Why VDI 1.0 failed and how VDI 2.0 is finally delivering on its promise
When legacy VDI 1.0 was launched a decade ago, experts proclaimed it would change the IT landscape forever. Since then, however, it has failed to live up to the hype. While there are numerous reasons why VDI 1.0 adoption has historically been low, we found it interesting that analysts at Gartner Inc. and elsewhere recently came up with a list of 2 fundamental problems:
- Legacy storage systems cause major congestion, which ultimately impairs I/O through-put in the virtualized server stack. This, in turn, causes poor performance on desktops, annoying users and frustrating IT.
- Legacy VDI itself is overwhelmingly complex. As a result, IT admins get bogged down with 9+ months of set up, which is followed by labor-intensive maintenance, upgrades, and servicing issues. Moreover, it's also incredibly expensive, which limits IT's ability to provide high-quality services to end users and makes user experience poor.
Generally, we agree with the experts. Poor performance and high complexity are at the root of VDI's poor adoption rates. Fixing these two issues is crucial if VDI is going to live up to its promises.
The thing is, VDI 1.0's infrastructure makes it fundamentally incapable of resolving these problems. Here's why VDI 2.0 will take over where legacy VDI 1.0 left off and finally deliver the VDI revolution we've all been waiting for.
Too often technology professionals forget to consider the user experience. As IT, we focus on building software and infrastructure. And that’s the root of the problem. Eventually the “solution” gets so complicated that it gets in the way and becomes the problem itself!
User experience is king. When VDI 1.0 slows down boot time, login time, and application launch time, user experience is poor and productivity slows to a crawl. In fact, it’s common for IT teams to hear: “I launch Citrix and go get a cup of coffee while it connects.” For remote office and branch office (ROBO) users the latency caused by distance can render VDI 1.0 unusable.
As IT professionals, our challenge is to fix this problem by geting out of the path between end users and the applications and resources they are accessing. Do that, and performance problems for both the user and IT are solved.
Too much complexity causes poor performance
Complexity is really at the heart of all VDI performance issues. When you eliminate complexity your biggest problem is solved. When Workspot's team began thinking about how to solve VDI's performance problems, we started from scratch. We also examined how various enterprise companies have approached delivering their products in the cloud.
One of our favorite examples is Siebel. As cloud services became more dependable and desirable by organizations, Siebel partnered with IBM to cloud-host its enterprise, on-prem software to offer CRM as a service. Citrix took much the same approach, taking its enterprise, on-prem VDI software and hosting it in the cloud as a service. Notably, both of these companies have not been successful with this attempted shortcut. Now, compare Siebel's approach to Salesforce's. When it launched, Salesforce started from scratch, eventually introducing a completely redesigned CRM software built for the cloud. Designing a product for its enviroment is a much more savvy approach. From our perspective, VDI needed a complete do-over. So that's what we did.
Workspot's VDI 2.0 is a cloud native service, which means that it is infinitely and instantly scalable. It has a simple architecture that gets out of the way of both users and IT, providing a direct connection between users and their assigned resources. There is nothing to impede the connection. Nothing for IT to install, patch, update, etc. When VDI 2.0 is paired with hyper-converged technology, there is a huge acceleration in how the resource is served. As a result, users get responses quickly. Performance issues are solved.
Simplification means TCO reduction
There are many benefits to simplifying VDI that go way beyond performance. The one we like to talk about most, though, is cost reduction. Why? Because cost has always been one of the top concerns with legacy VDI. For every $1 spent on VDI licenses, $10 has traditionally been spent on infrastructure to host and operate VDI 1.0. Below this massive cost is a huge iceberg of equipment and infrastructure, not to mention an extensive rollout process, new policies, engineering expertise, etc.
However, thanks to hyper-converged infrastructure, legacy VDI's massive iceberg of equipment can become a thing of the past. Now it's possible for IT to adopt hyper-converged infrastructure that is ready to host VDI in under an hour. Forget 9+ months of deployment. The end result: dramatically reduced CapEx.
The introduction of VDI 2.0's cloud native control plane is a huge innovation that not only makes deployment in a single day possible, but it also significantly simplifies management. VDI 2.0 eliminates the need for admin workflows, such as installing, patching, upgrades, and troubleshooting.
Ultimately, VDI 2.0 and hyper-converged infrastructure helps IT departments achieve the important goal of shifting costs away from CapEx toward OpEx. VDI 2.0 not only shifts cost to OpEx, it also reduces VDI's overall TCO.
VDI 2.0 will spearhead the next revolution
VDI 2.0 solves all the performance issues that legacy VDI will never be able to fix. As a bonus, it drastically reduces TCO. Users love it because they can log onto their desktops and get to work right away. IT loves it because they don't need PhDs in VDI 1.0 to accomplish deployment or management tasks. VDI can now be operational in a single day. It's a win-win-win for businesses, users, and IT. The VDI revolution is here. Want to learn how Workspot is changing the future of VDI? Download our End User Computing Roadmap.