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Warwickshire County Council offers technical support to 249 schools in the United Kingdom (U.K.). As computers become core teaching and learning tools, the council needs to provide solutions that serve the increasing demand for technology for students, even as budgets become tighter. The council also wanted to build an infrastructure for students to access the network from home. By adopting Windows Server 2008 R2 with the Windows 7 operating system, the council streamlined centralised services, and immediately saved an estimated £100,000 (U.S.$148,000) a year in running costs, while decreasing its carbon footprint. The resulting infrastructure is now ready to provide the extra bandwidth needed as schools move towards equipping every student with a home computer. Ease of management means the council can increase the number of computers by four times without additional operating costs.
Council Gears Up to Give Students Mobile Computers and Saves Thousands of Pounds Overview ―Instead of asking if they can have an application to Country or Region: United Kingdom Number of Employees: 15,500 use next term, teachers can request applications Industry: Education—Primary and secondary schools and receive them before their next lessons.‖ Chris Page, Technical Development Manager, Warwickshire County Council Customer Profile The Warwickshire County Council Central ICT Development Service employs 35 staff who focus on providing ICT services to local schools—from technical support, Warwickshire County Council offers technical support to 249 to deploying advanced technology. schools in the United Kingdom (U.K.). As computers become Business Situation core teaching and learning tools, the council needs to provide The council needed to upgrade its solutions that serve the increasing demand for technology for infrastructure to fulfil the need for faster technology in classrooms. It also wanted students, even as budgets become tighter. The council also to build the foundations to support wanted to build an infrastructure for students to access the computers at home for every student. network from home. By adopting Windows Server 2008 R2 with Solution the Windows 7 operating system, the council streamlined Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 were deployed to provide cost-effective, centralised services, and immediately saved an estimated progressive technology in Warwickshire £100,000 (U.S.$148,000) a year in running costs, while decreasing schools. its carbon footprint. The resulting infrastructure is now ready to Benefits provide the extra bandwidth needed as schools move towards £100,000 saved a year Simplified adoption equipping every student with a home computer. Ease of Increased efficiency management means the council can increase the number of Improved learning experience Anywhere, anytime access computers by four times without additional operating costs. Situation value to schools. He spent a day with his Warwickshire, in the West Midlands, in team at Microsoft U.K. headquarters in England, is best known as the birthplace of Reading, evaluating how Windows Server William Shakespeare. In fact, many great 2008 R2 would best fit the council’s needs. literary figures were born or educated in the county, including George Elliot, Several schools in Warwickshire had an Elizabeth Gaskell, and Philip Larkin. It’s no immediate use for Windows Server 2008 R2 surprise that quality education has long and Windows 7. Microsoft recommended been a tradition in Warwickshire, home to Microsoft Gold Certified Partner OCSL to the oldest surviving boys’ school in the help the team conduct a pilot programme country. at Ash Green School, using 25 Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) suites Education continues to be an important connected to a single server. Anthony facet of life in Warwickshire as schools Lander, Senior Systems Engineer at embrace 21st-century teaching and Warwickshire County Council, says: ―We’ve ―One of the most learning tools. Warwickshire County built up a good Microsoft skill set over the Council Central ICT Development Service years, but we didn’t have expertise in VDI obvious things I has risen to this challenge since 1999 by technology. Working with OCSL was a noticed about the offering schools the latest technology valuable experience because its experts available, with a strong emphasis on could fill in the gaps in our knowledge.‖ Windows Server 2008 Microsoft products. Chris Page, Technical Development Manager at Warwickshire After an initial meeting in July 2009, the R2 adoption was the County Council, says: ―ICT has become so complete deployment took just six weeks. smooth deployment. important to the process of learning that OCSL spent a week at the Warwickshire on one occasion a school closed for the day County Council office reviewing Warwickshire can now because the technology wasn’t working.‖ requirements for deployment. The OCSL team then documented all requirements for replicate it with It was clear that ICT was becoming mission- the Warwickshire team to follow and wrote confidence at other critical in the classroom. As the council a technical white paper. Jane Ayres, faced increasing pressure to provide better Director at OCSL, says: ―Although this schools.‖ and faster technology, its strategy has particular implementation was niche, it was expanded to ensure that every student can very quick. Our main task was to integrate Jane Ayres, Director, OCSL have an individual home computer within the school’s custom-built applications, and the next two years. Any solution had to be make sure they were working in the way flexible enough to allow for demand the client needed them to work. We caused by this expansion of provision. It virtualised the applications on Hyper-V, also had to be scalable enough to use in a ensuring they will always be available.‖ variety of learning environments. Considering the limited resources in the Lander and his team deployed the system public sector, any solution adopted had to at the school and trained the on-site be cost effective, while also supporting the technician within two weeks. Now students council’s sustainability agenda. and staff can access Windows 7 anywhere on campus and from home. Students using Solution the computer lab equipped with VDI suites When Page heard about the Windows see their own individual desktops as if they Server 2008 R2 early adopter programme, each had their own computer. he immediately realised it would offer good Central services at Warwickshire County Choosing Microsoft subscription licensing Council Central ICT Development Service for education—the Schools Agreement— are running on Windows Server 2008 R2. further adds to the savings, while ICT staff can now monitor and maintain the virtualising applications gives schools systems at Ash Green and the four other access to more software while costing less. schools that have already deployed Windows Server 2008 R2. Windows Ease of Deployment Simplifies Adoption Automated Installation Kit and the A familiar Microsoft interface combined Microsoft Deployment Toolkit add low- with the expertise of the in-house and touch installation features to the system, so OCSL team simplified deployment. ―One of ICT administrators can deploy systems from the most obvious things I noticed about a central location. the Windows Server 2008 R2 adoption was the smooth deployment,‖ says Ayres. Benefits ―Warwickshire can now replicate it with Streamlined centralised services provide a confidence at other schools.