Leading Law Firms Reap Benefits of Desktop Virtualization with Unidesk

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Layering Technology Meets Legal Application Delivery and Interoperability Requirements

Unidesk desktop layering software simplifies Windows management and VDI

Unidesk Corporation, the leading provider of application delivery, image management, and provisioning software for cloud-hosted desktops, announced today that Bernstein Shur, one of northern New England’s largest law firms; Miller Johnson, one of the largest law firms in western Michigan; and Procopio, Cory, Hargreaves & Savitch LLP, one of the largest business law firms in California, have all successfully implemented Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) with Unidesk. Attorneys at the firms are now using Citrix XenDesktop® or VMware Horizon View™ to access their Microsoft Windows® desktops and applications from virtually any location and any device to offer enhanced service to clients. IT managers at all three firms are using Unidesk to create the virtual desktops, deliver applications, apply Windows updates, and perform desktop break/fix with unprecedented simplicity and speed.

“Our workforce is pushing outside the four walls of our offices, so being able to provide a consistent experience while they’re on the move is a big benefit,” said Matthew Kramer, Director of IT, Bernstein Shur. “Our attorneys can now start reviewing a document on their virtual desktop at the office, and securely pick up right where they left off from their home PC or tablet. Unidesk enables our small IT staff to easily deploy and update virtual desktops and applications, and has made the move from physical PCs to VDI viable.”

Solving the VDI Application Delivery Challenge for Law Firms
Law firms implementing VDI often find that the many different applications and plug-ins required for document review, document preparation, e-discovery, property research, and other legal work cannot be delivered with traditional application virtualization technology, which isolates applications to prevent conflict. Because isolated applications run inside their own protective “bubbles,” they cannot work with each other unless they are packaged together.

Commented Kramer, “We initially looked at implementing non-persistent desktops and virtualizing our applications, but it just wasn’t feasible. We have 10-15 different plug-ins for Microsoft Outlook alone, and each one has different release cycles. It would have been far too complicated getting them to interoperate, and to juggle the different versions and one-offs that are needed by different groups. With Unidesk, we can give everyone persistent desktops, and layer in any application or plug-in that is needed.”

Unidesk desktop layering technology provides the same modular application packaging and delivery benefits as application virtualization, but without the isolation side effects. Unidesk layered applications look to each other, and to Windows, as if they are natively installed.

“We have 53 application layers in use across our 225 Unidesk desktops,” said Isidore Okoro, Director of Information Technology, Miller Johnson. “We package each plug-in or application once as a unique layer, then assign the layer to multiple desktops with a few clicks. This allowed us to carefully build, test, and deploy new desktops for our big Windows 7 rollout. Our attorneys and staff can now get the latest legal application, plug-in, or software update in less time, and in a controlled manner. Everything works together seamlessly without us ever having to touch the base application. Unidesk has made the lives of our IT staff a lot easier, and is a big part of our success in managing our new Windows 7 VDI environment.”

Microsoft Office, HP Autonomy Worksite, OpenText eDOCS, Thomson Reuters Elite Enterprise, Summation Pro, Trial Director, Winscribe, Cisco Jabber, Dragon Naturally Speaking, Firefox, Google Chrome, Microsoft Internet Explorer, and numerous plug-ins are just some of the applications that are being delivered by the law firms as Unidesk layers.

Making Persistent Desktops Affordable and Easy to Manage
Before Unidesk, law firms encountered two other common challenges when implementing VDI:
-- Non-persistent desktops required less storage than persistent desktops, making them more cost-effective to implement. However, non-persistent desktops lose all settings and personal preferences after each use, preventing attorneys from picking up their work where they last left off, and wasting billable time.
-- Applications and plug-ins that could not be virtualized were built into the Windows gold image. Many gold images were needed to allow for the unique requirements of different practice groups, making Windows patches and hot fixes difficult and time-consuming for IT.

