Howdy! My name is Scott Anderson and I’ve been doing “IT Stuff” for over 25 years now with high level certifications in Microsoft & Citrix technologies. Well… more like 35+ years of IT if you go back to 1982 when my Dad dropped about $1200 for a RadioShack TRS-80 Model III with 48K of Ram and _dual_ single density floppy drives (I could boot TRS-DOS and run Apps too, without having to swap floppy disks!!). It was then when I fell in love with computing – managing data – making things go.
From there, I went to Kilgore Jr. College and got my A.S. in Data Processing and moved on to Texas A&M to get a degree in Computer Science. Sadly, after a semester and a half, we both mutually parted ways on the basis of “not meeting expectations” of each other. I found I wasn’t cut out to be a “coder” or Electrical Engineer (although it would have been cool), and also found that high level classes that are taught by TA’s or Professors that are focused on research and writing their next awesome book so they can get tenure. That didn’t make for a very good educational experience.
That’s when my education took a detour through the world of Recreation, Park & Tourism Sciences at Texas A&M. It’s there that I found how to apply my Analytical skills to the research process, having had the opportunities to work with several gifted Professors on the Research Methodology, Data Collection & Analysis side of the world through the end of my Bachelor’s and on into my Master’s program. SPSS & SAS were my friends and with the use of DBase IV, I could slice a rather large data set into the appropriate pieces for useful statistical analysis.
After graduating from Texas A&M with my M.S., I headed to the “Silicon Prairie” which is also known as The University of Illinois, to study what else but… Leisure Studies. Thanks to a Graduate Assistantship working on Departmental computers and servers, I learned that I was more interested in working with end users and helping them use computers instead of the Social Theory of Leisure (no offense, Jack Kelly).
So after dropping out of PhD. school, it was time to get a real job. After 10.5 years of post-High School education, it was time. My first real job was doing help desk for CSC-Intelicom in Champaign, IL and my first experience with VDI. This was in 1996, folks!! CSC had a SCO-Unix server running Hydra (pre-Terminal Services) and end users were accessing Windows 3.11 desktops from mainframe CRT terminals with 10MB Ethernet cards with BootP eproms. This worked famously, until they got a MS Office Macro virus inside the Hydra virtual system via Outlook, and no one knew what to do – it was virtualized and running on SCO-Unix, so we couldn’t just boot the Hydra system to a floppy and clean it up… Fortunately, I figured that if the macro virus came in via email, so can the cleanup. We emailed the virus cleaner to one of the employees using the Hydra environment, detached it from Outlook and ran it inside of the virtual environment. Problem solved.
I’ve worked several different places since then and I have been working the last 15 years with Dell ProSupport. Initially, I did Microsoft Platform, MS & Citrix VDI plus VDI EUC support for 12 years, and swapped over to VMWare Hypervisor & Horizon VDI support 3 years ago. But, I still use the same common sense approach to troubleshooting problems: lots of questions, define the scope, then get to work fixing it.
My plan with this blog is to share some answers and research that I’ve been doing with Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) so that someone won’t have to “recreate the wheel” or have to dig in 46 different places to get enough information to do something right the first time.
Thanks for reading,