Northrim Bank is committed to the very highest level of service. That’s why the popular Alaska-based community bank deployed VMware® Horizon View™ to help meet its “Customer First Service” goals.
Now Horizon View enables workforce mobility between headquarters and branch offices. It also serves as a critical component of the bank’s “branch in a box” high-availability solution. Together with Cisco UCS E-Series Servers and Atlantis Computing ILIO data-storage technologies, Horizon View reduces costs, keeps the bank in compliance, and enables always-on access to applications for business-critical processes performed by management, bank tellers, and loan originators.
Delivering VDI to branch offices is something many enterprises struggle to deliver. There are many hurdles to overcome in doing this effectively including:
Storage and Cost Intensive: VDI workloads are very storage intensive and in many cases, the price-performance barrier is hard to overcome even in data center environments. However, data centers have the advantage of scale where you could be servicing hundreds to thousands to users. At this scale, the cost of expensive storage is distributed across many users bringing down the cost/desktop. However, branches usually deal with 250 or less users and the economies of scale just don’t play well.
WAN Challenges: A branch office could be thousands of miles from the data center where the VDI infrastructure is hosted. The latency of dealing with these large distances means the user experience is usually terrible. In addition, most VDI vendors will not support VDI sessions in excess of 250ms of round-trip latency. In addition to latency, bandwidth at the remote locations is limited and in most cases prohibitively expensive to go to higher capacities. On a typical T1 link, pushing more than 10 VDI sessions will be a daunting task.
WAN failures: WAN failures mean all branch users are left without VDI access; a huge operational expense to take on.
For these reasons, many IT administrators have a VDI initiative for the data center but continue to operate the traditional desktop model at their remote/branch offices even though they’d like to consolidate on one architecture.
By Tina de Benedictis, Senior Technical Marketing Manager, End-User Computing, VMware
A primary new feature offered in Horizon Mirage 4.2 is a Help Desk web console. This web console enables Help Desk personnel to easily fulfill common user requests, such as desktop recovery and incremental backups, always with the zero-touch style of Horizon Mirage. The Horizon Mirage Web Manager transforms Help Desk personnel into magicians!
The new web console allows Horizon Mirage Help Desk personnel to perform the following actions on selected devices:
Set Drivers (device drivers)
Synchronize (synchronize the current endpoint with the backup image)
Restore (restore desktop from a backup image)
Revert to Snapshot (restore to a particular snapshot of the desktop)
By Tina de Benedictis, Senior Technical Marketing Manager, End-User Computing, VMware
No neckties in the paper shredder—what does that have to do with VMware Horizon Mirage Branch Reflectors? By the end of this blog post, you will know.
You have probably noticed those words or an icon on the paper shredder that indicate you should not put neckties in the paper shredder. Who would put a necktie in the paper shredder? It might be someone who was not paying enough attention and let their necktie dangle into the shredder, or it might be someone who hated that particular necktie and thought the paper shredder was the right place to demolish it.
This is where we find the similarity to Horizon Mirage Branch Reflectors. Branch Reflectors are for efficient handling of layer updates coming down from the datacenter to endpoints, not for backups of endpoints going back up to the datacenter. Who would think that Branch Reflectors are for backups? A lot of people do, and they are surprised to find out that they need to think about their WAN instead of the LAN when planning backups of branch-office endpoints.
by Eric Carter, Director of Product Marketing, Riverbed Technology
When it comes to delivering applications over the wide area network (WAN), bandwidth is a key factor in performance, but just as critical is network latency. Yes, as fast as it is, the speed of light imposes a speed limit. Data can only move so fast over distance and through devices that connect point A to point B. The reality of physics takes its toll especially on interactive applications such as desktop virtualization. The good news is that technology innovation now makes it possible to overcome the speed of light issue – not necessarily bending the laws of physics – rather providing a new way to negate the effects of the WAN to deliver local “edge” performance from the data center even over thousands of miles.
Riverbed Technology designed its Granite product to present data-center-managed storage, servers, and applications as if they’re local in remote locations. As customers continue to invest in VMware Horizon View and extend desktop as a service to end user communities that work from branch offices, the unique capabilities of Granite with the Horizon Branch Office Desktop solution helps IT organizations preserve what they want – data center-based provisioning, management and security – while also providing users what they want – a high-performance, reliable desktop experience.
By: Robert Baesman, Director of Product Management, VMware End User Computing
Several months back, I got up in this forum to talk about some good stuff for the branch office from our friends at Riverbed. As part of that discussion, I described a tech-preview of a VDI deployment architecture where the virtual desktops themselves are distributed to servers in the branch, while management stays centralized at the datacenter. Well, today I’m excited to announce that we’re moving out of tech-preview and into full support of distributed branch architectures with partners like Riverbed, Cisco and others.
By Robert Baesman, Director of Desktop Product Management, End-User Computing, VMware
How to View a Mirage on the Horizon…
Yes, the pun is intended <groan>. Today, VMware is happy to announce the launch of the latest edition of our two most popular enterprise End-User Computing products: VMware Horizon View 5.2 and VMware Horizon Mirage 4.0. You can look forward to further announcements regarding general availability of these product versions soon.
But wait! Just yesterday we were referring to these products as “VMware View” and “VMware Mirage”. What’s that “Horizon” name doing in there? Well, as our CTO, Scott Davis, observed in his blog, these two great products are now part of our Horizon Suite and our strategy and vision for the virtual workspace.
By Steven Poitras, Solution Architect at Nutanix, Inc.
Today’s distributed businesses rely extensively on branch offices for selling to, servicing and satisfying new and existing customers. Yet far too many of these remote locations remain hamstrung by legacy infrastructure, ultimately impacting the ability of the business to grow revenue and profits.
Virtual desktop deployments in branch offices have been particularly problematic, plagued by challenges including complexity, poor performance, inconsistent performance, high costs and manageability issues. Nutanix and VMware have partnered to deliver a simple, easy-to-manage Branch Office Desktop (BOD) solution that addresses these challenges, allowing branch offices to reach their full potential.
By Courtney Burry, Director of Solutions Marketing, End User Computing and Brian Gammage, Chief Market Technologist, End User Computing, VMware
When it comes to managing IT in branch offices, it’s not uncommon for organizations to look at centralization. Why? Because it simply isn’t efficient to maintain local IT staff and resources in each location, especially when the work tasks being supported in each location are near-identical. Not only is the inefficiency of replicated and distributed IT management an unnecessary resource drain, it can expose the organization to greater risks of lost productivity and revenues by creating many more points of vulnerability.
Against this backdrop, desktop virtualization is a compelling technology option, because… Continue reading →
By Rory Clements, Solution Architect, End User Computing, VMware
Following the launch of the VMware Rapid Desktop Program at VMworld in San Francisco, the global VMware and IBM teams committed to not only delivering a validated solution based on the Branch Office Desktop, but also creating and certifying an IBM Rapid Desktop appliance based on the IBM System x and IBM Flex Systems hardware families.
Now-just 6 weeks later, the IBM and VMware EUC teams have completed work on a fully validated Branch Office Desktop solution hosted at the IBM labs in Greenock, UK. This same team in Greenock developed the recently announced IBM SmartCloud Desktop Infrastructure reference architecture as foundation for validated vertical use cases.
Optimized to deliver consistent and scalable desktops as a managed service for remote and branch office workers across the WAN—this architecture… Continue reading →