With Unidesk, the three law firms are offering persistent desktops to their attorneys and staff. Unidesk stores Windows and application layers only once per host, so persistent desktops are now as storage-efficient as traditional non-persistent desktops. Since all applications and plug-ins can be layered separately, one clean gold image of Windows can be used for all desktops, making operating system patches and updates highly efficient.

“We were well into our migration of 300 users using our broker’s built-in tools when we realized the added benefits that a complete VDI management solution could deliver. The tools provided by Citrix alone to manage and deploy desktops lacked certain features causing major headaches for our team. Unidesk was able to fill those gaps and enable us to completely virtualize our entire desktop environment,” said Craig Crosby, Director of Information Services, Procopio, Cory, Hargreaves & Savitch LLP. “Plus, having the ability to use persistent desktops with a small storage footprint, one image of Windows to update, easy application layering, and quick desktop repair enables our IT team to work more efficiently, and in turn makes our users more effective.”

Integration with Citrix XenDesktop and VMware Horizon View
Unidesk integrates with VMware Horizon View and Citrix XenDesktop to provision desktops directly into existing pools and groups, and enable desktop access through the two leading desktop virtualization platforms. Bernstein Shur and Miller Johnson use Unidesk with VMware Horizon View. Procopio uses Unidesk with Citrix XenDesktop.

Tweet This: Three leading U.S. law firms unlock the benefits of #VDI with @UnideskCorp, @vmwareview, and @XenDesktop – http://bit.ly/12Bq8Ad

To learn more about how law firms are succeeding with VDI, register for the live webinar with Matt Kramer from Bernstein Shur that will take place on Thursday, August 8 at 2:00 PM ET. Register here: http://www.unidesk.com/resources/webinars

About Unidesk Corporation
Unidesk Corporation (http://www.unidesk.com) provides the management platform that accelerates the movement of desktops to the cloud. Designed for Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI), Unidesk® desktop layering software is the simplest and most powerful way for IT organizations to deliver applications, manage images, sustain user customizations, and optimize storage for Microsoft Windows® desktops hosted on VMware vSphere®. By using Unidesk to create, manage, and repair desktops for Citrix XenDesktop®, VMware Horizon View™ and other brokering solutions, customers can accelerate VDI projects, reduce IT operations costs, cut storage costs, and foster a more productive workforce. Unidesk is available through an expanding network of solution partners. Unidesk Corp. is a privately-held company based in Marlborough, Mass, USA.

About Bernstein Shur
Widely regarded as one of New England’s most entrepreneurial law firms, Bernstein Shur is a multi-service firm with more than 100 attorneys in offices in Maine and New Hampshire. Founded in 1915, the firm provides practical and innovative counsel in the areas of business law, litigation, and municipal law to clients throughout the region and around the world. Bernstein Shur is Maine’s exclusive member of Lex Mundi, the world’s leading association of independent law firms. More information is available at http://www.bernsteinshur.com.

About Miller Johnson
Founded in 1959, Miller Johnson is a full-service firm providing legal counsel to businesses and individuals in areas such as business and corporate, employment and labor, litigation, employee benefits, family law, and estate planning. See more at http://www.millerjohnson.com

About Procopio, Cory, Hargreaves & Savitch LLP
With more than 130 attorneys in San Diego, Del Mar and Silicon Valley, Procopio, Cory, Hargreaves & Savitch LLP is one of the largest business law firms in Southern California. Procopio is a local law firm with a global network capable of serving clients’ interests throughout the world. The firm is dedicated to understanding the businesses and industries of clients and collaborating with them to develop tailored strategies. Procopio advises companies at every stage in the corporate life cycle, helping them to plan, finance and operate their businesses. Since 1946, the firm’s success has been derived from its commitment to clients and its ability to maximize the value provided to them. Procopio’s goal is to continue building long-term relationships with clients through a steady, team-oriented approach. For additional information, please visit http://www.procopio.com.

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Unidesk is a registered trademark of Unidesk Corporation in the United States and/or other jurisdictions. All other trademarks and registered trademarks are property of their respective owners.

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