Next Steps into the Cloud at Housing Association

This housing association has a rich history of supporting the community since the early nineteen-hundreds. The organization prides itself to maintain their more than 20,000 housing units strong portfolio by modernizing more than a thousand units per year. A little over a year ago, they upgraded their Horizon View environment with new UAGs and new GoldenMaster. Now they needed to expand their capacity, firstly because of company growth and more projects but also because even the last remaining employees that were on local hardware had to be enabled to work from home during the COVID-19 lockdowns.

“Back then, the security servers in the DMZ were replaced by UAGs” remembered Reinhard Partmann,comdivision’s project lead for the customer “the firewall configuration was updated and the master images of the existing pools were equipped with the new agent and the pools recomposed.” Partmann said.

The Challenge

There was no real challenge in terms of switching over to the new service, since many of their users were already working from remote (different districts, construction sites, home offices), Partmann explained “the virtual desktop was reality for them, the only change was, that it wasn't hosted on-premises”. Around 250 users are working with Office apps, bookkeeping and business software.

The other aspects disaster recovery: running a full disaster recovery site is very expensive: “we ran a TCO Workshop to gather the real cost of an outage and what it would need to restore the main datacenter and enable the customer to keep working”said Partmann “after this exercise, the customer realized, that Horizon Cloudis the right decision – he said: “even if the main building should be subject to natural disaster or else, the outside locations have a chance to keep working.”

The Solution

“The customer now has a mix of on-prem an cloud hosted virtual desktops, that are managed using the VMware Horizon Control Plane” explained Partmann, and continued: “with thistool performance is optimized by intelligently connecting users to their virtual desktops and apps through a single URL to Horizon Pods based on available capacity, user location, preference, and more, regardless if the Horizon deployment type is on-premises or in the cloud. Desktop images are centrally managed and application management and monitoring is simplified”Partmann concluded.

The Result

“…maybe this added visibility is the reason the customer will most likely move all virtual desktops to the cloud with the next hardware refresh cycle of the VDI infrastructure” said Partmann. Either way, with the new solution, the customer is now able to simplify the onboarding and configuration of the Horizon environment on any cloud.

“With VMware Horizon we are not locked into a Cloud Service Provider, we can move quickly to another offering, if the situation requires it” said the CIO “in the future, wecan now scale the Horizon infrastructure in environments such as VMware Cloud On AWS and Horizon Cloud on Azure… this is the flexibility we need!” he concluded.



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