Kawasaki Motors Manufacturing Corp., U.S.A. Rolls out Virtual Desktops Created and Managed by Unidesk

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1,300 employee manufacturing facility chooses Unidesk to provision custom virtual desktops, let users make changes to their desktops and run their own personal applications with minimal effects on storage.

Unidesk 1.2 , the latest version of the virtual desktop management platform.

The idea behind having one base image to patch and push to every desktop is a good one, but only if it incorporates everything the user views as ‘personal.’ Unidesk is the only solution that satisfies both of these requirements.”

Kawasaki Motors Manufacturing Corp., U.S.A. (KMM) has begun rolling out virtual desktops at the company’s consumer products manufacturing facility in Lincoln, Neb., using Unidesk® virtual desktop management software to package, deliver and manage Microsoft Windows and business applications, while leaving users free to customize their virtual desktops and access them from anywhere they desire.

The ability to effortlessly and flexibly provision custom virtual desktops from a single image while simultaneously enabling users to make changes to their desktops -- and even run their own personal applications -- with minimal effects on storage are the key reasons KMM chose Unidesk for its virtual desktop pilot at this 1,300 employee facility.

“We’re very excited about Unidesk because we found it’s a simple solution IT can use to create virtual desktops without a lot of scripting, templates or integration complexity,” says Paul Kramer, Assistant Manager of Information Systems at Kawasaki Motors Manufacturing Corp., U.S.A. “Even more important, we’re confident our user community will embrace the idea of virtual desktops when they learn they can access their own desktop from any computer in the facility and have all their own files, data and user-installed applications always right at their fingertips.”

KMM began virtualizing servers in 2009 with an eye toward re-purposing existing dual quad-core servers to eventually host Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI). For its VDI pilot, the company is using Unidesk for virtual desktop provisioning, personalization, and management; Citrix® XenDesktop® for secure virtual desktop brokering, user authentication, and a high performance user experience; and VMware vSphere® as the virtualization platform to host the desktops.

VDI for Manufacturing
Manufacturing is viewed as an ideal environment for data center-hosted virtual desktops because of the mobility required by end users, the wide range of applications needed for manufacturing operations, the cost savings offered by energy-efficient thin or zero clients, and the IT effort and expense needed to keep widely distributed physical PCs patched and up to date. But worker and application diversity, coupled with the technical acumen of manufacturing workers, also creates challenges for VDI. Because every desktop is a little different, and because workers are savvy enough to customize their desktops with their own user-installed applications,persistent virtual desktops are needed. Image sharing technologies for VDI, however, won’t work for persistent desktops, offsetting any desktop management efficiencies and increasing storage requirements.

For these reasons, KMM chose Unidesk. Unidesk has the unique ability to give the many technical knowledge workers at KMM persistent desktops that retain all desktop customizations, while providing the storage efficiency and single image management benefits of non-persistent desktops. Unidesk was also selected for its ability to quickly package and deliver the many different types of applications needed by KMM’s users in accounting, engineering, purchasing, production and management.

“We’re looking for VDI to give us huge savings in the cost of managing our desktops, but we also recognize that for VDI to be successful at KMM, it must be embraced by end users,” Kramer says. “The idea behind having one base image to patch and push to every desktop is a good one, but only if it incorporates everything the user views as ‘personal.’ Unidesk is the only solution that satisfies both of these requirements.”

To end users, Unidesk persistent desktops are just like their own physical PCs. Users can save files anywhere on their "local" desktops, change profile settings, install applications and add-ons, and use applications that store GUIDs (Globally Unique Identifiers) that need to be retained between desktop sessions for the applications to work properly. With its patent-pending desktop layering technology, Unidesk is able to maintain all of these user customizations through desktop logouts, reboots, and IT-initiated operating system and application updates in isolated personalization layers that are separate and distinct from IT-created and controlled operating system and application layers.

KMM plans to complete its VDI pilot in the coming months, with broader rollout planned for the remainder of the year.

Established in 1974, Kawasaki Motors Manufacturing Corp., U.S.A. (KMM) is a subsidiary of Kawasaki Heavy Industries, LTD. KMM is located in the center of the United States in Lincoln, Nebraska. This facility produces All-Terrain Vehicles, Utility Vehicles, Personal Watercraft, Recreation Utility Vehicles, and Passenger Rail Cars.

About Unidesk
Unidesk (http://www.unidesk.com) 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. All other trademarks and registered trademarks are property of their respective owners.

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