Research: Desktop virtualization growing in popularity

Desktop virtualization has been around for several years, but is gaining traction among companies around the world, with the number of users nearly doubling in the past five years. This report focuses on the results of TechRepublic's survey on who is using virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI), which are the favored vendors, and the perceived pros and cons.
Written by Teena Maddox, Contributor

Desktop virtualization is growing in popularity, even though it's been around for several years. In June, TechRepublic conducted a survey to see who is using virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) and discover the benefits and drawbacks — both expected and unexpected.

Virtualizing the Enterprise: An overview

Download the survey results in the new report Research: Virtual desktop infrastructure benefits, drivers and favored vendors.

For those curious to learn more about VDI, from a conceptual standpoint, it isn't much different from the old dumb terminal/mainframe setup that was used 30 years ago. Of course, the technology has changed, and it's no longer necessary to have a huge computer that fills a room to act as the backend.

At its very base level, there are usually a few VDI servers sitting in a data center and these servers act as the brains of the operation. They generally handle all of the compute resources and IOPs, while the virtual desktops are deployed to users on laptops, desktops, mobile devices or thin clients. The virtual desktop acts the same as if users were working on a computer with local resources. For example, they can see their Windows 7 screen and interact with it as they would on any other computer. An important difference here is that the administrator has more control. The admin can dictate the times users can access their desktop, load the proper applications — and even wipe all the data if the end user device is stolen or an employee leaves the organisation.

Because of this flexibility, which allows more mobility among employees, the number of VDI users has nearly doubled over the last five years, according to the TechRepublic survey results.

Companies using VDI

The survey, which had 255 respondents, broke down the numbers by company size and geography, to find out exactly who is using VDI and where.

Size of companies using VDI

The report covers a range of VDI topics, including:

  • Preferred vendors
  • Benefits of VDI
  • Reasons for using certain vendors
  • Reasons some companies are not using VDI
  • What would make some companies change their minds about VDI
  • Benefits expected but not realized with VDI
  • Future plans to implement VDI

Download the full report Research: Virtual desktop infrastructure benefits, drivers and favored vendors.

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