The majority of Nutanix customers running VDI on Nutanix today are using vSphere as hypervisor. However, there is an increasing demand for Nutanix Acropolis supported VDI solutions. Customers want to run VDI on Acropolis, eliminating hypervisor license costs, therefore reducing the total cost per desktop. Cost per desktop has been one of the factors in VDI adoption leading to many ROI discussions; furthermore, vSphere is overkill for some VDI deployments.
What are the VDI options for Acropolis today?
The industry leading VDI solution is supported on Acropolis hypervisor today, both XenDesktop and XenApp. If you are a XenDesktop or XenApp customer, you now have a supported hyperconverged software-defined-storage solution to successfully run your deployment without incurring into vSphere licenses.
If your deployment is on XenServer you now have an equally free hypervisor alternative that delivers easier management and a pay-as-you-grow model with integrated software-defined-storage capabilities.
Despite fully supported by both Citrix and Nutanix today via manual provisioning, there’s no integration with MCS yet. The integration is coming for XenDesktop 7.6 very shortly and will be further enhanced for XenDesktop 7.7.
Here is the Citrix page on Nutanix Acropolis (http://www.citrixreadyprogram.com/nutanix/acropolis)
Almost the entire Citrix products portfolio is Nutanix Ready and Citrix Ready (XenApp, XenDesktop, Netscaler and Sharefile).
[Update] This is the first demo available on Citrix XenDesktop 7.6 for AHV.
UDS Enterprise by VirtualCable
VirtualCable is a Spanish vendor who provide a multi platform connection broker for Windows and Linux with support for multiple hypervisors, including Nutanix Acropolis. The solution also provides virtual desktops and app virtualization, authenticators (Active Directory, eDirectory, OpenLDAP, Internal database, IP authenticator, SAML, CAS, Internal authentication system, authentication system by device, IP, MAC, Hostname…) and offer the following display protocol support (RDP, XRDP, RDP through HTML5, NX, SPICE, RGS).
Click this link to watch in full screen: http://bit.ly/1M0gw7H
AppliDis Fusion 5 is a unified virtualization solution which allows you to provide access to applications and Windows desktops with full integration into Acropolis hypervisor. AppliDis Fusion 5 enables employees to work remotely, from either within or outside of their organization, ensuring the portability of their applications with any device.
Workspot is a cloud-based workspace as a service solution that integrates into Acropolis and will be able to directly provision desktops in Acropolis clusters. Workspot has release a Beta version of their product integrated with on-premisses Nutanix Acropolis hypervisor and is currently opening open to Beta testers. For more information http://workspot.com/nutanix
Stand-Alone Windows VMs
Stand alone Virtual machines with remote display protocols enabled can be treated and accessed as virtual desktops. Some Nutanix customers decided to use Acropolis to host stand-alone virtual machines manually provisioned. They hey use NETBIOS and DNS resolution to allow users to access their desktops, therefore each user must know or be pre-configured with the virtual desktop FQDN. For this end they are using a common naming classification for desktop naming that uses the employee’s ID. Since they use only Windows 7 desktops they are using RDP; but Linux desktops could also be used with xRDP.
One of the submissions for the Nutanix Coding Challenge is quite interesting from a VDI point of view. The team at EZDC Automation used the self-service engine from vCloud Automation Center (vRA) to automate the creation and customization of desktops using the Acropolis API’s and making them available in VMware Horizon View for use. In this case Horizon View is handling the connection brokering to unmanaged desktops, but both persistent and floating use-cases can be successfully deployed.
Disclaimer: I am not recommending any of the products. Please test and evaluate the product functionalities and integration before committing to any of them.
This article was first published by Andre Leibovici (@andreleibovici) at myvirtualcloud.net