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Desktop Virtualization | News

Caifornia District Takes Computer Labs Virtual

The Woodland, CA Unified School District has replaced its legacy computer lab desktop systems with virtual desktops. The district estimated it saved 90 percent of the cost of powering 300 of those systems when it moved to Pano Logic's zero client computing desktop virtualization solution.

The 10,000-student school district, located 15 miles northwest of Sacramento, has been recording declining energy consumption numbers in five K-12 computer labs since last spring when it replaced PCs, estimated to cost about $50 a year each, with Pano Logic virtual desktops, estimated to cost $5 annually. The district also added in the cost of time and personnel resources when estimating savings.

“We needed a solution that required less maintenance, consumed less energy and improved productivity of our IT staff,” Joshua Koch, director of technology at Woodland, said in a prepared statement.

The Pano Logic system includes an end-to-end hardware-and-software virtual desktop that independently interoperates with three hypervisors (VSphere, XenServer, Hyper-V) and their management systems (VMWare View, XenDesktop, Microsoft SCVMM), the company said. This allows the user to eliminate endpoint support and maintenance by using a cloud computing-ready device for centralized management. The energy savings are realized because, the company said, Pano Logic zero client devices consume 97 percent less power than PCs and 50 percent less power than thin clients and eliminate endpoint security liabilities because they do not store data locally.

While energy and cost savings were the primary reason the school district adopted virtual desktop computing, Woodland has realized other gains as well, it reported. Previously, staff and teachers used one PC to scan multiple electronic Scantron answer sheets for tests measuring student academic achievement. The virtual desktop system lets teachers access centrally hosted software from multiple Pano Logic zero clients located throughout the district or by using the VMWare View Client installed on each teacher computer.

About the Author

Jim Barthold is a freelance technology reporter. He can be reached at jimbarthold@comcast.net.

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