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"One of the essential objectives for TVTC is to promote educational plans and make the best use of innovative technologies. Huawei's work helps us with this object, by building a new platform. We are enabled to promote a series of educational projects and prepare our students for the future." - TVTC manager, Dr. Ali bin Nasser Al-Ghafis
Technical and Vocational Training Corporation (TVTC) is the Saudi Arabian government institute for vocational education and training, the largest training institute in the Middle East. TVTC has 142 subordinate technical colleges, 250 training labs, 65 training centers, and more than 50,000 students.
TVTC previously deployed PCs as training terminals in 250 training labs and 65 training centers. In the last few years, the management of TVTC invested heavily in network multimedia interactive teaching, organized network teaching, and learning on demand. Many PCs in the lab were outdated because they were deployed a long time ago, these outdated PCs caused serious service interruption during network multimedia teaching. In most cases, PCs provided an optimal solution in terms of cost, performance, and function. However, PCs have the following disadvantages and inconveniences in the actual teaching activities:
PCs provide a variety of ports, such as universal serial bus (USB) ports, serial ports, and parallel ports, for connecting external devices. If no effective management measure is taken, unauthorized devices may connect to PCs and steal data and teaching materials. PCs are also vulnerable to virus attacks. The slow running of PCs caused deteriorated experience of teachers and students. Once a 'blue screen of death' or breakdown occurred, normal teaching activities could be seriously affected and teaching accidents could be caused.
TVTC organizes specialists and develops a large number of excellent teaching materials each year. In addition, during the actual teaching activities, teachers and students collect a large number of teaching materials based on teaching practice. By sharing on traditional file servers, teaching materials were difficult to be delivered to PC terminals in training institutes all over the country.
With PC hardware scattered, the centralized PC management was difficult to be realized. The routine O&M workload was heavy, including anti-virus software package upgrade, application software upgrade, and PC OS upgrade and patching. In addition, different types of PC hardware and varied user requirements for desktop environment made PC desktop standardization more difficult.
To resolve problems caused by outdated PCs, the management of TVTC considered the feasibility of Huawei FusionAccess Desktop Cloud Solution to replace traditional PCs. The desktop cloud technology uses a server system to carry desktop images. In this manner, resources can be centralized to improve the manageability of the desktop computing infrastructure.
In consideration of the great number of branch offices and students all over the country, the management of TVTC put forward the following requirements:
With the development of network communication technologies and rich contents of video teaching, HD network video communication technology is used more and more broadly in teaching at TVTC. Education modes such as online teaching and on demand multimedia teaching materials required the solution to support HD video broadcasts.
The popularity of distance teaching required the solution to support interactive teaching activities between teachers and students, such as online discussion and Q&A.
The solution needed to provide routine O&M such as remote patching, upgrading, and courseware pushing for teaching terminals.
During the communication with major desktop cloud manufacturers, Huawei FusionAccess Desktop Cloud Solution drew TVTC's attention. After the first phase of the pilot project for about 600 VMs, Huawei FusionAccess Desktop Cloud Solution deployed VDIs in four TVTC colleges, resolving problems caused by traditional PCs and fulfilling the new requirements made by the management of TVTC. After fierce competition, Huawei devices were deployed as the 13,200 VMs for the second phase of the project, covering all branch offices of TVTC and becoming the largest education desktop cloud in the world.
Huawei’s FusionAccess Desktop Cloud Solution includes servers, access switches, storage devices, virtualization software, desktop cloud software, and cloud terminals. The solution features high compatibility, high performance, high reliability, overall delivery, and professional maintenance teams. More details about the advantages are shown as follow:
In terms of security, Huawei offered an end-to-end solution that covered training terminal access, user rights authentication, user behavior audit, encrypted data transmission, content encryption, and rights management. The solution centrally stored data in the backend data center, but not the frontend office terminals (terminals had no hard disks), to ensure the data security.
In terms of HD video teaching, Huawei CT5000 was deployed as the desktop cloud terminal. The CT5000 depends on Huawei’s HD video thin client code solution and uses AMD Fusion platform design. The CT5000 is an energy-efficient product with a total power consumption of less than 10W. The CT5000 uses WES7 as the basic OS and is fully compatible with HDP and ICA virtualization applications. By using CT5000, users can enjoy faster and better OA office experience. In addition, the DVI-I interfaces of CT5000 support dual display. Users can visit YouTube by using a 60-inch HD LCD and view 1080p videos smoothly.
Huawei offered a unified O&M platform and realized the unified and centralized management of VMs. The O&M platform provided a rich set of functions, including unified delivery and centralized upgrade of desktops, unified release and centralized upgrade of application software, and centralized management of VMs on the system. Compared with a conventional PC office system, the desktop cloud attains a tenfold increase in O&M efficiency.
After the deployment of Huawei’s FusionAccess Desktop Solution, TVTC enjoyed the following benefits:
The desktop cloud system is a fully meshed system. Without a local hard disk, cloud terminals do not store data. All data is stored in the cloud data center. The write function of USB ports is disabled by default. Read and write policies can be controlled by the desktop cloud management system FusionManager. Illegal access by movable storage media is effectively prevented.
By deploying FusionAccess Desktop Cloud Solution, excellent teaching materials are centrally deployed, allowing one-click push. Students can view all teaching materials needed for the day's courses when they enable teaching terminals.
FusionAccess Desktop Cloud Solution supports new educating activities such as online teaching, HD teaching videos on demand, and online interaction.
The unified O&M platform provides quick service provisioning and centralized management of software in the office system. Compared to traditional office system on PCs, Huawei’s FusionAccess Desktop Cloud Solution improves O&M efficiency by more than ten times.