Despite Low Profile, Zero-Client VDI Still Viable Option
Outshouted by larger vendors, Pano Logic Wyse, N-computing are often overlooked
Not to be left out of the desktop virtualization bonanza being rounded up by VMware, Citrix and Microsfot, Wyse, Pano Logic and other members of the traditional shared-system/terminal-services version of application- and desktop virtualization are trying to remind people they're not only still around but, depending on what you're looking for, a lot better proven, much cheaper and often much faster than the newer versions.
Wyse launched what it calls the fastest thin-client software for virtual desktop or cloud computing as well as another version of the client that allows Android carriers to get full secure access to their PCs runing almost any server or VM. It also hooked up with Citrix to flog a joint effort at cost-justifying cloud-based virtual desktops and connect Wyse' front ends to Citrix' back, for that very purpose .
Pano Logic , which puts a tiny black box on your desktop for a couple of hundred dollars and gives almost movie-quality views and interaction with apps running back on the server, is updating its toolset and has added support for Microsoft's small-but-growing installed base of Hyper-V users.
Most of the really-thin-client vendors -- N-Computing, Teradici, Wyse, Pano Logic -- work well with Citrix, VMware and the other big vendors on the back end. But they're also designed as standalones, and often deliver more effective -- and more cost-effective -- service than some of the more complicated systems , according to customers of theirs I've interviewed.
The problem is their implementations tend to be a little monochromatic compared to the variety Citrix and VMware are going for; Pano Logic execs especially tout that as a strength -- easy to manage, fast, specialized and all that.
It's really up to your end users what they'll put up with. If they don't need a laptop to take home and don't want to plug in CDs or DVDs wtih private data, games, or pictures (or if you can keep them from doing it), you're golden. If so, you're in trouble.
Even so, zero-client can fit in with some pretty complex implementations, and do it saving money and adding function at the same time . Not always, but in some cases it's a great option.