Each student has their own laptop (BYOT), so lack of SOE exists Recognition that whilst in theory it is nice that students choose the appropriate application to create a piece of work that demonstrates their understanding of a concept, the reality is that standard application suits are necessary to teach certain subjects –Music Sibelius Acid –TAS Photoshop Illustrator W HY V IRTUALISATION ?
Not feasible to try and install each piece of software on individual machines How do we handle students who lose their laptop and bring another home device. Lesson interruptions to reinstall software No guarantee that student machines have the capabilities to run large software suites such as Creative Suite CS6 Licencing restrictions. Many software vendors don’t allow the installation of educational software on student personal devices W HY V IRTUALISATION ?
The main requirement was to provide virtualisation at the application layer, not desktop layer. A big focus of BYOT is personalisation of learning, and we wanted virtual applications to be more of an extension of the student’s laptop, not found on a remote desktop. Needed to handed a whole year group (max 120 students) simultaneously with minimal performance drop Needed to be able to run large, graphics and multimedia based applications (Adobe CS6, Acid) O UR R EQUIREMENTS
Needed to work seamless both onsite and over the Internet at home (assuming at least a good 3G or DSL line at home) Fast application loading Application preference remembering Support of local hardware, including saving to local computer hard drives, webcam and USB support Web portal for application access, as well as ability to use local shortcuts Compatible with iOS, Android, Windows Mobile and Chrome OS. O UR R EQUIREMENTS
NetStrategy tasked with investigating current and upcoming technologies in mid-2012 and to demonstrate to Roseville College a pilot build that best met the stated requirements A hybrid solution of Citrix XenApp and XenDesktop running on VMWare VSphere server backend proposed Primary reason for Citrix is that is allowed for application virtualisation focus, whereas Windows Remote Desktop and VMWare View were more traditional desktop focused W HY CITRIX
3 x Dell R720 servers –Dual Xeon E-2690 2.9Ghz CPUs, 256Gb RAM, dual 10GB NICs, dual 600Gb SAS local HDDs 1 x Dell EqualLogic PS6110XS SAS/SSD Hybrid SAN (13TB storage) Citrix XenDesktop Concurrent Enterprise Licence for 120 users Microsoft Windows 2008 R2 Remote Desktop Services NetStrategy Professional Services INFRASTRUCTURE
XenApp (Windows 2008 R2) is used for: –Simple applications that don’t require isolation such as Microsoft Office, Geometer’s SketchPad, Inspiration XenDesktop (Windows 7) is used for: –More complex applications that require isolation, such as Creative Suite CS6 (which requires administrative rights on XenApp), –Heavy multimedia apps that require driver level access to the OS such as Acid Studio App Store –Portal access that presents available XenApp and XenDesktop apps in one location INFRASTRUCTURE
All 7-12 students have their own personal laptop (BYOT) 2012 saw 4 computer specialist labs at over 90% utilisation 2013 has 2 computer specialist labs (one TAS, one Music) at less than 50% utilisation Students and teachers are now using virtualised applications on personal laptops instead of using computer labs Students can now access all required software from home on their devices S UPPORTING LEARNING
Currently investigating and testing changing TAS lab to a universal dock system where students can plug their laptops in and use their device with large widescreen monitor and graphics tablets for graphic design and multimedia Investigating the use of Citrix ShareFile to work hand in hand with XenApp/XenDesktop as a shared repository available to all College members on all devices. S UPPORTING LEARNING – F UTURE
Citrix is a complicated beast. You need very good in- house or very good outsourced technical services Receiver capabilities differ. Mac and Android receiver versions lag a little behind Windows and iOS versions Some applications just won’t place nice. Sibelius 6 is one such example Its amazing what 3G networks can support Students will always find a way to break something that you never thought possible, or can’t replicate in testing LESSONS LEARNT
A well designed virtualisation solution is expensive, but worth it! So far, it is proving as a successful alternative to a school owned 1:1 fleet with SOE LESSONS LEARNT
Brian Madden paradox… VDI has become TS Choice between operating systems – Desktop OS rather than App delivered from a Server OS More flexible application support. E.g. Solid Edge Ability to be flexible and agile about student devices. Licensing cost (at the time). In my opinion administration and management is easier than Citrix. W HY VDI OVER TS?
