices," said Andrew. "We couldn't get them out of the boxes quickly enough for the engineers."

WDH has further complemented the IGEL devices with the Data Security solution DriveLock. Using the DriveLock Virtual Channel already included in the Linux-based IGEL Universal Desktop, access rights and security settings for external storage devices can be configured to whitelist approved devices, even down to the serial number of an individual USB stick.

Electricity savings enable faster roll-out
The organisation calculated that there would be significant electricity savings as a result of the deployment because the IGEL thin clients use so little power compared to traditional PCs. The electricity savings over the longer five-to-seven year lifecycle meant WDH would be able to afford to deploy the new desktops in one fast roll-out, rather than being forced to stagger it due to cost.

WDH rolled out 200 IGEL UD5 LX devices to 70 different locations in just two weeks. Today, all 775 PCs have been replaced with IGEL thin clients. The devices use Citrix XenApp application delivery to publish applications from the XenApp server and some over Microsoft App-V to avoid saturating the servers with applications.

The servers are virtualised on Dell hardware using VMware ESX Enterprise plus licensing and work with a standard Windows 2008 64-bit operating system. Applications are installed on start-up by group policy and MSI, which allows the IT team to remove or add applications quickly and efficiently and deploy a new XenApp server in less than 45 minutes.

"The feedback we have been getting from our users is that the IGEL devices are now ridiculously quick and easy to use," said Andrew. "We still use our 1MB ADSL lines and users that previously reported log on times of up to 30 minutes can now start their IGEL, turn on the thin client, log on and launch an application in less than two minutes. The desktop infrastructure is also so easy to maintain.

Andrew finished by saying: "To reap the benefits of desktop virtualisation you need a strong thin client solution, and that solution is IGEL thin clients and its management suite."

Eric Backhouse, WDH Infrastructure and Customer Services Manager, added: "The move to an end-to-end virtual desktop solution, utilising IGEL thin clients supported by Citrix Xen Desktop, has allowed us to provide a high quality, highly effective way of working for employees at remote sites."

"The IGEL solution is the backbone of our flexibility and mobility project. It will cost less to own and operate, we will be able to work out how much will be used in terms of resources and the system can be expanded to meet the future needs of WDH."

About IGEL Technology
A world leader in thin and zero client solutions, IGEL Technology helps organisations improve the agility, efficiency and security of their virtual desktop and application delivery systems. IGEL produces one of the industry's widest ranges of thin and zero clients, based on Linux and Microsoft Windows, allowing customers to access a broad spectrum of server-based infrastructures and applications. IGEL also offers powerful and intuitive management software for easy deployment and administration of thin clients throughout any size organisation. Partnerships with industry leaders like Red Hat, Citrix, VMware and Microsoft ensure that IGEL provides the most up-to-date technology and trustworthy security to clients in industries that include Healthcare, Education & Research, Public Sector, Financial, Insurance, Retail, Logistics and Manufacturing. IGEL has offices in the United Kingdom, Australia, France, the Netherlands, Austria, Belgium, Switzerland, Sweden, the United States, Germany, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Beijing and Singapore and is represented by partners in over 50 countries worldwide. To learn more, visit www.igel.co.uk or follow us on Twitter: twitter.com/IGEL_Technology

Editorial contacts:

IGEL Technology GmbH
Dr. Frank Lampe
Hanna-Kunath-Str. 31
28199 Bremen
Tel.: 0421 / 52094 1300
Fax: 0421 / 52094 1399
E-Mail: [email protected]
Web: www.igel.com

Amber Group
Paul Smith
Tel: +44 (0)7770 828525
Email: [email protected]

Source: RealWire

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By RealWire News Distribution

RealWire is a global news release distribution service specialising in the online media. The RealWire approach focuses on delivering relevant content to the receivers of our client's news releases. As we know that it is only through delivering relevance, that influence can ever be achieved.

