Remote Working Environment Using Thin Clients

Introduction

COVID-19 has been one of the biggest stories of 2020 so far, and the virus is impacting entire industries, causing them to gyrate in unpredictable ways. On a positive note, the disruption has accelerated remote work practices, causing a shifting landscape across areas in technology including hardware, software, network equipment, and IT services. From a sustainability perspective, IT particularly plays an important role in providing excellent support to mitigate the negative effects of this crisis. The question is: how?

Before answering this, let’s consider countries such as Italy, Spain, and the United Kingdom that are implementing strict lockdown measures due to the number of cases surging daily. Currently, more than 2 million patients have been recorded with the death count reaching almost 1,50,000 globally. To say the least, the pandemic has greatly affected nations and individuals, and it will be a while before things return to normal.

Organizations are responding to the situation by adopting sustainable remote working solutions to protect their employees and communities. While most companies have the necessary equipment and infrastructure in place to support remote work, some businesses are yet to revamp their IT systems. A remote work environment ensures end user productivity, operational efficiency, and business continuity in these trying times. Thin Client remote desktop solutions, in particular, are preferred when it comes to addressing remote work challenges that many organizations face. 

Rising To The Challenge

Thin Clients are a feasible solution for providing users with a virtual desktop environment that ensures consistent productivity even when employees are not in the workplace. Enabling remote work environments using Thin Clients is secure and affordable because all your important data is saved on a remote server.

How are Thin Clients useful? These compact devices have a basic OS, integrate limited moving parts, function as terminals, and connect end users to a remote server. The end user experience is familiar to that of using a traditional desktop computer. Thin Clients also occupy less space and allow for minimal energy consumption as compared to regular desktop PCs. These endpoints offer Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) to users with a centralized management system. Administrators remain in control of all activities taking place within the terminals and all information is transparent on each system. Apart from being able to secure your network in case of emergencies, you can resolve potential issues without having to physically check a machine for problems.

So, where does a VDI Thin Client fit in the context of remote work? Depending upon network usage, you may need to deploy your virtual desktops on a public or a private cloud. The deployment should be configured with multi-factor authentication (MFA) to ensure in-depth security. Next, users are provided with a VPN to connect to the environment. The network bandwidth needs to be taken care of both on the network supplier’s side and the end user’s side for a smooth working environment. An IT administrator then creates a Virtual Machine for a user to access the Thin Client with the help of a VPN. 

Look up ClearCube Thin Clients that enable task workers, knowledge workers, and power users secure access to the cloud. These two represent the perfect combination of modern IT, with cloud computing providing a continuation of server-based computing and a Thin Client as the endpoint for your cloud computing solution. With this setup, hardware space for applications does not pose any risk, and workload on servers is minimized. Together, cloud computing and Thin Client endpoints offer many benefits, including improved security, remote accessibility, increased productivity, and cost reduction.

  • Improved Security

Saving information on the cloud eliminates the likelihood of physical data being lost or compromised. Administrators can also maintain anti-virus protection and program patches in the cloud. Other than the remote server, it is impossible to copy data onto a disk or save it to any other location.

  • Remote Accessibility

Employees will have the flexibility to access corporate files and software on different devices. If they need to work outside of the office, they will continue to have the same access. 

  • Increased Productivity

One of the biggest concerns of allowing remote work is end-user productivity. This is not a problem with Thin Clients, as they are easy to set up and deploy, which also reduces time updating machines separately.

  • Cost Reduction

As software is located on the cloud, one-on-one machine program updates are no longer unnecessary. Thin Clients also offer significant cost savings as compared to PC infrastructures. These devices only consume about 9-25 watts as compared to a 150-watt physical desktop. 

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Identifying User Requirements

Before moving further, identify end-user needs so that you can decide on the best Thin Client deployment for your business. Different users have different needs, and it is important to facilitate them with the right configurations so that you do not under-provision or over provision. Imagine a situation in which a power user requiring high-end processing power and graphics is set up with a basic Thin Client intended for a task user. Failure to understand end-user requirements could prove costly to the company in terms of employee satisfaction, productivity, and profitability.

