I am encouraged that the cost of VDI is one of the things that will get us all to stop and think for a moment…what problem(s) are we really trying to solve? It’s a premium way to deliver workspaces, and it comes at a premium cost. Its not cheaper than a PC, and thats a good thing.
When we compare the per workspace cost of VDI and claim it is cheaper than that provided by a PC -we are doing a disservice. Its like trying to compare Apples to Pickup Trucks. If cost per workspace is your goal – VDI ain’t gonna work for you. Trust me on that.
So, I submit to you the greatest lesson we all should have learned in the past 8 “Years of the Desktop” is that if you get your users under management FIRST using data, profile, and application management and layering, THEN choose your windows delivery methods and devices (Physical PCs, VDI sessions, XenApp, RDSH, Cloud, tablets, Phones, BYOD, etc) and LASTLY choose your vendor(s) – and your devices if you care….and not only will you save money you will not fall victim to believing VDI solves everything. In fact – VDI should stand for “Very Distracting Idea” – because it is but one course of treatment, it is not the cure. Alternatively delivering network stored data, profiles, and applications to a physical PC might be the cheapest, but not necessarily the best.
And when I say best, I mean from all measures of productivity, not CAPEX (capital cost or cost per unit). This is dead math just as it is juvenile to compare the cost of a typewriter to a pc. The new math is a calculation of the productivity gains to three stakeholder groups. 1. Users 2. Budgets 3. Staff. If the net result is an increase yield in productivity – the technology you are exploring is justified. If not, please rethink your decisions. And if you cannot measure it, you cannot manage it – don’t overlook monitoring – these distributed workspaces have a few moving parts – proactive visibility is key.