@ThingsExpo Stories
SYS-CON Events announced today that Auditwerx will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Auditwerx specializes in SOC 1, SOC 2, and SOC 3 attestation services throughout the U.S. and Canada. As a division of Carr, Riggs & Ingram (CRI), one of the top 20 largest CPA firms nationally, you can expect the resources, skills, and experience of a much larger firm combined with the accessibility and attent...
In his session at @ThingsExpo, Eric Lachapelle, CEO of the Professional Evaluation and Certification Board (PECB), will provide an overview of various initiatives to certifiy the security of connected devices and future trends in ensuring public trust of IoT. Eric Lachapelle is the Chief Executive Officer of the Professional Evaluation and Certification Board (PECB), an international certification body. His role is to help companies and individuals to achieve professional, accredited and worldw...
In his General Session at 16th Cloud Expo, David Shacochis, host of The Hybrid IT Files podcast and Vice President at CenturyLink, investigated three key trends of the “gigabit economy" though the story of a Fortune 500 communications company in transformation. Narrating how multi-modal hybrid IT, service automation, and agile delivery all intersect, he will cover the role of storytelling and empathy in achieving strategic alignment between the enterprise and its information technology.
Microservices are a very exciting architectural approach that many organizations are looking to as a way to accelerate innovation. Microservices promise to allow teams to move away from monolithic "ball of mud" systems, but the reality is that, in the vast majority of organizations, different projects and technologies will continue to be developed at different speeds. How to handle the dependencies between these disparate systems with different iteration cycles? Consider the "canoncial problem" ...
The Internet of Things is clearly many things: data collection and analytics, wearables, Smart Grids and Smart Cities, the Industrial Internet, and more. Cool platforms like Arduino, Raspberry Pi, Intel's Galileo and Edison, and a diverse world of sensors are making the IoT a great toy box for developers in all these areas. In this Power Panel at @ThingsExpo, moderated by Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff, panelists discussed what things are the most important, which will have the most profound e...
Keeping pace with advancements in software delivery processes and tooling is taxing even for the most proficient organizations. Point tools, platforms, open source and the increasing adoption of private and public cloud services requires strong engineering rigor - all in the face of developer demands to use the tools of choice. As Agile has settled in as a mainstream practice, now DevOps has emerged as the next wave to improve software delivery speed and output. To make DevOps work, organization...
My team embarked on building a data lake for our sales and marketing data to better understand customer journeys. This required building a hybrid data pipeline to connect our cloud CRM with the new Hadoop Data Lake. One challenge is that IT was not in a position to provide support until we proved value and marketing did not have the experience, so we embarked on the journey ourselves within the product marketing team for our line of business within Progress. In his session at @BigDataExpo, Sum...
Web Real-Time Communication APIs have quickly revolutionized what browsers are capable of. In addition to video and audio streams, we can now bi-directionally send arbitrary data over WebRTC's PeerConnection Data Channels. With the advent of Progressive Web Apps and new hardware APIs such as WebBluetooh and WebUSB, we can finally enable users to stitch together the Internet of Things directly from their browsers while communicating privately and securely in a decentralized way.
DevOps is often described as a combination of technology and culture. Without both, DevOps isn't complete. However, applying the culture to outdated technology is a recipe for disaster; as response times grow and connections between teams are delayed by technology, the culture will die. A Nutanix Enterprise Cloud has many benefits that provide the needed base for a true DevOps paradigm.
What sort of WebRTC based applications can we expect to see over the next year and beyond? One way to predict development trends is to see what sorts of applications startups are building. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Arin Sime, founder of WebRTC.ventures, will discuss the current and likely future trends in WebRTC application development based on real requests for custom applications from real customers, as well as other public sources of information,
In his General Session at 17th Cloud Expo, Bruce Swann, Senior Product Marketing Manager for Adobe Campaign, explored the key ingredients of cross-channel marketing in a digital world. Learn how the Adobe Marketing Cloud can help marketers embrace opportunities for personalized, relevant and real-time customer engagement across offline (direct mail, point of sale, call center) and digital (email, website, SMS, mobile apps, social networks, connected objects).
With the introduction of IoT and Smart Living in every aspect of our lives, one question has become relevant: What are the security implications? To answer this, first we have to look and explore the security models of the technologies that IoT is founded upon. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Nevi Kaja, a Research Engineer at Ford Motor Company, will discuss some of the security challenges of the IoT infrastructure and relate how these aspects impact Smart Living. The material will be delivered i...
"My role is working with customers, helping them go through this digital transformation. I spend a lot of time talking to banks, big industries, manufacturers working through how they are integrating and transforming their IT platforms and moving them forward," explained William Morrish, General Manager Product Sales at Interoute, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Ocean9will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Ocean9 provides cloud services for Backup, Disaster Recovery (DRaaS) and instant Innovation, and redefines enterprise infrastructure with its cloud native subscription offerings for mission critical SAP workloads.
Your homes and cars can be automated and self-serviced. Why can't your storage? From simply asking questions to analyze and troubleshoot your infrastructure, to provisioning storage with snapshots, recovery and replication, your wildest sci-fi dream has come true. In his session at @DevOpsSummit at 20th Cloud Expo, Dan Florea, Director of Product Management at Tintri, will provide a ChatOps demo where you can talk to your storage and manage it from anywhere, through Slack and similar services ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Linux Academy, the foremost online Linux and cloud training platform and community, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Linux Academy was founded on the belief that providing high-quality, in-depth training should be available at an affordable price. Industry leaders in quality training, provided services, and student certification passes, its goal is to c...
"delaPlex is a software development company. We do team-based outsourcing development," explained Mark Rivers, COO and Co-founder of delaPlex Software, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
SYS-CON Events announced today that SoftLayer, an IBM Company, has been named “Gold Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York, New York. SoftLayer, an IBM Company, provides cloud infrastructure as a service from a growing number of data centers and network points of presence around the world. SoftLayer’s customers range from Web startups to global enterprises.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Technologic Systems Inc., an embedded systems solutions company, will exhibit at SYS-CON's @ThingsExpo, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Technologic Systems is an embedded systems company with headquarters in Fountain Hills, Arizona. They have been in business for 32 years, helping more than 8,000 OEM customers and building over a hundred COTS products that have never been discontinued. Technologic Systems’ pr...
SYS-CON Events announced today that CA Technologies has been named “Platinum Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and the 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place October 31-November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. CA Technologies helps customers succeed in a future where every business – from apparel to energy – is being rewritten by software. From ...