Feeds

Dell flogs its 'zero client'

PC-over-IP rolls into FX100 boxes

Boost IT visibility and business value

Dell has unveiled its first "zero client" device for enterprise customers who think traditional thin clients are fatty, fatty 2x4s.

The FX100 Zero Client has no x86 CPU, no hard disk drive, and no image to manage. Instead, it simply acts as a terminal to a virtual environment running on a remote server.

The system was previously paired only with a Dell Precision R5400 Rack Workstation as a one-to-one link, but it now ships with firmware supporting VMware View 4.0. The VMware software sports a new communications protocol called PC-over-IP that enables real-time screen rendering and can purportedly scale to tens of thousands of virtualized desktops.

That means multiple FX100 devices can now connect to a single server. The fan-less, driver-less box itself handles only base input and output, like audio, USB, DVI, display, mouse, and keyboard connections. According to Dell, the FX100 consumes just 30 watts.

Despite the minimal hardware involved, Dell's zero client price tag doesn't exactly go easy on the zeros. The device starts at $500 a pop. The remote access host card is $300. The question, of course, is whether plugging bare-bones zero client hardware into a centralized server will save money in the long haul versus buying a fleet of cheapo desktops for the workforce.

Dell enters the zero client fray against a host of smaller firms and startups such as Pano Logic, ClearCube Technology, and Wyse Technology.

Concurrent with the FX100 announcement, Dell announced a new high-performance desktop PC line, the Optiplex 980.

The Optiplex 980 adds Intel's new Core i5 and i7 processors into the Dell biz computer market. In addition to offering a solid state drive option, it also promises to please the Earth Mother with a "90 per cent energy efficient power supply" and containing more post-consumer recycled content than previous generations.

Optiplex 980 boxes are available in mini-tower, desktop, and small form factor chassis variants. They will become available worldwide "in the coming weeks," starting at $807, according to Dell. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
The Return of BSOD: Does ANYONE trust Microsoft patches?
Sysadmins, you're either fighting fires or seen as incompetents now
Microsoft: Azure isn't ready for biz-critical apps … yet
Microsoft will move its own IT to the cloud to avoid $200m server bill
Oracle reveals 32-core, 10 BEEELLION-transistor SPARC M7
New chip scales to 1024 cores, 8192 threads 64 TB RAM, at speeds over 3.6GHz
Docker kicks KVM's butt in IBM tests
Big Blue finds containers are speedy, but may not have much room to improve
US regulators OK sale of IBM's x86 server biz to Lenovo
Now all that remains is for gov't offices to ban the boxes
Gartner's Special Report: Should you believe the hype?
Enough hot air to carry a balloon to the Moon
Flash could be CHEAPER than SAS DISK? Come off it, NetApp
Stats analysis reckons we'll hit that point in just three years
Dell The Man shrieks: 'We've got a Bitcoin order, we've got a Bitcoin order'
$50k of PowerEdge servers? That'll be 85 coins in digi-dosh
prev story

Whitepapers

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup
IT departments are embracing cloud backup, but there’s a lot you need to know before choosing a service provider. Learn all the critical things you need to know.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.