‖ ―Twenty virtualised cost-effective way to put progressive technology into Warwickshire schools. This ease of deployment was an important servers run on one Technology advances increase more rapidly factor—fast turnaround is paramount in physical server, so in every year along with educational schools, where all deployments need to be requirements, so the flexibility and completed during the school holidays. addition to cutting scalability of Windows Server 2008 R2 is critical. As educators, schools often feel Streamlined Management Saves Time electricity costs, we’ll responsible for preserving resources for and Increases Efficiency buy less hardware— future generations, promoting the green IT A centralised system, running a virtualised agenda as much as possible. environment saves valuable resources and and those aren’t the improves the services schools receive. For Efficient Systems Save More Than example, Warwickshire can now employ only savings we’re £100,000 a Year one person to monitor filtering systems for going to see.‖ Virtualised systems run more servers with 200 schools. The council could increase the less equipment, decreasing power and number of computers four times without Chris Page, Technical Development cooling costs by an estimated £100,000 additional operating costs. Alwyn Waine, Manager, Warwickshire County Council (U.S.$148,000) a year. ―Twenty virtualised Service Development Officer for servers run on one physical server, so in Warwickshire County Council, says: ―This addition to cutting electricity costs, we’ll way, we deliver top-quality services with buy less hardware—and those aren’t the significant savings.‖ only savings we’re going to see,‖ says Page. With Windows Automated Installation Kit The council will also save money on and Microsoft Deployment Toolkit, equipment at each school. Windows 7 Warwickshire can create a central image needs less memory resource to operate, so with applications delivered by App-V, and personal and portable computers will not deploy it without having to visit every need to be replaced as often. With VDI desktop. ―This saves a lot of time,‖ says technology, whole classrooms of students Page. ―With App-V, instead of asking if they can work individually from one physical can have an application to use next term, server hosting multiple operating systems teachers can request applications and with multiple monitors—resulting in even receive them before their next lessons.‖ more savings. Streamlined System Increases online, while administrative data and Productivity and Improves Learning student records are stored and accessed Experience electronically. Combined, Windows 7 and Streamlined systems in Windows 7 make it Windows Server 2008 R2 provide extra easy to access files and frequently used security features for important data and applications. Tasks such as printing and applications. saving files are also quicker and easier. Staff spend less time on administrative tasks and more time improving the learning experience for students. When lessons are conducted using classroom computers, many students download the same files from the school’s central server at the same time. ―With ―With Windows 7 we Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2, we can use BranchCache to reduce strain can provide a secure, on the network by cutting down on the consistent user amount of traffic. Now, without computer delays, teachers can keep up the pace of environment. Users will lessons, and students are less likely to be distracted,‖ says Lander. be able to log on at home or in the airport Anywhere, Anytime Access Improves the Learning experience exactly as they do at When teachers and students take work home with them, the DirectAccess feature school.‖ provided by Windows 7 and Windows Chris Page, Technical Development Server 2008 R2 will reduce the time it takes Manager, Warwickshire County Council to log on to the system remotely. Page says: ―With Windows 7 we can provide a secure, consistent user environment. Users will be able to log on at home or in the airport exactly as they do at school.‖ DirectAccess will also help Warwickshire contain costs. Page says: ―For children that are in the care of the authority, we currently deploy a virtual private network (VPN) solution. We hope to replace this with DirectAccess. This will save £100 a student as we will no longer need the VPN hardware and licence.‖ Security is also important in an educational setting. Children of all ages are conducting research and accessing learning materials For More Information Windows Server 2008 R2 For further information about Microsoft Windows Server 2008 R2 is the latest products and services, please visit: version of the Windows Server operating www.microsoft.com/uk system from Microsoft. With Windows Server 2008 R2, you can create solutions or call 0870 60 10 100* that are easier to plan, deploy, and manage than with previous versions of Windows For hearing impaired customers with a Server. Building on the features, security, Minicom, contact: 0870 50 30 400* reliability, and performance provided by Windows Server 2008, Windows Server *Lines are open 8am–6pm, Monday to 2008 R2 extends connectivity and control Friday. Please note, numbers prefixed to local and remote resources. This means 0870 will be charged at national call that your organisation can benefit from rates. For details of national call rate reduced costs and increased efficiencies charges, please contact your gained through enhanced management telecommunications provider. and control over resources across the For more information about OCSL enterprise. products and services, call (0845) 605 2100 or visit the Web site at: For more information, go to: www.ocsl.co.uk www.microsoft.com/WindowsServer2008R2 For more information about Warwickshire County Council products and services, call (01926) 410 410 or visit the Web site at: www.warwickshire.gov.uk Software and Services Microsoft Server Product Portfolio − Windows Server 2008 R2 Enterprise − Windows 7 Technologies − Hyper-V This case study is for informational purposes only. MICROSOFT MAKES NO WARRANTIES, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, IN THIS SUMMARY. Document published December 2009
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