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CESI 2016 - DOTIE Project

Presentation highlighting the work being undertaken
by

Trevor Collins

on 27 February 2016

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Transcript of CESI 2016 - DOTIE Project

DOTIE Project (1)
Sourcing second-hand ICT equipment
Refurbish units received
Distribute them to local schools
c.300+ units made available through our efforts so far
School Wi-Fi
School Websites
Staff Training Resources
DOTIE Project #2
Taking the business model that we are currently using and creating a large scale, town-based ICT system using VDI.
Done in conjunction with local firms
Large-scale finance required
Research opportunities
Thinking 'outside the box'
Future-proof system
Google Apps
Email system: Every student and teacher member has a @bgsmail.ie account
Whole-school approach to communication
Using the Google Classroom online learning environment (Staff training)
Use Google Apps to maintain staff website. (Staff access only)
Major tool for internal communication.
Noticeboard and calendar
Google Drive resources
Bandon CoderDojo
Donating Old Technology Into Education
Format:
BGS VDI
Would be possible to have desktops for an entire region in a central data center

Users could access these devices in school and at home



VDI =

IaaS

Currently have private cloud on local servers
Any extension will involve remote servers

No reason why we couldn’t host a community hub

VDI =

IaaS

Schematic of VDI infrastructure

VDI =

IaaS

Ease of use?
With the client installed users can access their desktop from any device, anywhere on or off campus
Ideal for BYOD
Allows for access to school software from home
Do not require new machines, old repurposed ones will do
Users access desktops with specific applications installed for their use
All desktops in a pool are identical, with Persona added if required;
Ideal for ICT training and collaboration in a school
Universally positive response from staff and students
Virtual Desktop Infrastructure

Cloud Computing (VDI)

Easy to manage

Staff centrally manage all desktops

Desktops of any specifications can be formed

To maintain all desktops in a pool only the golden image needs to be updated

Software can be added and rolled out to all desktops in minutes

Easy to make specific pool of desktops for each type of users

Users cannot introduce viruses or malware as the desktop is refreshed after logoff

With the introduction of thin clients management is further reduced
Virtual Desktop Infrastructure

Cloud Computing (VDI)

Virtual Desktop Infrastructure
Cloud Computing (VDI)
Networked PCs in specialist rooms & classrooms
Shared storage
Servers for authentication, file server etc.

Traditional Deployment

Because of these issues we decided to look for alternative ways of deploying computing.

We instead installed a Virtual Desktop Infrastructure solution utilising VMware software, running on Dell servers and incorporating a EMC SAN

This is the first such installation in an Irish secondary school
Networked PCs in specialist rooms & classrooms
Shared storage
Servers for authentication, file server etc.

Management problems

Difficultly in accessing 120 PCs
Maintaining/installing applications
Maintenance
Life cycle of PC's
Costs

Traditional Deployment

In this section, we’d like to:
Explain the context for what we created
Introduce VDI
Outline advantages of VDI

Worked with ICS over a number of year is the provision of ECDL

ICS noted we utilise a Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) solution to provide computing in the school

Bandon Grammar School

Darren Platts dplatts@bgsmail.ie
Trevor Collins, tcollins@bgsmail.ie

Case Study: Virtual Desktop Infrastructure

Bandon Grammar School, Co. Cork

Conclusion

The school’s VDI solution consists of centralised desktops, accessible from any device inside or outside the school

Administration is significantly easier than in a ‘traditional’ deployment

Old PCs can be recycled to act as clients accessing the virtual desktops

Very compatible with BYOD

Our experiences suggest that VDI is a viable alternative for schools and training providers

IaaS will be a feature of computing in schools in the future

It would be possible to provide access to virtual desktops stored in a community cloud on remote servers

The VMware VDI solution has proven very successful in the school

Install desktops on a centralised server

Virtual Desktop

Cloud Computing (VDI)
Efficiency problems
Usage: much of the time not all of the computers are in use, wasting processing power
After 4.00 or in the Summer months the computers sit idle
Each computer has virtually a replica hard drive!

Networked PCs in specialist rooms & classrooms
Shared storage
Servers for authentication, file server etc.
Traditional Deployment

First examined a traditional model of computing deployment

Essentially presented with a green field site and a challenge to find and implement a suitable ICT infrastructure for the school

School has recently expanded

440 – 670 students
New building erected
Desire for 4 computer rooms
Expansion of ECDL delivery to students
ICT to support teaching & learning


BGS is a co-ed voluntary secondary school; 670 students, 48 teachers

Context for activities undertaken
Staff & Students desktops are customised with Persona

Groups can be made with access to certain software.
Persona management:
However in addition to the desktop from a pool, users get their own Persona profile.
This is configurable to contain application data, theme settings, documents, browsing history etc
Each time a user logs on they get the new refreshed desktop from the pool.

Different pools of desktops can be created from different groups of users, e.g. staff, student, ECDL, young scientist etc
.
Virtual Desktop Infrastructure

Cloud Computing (VDI)

Adaptability?
Can we deploy new software quickly?
How is this compatible with BYOD or 1:1 initiatives?
Can we customise the infrastructure to serve needs of staff and students?

Networked PCs in specialist rooms & classrooms
Shared storage
Servers for authentication, file server etc.

Traditional Deployment

Usage difficulties
In order to access specific applications, user has to be present at machine
Unless uniform installation of operating system & applications, end user may have difficulties
Uniform provision is essential for training e.g. ECDL

Networked PCs in specialist rooms & classrooms
Shared storage
Servers for authentication, file server etc.

Traditional Deployment

Darren Platts, dplatts@bgsmail.ie
Trevor Collins, tcollins@bgsmail.ie

Acknowledgments:
Dr Edward Gash, Mr Gordon O’Reilly VMware
Staff & Students of BGS

All desktops are stored centrally
Created from a single image
Users connect from any device
All users get identical desktops
After use, the desktop is refreshed to its original state ready for next user
Computer cannot get a virus
Info can be accessed from ANYWHERE once a small 'linking' program has been downloaded


Virtual Desktop Infrastructure

Cloud Computing (VDI)
1. Who we are
2. What we've done
3. How we did it
4. DOTIE project Part 1
5. Google Classroom
6. Bandon CoderDojo
7. BGS ICT Curriculum
8. VDI Infrastructure
9. DOTIE project Part 2
New location
Age group & numbers
What we do: (Scratch, 3D design, HTML, Python & Web design)
Making presentations
On-line fun with games

Key words:
Golden Image
Clone
Virtual (Cloud-based) computer
N.B MASSIVE economies of scale once initial capital outlay has been made!
Trevor Collins. B.A., H.D.E., M.Ed.
Darren Platts. B.Sc
ALL work done for FREE!
Need:
Change in mind-set
Gov Dept's to support it
Promote the concept
Using Google App's
Background to the future...
Tradition
Boards of management want to see ICT equipment
Depreciation on hardware is a big issue
Teachers need ICT skills
Teachers need to use ICT as part of their personal lives.
We need a system better than BYOD
Imagine
A system that is centrally run by experts
At minimum cost to schools
With minimum administration time spent by teachers
Allowing schools to have complete control over the programs used
Enabling schools to customise the needs of the student with the school infrastructure.
Enabling schools to use second hand ICT equipment thus saving schools thousands of euro
A system that is device independent!


Key Questions
Can this system work?
Is the system financially viable on a large scale?
Will a large scale Virtual Desktop Infrastructure make a huge difference the quality of teaching and learning in Irish Schools?
Most Definitely:
YES!
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