MacBook Airs with no BootCamp meant Vmware View needed to improve. VDI boot times and overall performance was not impressive. New Setup: Floating dynamic pools, using the local SSD storage. Profiles sync back to SAN storage. Always on desktops eliminates boot storms and speeds up time to connect. VMware Windows 7 Optimisation guide. R E -I MPLEMENTATION
3 x HP BL490c G7 blades –Dual Xeon X5650 2.67 Ghz, 198GB RAM, 600GB FusionIO SSD local storage (91,000IOPS) Current number of Desktops: 215 * Max concurrent in use:157 Benchmarked max: ~210 (Win7 4GB RAM) - Host paging to disk (SSD) seen at around 90 desktops per host Tools: VMware View Planner, IOMeter * 85 x Windows XP 2GB RAM I NFRASTRUCTURE /B ENCHMARKS
Efficient learning – accessible anywhere, anytime. Access to all required network resources Move to BYOT – teachers can be confident in delivering a lesson using devices Primary place for school work I MPACT ON L EARNING
Extending life of lab machines by booting directly into Virtual Desktops Deploying thin clients in some areas, e.g. Opacs machines Wait for the technology to mature further VMWare Horizon Where to next? Making better use of our VDI
Monte, a “Mac” School: –~1200 Students –~150 Staff –1450 Macs 2009/10 White Macbook’s (10.6.x) > 2012 MacAir’s (10.8.x) Except for TAS: –1.5 PC Labs (45 Win7 PCs) –“2D Design Tools” Laser Cutter, 3D Prototyper … And the Business Office W HY V IRTUALISATION ?
Find a solution that: Delivers the required application(s) On our Network Infrastructure Within our tiny budget With the ability to scale up and out in the future G ENERAL R EQUIREMENTS
Find a solution that: Delivers the required application(s) –On campus or at home –Fast –With local and remote file access –With local USB (file and print) –Backed Up –…access to the internet… On our Network Infrastructure Within our tiny budget With the ability to scale up and out in the future G ENERAL R EQUIREMENTS
“60 concurrent users, Equivalent Application Functionality, For less than the cost of a PC Lab” M ISSION
Vendors Write Criteria/Requirements Build VMWare PoC Build Citrix PoC Initial Testing Student Test Round 1 Tweaking / Refining Student Test Round 2 Decision ? P ROCESS
Environment Delivered Applications User Experience: –Complexity –Start up Time –Application Performance http://bit.ly/ZbbXDt D EFINING C RITERIA
Solution Functionality: –File Access –USB/External Devices –Printing –Internet Access –Native File Association http://bit.ly/ZbbXDt D EFINING C RITERIA
Solution Complexity: –Administrative Overhead –Application/SOE Maintenance –Backup/Restore and DR Solution ‘Client Robustness’: –Performance over slow internet –…over ‘intermittent’ internet –Mac sleep/wake cycle http://bit.ly/ZbbXDt D EFINING C RITERIA
Future Proofing: –Scaling up, Scaling out –Move to ‘cloud’ ? Client Management Solution Cost: –ROI Licencing (Upfront and Recurring) Applications http://bit.ly/ZbbXDt D EFINING C RITERIA
VMWare – Horizon View 5.2 1 x Dell R710 – ESXi 5.1 (x5680 3.33Ghz 2 x 6 Cores, 128Gb, Internal SAS, iSCSI to SAN) 2 x Win2k8 Server VMs (On Production VM Environment) –View Connection Server –View Composer –View Transfer Server –SQL Server N x Win7 Desktop VMs Extreme x670 10Gb CoreExtreme x350 1Gb Edge Dell EqualLogic PS6110xvMotorola AP7131 P O C B UILD - VMW ARE
Citrix 1 x Dell R710 – Win2k8 (x5680 3.33Ghz 2 x 6 Cores, 128Gb, Internal SAS, iSCSI to SAN) 5 x Win2k8 Server VMs (On Production VM Environment) –Licence Server –StoreFront –Streaming Profiler –Netscaler –App Center Extreme x670 10Gb CoreExtreme x350 1Gb Edge Dell EqualLogic PS6110xvMotorola AP7131 P O C B UILD - C ITRIX
User Testing Student Survey G ATHERING F EEDBACK
D ECISION ? VMWare: P: Performance Synergy (already VMWare backend) Desktop/Application Management M: Boot up time Another SOE Scalable limit I: Teach ‘Windows Skills’ Horizon Suite Citrix: P: Seamless Fast start up XenApp and XenDesktop Theoretically scales well M: Fine tuning applications Whole new backend to maintain I: Citrix ecosystem of products
Alex Gibson – firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com James Stewart – firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com Mark McLennan - firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com QUESTIONS & ANSWERS