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Most of the time, the decision makers at a client site, those responsible for deciding whether or not to move forward with a technical project, are not technical people.

We aren’t expecting clients to be technical.  We work really well in this situation.  We have decades of combined experience, and we want to apply it practically and effectively.  The end result, however, is often a complete upgrade to a users computing environment.  We regularly do what is sometimes termed a “forklift” upgrade, where every major component in an environment is replaced with a pallet of new gear, a whole forklift full…

Users are used to their computers.  They have the programs in the same place, they access the shares in the same way, the printers are where they  expect.  When we do these forklift upgrades, things are mostly the same.  The programs are still there, but they might be in a slightly different spot.  The version of Windows may be upgraded, and look and feel different.  It’s like getting a new car almost.  If you’ve driven a Camry for the last five years, and you go buy a new one, Toyota does a good job of keeping the experience similar, but the gas pedal might feel different, and the radio now has Nav and touchscreen where there used to be dials, and the heater is temperature based instead of little red tick marks.  It’s a Camry, but it’s a new Camry.

Everybody loves a new car.  It smells new, and it’s faster, and it gets better gas mileage, and the paint is perfect, and it’s easy to get used to those little differences.

Getting a new computer is the same.  It boots up RIGHT NOW, and it’s fast, and it has a red light instead of a green one, and it works all day long and you don’t have to reboot it.  And now, with virtualization, we can buy one server, and provide a computing environment to dozens of users.  Imagine buying one Camry, but through the new Toyota magic, ten people could drive that Camry at the same time!  They could drive it to ten different locations, and one person could go 100mph, and one 25mph, and one could park it and take a nap in the drivers seat, and one could crash it into a wall, and none of them would affect the others.

That’s what virtualization does.  We don’t have to buy one server to do one job any more.  We can buy one server, and it’s a little more expensive, but it does more than ten used to, or 20 in some cases.  But imagine telling a user how it works…

We have a new Camry for you to drive today.  This Camry is faster than the old Camry, and in fact you are sharing this Camry with ten other drivers, at the exact same time, via magic.  We can actually make a copy of this Camry, with your personal preferences, every time you open your garage, and tomorrow it will be brand new again, and ten other people will also have one.  Oh, and you can actually drive this Camry anywhere you are, as long as you have your keys with you.  You don’t have to bring the Camry, just the key, and you can drive it anywhere.

Also, if your Camry breaks down, just shut it off, let us know, and we’ll have another one for you in just a minute.  You might have to choose your radio station again, but otherwise, it’s identical to the old Camry.

And if you don’t like Camrys, but you want Ferraris instead?  We can do that.  Of course Ferraris cost more, but if you are used to winning races, and you need the benefits that Ferraris bring, then we can build you Ferraris, and now we can give you ten Ferraris for what it used to cost for three Camrys.

Sure, the analogy breaks down eventually, but the point is that we are letting you drive differently now.  You can have performance, and reliability, and you can drive a brand new car every day, and you don’t have to worry about the things you used to.  You still have to hold the wheel, and you still have to watch where you are going, and inept or careless driving will still get you in trouble.

Virtualization is awesome.  We can build systems that support ten times the number of users, with multiples of performance and capacity, and we can do it for less than ever.  And if you MUST have systems that just cannot go down, ever, then we can do that too, and it’s still less expensive than ever.

Virtualization, and Disaster Recovery, and the availability of higher than ever bandwidth can enable solutions that small countries couldn’t implement just a few years ago.

We can give you virtual servers and workstations.  We can build garages, and all the cars to park in them, and they are indistinguishable from real physical cars and garages, except they cost less, use fewer resources, and everything can fit in the garage you used to park one car in.

There are a lot of you that haven’t bought a car in a while… Maybe you are driving an economy car from 1985, after the oil embargo, and it’s small, and it’s cheap to maintain, and you are used to the fact that it won’t really go much over the speed limit.  But they just raised the speed limit.  And your car isn’t safe anymore.  In fact, you could be driving along at any time, and thieves can just take over, remotely, and use your car to crash into a lot of other cars, and blame you for it.

It’s time to upgrade.

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