VDI Storage . The Secret Critical Component

On 5 November 2012 by Pete Petersen

Implementing VDI solutions for years in dozens of environments for hundreds of thousands of users, after a while, you pick up a few things. One of the secrets–in the things to get right–is storage. How storage is implemented behind a VDI solution–whether that’s shared hosted desktop via RDS or XenApp, or true hosted virtual desktops with Windows 7 via XenDesktop or Quest Virtual Desktop (fka vWorkspace)–affects the user experience in a monumental way. VDI loads on data center services is unlike any other server load. There are unique things to worry about: boot storms, page files, actual user apps running in the data center (and therefore, users crawling around inside your data center network), virus definition files to update and scans to schedule. All tricks to consider. All of these things affect the perceived performance of the solution, and if storage is not implemented correctly behind the solution, the user experience can suffer to the point of unusability at times.

Check out Ruben Spruijt’s Part 1 on “Local storage for VDI done right” to get a primer.

And be sure to review Evaluator Group’s paper “Storage for VDI Environments” for a look at storage considerations related to a well-implemented VDI solution.

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