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This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties, and confers no rights. The opinions expressed within are my own and should not be attributed to any other Individual, Company or the one I work for. I just happen to be a classic techie who is passionate about getting things to work as they should do (and are sometimes advertised and marketed as being able to?) and when I can I drop notes here to help others falling in to the same traps that I have fallen in to. If this has helped then please pass it on - if you feel that I have commented in error or disagree then please feel free to discuss with me either publically or privately? Cheers, Dave
Thin Clients, VDI and Linux integration from the front lines.... Raw and sometimes unedited notes based on my experiences with VMware, Thin Clients, Linux etc.

Now this really intriguing, this startup appears to have everything going for it? Certainly from the roll call of people involved as well as the funding it seems like it's heading in the right direction? And with the anticipated growth in the Thin Client Market it has a good a chance as anyone else?

Whether or not it will actullay replace or take away any business from the traditional Thin Client vendors like Neoware, Wyse or HP remains to be seen - as I can see that the prerequisite for adding a chip at the Server end will rule out the installation in any existing Server Farms.

But I can see this working really well in a Set Top Box play for the home entertainment side of things where HD can be delivered with very little bandwidth - still it will be interesting to see how it works out?

 

Is Teradici's PC-Over-IP The Next Big Thing?

A fabless start-up hidden away out of sight in British Columbia that been rethinking the problem of thin clients

 

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There's a fabless semiconductor start-up hidden away out of sight in Vancouver, British Columbia that been rethinking the problem of thin clients and the so-called PC Blade for the last three years.

And now that it's got the necessary silicon, firmware and fancy signal processing algorithms in hand - along with a couple of early adopters like IBM and ClearCube - and it's shipping pre-production product ahead of initial volumes in August - it's ready to come out from under the radar and lay its cards on the table, so to speak.

The name of this prodigy is Teradici Corporation and it calls its widgetry PC-over-IP technology, meaning it can physically separate the computer from the user long distance.

It claims it can deliver a true PC experience from the data center - where it puts the guts of the enterprise PC - over any IP network to the desktop - which it reduces to a display, a keyboard, a mouse and a gismo that, being Canadian, it calls a puck 'cause, well, it looks like a puck.

It says it's even solved the thin client's notorious problems with printing let alone mastering the computer display compression and low latency propagation over IP networks that have evaded thin clients, reproducing a real PC experience complete with sophisticated graphics and surround sound.

The solution basically consists of two Teradici chips - one PC-over-IP processor at the host, which can be a workstation, a rack-mounted server or more likely a blade server, and the other in the puck.

Since the Teradici chip goes on the host's motherboard sandwiched in between the Southbridge and the GPU so the host thinks it's a USB controller, you can see why this is an OEM play. Teradici won't be selling direct.

For starters, IBM is going to ship a Teradici-based BladeCenter "Workstation Blade" it previewed in May at PartnerWorld this month and ClearCube, which has been laboring in the PC blade vineyards for the last seven years and says it suddenly finds it hot on the back of Teradici whispers, says it's going to add Teradici widgetry starting next quarter and use its own Sentral management software.

Now, saying Teradici's solution comes down to two high-speed slivers of silicon makes it sound like a piece of cake. Well, as you might imagine, in wrestling its widgetry into two chips, Teradici has wrestled more than a few bears including a law of nature that may not make the solution viable at distances of greater than 2,500 miles between host and client.

Not and still fool the user into thinking he's working locally - (your basic "is it real or is it Memorex" test, according to Teradici finance VP Sam Davison).

Teradici will have to see what can be done to extend the IP conversion and compression/decompression algorithms in its Tera Image Engine, but 2,500 miles is a vast improvement over what's been available - sometimes a short thousand feet - and as a proof point, Teradici can wave around the 28 patent filings it's made with the US Patent office and the 20 others it's got in process.

