Subject: Re: [K12OSN] Future LTSP direction: Local Apps

Robert Arkiletian robark at
Sat Mar 24 05:21:44 UTC 2007

On 3/23/07, pogson <robert.pogson at> wrote:
>  "The only down side is power consumption as compared to real thin
>  clients."
>  I think there are other downsides:
> capital cost per seat is almost $100 more than a fanless thin client like NTAVO 6040

The NTAVO 6040 is listed as starting at $139 USD.
The system I listed was $179 USD.

> there will be power supply and cpu fans wearing out and making noise

You are right, having a fanless system is a real plus.

> power consumption will likely be double or triple that of compact thin client

I would agree, that is probably a good guess.

> the network has to load 100 megabytes or so into each client at the start of classes as compared to a thin client loading only a few. Caching may help from a warm login but that means you have to leave the things running, increasing the energy consumption again.

They do have automated (cron) shutdown scripts as well as wakeup
scripts (without security issues I might add). So no, they don't leave
them on. However, the morning boot time is longer than regular ltsp
but you can automate that to just before school starts.

>  Still it is a neat solution if you are going to do lots of multimedia or heavy CPU load. I would only use it in a multimedia development lab. All of my classroom and lab experiences with the curriculums I have do not need it. I think most of the downsides would be mitigated with a slightly more powerful processor and Multi-seat X. Then, the power is averaged over 5-10 users.

I agree for using a browser, wordprocessing and most things thin
clients are enough. So you're right it really shines in a multimedia
situation. However, as time goes on web content is getting more and
more multimedia rich. And it's nice to be able to handle that kind of
bling. Especially when the Windows lab down the hall has it.

>  One upside not listed is that the server becomes a straight file server so it might be able to service more clients this way.

Good point.

>  I still think straight LTSP is the best solution in most cases. I could see one such client per classroom and possibly a bunch in a multimedia lab.

I am a big advocate of ltsp so I can't really disagree. But I have to
say seeing those fat diskless clients running an mplayer movie was a
sight. I can't do that in my own lab. I'm just glad LTSP 5 is
developing into a system where local apps are going to be much easier.

Robert Arkiletian
Eric Hamber Secondary, Vancouver, Canada
C++ GUI tutorial

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