Citrix Xen Desktop and Other VDI
Term Server and Virtual Desktop Interface (VDI) users often experience a sluggishness in performance. When these solutions are run from a data center, the performance issues are often blamed on the performance of the Internet. While Internet response times do slow down these applications, the more serious slowness problem is actually due to the limited number of IOs per second (IOPS) that hard disks can supply.
Just as your Laptop needs 80 IOPS of a fast hard disk to run moderately efficiently, so does a Virtual Desktop. Thus, to run VDI successfully, you either need one hard drive per virtual, or you need another source of IOPS. A current generation Flash Solid State Disk can deliver enough IOPS to replace a hundred or more Disk Drives. And the only problem here is that Flash Media is very expensive. With Raid-10 sets of even commercial grade media, you will find that a 60GB user volume costs about $65 a month. Even with Raid SuperCharger, the cost is around $45/month - about 87% of the cost of a virtual windows system. By comparison, a hard disk sub-system will only cost about $12 to $15 though this is likely to perform inadequately.
There are two ways out of this dilemma - one available today, and another available this quarter.
The Citrix Gold Disk
The Citrix Gold Disk design approach allows you to install only one copy of your desktop software for all your users. This reduces storage requirements per user from a typical design level of 60GB per user, to around 20GB to 30GB per user. At this point, the hardware for a high performance Flash based solution costs no more than a hard disk solution - about $20 per workstation month. But while Citrix has some nice management utilities, it's software cost of $400 per user can be significant.
Raid SuperCharger De-duplication
Raid SuperCharger will soon include a de-duplication option. Given our standard dedicated system pricing methodology, we expect to deliver all the service, hardware and storage you need for around $20 a user, exclusive a copy of Windows.