Other than that it's promising the rich media experience of a local PC and limitless USB peripherals without the typical security and compliance issues, data management headaches, support and maintenance hurdles and newfound power and heat concerns that go with a free-standing PC.

Teradici's operating system-indifferent approach turns the desktop into a completely driver-less, stateless device with no fan that takes a comparatively little 15W of power to run (down from your typical 300W). The user is provided with HD audio and can have four monitors on his desk if he likes. But the desktop's real working parts are back in a secure cage in the data center, which send out packets over a 10/100/1000 Ethernet link to the client.

Teradici's algorithms de-tox the impact of dropped packets.

The start-up says the natural customer for its technology is the company that want to gain "complete control over its entire PC and workstation deployment," which of course is pretty much everybody in the universe, but it figures first takers will be traders, banks, manufacturers and designers, entertainment and animation folk, healthcare professionals and government agencies that for practical reasons like securing their data, eliminating malware and alleviating the heat and noise at their desks.

The advantages are of course in aggregating individual desktops and gathering all of one's applications and data storage in a single location.

Teradici has collected $34 million in funding - that's in US greenbacks, by the way - across two rounds led by Alloy Venture and says it's got enough money to last into 2009. And it has great expectations since 90 million PCs are supposed to ship worldwide next year.

It didn't call itself "monster" for nothing.

Apparently we can expect Teradici to turn up in some of those HDTV home media solutions.

The Teradici team, now up to 55 people, includes CEO Dan Cordingley, an Intel refugee; sales, marketing and business development VP Mike DeNeffe, who hails from Wyse, Transmeta, NEC and Epson; silicon engineering VP Maher Fahmi, who came out of PMC-Sierra; chief architect Dave Hobbs, who used to be CTO at Spectrum Signal Processing; and software engineering VP Ken Unger, who used to be director of engineering for VoIP products at Broadcom.

Kevin Huscroft, the founder of PMC-Sierra, is chairman and Dell's former CTO Randy Grove is on the board. So is the managing director of Merrill Lynch's global infrastructure solutions Jim Noble. One of the company's advisors is Chris Hipp, the guy who co-founded RLX, the first blade company.

Posted on Tuesday, June 26, 2007 10:24 AM Citrix , VMware and other Virtualization tools | Back to top


Comments on this post: Is Teradici's PC-Over-IP The Next Big Thing in Thin Clients? maybe, maybe not, the requirement of a Signal Processing Chip at each end might be a tough hurdle?

# re: Is Teradici's PC-Over-IP The Next Big Thing in Thin Clients? maybe, maybe not, the requirement of a Signal Processing Chip a
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I've been testing these for three weeks now for a company that wants to resell them with our products, like IBM. Here what I've found:

1. Cannot game on it at resolutions higher than 800x600
2. Gets pixelated at high resolution and complicated textures moving aroundm this occurs with CAD software
3. Sessions drop out, seemingly randomly on our network
4. It is expensive. Adds like $700 on top of the cost of the computer running it. Thats not counting the extra networking required.

I really don't see this taking off in the corporate envirionment.

Set top boxes for cable companies is another thing entirely...
Left by Ryan on Feb 23, 2008 5:34 AM

# re: Is Teradici's PC-Over-IP The Next Big Thing in Thin Clients? maybe, maybe not, the requirement of a Signal Processing Chip a
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These proprietary hardware solutions are another attempt at locking users into proprietary environments.

We conducted a two month pilot evaluating solutions from different vendors and went with Elusiva VDI product. They offer an extension to existing RDP stack much like Citrix. It does two-way sound, USB redirection, includes universal printer driver and they are promising OpenGL and DirectX in a couple of months.

Software work with Windows, Linux and Java clients. We are running HP T55xx XPe thin terminals. For now, it is only a small project - we rolled it out for our risk management department. Still, unless someone shows us another reasonably priced product, we will deploy to every desktop.

Ganesh.
Left by Anon on Apr 19, 2008 7:46 AM

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