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06.08.2015 - The Only Constant is Change: a Truism for IT Infrastructure and Desktops as a Service

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Supporting Temporary Use Cases with Desktops-as-a-Service (DaaS)

The coming of summer makes me think of that big truism “the only constant is change,” and its counterpart, “it’s how you handle change that matters.” When it comes to IT infrastructure, the ability to effectively manage unforeseen business shifts, seasonal peaks and valleys, and ad-hoc temporary use cases is critical.

How rapidly can you adjust? And how much will it cost you, both in financial and human resources?

Businesses of all types struggle with this. One of the more obvious examples is in retail, where influxes of seasonal workers need to be armed with secure a corporate desktop to handle holiday gift-buying crunches.

Education is another vertical that has regular capacity spikes. In their case it’s during mid-terms and finals, when they need a slew of additional desktops for online testing applications. To make sure they can handle these ebbs and flows, IT organizations often purchase, build out and maintain extra infrastructure, which sits unused much of the year.

And it’s not just in verticals. For instance, every business with dev/test capabilities needs to spin up servers and desktops when evaluating technologies and simulating how apps will run in various environments, and then just as easily spin them down. And, as anyone in IT who has been part of an M&A knows, it’s not uncommon to have to quickly turn around temporary workspaces for hundreds or thousands of new employees, while the acquired company’s infrastructure is evaluated for security and compliance before being integrated with the acquirer’s environment.

One of the best ways to handle temporary use cases like these is with virtual desktops, which enable great flexibility and security and, when part of a virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI), the benefits of centralized management. However, on-premises VDI has drawbacks...

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