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VMWare Image Deployment Suggestion

We are considering a thin client solution using VMWare View. Let me first describe our current situation.

Currently, we install/update a list of software on the physical PCs one by one (>1000 PCs in total). We have taken at a look at the introduction of VMWare view. However, one problem for our situation is that the combination of software to be installed on the PCs are different and there are a huge number of software combinations.

Therefore, we would like to seek for some suggestion that how we can use VMWare View to deploy easily for the following example scenerio (each group may have different number of PCs and the list of software are example only, the list of software to be installed on the PCs are far more than listed in the example):

Group 1: Base (i.e. Freeware) only
Group 2: Base (i.e. Freeware) (Same as PC of Group 1) + Adobe CS
Group 3: Base (i.e. Freeware) (Same as PC of Group 1) + MS Office
Group 4: Base (i.e. Freeware) (Same as PC of Group 4) + MS Office + Adobe CS
Group 5: Base (i.e. Freeware) (Same as PC of Group 1) + MS Office + MS Visual Studio
Group 6: Base (i.e. Freeware) (Same as PC of Group 1) + MS Office + Adobe CS + MS Visual Studio
Group 7: Base (i.e. Freeware) (Same as PC of Group 1) + MS Office + CorelDraw Graphics Suite
Group 8: Base (i.e. Freeware) (Same as PC of Group 1) + MS Office + CorelDraw Graphics Suite + MS Visual Studio
Group 9: Base (i.e. Freeware) (Same as PC of Group 1) + MS Office + Adobe CS + CorelDraw Graphics Suite
Group 10: Base (i.e. Freeware) (Same as PC of Group 1) + MS Office + Adobe CS + CorelDraw Graphics Suite + MS Visual Studio
Group 11: Base (i.e. Freeware) (Same as PC of Group 1) + Adobe CS + CorelDraw Graphics Suite + MS Visual Studio
Group 12: Base (i.e. Freeware) (Same as PC of Group 1) + Adobe CS + CorelDraw Graphics Suite
Group 13: Base (i.e. Freeware) (Same as PC of Group 1) + CorelDraw Graphics Suite  + MS Visual Studio

Thanks a lot.
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Peter Kwan
Asked:
Peter Kwan
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2 Solutions
 
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Within any new deployment requires some up front development time.

Normally when we complete a enterprise rollout of technology, either Microsoft, Citrix or VMware, we would create Global Groups which define the applications that users are entitled to use. As Microsoft Office is the base application required by most organisation this is always included as standard (but not Access). This make it easier for the Customer Support Teams which create new users in the future, but on the User Request forms, there are Tick Boxes which reflect the application groups that a user requires, this also make it easier for Inventory and License Management, as we have shown, that we are limiting the user count access to applications by Global Security Groups.

So, in your scenaio, we would create a

1. Mirosoft Office Application Group
2. Adobe CS Group
3. MS Visual Studio
3. CorelDraw Graphics Suite

There are two two ways you can accomodate this with VMware View.

1. You would create your Golden Master Image (Parent Image)
2. Create the Snapshots that your require and apply the Correct Snapshot using Composer and Linked Clones to deploy the Group that you require. That would require 13 os so different snapshots.

The smarter way would be to use ThinApp and package the application, and the application would then be streamed to the users, based on their group entitlements.

As I said, there is a developement phase of your deployment, for your scenario, as there is with all good View projects.

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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Application Virualization using ThinApp can also reduce your storage assigned to Windows 7 desktops as well.
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Peter KwanAuthor Commented:
If we use one of these two ways of deployment, how can we save the effort of applying software patches? Our ideal thought is to apply the software patch only to one of the images and the patch can be propagated to other images.

Thanks.
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