Teradici and Dell Launch Software-Based Workstation Virtualization at SIGGRAPH 2014

Even if your Dell Precision workstation is physically miles away, you can reach for it and commandeer it remotely from the nearest windows tablet or PC. Today at SIGGRAPH (August 10-14, Vancouver), Teradici and Dell announced a partnership that would facilitate remote workstation usage.

Typically Teradici’s PC over IP (PCoIP) solutions require hardware—a remote card—that connects the host device and the client device. The approach lets you use a lightweight device (a Teradici client box or a lightweight tablet) to access and drive a more powerful machine hosted on a server or located offsite. The latest solution, however, is made possibly solely with software. You install the Teradici Workstation Access software on your Dell Precision workstation and the lightweight client device to connect the two.

According to Teradici, the software-based remote experience is “ideally suited to small and mid-sized businesses (SMBs) in architecture, construction, engineering and manufacturing.”  Olivier Favre, Teradici’s director of product marketing, reveals, “The target market for the [software-based solution] is small and midsized companies with 50-100 workstations.”

Teradici expects the exposure to PCoIP’s convenience through the Workstation Access software would lead customers to sign up for more comprehensive virtualization solutions.The Teradici Workstation Access software is set to become available next week. In the first release, it’ll only be compatible with Dell Precision workstations.

Some hardware makers, like GPU maker AMD, have integrated the Teradici PCoIP hardware component into their products. For example, the AMD FirePro R5000 GPU includes the Teridici hardware. This eliminates a barrier for those who don’t want to bother with installing the hardware themselves. Shifting to the software-only approach eliminates yet another barrier to PCoIP. IT managers put off by the need to reconfigure their network setup to facilitate hardware-based PCoIP, for example, might be more open to try it or permit it with the software-only approach.

According to Favre, in the first release of Teradici Workstation Access software, the setup will be one to one—one client device driving one physical host machine. But in future versions, subdividing the power of the hardware into multiple virtual machines may become possible. Favre also said that the software-based solution can accommodate GPU acceleration—a function that’ll be important to those who work with graphics-heavy 3D modeling programs.

In performance, however, hardware-based PCoIP tends to offer better performance than the software-based approach, Favre explained, because the latter is limited by the bandwidth connection and the speed with which the client device can decode the transmitted data.

According to Teradici’s announcement, “The new software is priced at U.S. $199, plus $40 for a one-year mandatory support and maintenance contract, which includes free software upgrades (major and minor releases) and 24 x 7x 365  support services.

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Kenneth Wong

Kenneth Wong is Digital Engineering’s resident blogger and senior editor. Email him at [email protected] or share your thoughts on this article at digitaleng.news/facebook.

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