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Virtualization Moving From Data Center To Desktop

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.

Security can also be enhanced. End users cannot download new applications or store data locally, so there are fewer instances of malware invading the enterprise network. In addition, corporate data no longer walks out of the door at the end of the day.

These changes can reduce support costs. Because fewer calls come in to help desks, companies can cut their support requirements by 20% or more in certain cases. Corporations can then either reduce their staff or assign individuals to more pressing assignments.

VDI can be economical. In some cases, companies can consolidate a hodgepodge of software licenses. Because this approach relies on a utility based computing model, corporations can reduce the number of licenses that they have while still providing employees with access to needed applications.

While sounding good in theory, this option can present corporations with various challenges.  "Historically, companies have not realized the expected ROI by moving to VDI," stated Chris Wolf, an analyst at Burton Group Inc.

Depending on the system selected, the initial costs can be high. Vendors have designed their systems in different ways. In some cases, customers need to upgrade the central systems with faster processors or additional memory because they can carry a high processing load. In other cases, a company may have to beef up its desktop systems.

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