Tuesday, 02 April 2019 11:28

VMware deploys Horizon Cloud at UTS to enhance student online access

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Cloud computing and platform virtualisation vendor VMware has deployed VMware Horizon Cloud on Microsoft Azure which gives more than 10,000 students at the University of Technology Sydney the flexibility to access applications and workloads online.

VMware says students can access the platform on any student device from home, on campus or wherever they have Wi-Fi.

Previously, engineering and IT students were required to complete coursework on campus, due to the availability and complexity of the software required for their courses.

VMware says that now,students can log into their virtual desktops wherever they are and begin working with their software of choice – all within minutes.

“The efficiency of the VMware Horizon Cloud on Microsoft Azure solution even enables students to access their virtual desktop from overseas or in high latency connectivity areas without any downtime," the company said.

By running VMware Horizon Cloud on Microsoft Azure, UTS is able to host, manage and scale out its digital tools and software over VMware virtual desktops.

VMware says Horizon Cloud on Microsoft Azure has successfully handled more than 50,000 software and application load requests with zero downtime, and the cloud deployment had also significantly reduced operations and maintenance time for the university’s IT team, while better guarding UTS’ network against data breaches or attacks.

“Our priority is to have our students prepared for today’s highly digital and connected society, something a cloud-first approach to self-directed learning can provide,” says Rob Jarman, associate dean, Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology, UTS.

“VMware’s virtual desktop solution hosted on Microsoft’s public cloud platform Azure is helping us create an environment where students can gain that confidence in digital working, learning and collaboration which will take them even further in the workforce. It’s a valuable milestone in our digital transformation journey and one that we believe will positively impact students well beyond what they experience today.”

“VMware Horizon Cloud on Microsoft Azure is far more stable and consistent than anything we could have deployed on-premises. Moving applications and desktop infrastructure to the cloud has resulted in reductions to operational costs by 40% - freeing up not only IT’s budget, but also the space once used to house server infrastructure,” said Peter Gale, deputy chief information officer, UTS.

“The engineering faculty’s coursework and research involve immense amounts of processing power that can stretch even the most powerful workstations. VMware’s cloud solution allows any engineering student to run their complex calculations or rendering tasks from home or even public Wi-Fi areas without compromising performance. This means UTS can expand its deployment to other less compute-intensive faculties with total confidence.”

Andrew Fox, director, end user experience, VMware ANZ, said, “VMware works alongside UTS to deliver services that will help the university reach its vision of becoming a world-leading facility. VMware Horizon Cloud on Microsoft Azure has enabled the university to differentiate its student experience, allowing students to access digital tools at any time, from any location, from any device.”

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Peter Dinham

Peter Dinham is a co-founder of iTWire and a 35-year veteran journalist and corporate communications consultant. He has worked as a journalist in all forms of media – newspapers/magazines, radio, television, press agency and now, online – including with the Canberra Times, The Examiner (Tasmania), the ABC and AAP-Reuters. As a freelance journalist he also had articles published in Australian and overseas magazines. He worked in the corporate communications/public relations sector, in-house with an airline, and as a senior executive in Australia of the world’s largest communications consultancy, Burson-Marsteller. He also ran his own communications consultancy and was a co-founder in Australia of the global photographic agency, the Image Bank (now Getty Images).

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