If you do not know where to begin, work with the ClearCube team that can offer you its expertise to help you make the right choice. Founded in 1997, ClearCube is a trusted brand that has provided federal and commercial customers with cutting-edge centralized computing and desktop virtualization solutions. We specialize in custom designed and engineered Thin Clients, Zero Clients, PC Blades, and workstations that address modern business demands as well as challenges. Our Thin Clients support Teradici, VMware, Citrix, Amazon WorkSpaces, and WVD technologies for remote accessibility especially during COVID-19. Let’s have a quick look at various options you can choose from to set up a remote work environment.

Copper Thin Clients

Copper Thin Clients consist of configurations with dual to three display screens for entry-level centralized and high-end VDI performance such as the CD8801 and CD8804 models. The latest in this range is the C4Pi Raspberry Pi 4  that is smaller than the size of your regular computer mouse. You can also get the CD8815 ruggedized machine for use in industrial settings or choose a quad-core Thin Client like CD8841 that accommodates power users. 

Fiber Thin Clients

Fiber Thin Clients like the CD8826F offer cloud-based deployment with ultra-high graphics and powerful multi-display features. 

Preparing Thin Clients

Take your teams and IT department into confidence before setting up a remote work environment with a Thin Client solution. The IT manager must create a network which all users need to connect to in order to ensure seamless remote collaboration. End users are then provided with a VPN and it is connected to the office network once they are logged in. A local server is created on the user’s network and they are ready to connect to the information available to their account. Administrators can easily modify or restrict access to information, further simplifying the management process.

Advantages of Choosing ClearCube

ClearCube enables you to work with high-end technologies and benefit from leveraging multiple remote work solutions that offer a modern IT experience. Customized solutions based entirely on your unique needs give you an additional advantage along with proactive Thin Clients that cater to different levels of workloads. In addition to being known for their reliability and versatility, these Thin Client endpoints provide secure VDI performance in different IT environments. Centralized management capabilities allow administrators to manage the entire setup from a single interface and represent security as well as control in a sustainable platform. 

Upgrading systems, creating backups, and deleting or adding configurations no longer present an issue for companies. All these functions can be performed with minimal time and effort if you choose Thin Clients over legacy systems. Write-protected Thin Clients also make it nearly impossible for any malware to affect normal operations. Even if a machine becomes a potential target, it can be cut from the cluster and replaced with another in a matter of minutes. You can also protect corporate data as well as ensure near-zero downtime as these endpoints are inherently secure.

Furthermore, the topic ‘remote desktop services Thin Client setup’ is often discussed on the Internet. Many Thin Clients are designed for Microsoft Remote Desktop Services and offer task workers and knowledge users a familiar PC experience. For businesses leveraging VDI infrastructure or Microsoft Windows Server, these Thin Clients offer easy-to-deploy, centrally managed, and high-performance virtual desktops. Take the example of ClearCube’s industrial Thin Client lineup that integrates the full screen, full-motion video at high resolution with built-in USB redirection, Wi-Fi connectivity, and Microsoft RemoteFX support.

Configuring a Thin Client

To start working with a Thin Client, configure it properly as it operates on a specific OS instead of the one designed for traditional PCs. The reason is Thin Clients do not have excessive moving parts or a full-fledged OS. These lightweight devices have to be configured step-by-step like traditional physical desktops before you can commence operations.

ClearCube Thin Clients come with support for multiple operating systems. There are Citrix-Ready and PCoIP-ready configurations that can operate on Linux or Windows 10 OS. You have to prepare the network before proceeding to the configuration process. There are different licensing requirements to meet when it comes to Windows 10 setups. A firewall will also be required to safeguard the network you are creating from any form of malicious attack. The whole configuration process is explained here in detail so that you would be able to understand it from the get-go.

Final Remarks

A remote work environment is an ultimate answer to business difficulties caused by the COVID-19 crisis. Companies cannot afford to let such disruptions halt organizational activities as this could affect productivity and revenue in the long run. In order to stay operational without compromising on employee productivity, consider using Thin Clients to support your work-from-home initiatives.

We at ClearCube are always ready to assist you with any queries or concerns you may have, and you can contact us anytime. Working together will enable all of us to overcome this global pandemic. Please get in touch with our 24/7 online customer representatives to get your remote work project underway.

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