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This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties, and confers no rights. The opinions expressed within are my own and should not be attributed to any other Individual, Company or the one I work for. I just happen to be a classic techie who is passionate about getting things to work as they should do (and are sometimes advertised and marketed as being able to?) and when I can I drop notes here to help others falling in to the same traps that I have fallen in to. If this has helped then please pass it on - if you feel that I have commented in error or disagree then please feel free to discuss with me either publically or privately? Cheers, Dave
Thin Clients, VDI and Linux integration from the front lines.... Raw and sometimes unedited notes based on my experiences with VMware, Thin Clients, Linux etc.

I am sure this is not really what VMware had in mind when they were touting VMware OnDemand? I'm guessing they had more of an idea that it would combine some of the benefits of ACE with ESX? ;-)

I have just got back from some training in Houston and while listening to a question from a colleague from the UK where he asked if "VDI was going to be able to use the full suite of Hypervisor functionality like vMotion..."  and that got me thinking...

Some of the Conventional Wisdom around the place holds that VDI by itself will likely not be able to cover all of any one customers needs and most will more than likely need to look at quite possibly a number of different approaches to cover ALL employees and ALL Applications.

So with this in mind I'd be interested in your thoughts on the following idea?

Just a few thoughts around VDI??

Let's say that we stock a couple of decent servers with loads of resources and allows us to run quite a few VDI instances? OK? So one of the possible issues with the classic VDI so far is that if a user places a bit too much pressure on the resources then it has the potential to impact on all other users, being as it is a shared resource? (This is still one of the classic gotcha's in Terminal Server and Citrix PS - the session is sticky and it stays with the same server unless a logout/login occurs)

So one idea I'm kicking around is the possibility that if a user started something like a 120Mb Excel spreadsheet that might consume quite a bit of CPU then would it be possible to use the vMotion to transfer him to a BladePC, if they started 3 or 4 of them (or they needed more resources?) then transfer them to a BladeWS.....?

Seamlessly!! with the user completely unaware that this has happened!!

Now the fundamentals of vMotion (or XenMotion for that matter?) requires shared boot storage - BUT I don't think it needs to be NFS or iSCSI, etc. - the Citrix Provisioning Server or OS Streaming method like Neoware IM would probably work just as well in this scenario? As this then leaves the Virtual HardDisk/Storage in a common area accessible by the Vitrual Desktops regardless of whether they are running on VDI's, the BladePC's or the BladeWS's.

The other point is the similarity of CPU would possibly cause an issue, and this probably extends beyond just Intel/AMD? This appears to be a fundamental of vMotion/XenMotion? So this might not fly today, but it is possible that with improvements in the Hypervisors this issue might be overcome at some stage soon?

Anyway, what do you think of the *idea/concept*? As a user requires more CPU and resources they might be able to be transferred from shared resources (VDI on ESX) to individual resources (BladePC) and then high powered resources (BladeWS) - once the high intensity workload has finished then the user would be transferred seamlessly back through the stack to a VDI instance on the ESX server.

Please bear in mind that this is only a concept at the moment and there are clearly problems and issues to be overcome - but the main reason for this post is to ask if you think it has legs? What do you think?

Clearly the ESX/Hypervisor would need to be able to run on hardware outside of it’s current Hardware Compatibility List (HCL) but with Xen this might not be such an issue?

Is wonder if this is where XenDesktop is headed? ;-)

Posted on Monday, April 28, 2008 3:58 AM Citrix , IT Management , Real Cool Stuff , VMware and other Virtualization tools , Linux , Thin Clients , HP/Neoware | Back to top


Comments on this post: Future vision of VDI? What if the Hypervisor was cheaper and flexible enough to run on BladePC's/BladeWS's - could vMotion/XenMotion then switch on demand?

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