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Working remotely with VMware with no internet connection

Posted on 2014-02-24
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Last Modified: 2014-03-05
I need an answer from someone who has used VMware and is using the current version and has experience with this.
We are designing a network where all desktops will be virtual.  We had a critical design review and one of our employees got visibly upset and yelled that he "wouldn't be able to work if he didn't have an internet connection".

I need to know how real companies are dealing with this issue for their remote and traveling employees.
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Question by:rand1964
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14 Comments
 
LVL 11

Expert Comment

by:Sean
ID: 39883589
This is one of the issues that comes with working remotely and there is no way around it other than to tell them to come into the office if their internet is not working, there is just no way around it. We have home agents and if they are unable to get connected within 30 min then they are required to come into the office.
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LVL 35

Accepted Solution

by:
Joseph Daly earned 501 total points
ID: 39883592
Vmware view supports the use of local mode desktops. This may be an option if the user knows ahead of time they will be traveling or without internet access.

http://pubs.vmware.com/view-50/index.jsp?topic=/com.vmware.view.planning.doc/GUID-4AA95490-1662-4F5E-9FE4-41402327638F.html
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LVL 124
ID: 39883603
As a Business, we install Internet into the Remote User House, we give them a PC, and give them a laptop with 3G/4GB connectivity.
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Author Comment

by:rand1964
ID: 39883649
Joe Daly,  What is the amount of time it takes to download the local mode desktop?

I can hear it now, "You expect me to download this every day and it takes 45 minutes"?!!!
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Author Comment

by:rand1964
ID: 39883659
Zindel1,
What do you do about traveling employees that always run into situations where there is no internet and they need to work?
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LVL 11

Assisted Solution

by:Sean
Sean earned 999 total points
ID: 39883672
If they are traveling we don't really expect them to work much. They have email setup on their phones so they reply to items from there and if they have anything they can do offline then they can do that but we don't expect a whole lot of work from users who are moving around a lot unless they are at their hotel or have them go to a coffee shop with free wifi. If they really need to work on the go get them one of these:

http://www.verizonwireless.com/b2c/store/controller?&item=phoneFirst&action=viewPhoneOverviewByDevice&deviceCategoryId=13&cmp=KNC-58100000008502117&zipRdr=y

(other companies have them as well Verizon is just an example)
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LVL 124
ID: 39883921
What Country are you located where there is No Internet?

We have employees, that work around the world, offline and online, without access to Internet.

We use Citrix, VMware Horizon VDI, Web email, Exchange Activesync, Dropbox, Box, Wuala, Amazon S3, Drive, Skydrive, Google to exchange data between Remote Workers and our offices.

I've also worked, offline and online, in very remote places, even in the Masi Mari in Kenya, from Hot Air Balloon!
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Author Comment

by:rand1964
ID: 39884458
How about White Sands New Mexico for DoD?  You ever get internet there?    I don't think so.
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LVL 124
ID: 39884507
Do your employees need to be connected 24x7 for their applications to the Internet?

Is the VMware technology that you are using VMware View Horizon? Is it a requirement, if the user already has a laptop, he needs to access VDI ? No Local applications on the laptop?

can they worked in offline, cache mode, and use location applications, Word, Excel, Email, Presentations, what market is your business in, reading electrical meters, gas meters, oil wells, turbine generation?
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Author Comment

by:rand1964
ID: 39884516
Our traveling employees never know where they will have internet access because of the places they go.  Lots of places with restricted access.
They want to be able to work offline just like with a regular system, but we are moving to 100% Virtual.  We want to control the data....they want to work no matter what.  That's the dilemma.
We have very impatient work-a-holics who sometimes work from the office, sometimes from home, sometimes on the road, sometimes at a base.
They want it work when they want to work, whenever that is.  That's why they are so upset about the possibility of any downtime if they can't get internet access.
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LVL 124
ID: 39884526
So, why can't your "on the road staff", have laptops, and local applications, so they can work offline, and then connect back into offices, when internet allows to sync back data ?

 what data are they producing?

Word documents, Excel documents?
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Author Comment

by:rand1964
ID: 39884593
Because their workstation can never "mingle" with the network...if they use anything other than a Zero client it MUST be sandboxed
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LVL 124
ID: 39884934
when you were completing your Requirements gathering for your design, this was never captured from users?

Looks like you are going to have to review your design.

So why not enforce VPN, so they cannot mingle with the network, and use Remote Connectivity to connect to "inner network" when they have internet access.
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LVL 11

Assisted Solution

by:Sean
Sean earned 999 total points
ID: 39885582
Other than using 4g LTE hot spot you wont be able to have internet 100% of the time...just a fact. Sorry but there isn't going to be much of a way around this with the model you are using...it is either the users who are out and about have laptops/tablets with applications installed and their files right there or they need internet access to use a sandboxed model.
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