What's the most efficient method of VDI delivery? Unidesk says layering

Unidesk has developed a unique layering technology to deliver virtual desktops efficiently and without all the maintenance hassles of traditional, heavy VDI solutions.

Unidesk might be the right answer for your failed VDI infrastructure project. Unidesk works seamlessly with Citrix XenDesktop, VMware Horizon, and Microsoft's Hyper-V.

Watch the full demo video.

What's so unique about Unidesk is their layering technology. To understand this new approach, imagine that you develop your own gold image of standard Windows operating system version, a base level of applications, and a generic set of drivers to cover your current needs. Upon this single gold image (Yes, single gold image) that you distribute to all your users, you or they can add user installed programs, custom applications, drivers, and services. The gold image remains untouched and golden.

The user-specific applications are separated as a new layer--the personalization layer.

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Administrators can also setup layers to apply to specific users or user groups that include a set of applications or settings.

The really cool part is that each user's system looks as if everything is installed locally to that individual system. You can't discern the difference between layered applications and those included in the gold image.

So what about updates, patches, and other needs for the general user population or those needed by individual users? That's easy. The gold image, being a single Windows image, gets updated once for everyone and individual systems update their own layers separately.

You might want to know what the advantages to this layered system are. If the single gold image doesn't attract you, although it should, the user-specific layers certainly should. What's so great about the single gold image is that there are gigabytes of programs, libraries, add-ons, and registry settings that are common to all Windows desktops--so why repeat them hundreds or thousands of times? That kind of solution burns up a lot of valuable and expensive SAN space. Having a single image that's distributed to everyone minimizes the huge space requirements that otherwise would overwhelm and drive up your budget.

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The only added space requirements are for those users who require additional applications, settings, or drivers that make their systems unique to them.

The single gold image makes image sprawl a thing of the past.

I know that I've said VDI is already a dinosaur, but I think Unidesk is onto something here and it's worth checking out for yourself. Watch the video linked above and let me know what you think of the solution. Have you found something better? Talk back and let me know.

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