Colama: Powering Virtual College Lab

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Colama is a virtual machine management application that implement a virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) for college computer labs.

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Colama: Powering Virtual College Lab

  1. 1. Colama: introducing Virtual College Lab Coriolis Technologies Pvt Ltd http://www.coriolis.co.in/colama 19-02-2009
  2. 2. What happens in a College Lab <ul><li>Familiarity with tools and languages </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Matlab, AutoCAD, C/C++, Java </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Needs specialized software configuration on computers </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Assignments (sessionals) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Practical projects for evaluation of students </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Needs personalized environment for each student. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Needs secure environment, backup etc. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Preferably portability of environment </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Practical examinations </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Time bound assignments in a controlled environment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Needs security, portability of environment </li></ul></ul>
  3. 3. IT activities for a typical College Lab <ul><li>Setup </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Install OS and patches, install software </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Create users </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>User privilege setting for the access to software </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Allocate disk quota for students using the same machine </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Routine administrative jobs </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Firewall rules, OS hardening </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Virus scans, Security updates, patching, backup </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Cleanup </li></ul><ul><ul><li>After course completion, recover the disk space by physically deleting data created by students. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Format if warranted. </li></ul></ul>
  4. 4. Pain points for traditional college labs <ul><li>Dedicated labs: under utilization of hardware resources </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Windows lab and Unix lab are physically different. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>AutoCAD/Matlab computers lie idle till a batch of AutoCAD/Matlab students arrives. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Fewer physical machines with desired software </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Students queuing up. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Less computer-time allotted for each student. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Hence, no heavy assignment can be given. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>No sync between home and lab computer </li></ul><ul><ul><li>We are not utilizing the compute power at students’ home desktop/laptop. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Huge loss of time (and often, data) in case of computer crash. </li></ul>
  5. 5. Pain points for traditional college labs <ul><li>Regular administrative activities for each machine </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Installation, configuration, security updates on individual machines </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>User access control </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Students should not be copying each other assignments </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Disk quota allocation for the m/cs used by multiple students. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Virus scans, software upgrades </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Data recovery, machine formatting for crashed machines </li></ul></ul><ul><li>IT administration of labs takes lot of bandwidth and hence, money. </li></ul>
  6. 6. Introducing Colama <ul><li>Colama creates and manages virtual infrastructure </li></ul><ul><li>What Colama does for college labs </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Drastic cut on capital and operational expenses </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Facilitates use of pre-configured virtual machines for training </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ensures portability and security </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Eases backup, restore </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Saves storage space </li></ul></ul><ul><li>What does that mean to students </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Access to their “own” machines which they can play with for much longer hours. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ability to quickly return machine to known state encourages experimentation, learning </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Increase their “value” in the job market </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Exposure to the state of the art technologies. </li></ul></ul></ul>
  7. 7. Colama benefits College administration <ul><li>How does Colama benefit the College Administration </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Zero installation and configuration time </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Just clone the required VM template from the VM library </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Portability and flexibility </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Use any lab for any purpose . </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Revision control of machines for basic to advanced programs </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Minimum storage and administration impact </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Scheduling labs and exams becomes lot easier. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Reduced security threats </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Delete the virtual machines and recover the storage after use by one batch of students </li></ul></ul></ul>
  8. 8. Colama benefits College administration <ul><li>How does Colama benefit the College Administration </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Reduce operational expenses for system administration </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Administration of physical machine with “just” OS installed </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>instead of m/cs with multiple software installed </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Quick cycle time between batches </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>No need to reuse the machines used by previous batches. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Fresh set of machines for every batch. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Just clone from pre-configured virtual machine templates. </li></ul></ul></ul>
  9. 9. Virtual College lab Teachers Students Colama training room manager Colama training machine repository Lab administrators LAN/SAN Colama managed hosts
  10. 10. Cost factors of today’s College lab <ul><li>Some costs are easier to measure </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Hardware and software costs. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Datacenter power and cooling costs. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Often referred to as “hard costs”. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Some costs are important but harder to quantify </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Cost for maintaining a IT team/partner </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Configuration and monitoring requirements of training rooms machines are higher than standard development environment. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Cost of managing and monitoring computers, cables, switches infrastructure </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Machine downtime affecting training schedule </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Often referred to as “soft costs”. </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. Cost reduction with virtual College lab <ul><li>Lower hardware costs </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Fewer machines required </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Just one low cost terminal per student, even if it is muti-tier/server application training </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Economical backup and disaster recovery. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Retirement of out-of-warranty hardware. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Lower IT costs </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Physical visits to the desktop endpoint by IT personnel are almost eliminated </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Software installations and upgrades are performed centrally </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Malware on the client is not possible </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Reduced downtime costs </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Less maintenance downtime. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Cost-effective high availability and DR. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>It may amount up to 50-70% cost reduction </li></ul>
  12. 12. We look forward to set up a virtual College lab for you. Thank you

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