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The thin client: Rethinking the corporate desktop. Webcast Goals:. What is thin-client computing? Benefits Risks Getting an ROI. Dan Farber. Editor in Chief, ZDNet. Martin Reynolds. Vice President of Research Gartner. Thin client in context.

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Presentation Transcript
webcast goals
Webcast Goals:
  • What is thin-client computing?
  • Benefits
  • Risks
  • Getting an ROI
dan farber

Dan Farber

Editor in Chief, ZDNet

martin reynolds

Martin Reynolds

Vice President of Research


thin client in context
Thin client in context

A thin client shifts processing and data storage from the client system to the data center.

pc replacement choices
PC replacement choices
  • Extend the life of an old PC
  • Buy a new PC
  • Try the thin client model
thin client characteristics
Thin client characteristics
  • Move storage and apps into the network
  • Administration shifts to centralized location
  • Work is more secure and stored on the network infrastructure
thin client in context8
Thin client in context

Typically, a thin client includes a CPU, memory, keyboard, peripheral ports, mouse and monitor and possibly flash card memory. They also lack a fan and storage devices.

are there smart thin clients
Are there “smart” thin clients?
  • Some additional functionality, such as CD-ROM drive or flash memory modules
  • Choose between fat or thin client
  • Some applets can be stored on a thin client
thin client software
Thin-client software
  • Accesses operating system environments–

ranging from Windows-based terminals to Linux

and Unix systems

  • Provides local printing, audio and serial device


  • Offers remote management software for support

and administration

thin client pricing
Thin-client pricing
  • Cuts hidden management and administrative costs
  • Costs can be similar to a low-cost desktop PC depending on configuration
  • Thin client device vary in price depending on

the components required for an application

thin client pricing12
Thin-client pricing
  • Don’t expect to save significantly on capital acquisition
  • Pick one that will last 5-7 years
  • Choose a model that fits well with application needs
  • Make sure it is quiet and cool
thin client pricing13
Thin-client pricing
  • Operations cost high
  • Determine need and usefulness
coming up

Coming Up ….

More benefits



thin client benefits
Thin-client benefits
  • Cost of ownership/administration
    • Save money by buying lower cost desktop configuration
    • Save money on administration costs
      • Gartner: thin clients can save an IT department 80 percent in support staff costs.
thin client benefits16
Thin-client benefits
  • Central administration and management
    • Move virus protection to data center
    • Thin client can be more secure
    • Performs software distribution over the network
    • Patch management easier
    • Eliminates desktop hardware upgrades
thin client
Thin client

Shipments of thin clients will reach 3.4 million units worldwide in 2007, up from just 1.5 million in 2003.

Source: IDC, 2003

thin client applications
Thin-client applications
  • Call center
  • Data entry
  • Insurance claims
  • Banking applications
  • Healthcare applications
types of workers
Types of workers
  • Fixed function
  • Paid hourly
  • Part-time
  • Factory floor
data center hardware costs
Data center hardware costs
  • Addition computing capability needed in data center
  • Costs can be up to 10 times higher than desktop hardware
  • Companies only utilizing 15 percent of server capacity
  • Some extra bandwidth to utilize
  • Some employees will not accept thin clients
  • Inappropriate for mobile workforce accessing servers from non-corporate locations
  • Cost of PCs still attractive, despite the administrative costs
  • Lack of awareness about thin clients
thin client future
Thin-client future

The market for thin clients is expected to grow at an annual rate of 22.8 percent over the next five years.

Source: IDC, 2003

deploying thin clients
Deploying thin clients
  • Evaluate users
    • Determine employee satisfaction
    • Analyze work loads of user
    • Examine applications workers use
roi energy costs
ROI: Energy costs
  • 25 percent savings over a desktop PC with monitor
  • Data center could absorb more energy costs
roi space savings
ROI: Space savings
  • Improved office space efficiency via smaller footprint
roi noise
ROI: Noise
  • Thin client build for quiet operation
  • Desktops louder because of fan noise
roi support
ROI: Support
  • Rapid deployment of applications and patches
  • Cut transit time and telephone time of IT staff
  • IT staff workforce can be reduced
    • PC environment: one support person is needed for every 100 PCs
    • Thin client environment: one support person is required for every 500 client devices
tablet pc and handhelds
Tablet PC and handhelds
  • Large market for thin applications
    • Power saving
    • Battery life increased
    • Run sophisticated applications
thin client summary
Thin-client summary
  • Saves costs
  • Increases productivity and uptime
  • Choose the right applications
  • Flexible for mobile computing scenarios
dan farber30

Dan Farber

Editor in Chief, ZDNet