For organizations already taking the full benefits of virtual desktops, the end of the year is the time for audits and planning. If you want to plan appropriately for the future, you must take time to evaluate your existing desktop virtualization program. If you are unaware of the current state of your virtual desktops, you are building on a shaky foundation. Doing the virtual desktop audit over the coming months can help find out improvement areas and ensure that the program is running as intended. This process is critical for resource and budget allocation and sets teams up to plan accurately for the coming year. The following areas must be considered when auditing your virtual desktops and planning for the following year.
Auditing golden images are essential to ensure they’re still what you want them to be and are ready for the following year. While it might be widely presumed that nothing much has changed, an audit may reveal that some GIs is out of scope while others are no longer needed. Reviewing the environment analytics will help determine how well golden images and desktops are performing and help identify new areas of improvement.
When inventorying golden images, the following questions need to be asked: Do all GIs adequately fulfill their intended use case? Has a particular GI been stretched out of its planned use case, and should a new GI be created to meet the expanded requirements? Are computing resources sufficient, or do they need to be adjusted? Is there any GIs that can be disposed of? Are GIs updated on all security and control requirements?
Nothing can sink a VDI initiative as fast as poor UX. Having the ability to monitor and evaluate desktop performance is key to a robust program. Performance monitoring should be done in real-time and must be reviewed throughout the year, but IT teams should ensure that they include a performance review in the year-end audits. When evaluating performance, the following questions need to be asked: Is desktop performance meeting the expectations? Does one need to adjust the computing resources to improve performance? Is VDI giving a consistent performance across offices and remote staff?
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A desktop is all about applications, but application expansion is a real thing that one should be concerned about. If you go through application usage metrics, you can get accurate world data to help you make intelligent decisions about the applications’ uses. You must review the applications on a company-wide and use-case basis.
While it may appear that an app is used sparingly, it might be critical for some use cases. When auditing applications, the following questions must be asked: Do we have applications that are not being used properly & can be eliminated? Are all software licenses in use? Is there any scope to scale back licenses? Whether a particular application helps one department be more productive than others and whether other departments also benefit from having access to that application.
Auditing and planning must go together. Auditing is fine, but it’s an incomplete job if you can’t use the audit to plan for the future. While auditing in the last months of the year, it’s essential to roadmap projected growth. While things may remain differently than planned during the year, understanding the expected need will help to ensure that proper infrastructure, GIs, endpoints, and other essential features are there to support growth.
When assessing potential growth, the following questions need to be asked: What growth do you expect in the coming year? Can the existing GIs support that growth, or are new GIs required? Is the VDI ready for increased usage? Are there enough software seats/licenses for the increased headcount?
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