Expanding VDI Use Cases with New Features for Dell Wyse Datacenter for Horizon View

Ed. Note: This post was authored by Cathi Allen, DVS marketing manager, Dell

To remain productive in today’s increasingly mobilized IT environment, the modern workforce needs access to data, applications, and communications infrastructure from any device, anywhere, at any time. Dell Cloud client-computing has partnered closely with VMware over the years and was just named the VMware’s 2014 OEM Global Partner of the Year. We collaborate to offer best of breed data center components combined with virtualization and management software and a world class portfolio of Dell Wyse virtualization end points. These pre-engineered and truly end-to-end solutions allow customers to take advantage of great Dell infrastructure and the power of VMware’s Horizon View products to deliver increased performance, agility and efficiency.

We’re excited to announce new features that extend the breadth of the Dell and VMware integrations and demonstrate continued commitment to strengthening our partnership. The Dell Wyse Datacenter for Horizon View leverages new features available in the latest VMware Horizon View 5.3 release to enable secure and predictable computing solutions that enhance end user experience and take full advantage of the latest advances in technology. Today we’re excited about the following new additions to the reference architecture for this solution:

PowerEdge C8220x with K2 GPU (vDGA)

The capability for 3D graphics and video in VMware Horizon View coupled with the vDGA capabilities of the PowerEdge c8220x allows the IT department to deliver virtual desktops to users who traditionally would have required high performance workstations to run application like AutoCAD and Edrawings in sectors like engineering and oil & gas. The new Compute GPU node offers the intensive computing power of next-generation Intel® processing plus enhanced I/O capabilities with performance gain and power efficiency achieved when accelerated by the NVIDIA K2 cards with shared virtualized graphics. Natively installed NVIDIA drivers allow the VMs to have the latest OpenGL and DirectX functionality and this can offer a compelling solution to your high performance graphics desktop needs. The node can accommodate 16 vDGA users per chassis delivering excellent performance to your users.

Horizon View HTML Access Agent

VMware and Google recently announced the ability to virtualize legacy windows applications on Chromebooks through VMware Horizon DaaS and we are excited about the opportunities this creates for customers transitioning from Windows XP and/or exploring the Dell Chromebook 11 for their enterprise. But with the release of VMware Horizon View 5.3, VMware has also introduced a new feature called “View Agent Direct-Connection Plug-In,” or VDAC, which allows direct connections from any VMware View Client (including the Chromebook 11) to the Virtual Desktop, without the need to go through a View Connection or Security server. This means that in addition to the DaaS offering for Chromebooks, anyone running Horizon View 5.3 VDI can easily transform any compatible device into a View Client through its browser and all capabilities that are supported by the View Client are fully supported by the Access Agent including PCoIP, RDP, USB redirection, sound, 3D, Real-Time Audio-Video (RTAV), Unity Touch, single sign-on, session management and more. By leveraging the fully compliant HTML capabilities of the Chromebook 11, the HTML Access Agent allows you to extend these affordable and easy to manage devices into the enterprise as a multi-functioning, mobile thin clients.

Watch this quick demo to learn more about how you can easily connect the Dell Chromebook to the Horizon View VDI using VDAC.

EqualLogic PS6210XS Storage

VDI deployments can create high demands on your storage platforms. These demands manifest themselves in the form of various storage storm activities such as boot, logon/logoff, virus scan, and various user-initiated desktop operations. This can create a chaotic and unpredictable storage experience that is uniquely challenging in the VDI desktop space. To ensure storage systems have the capabilities to handle these unpredictable events, we’re excited to include support for EqualLogic PS6210XS Storage Array, which is an all flash array with advanced storage architecture and feature set, combined with tight hypervisor integration, to provide an automated, self-tuning storage system capable of efficiently scaling to satisfy production-level VDI workloads.

VMare VSAN Validation (POC only at this time)

The addition of VSAN validation attempts to address common concerns among customers when deploying VDI, such as the complexity of adding new storage space, expensive maintenance contracts for SAN hardware and system complexity with zoning or masking. In addition to the Dell Compellent and EqualLogic offerings for VDI, VMware Virtual SAN (VSAN) is a new feature from VMware that allows you to create a clustered data store from locally attached storage (SSD and HDD). VMware VSAN offers an easy to configure, highly redundant, high performance storage system without the need to purchase any additional hardware. Performance should mimic single hop iSCSI with very high throughput and no bottleneck. This technical white paper discusses VMware’s new Virtual SAN feature and how it can be used to create a shared storage array from local disks. VSAN offers a highly available, high performing and easy to configure shared storage system at a much lower cost than traditional storage arrays. Due to the limits in VSAN 1.0, it’s most suited to smaller businesses or Proof of Concept deployment at this time.

Advances in hardware and software for VDI are creating an increasingly seamless end user experience, adding to the value proposition for virtualization deployment and increasing the range of supported use cases. VDI is no longer a trend or niche, it is a compelling and viable infrastructure option for users who need reliable, affordable access to data and applications across a variety of devices. The components of Dell Wyse Datacenter for Horizon View reference architecture have been integrated and tested to provide the optimal balance of high performance and lowest cost per user and the solution itself is highly flexible, extensible and scalable from 50-seat pilots to large-scale deployments for up to tens of thousands of users.  Together, Dell and VMware have developed a powerful, enterprise-class infrastructure designed to get you up and running with desktop virtualization faster, with less risk and to deliver an optimal end-user experience on any computing device.

Sarah Vela

About the Author: Sarah Vela

Sarah is the Chief Blog Strategist for Dell Technologies. Born in New York and raised in New England, she has been living and working in the Austin area for over 20 years, but she knows that doesn't make her a true Texan. She joined Dell in the spring of 2011, left briefly for another company, but realized her mistake and returned in November of 2019. Sarah has five kids, two dogs, two cats, and no free time.