Thursday, March 22, 2012

Using a VM for Remote Demos – Comments and Experiences?

I’ve heard a number of advantages and trade-offs regarding using virtual machines when presenting demos remotely (e.g., over WebEx or GoToMeeting).  One advantage is that using a VM eliminates (or hides) the possibility of the audience seeing IM’s or email previews and related notifications.  It also provides the ability to show a “clean” desktop.  On the other hand, using a VM may add substantial start-up time and/or complexity to operating remotely.

What experiences and recommendations can you share?


Anonymous said...

The biggest advantage is of course the speed since you're Virtual Desktop should be hosted at a data center with major bandwidth. Personally, I prefer to host locally though. I feel I have more control on the assets I'm showing. If you will be showing extensive video then absolutely go VD (virtual desktop) route. It may not appear absolutely great to you, but it will appear wonderful for everyone else. Of course, if you're a road warrior then using a VD is a better alternative because you know the connectivity will be great for the audience regardless of where you are.

Andy said...

The benefit of a VM is that it is easy to deploy and allows management of the demo system to be centralized. The drawback is that you need to spend some dollars on hardware to ensure that your laptop isn't overwhelmed.

My team recently moved to using a VM. We've both saved time and expanded the usage scenarios which we can demonstrate.

I think the real question is not whether to use VMs, but whether to use VMs in the cloud.

Pradip Shah said...

VMs help in setting up your demo well by saving the state of the VM. No more data cleanup after a demo.