Renasant Bank Taps Unidesk, Citrix, VMware for Personal Virtual Desktops

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Renasant is installing Unidesk to support virtual desktop users who need to customize their desktops, install their own applications, and run applications that can’t be easily virtualized.

Tupelo, Miss.-based Renasant Bank has selected Unidesk® as its virtual desktop management solution to make it easy and affordable for the company’s lean IT staff to provision and maintain a wide range of fully personalized desktops. Citrix® XenDesktop® is being used to access the Unidesk desktops, which will be hosted on VMware vSphere™ virtualization infrastructure.

With over 75 offices across the southeast and more than 1,100 employees, Renasant is installing Unidesk in departments including loan and audit, accounting, executive management and IT, where users need to customize their desktops, install their own applications, and run applications that can’t be easily virtualized. Unidesk will enable the firm to create and update virtual desktops from a single image, even if all the desktops are different, as well as deliver multiple applications. Unidesk will also enable full personalization of worker desktops, all while using up to 70% less storage than previously required.

“We’ve typically had a lot of success using best-of-breed products together, and we followed that playbook by choosing Citrix XenDesktop as our virtual desktop broker and VMware as our back-end virtual infrastructure. We see Unidesk as the final missing piece that makes virtual desktops work by taking away the headaches associated with provisioning and updating desktops that are each a little different,” says James Hayes, Renasant Bank Senior Vice President and Network Operations Manager.
With Unidesk, Renasant is reducing expenses and improving the user experience by managing virtual desktops as modular layers of operating systems, applications, and each user’s own personal configurations. Unidesk dynamically creates persistent virtual desktops by compositing the IT-managed, cleanly separated layers of Microsoft Windows and common applications such as Microsoft Office with each user's own personalization layer. This revolutionary approach gives the IT department desktops that are radically easier to provision, patch, and support, while empowering workers with desktops they can fully customize.

Unidesk’s layering technology will also drastically reduce Renasant’s storage capacity requirements by sharing a single image of the operating system and applications across many desktops, enabling the bank to focus on implementing storage technology that delivers the necessary levels of I/O performance.

“We’re finding that the keys to successfully virtualizing desktops, such as personalization, storage reduction, image patching, and application delivery, revolve almost completely around management. We could give everyone a generic desktop that is the same, but no one would accept that, or we could give people a personal virtual machine and suffer the high cost of storage and management. With Unidesk, I don’t have to make those trade-offs. I can choose the operating system and different applications for 100 users, and still manage just a few little images. In three minutes, I can provision or update a few of them, or all 100,” says Hayes.

Renasant has been working with solution provider GreenPages ( to deploy its virtual desktops. According to GreenPages CEO Ron Dupler, “We look at Unidesk as a real ‘best in show’ partner in this desktop virtualization project for its ability to address not only the extremely challenging issue of user personalization but the cost of storage and the difficulty of dealing with myriad applications. It’s a win all around.”

Renasant prides itself on providing “all the products of a large regional bank combined with the personal touch of a hometown community bank.” Begun more than 100 years ago, its branches now cover Alabama, Mississippi, Tennessee and Georgia with assets over $4.3 billion. “Unidesk’s approach to personalizing and managing virtual desktops will help me meet our objective of keeping IT as efficient and as secure as possible – and, it’s a great fit with our personal touch approach to banking,” added Hayes.

About Unidesk

Unidesk ( provides the virtual desktop management software platform that organizations of all sizes require to successfully centralize desktops on data center servers. The company’s patent-pending desktop layering technology works with Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) access solutions from VMware, Citrix, Microsoft, and other vendors to sustain personalization for workers who need a customizable user experience, while empowering IT with efficient management of operating system and application updates. Unidesk customers benefit from increased worker productivity and reduced IT operations and data center storage costs. Unidesk is a privately-held company with headquarters in Marlborough, Mass, USA.

Unidesk is a registered trademark of Unidesk Corporation in the United States and/or other jurisdictions.


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