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Evaluating VDI Storage Solutions: Five Points To Consider

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Virtual Desktop Infrastructure: Making the Move

If you, like IT professionals at numerous large companies we’ve worked with, currently want to upgrade your server-based computing system to a VDI, there are a few key tips to consider before taking on the migration.

During the consideration phase, be sure to analyze each vendor’s solution with the the following five points in mind.

Looking for an in-depth comparison of the top Enterprise SAN storage companies? Click here to download our Comparison Whitepaper today.

VDI Migration Considerations

1. User Experience

Although these considerations are not necessarily ranked in order of importance, as that may change case-by-case, user experience should always be high up on your list of priorities.

Used to the flash-supported devices of today, end users expect almost-immediate application load times.

In an attempt to maintain a stable, happy relationship with them, your new storage solution has to keep up with or exceed your current response times. In this case, there is no cliché – every second counts.

IOPS alone isn’t a very useful metric so be sure to look at each storage solution for other specs to get a well-rounded idea of how it will compare to your current setup. Keep an eye out for all of the following:

  • IOPS
  • Latency
  • Read vs. Write Percentage (%)
  • I/O Size

2. Flexibility

Consider storage solution flexibility in a couple of ways:

1. Deployment

Ensure that your new solution will deploy as effortlessly as possible. Something to consider here is what type of clone you will be running.

  • Linked Clone – A clone of the parent virtual machine that repeatedly shares disks with said parent. Such a setup saves disk space. It also makes it possible for multiple machines to use one software installation.
  • Full Clone – Independent from the parent virtual machine. Any operation of the full clone is completely separate from the parent and as such, does not rely in any way on being connected to said parent. Less disk space, but more performance are features of choosing a full clone.

 

2. Administration

Don’t let simple, day-to-day tasks keep your IT professionals from other priorities. Make sure to pick a “set it and forget it” solution that will automate certain to-dos so that your team can spend its time where it is needed.

Not only will this eliminate unnecessary stress, but it will also improve team performance, which will trickle up to increase network performance.

Solutions like InfoSight Predictive Analytics from Nimble Storage automate tons of data analytics, literally keeping an extra eye on your operating system, often fixing any problem before you ever even realize it existed.

Make sure your solution will work for, not just with, you.

3. Scalability

An uncertain future is as much a reality in IT as anywhere else. To be prepared for unforeseen developments in your infrastructure, you need to make sure whichever storage solution that you decide on is scalable.

This is especially important to consider if you roll out a pilot or demo trial. Be sure that any storage limitations will allow for sufficient performance once all of your needed desktops are up and running.

Not only does your storage solution need to be scalable for the physical growth that comes with added hardware, but it needs to scale for the growth that comes from increased demand.

If your company experiences an increase in end users, data, etc., you don’t want your operating system performance to suffer. To prevent it from doing so, analyze your solution to ensure that you will not only have enough performance for now, but that it will be able to efficiently provide for any increased need in the future.

4. Kind

As cloud operations are becoming more and more mainstream, the infrastructure of virtual desktops is changing. There are of course several options when it comes to your system architecture, but one, known as Desktop as a Service (DaaS), is becoming more popular among some companies.

With DaaS, your IT department would outsource your virtual desktops to a third-party service provider. Although this would free up some time, many IT professionals are weary of shipping any responsibility out of house.

The benefits of DaaS are really no different than that of a VDI solution, but it does come with some drawbacks to consider, including licensing and security concerns as well as system control.

Consider, again, pros and cons and how they will either benefit or harm your company’s specific needs and goals.

5. Cost

In our experience, most IT professionals, although concerned with budget, put aspects like performance, security and space above cost.

However, there are some cost considerations you should take into account:

1. $/Desktop

Deduplication

  • Storage is expensive, but eliminating redundant, unnecessary data will definitely drive costs down.

 

2. Reduction of other costs

How will your solution reduce other costs that your team incurs?

  • Server costs
  • Networking costs
  •      Some solutions have triggers in place that will do things like shut down idle desktops to
  •      reduce costs.
Looking for an in-depth comparison of the top Enterprise SAN storage companies? Click here to download our Comparison Whitepaper today.

CTC Technologies, Inc. Can Help You Decide on a VDI Migration Plan Today!

If you want to take some of these considerations into the next phase and start a migration plan, our team would be happy to assist you.

Through our trusted partnerships, we have helped several companies migrate to a VDI solution that has increased their performance and security by touching on all five points above.

If you’d like to move forward or just have some questions we haven’t answered here, please get in touch with us. Need a faster response? Give us a call at 734.408.1993.