Dell Adds to Its VDI, Thin-Client Lineup

By Chris Preimesberger  |  Posted 2011-05-26 Print this article Print

The company introduces an enhanced Dell Virtual Lab 2.0 package, aimed at educational use cases, along with new OptiPlex FX170 and FX130 thin-client offerings.

Dell, knowing that the trend toward virtual desktops is still ramping up, isn't wasting any time moving ahead with its virtual desktop infrastructure and thin-client product lines.

The company on May 25 introduced an enhanced Dell Virtual Lab 2.0 package, aimed at educational use cases, along with new Dell OptiPlex FX170 and FX130 thin-client offerings.

Virtual Lab 2.0, Dell's higher-education package designed specifically for colleges and universities, has added validation testing on six of its popular applications, allowing students and faculty members free access to secure, lab-based software at any time-and from any device-they choose.

Seven more applications for this package are scheduled to be completed by the end of the year. The currently available applications are Adobe Premiere Pr CS3, AutoCad 2DLT, Wolfram Mathmatica 7, Mathworks MatLab, SAS and IBM SPSS.

OptiPlex thin-client systems offer connectivity for task workers in mobile, contract, and remote situations who use a desktop virtualization infrastructure. They are aimed at organizations in the education, financial, health care and retail fields. 

Specifically, the OptiPlex FX170 (pictured, left) is designed for knowledge-based workers focused on multimedia and content creation, while the FX130 (pictured, right) is good for application and task-based environments. They both provide the following features:

  • optional support for dual monitors;
  • the ability to centrally manage data and images in the data center;
  • fan-less systems with no moving parts;
  • measurements less than 1.5 inches wide and weight less than 1.5 pounds; and
  • Standard Dell ProSupport for simple, quick hardware replacement.
Software options include Devon IT Echo, Management Console Dell Edition and Devon IT DeTOS Dell Edition, which provide support for Microsoft Windows Embedded and DeTOS thin clients and allow access to Citrix XenApp or XenDesktop, Microsoft Remote Desktop Services, VMware View and Web-based applications.

Less than three months ago, on March 10, Dell and longtime virtualization partners Citrix and VMware unveiled a group of new enterprise desktop virtualization packages.

These desktop virtualization systems can be cloud- or locally-based and are comprised of prepackaged services with pretested hardware and software, Dell Director of Solutions Program Management Terry Vaughn told eWEEK.

Very little IT-specialist work needs to be done for installation. Citrix and/or VMware supply the virtual desktop software secret sauce for these new packages. Dell supplies its PowerEdge servers, EqualLogic storage and PowerConnect networking.

Chris Preimesberger Chris Preimesberger was named Editor-in-Chief of Features & Analysis at eWEEK in November 2011. Previously he served eWEEK as Senior Writer, covering a range of IT sectors that include data center systems, cloud computing, storage, virtualization, green IT, e-discovery and IT governance. His blog, Storage Station, is considered a go-to information source. Chris won a national Folio Award for magazine writing in November 2011 for a cover story on and CEO-founder Marc Benioff, and he has served as a judge for the SIIA Codie Awards since 2005. In previous IT journalism, Chris was a founding editor of both IT Manager's Journal and and was managing editor of Software Development magazine. His diverse resume also includes: sportswriter for the Los Angeles Daily News, covering NCAA and NBA basketball, television critic for the Palo Alto Times Tribune, and Sports Information Director at Stanford University. He has served as a correspondent for The Associated Press, covering Stanford and NCAA tournament basketball, since 1983. He has covered a number of major events, including the 1984 Democratic National Convention, a Presidential press conference at the White House in 1993, the Emmy Awards (three times), two Rose Bowls, the Fiesta Bowl, several NCAA men's and women's basketball tournaments, a Formula One Grand Prix auto race, a heavyweight boxing championship bout (Ali vs. Spinks, 1978), and the 1985 Super Bowl. A 1975 graduate of Pepperdine University in Malibu, Calif., Chris has won more than a dozen regional and national awards for his work. He and his wife, Rebecca, have four children and reside in Redwood City, Calif.Follow on Twitter: editingwhiz

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