Thales Australia and the department of defence have successfully completed the Next Generation Desktop (NGD) project pilot program.
In its full implementation, NGD will use thin client technology to replace traditional desktops, which will substantially reduce hardware, power and sustainment costs for defence.
According to Thales Australia, the pilot involved over 700 defence users across Australia trialling a new secure desktop computer system that is simpler to use and less expensive to sustain than current systems.
Instead of multiple terminals for different networks, users will utilise de-cluttered workspaces with one computer, one keyboard, one screen and one mouse – enabling simultaneous access to the Defence Restricted Network and Defence Secret Network on the same screen.
Thales Australia CEO, Chris Jenkins, said the pilot was an effective way of gathering real-world data from a multitude of users.
“The pilot not only demonstrated the viability of this Server Based Computing solution, but also generated valuable implementation and de-risking experience across several defence sites and networks that will prove highly beneficial as the program continues,” he said.
The company has been working closely with defence’s chief information officer group, as well as end users and its partners, to ensure the pilot was a success and their feedback was gathered and integrated into the rollout strategy.
“We have also recently completed a series of joint workshops with the customer, and are currently discussing how to proceed with full scale implementation of the NGD solution,” Jenkins claimed.
The Commonwealth has also granted Second Pass approval, marking a significant step in a program that has the potential to deliver long-term Strategic Reform Program savings.