New Library, New VDI, and Desktop Everywhere
Cornell Information Technologies and Cornell University Library IT
Cornell University Library IT (CUL-IT) recently took over support of the new Hospitality, Labor, and Management (HLM) Library. The new HLM Library comprises three formerly separate libraries from the School of Hotel Administration, the School of Industrial and Labor Relations (ILR), and the Johnson Graduate School of Management. The consolidation of these libraries enables students, faculty, and staff across these colleges to share reference materials and resources.
CUL-IT inherited the ILR public lab systems in the Catherwood Library in Ives Hall. At the time, the systems were running on the ILR IT Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) service and needed to move away from that service. CUL-IT considered whether to go with CIT’s Desktop Everywhere service, to create their own VDI service, or to deploy desktop computers. Ultimately they decided to go with Desktop Everywhere.
Several IT challenges had to be overcome to integrate the public lab systems into the Desktop Everywhere environment:
- Converting the inherited thin clients to the new service. Desktop Everywhere recommends using newer available models.
- Learning what was needed to onboard the service, such as setting up Active Directory accounts, and the various hardware configurations.
- Configuring the environment to meet the needs of library patrons, including setting up specialized software, adding the library’s branded desktop wallpaper (instead of using the CIT wallpaper that comes with the service), adding shortcuts to the library website, and setting up the library homepage.
The solution to the setup challenges was to implement the change in phases. Since the fall semester of 2015, CUL-IT has been running 65 units on Desktop Everywhere, with the possibility of adding up to 200 machines. Challenges in the future will include adding the option for users to log into the service with their own accounts, while also allowing a way for the general public to use the systems, as New York state residents are allowed to use this particular library.
Will Shepard and Christian Miller, HLM Library
Peter Magnus and Gabriel Plaine, CUL-IT
The Collaborative Relationship
“CIT’s Desktop Everywhere team has worked with CUL-IT every step of the way and has been a reliable service provider.” – Gabriel Plaine, network technician, CUL-IT
“One of the benefits of using Desktop Everywhere is that the systems will upgrade in the background, thereby reducing downtimes for maintenance.” – Peter Magnus, desktop services manager, CUL-IT
More information on Desktop Everywhere