Managing a large-scale IT infrastructure that includes hundreds and thousands of jobs is never easy. Strict control, rights restrictions, appropriate security policies, centralized mechanisms for installing and updating software are needed. The situation is further complicated when it comes to computers on different platforms and from different manufacturers.
The convenience and security of VDI
To solve this whole complex of tasks, VDI technology (Virtual Desktop Infrastructure) is used all over the world. Let us briefly recall what its essence is. All workplaces, operating systems, applications, credentials and files are located not on the local computers of users, but on servers in the company’s data center. This is much safer, since the data center is better protected: from physical security at the entrance to redundant power supply. Data on the server is also more secure. Thanks to a competent backup policy, they are not afraid of accidental or deliberate deletion, since everything can be restored from a backup. Users’ local PCs store nothing at all, as they usually don’t have a drive. Yes, this is not a PC in the classical sense, but thin clients. Their main purpose is to provide an uninterrupted and secure network connection of the user to a remote workplace and the ability to work with applications, data and files. For the user, there is not and should not be a noticeable difference when working on a VDI workstation or on a regular computer. Some do not even realize that they do not work on a regular computer, but on a thin client. Moreover, there is no fundamental difference between these devices.
A thin client is a specialized mini-computer with sufficient characteristics to support data transfer protocols (RDP, ICA, PCoIP). It does not store anything, does not perform calculations, does not draw graphics, but broadcasts the image from the server to the monitor. The case of a thin client is usually stronger and more secure than that of a classic desktop, since it must be able to work without shutting down and rebooting for a long time. In addition, it consumes several times less electricity than a conventional PC. Of course, a thin client can be made from a regular PC, most often obsolete and subject to decommissioning. Thus, you can significantly save costs and get a number of new benefits for the IT service: security, ease of management, easy scaling,
Areas of use
Virtual workplaces can be used not only to organize simple work with documents, simple calculations and web surfing. If your server has high-performance graphics adapters with graphics processing units (GPUs), VDI can be used to solve tasks that require powerful graphics support. This service has recently been offered by Cloud, one of the leaders in the Russian cloud services market.
GPU VDI jobs can be in demand in many areas. First, it is industrial and building design. The industry is increasingly using technologies not just for three-dimensional modeling, but for “digital twins” of designed products that reflect their entire life cycle. In construction, BIM (Building Information Model) is almost universally used.
In Russia today there is an increase in industrial production, due to the need to replace imports of a number of products of foreign origin. New enterprises are opening, and the demand for engineers and designers is growing accordingly. Since industrial production is an area that requires special security measures, the VDI infrastructure will be useful from this side as well. The second direction is the development of entertainment, advertising and multimedia content. Graphics and video processing require appropriate PC hardware resources. Creative workers use the technology of Apple and other world-famous manufacturers. But due to sanctions restrictions, the purchase and support of such equipment will be more difficult and more expensive than it was before. Therefore, deploying a VDI infrastructure can be beneficial for large studios and content agencies. The third direction is teaching students of engineering and creative specialties. Given the fact that a number of leading technical universities have come under anti-Russian sanctions, they will certainly be interested in the technology of safe and completely sanction-clean workplaces for teaching students.
What other options are available to VDI users with Cloud GPUs? They can customize the virtual desktop configuration according to the needs of the company – allocate resources (GPU, vCPU, vRAM, SSD), select OS, set up access policies. Data in VDI is reliably protected from leakage (prohibition of connecting external storage devices, disabling the clipboard). A little later, two-factor authentication will be available. To administer VDI, a regular PC or laptop is sufficient. Even a tablet will do.
In conclusion, it should be emphasized that thanks to flexible pricing schemes that adapt workplaces to the specific needs of the business at a particular time, significant cost savings can be achieved. That is, the leased capacity can always be increased or reduced depending on the current staff or the volume of tasks.