In the spring of 2011, Dell launched an enterprise-class VDI solution, Dell Desktop Virtualization Solution (DVS), based on an Integrated Solution Stack – the ISS, a prepackaged and pretested bundle including Dell servers, storage, networking units and services, running on Citrix XenDesktop or VMware View software – flexible delivery models and a clear methodology where Dell specialists help customers to go through the different phases of a complex VDI project.

The solution has been very well received in the market, both in North America and in Europe. We worked closely with several customers who gave extremely constructive feedback. Our customers said that they wanted to be able to implement VDI on a trial basis for a small number (100-300) of select users in their production environment in a cost-effective manner. They want to be able to expand from there to several thousand virtual seats while using the hardware purchased in the initial investment phase (no rip and replace). To keep cost down (in general and essentially during the trial), customers mentioned that they want to be able to use their own existing storage and networking hardware infrastructure. Overall, they welcome more flexibility around the choice of the hardware in the ISS, and around the Blueprint process.

Dell listened to these suggestions. In addition, we also wanted to bring the latest technology to our VDI stack, including the recently launched Dell PowerEdge 12G servers. As a result, we are pleased to announce a significant evolution of the ISS to DVS Enterprise which now includes the following new improvements:

  1. The solution is now qualified to start with as few as 50 users and to grow up to 50,000 virtual seats, allowing the POC initial investment to be leveraged as the deployment grows.
  2. It runs on new Dell PowerEdge 12G servers, rack and blades, bringing up to 50% increase in basic user density per server, and saving up to 39% power in performance/watt compared to the previous 11G servers generation1).
  3. It is qualified both on cost effective enterprise-class Dell PowerConnect switches (recommended) and on Dell Force10 switches (optional) for advanced functionalities and manageability.
  4. For greater flexibility, it enables the use of non-Dell storage and networking hardware, as long as those meet minimum technical specifications.
  5. In order to enable a low price per virtual user for any number of total virtual users, Dell can recommend a specific list of hardware configurations.
  6. In order to keep cost reasonable during smaller-scale implementations, the Blueprint process has been made optional for lower-seat count trials. For implementations with more than 300 users, Dell strongly recommends a Blueprint Assessment. The Blueprinting process has also been optimized and comes now in three varieties including a cost-effective Blueprint Lite where the customer can provide the data for Dell to run analytics on.
  7. Increased flexibility around licensing

In addition to traditional benefits brought by desktop virtualization, such as increased security, end-user productivity and IT manageability, these new features also bring:

  • Increased flexibility to leverage customers’ investments in non-Dell network and storage components
  • Increased performance with the new 12G servers and networking hardware
  • Relative cost-effectiveness for low seat-count projects, between 50-500 users
  • Faster time to deployment: set up 500 virtual seats in as few as 3 days.

The solution comes with a range of services. Dell ProSupport is included providing 3-year support for all aspects of the hardware and the software and making Dell your one-stop for any assistance. Dell also offers a range of optional services, including Deployment, Blueprint assessment, Image Creation, Application packaging and Technical Staff Augmentation.

DVS Enterprise is aimed at customers with a sophisticated IT environment and IT resources made of specialists rather than generalists. These customers are looking for increased performance and flexibility from a solution that has functionality to grow along with their organization. These specialists are looking at utilizing features such as High Availability, Redundancy, Disaster Recovery and Application streaming along with the advance management functions that may be dependent on Dynamic Motion.

By choosing Dell to implement a VDI solution, our customers have a single point of contact for purchasing and support on all elements of the solution, as Dell is one of the rare large IT companies to provide a complete end-to-end VDI solution, including the end points.

For those customers who don’t need all the sophistication and flexibility brought by DVS Enterprise, Dell recently announced DVS Simplified, an easy to deploy and easy to manage VDI appliance, shipping from the factory with a pre-installed VDI-in-a-Box software.

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1) Based on March 2012 SPECpower_ssj2008 benchmark results comparing a Dell PowerEdge M620 blade server to a Dell PowerEdge M610. Actual performance will vary based on configuration, usage and manufacturing variability