Dan's Take

Dell Adds To Its VDI, Cloud Offerings

New thin clients are part of a "vWorkspace" upgrade.

Dell recently announced a number of things it is relating to enterprise VDI and Azure-based cloud computing. The announcement included the release of Wyse 7000 and 5000 series Windows 10-based thin clients, Wyse vWorkspace 8.6 and the Dell Unified Communications Command Suite (UCCS). Let's examine these one by one:

Wyse Windows 10-Based Thin Clients
Dell announced the Wyse 7490-Z90Q10 and 5490-D90Q10 thin clients. The devices will be available with the specialized "Windows 10 IoT Enterprise" operating system, starting July 29. The company says these thin client devices are "secure, highly scalable and provide a superb user experience." The devices are based on AMD G-Series quad-core microprocessors. They include Trusted Platform Module (TPM) features for security. TPM also includes BitLocker drive encryption, secure boot and Windows defender.

Wyse vWorkspace 8.6
Dell's vWorkspace 8.6 includes a number of new features including global localization; improved connectivity to Windows applications; and connectors for Windows, Linux and Chrome devices for a better user experience than just supporting HTML5 access.

Dell also says that the vWorkspace 8.6 sign-on makes it easier for users to access corporate applications and data using their own email addresses. It also makes it possible for users to drag and drop files from a Windows PC onto a virtual desktop.

It also allows "application layering" for virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI), which allows each application to be a separate VDI session and reduces the number of Windows images the enterprise must manage and maintain.

Dell Unified Communications Command Suite
Dell also launched a new release of its Unified Communications Command Suite (UCCS). The suite which adds analytics and diagnostics for Microsoft Exchange and Lync, making it easier for enterprises to learn more about how their staffs are using email, trends in usage and use of communications bandwidth.

Using VDI typically means that enterprises don't care what operating system is supporting virtual access capabilities. From that perspective, it matters little what microprocessor is embedded in a thin client device, or what embedded OS is driving the device. VDI, however, is a much larger concept than merely deploying virtual access software.

Dan's Take: Something for Everyone
Dell's new thin client family members have been designed to be powerful tools for any type of  VDI. They have a powerful general-purpose operating system that can support virtual access, application virtualization or complete virtual processing-based client system images. The choice of processor also demonstrates that Dell was thinking ahead and made sure that the device had enough horses to drag whatever sled or set of sleds the enterprise asks them to.

Dell's vWorkspace also demonstrates the company's commitment to worldwide use of its technology. In the past, staff in Asia would have to navigate English language menus and commands to get to their natural-language applications.

Are these thin clients for everyone? Clearly not. They're designed for enterprise-class, complex computing environments that have a VDI component. If these devises are too expensive, too powerful or too complex for customers, Dell can point out that it offers a large family of thin client devices that can deal with everything from environments deploying only access virtualization, such as those relying on Microsoft terminal services, Citrix XenDesktop or VMware Horizon (with View).

About the Author

Daniel Kusnetzky, a reformed software engineer and product manager, founded Kusnetzky Group LLC in 2006. He's literally written the book on virtualization and often comments on cloud computing, mobility and systems software. He has been a business unit manager at a hardware company and head of corporate marketing and strategy at a software company.

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