VDI makes sense!

If there is one fashionable word in the IT industry, it is “Virtualization”. Today we are virtualizing network, storage, hardware, desktops and applications. Desktop or workstation virtualization is getting increasingly more attention.

If there is one fashionable word in the IT industry, it is “Virtualization”. Today we are virtualizing network, storage, hardware, desktops and applications. Desktop or workstation virtualization is getting increasingly more attention. Increasingly more people are wondering if they should choose Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI), Server Based Computing (SBC) or local desktops. Is VDI replacing SBC? Does SBC replace the local desktop? And how does application virtualization and OS streaming technology work in a VDI infrastructure?

In this article, Ruben Spruijt will explain what VDI is, what the advantages are and of which components a VDI infrastructure consists so that there is a clear picture of VDI applications.

Application and desktop delivery

One of the most important functions of an ICT infrastructure is the delivery of application functionality to the end users so that they may work more efficiently and productively. Depending upon the situation, there are three main solutions for application and desktop delivery, implemented separately and in a carefully chosen combination:

  • Local personal desktop, Personal Computer;
  • Separate central desktop, Server Based Computing (SBC);
  • Personal central virtual or physical desktop, Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI).

What is VDI?

Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) is a solution for remote access to Windows XP/Vista or Linux desktops that are implemented on a virtual machine in the data centre. VDI can be a server hosted solution (online computing) or a client side solution (offline computing). This article primarily describes VDI from the server hosted solution. With this, access to the desktop is not bound to one location or end user device. Each user possesses a unique personal desktop environment. Program execution, data processing and data storage take place centrally on a personal desktop. The information appears on the client screen via RDP/ICA/VNC or RGS. The protocol for the reproduction of the correct information dependant on operating system, bandwidth, application properties and technical or company requirements. Just as other solutions for desktop delivery, VDI consists of various infrastructure components that assure administration, load balancing, session control and secure access to virtual work stations.


I have created an article about the VDI, Virtual Desktop Infrastructure solution. This article is published in LanVision, a Dutch IT-Pro magazine.

You can download a copy in English here: https://www.virtuall.nl/articles/PublishedArticles/LanVisionVDIenglish.pdf

The Dutch (original version) can be downloaded here: https://www.virtuall.nl/articles/PublishedArticles/LanVisionVDIdutch.pdf

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That was a very good overview of Virtual Desktops. I think you did an excellent job of covering the advantages and disadvantages of new technology. It seems every technology company (large and small) is looking to make the leap into Virtual Desktops. It will be interesting to see how things shake out.


Barry Flanagan

 Read my Citrix blog at http://community.citrix.com/blogs/citrite/barryf/

Thanks Barry for this positive feedback!

Hi Ruben!

I noticed you mention the use of HP RGS for accessing sessions.  I've tried to evaluate RSG and have found that as of recently, it only works specifically on HP blade PC's and hardware.  Have you come across this as well?

Great article, hope to see you at BriForum Chicago in June! 


Hi Tony,

I have worked with RGS without using HP Bladed PC's/workstations. I downloaded the RGS evaluation and installed the transmitter and receiver on two high-end laptops. The graphical perfomance is great!. The bandwidth needed is MB's..




RGS works only when the BIOS is an HP bios. So in a VDI environment the Server Class Hardware must be HP. The .VMX file must be changed when running your VM with RGS. In my testlab i used two HP laptops with RGS without any problems.

So RGS doesn't work when the PC isn't a HP machine..