Rethinking Pivot3’s VDI solution

A couple of weeks ago, I wrote a post here at questioning the value proposition of the Pivot3 vSTAC solution.  After further consideration and looking at a specific use case, I want to revisit my statements from that blog posting.  In that post, I indicated that I had failed to see the value proposition in the solution.  Here’s where I went wrong:

  • My issue is really with VDI itself, not necessarily with Pivot3.  There are many that embark on VDI projects in the hope of saving money.  It won’t happen.  When I wrote that post, I was too focused on the financial side of the equation and compared Pivot3’s solution with a traditional desktop rather than stacking it up against other VDI solutions out there.
  • I made an assumption that an organization would either go VDI or stick with traditional desktops based on cost factors alone.  In reality, there may be many other factors that lead an organization to move forward with VDI.  Instead, I should have made the assumption that an organization would, in fact, be implementing VDI and then discuss Pivot3 on its merits in that context.

With these two factors in mind – considering Pivot3’s vSTAC in comparison to other VDI solutions and assuming that an organization has already made the decision to go VDI – I believe that Pivot3 is on to something.  In fact, as I continued to consider how the product could be used in an organization and how the solution solves VDI dilemmas, a number of factors came to mind.

  • Storage is distributed across lots of spindles and between spinning storage and flash storage, helping to eliminate storage issues.  Storage is the Achilles’ Heel for VDI.  By combining some SSD and some traditional storage, the vSTAC goes a long way toward solving storage performance problems inherent in poorly architected VDI solutions.
  • The deployment is massively simplified. If you have a clue how to use vSphere, you’d golden. The learning curve is all but eliminated.  I was speaking with a customer today that needs a fast VDI rollout.  A Pivot3 solution can make that possible.
  • A “building block” approach is enabled.  With traditional VDI, one has to provision massive storage ahead of time and build out a robust foundation.  Sure, it would be possible to buy “just enough” compute, RAM and processing power each time the VDI environment is expanded, but with Pivot3, that happens out of the box. As you make the decision to add more virtual desktops, you can simply add another node to the vSTAC.  Pay as you go.

For an organization that has made the decision to go with VDI, there will be a baseline infrastructure cost that must be absorbed somewhere.  It can be absorbed through the implementation of a large shared infrastructure that is maintained by expensive IT staff, or it can be maintained through taking a building block approach as outlined here.  Personally, after considering the Pivot3 solution in this light, I am able to better see the value proposition in the product.

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