Virtualization has sparked a paradigm shift in the IT industry. Because this computing technique enables companies to more effectively maximize use of their hardware, many corporations who have virtualized their servers are starting to think about applying that same principle to their desktops.
The change offers potential benefits. With Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI), companies replace desktop PCs with devices that do not house application software, an approach that offers them some potential benefits. They can better support remote workers, enhance security, reduce calls to their help desk, and cut their software licensing costs.
Consequently, customer interest is picking up, and competition has heated up. "There has been a lot of activity in the VDI market," stated Chris Wolf, an analyst at Burton Group Inc. Citrix, MokaFive, Pano Logic, Ring Cube, Symantec, Oracle, and VMware are some of the vendors who have developed desktop virtualization products.
Corporations see potential benefits in moving to desktop virtualization. "VDI fits with the growing emphasis on mobility," stated Mark Bowker, senior analyst at Enterprise Strategy Group. No longer are users tied to their cubicles; instead, they are on the go, working from home or the road. Many companies have struggled to support these users.
VDI can help. This approach enables companies to get new users up and running quickly. Corporations do not have to provision and test new PCs and then load the proper software onto them. Instead they plug in a new piece of hardware and download a software image that has already been developed. Additionally, upgrades and patches can be completed more quickly. Instead of populating remote devices with updated operating systems and applications, IT departments change software running on one system, and the alterations are automatically downloaded as the other systems come online.