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Virtualization vs Deskptops with file server(s)

Posted on 2012-03-15
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Last Modified: 2012-06-21
Its all about the bottom line, simple put is it cost effective to consider virtual server and thin clients over desktops with a total of about 100 systems, not all of which require more then a word processor and access to a particular client.

I can replace a desktop with Office pro for about $900 on the low end and $1200 on the hi end.

the VM server is 4-7 grand and the clients are being sold at $250....each, no mention of application, installation or management,
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Question by:Eric_Where_am_I
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Callandor earned 500 total points
ID: 37726296
Your breakeven point is 7 PCs for the low end costs and 8 PCs at the high end.

4000 + 7 * 250 = 5750 versus 7 * 900 = 6300
7000 + 8 * 250 = 9000 versus 8 * 1200 = 9600

Since you've got 100 PCs, that's

4000 + 100 * 250 = 29000 versus 90000
7000 + 100 * 250 = 32000 versus 120000

So you have $61,000 to $88,000 to play with for application software, installation and management.  With a centralized server, your maintenance will be a lot easier.
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by:Eric_Where_am_I
ID: 37726338
I apprciate the the answer, but are the numbers being thrown around accurate?  4-7k for a server I am pretty sure does not include the cost of Office Licenses, Server Clients.   And these little $250 pc's, as I browse through my preferred vendor, im seeing that the avg. price is over $300...and for the one I thought looked the best $500.

I have to laugh to...NOT AT YOU!...but the idea that the board would give me the dollars is a joke.  

I am giving you the points, I do apprciate the sounding board.
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by:Callandor
ID: 37726666
I was just using the numbers provided, since I don't know your procurement process or costs.  You are right, if the board doesn't know the true costs, they are heading down a dark road with no lights on.
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Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 37727325
Software licenses are the same regardless  OS licenses are potentially different.  You need 100 copies of office for 100 systems.  Whether they are desktops, VDI, or terminal service users.  

Then understand a thin client for VDI or terminal services (remote desktop services) might cost $250, but:
*probably has no moving parts which means reliability and in turn PRODUCTIVITY goes up and support costs go down
*doesn't need antivirus or signficant management (I believe callandor pointed this out).
*uses much less power so electic costs go down (in my experience, a full PC costs $15-20 per month (on Long Island/NYC).  A thin client box may only cost $5 per month.

You really need to break out Excel and put in columns for costs on everything - power - lost productivity - extra help implementing - software - labor - hardware... everything.  And some of your cost estimates may be guesses if you don't have metrics to know how much a service call to a desktop PC is and how much a service call to a thin client might be.

It's quite possible the initial cost would be quite high, but the savings from electricity alone, over 3 years, might easily make up for it.
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