Server sprawl is the quiet scourge of enterprise IT environments. Like its name suggests, it’s what happens when organizations deploy more and more hardware/software infrastructure without also taking counter-steps to consolidate.
Because rolling out additional print servers is a quick fix to support new locations or growing print demand, server sprawl can disproportionately affect corporate printing. Many off-the-shelf print solutions also have heavy server-based requirements.
Server sprawl isn’t an intentional thing. No one says to themselves, “I’m going to pack my IT environment with wall-to-wall servers!” It usually just happens gradually through acquisitions or expansions. One server gets spun up for this particular purpose, another one gets added for that particular solution.
That ‘mission creep’ is exactly what happened to Schnader, a prestigious full-service law firm with offices on both coasts of the United States.
And while that infrastructure might help distribute the load, it can be an absolute nightmare to administer. It also can be a huge drain on the budget. All that extra equipment and the extra time spent managing it equals wasted dollars.
At risk print environments
Two kinds of print environments are more prone to server sprawl than others.
One is VDI environments. Since VDI is a server-based architecture, there’s already a tendency to spin up servers to accommodate growing user pools. The problem here, as Schnader discovered in its Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops (formerly XenApp and XenDesktop) environment, is that these supplemental servers can make existing VDI printer and driver deployment challenges even worse.
The other common server-sprawl scenario is found in print environments that use distributed, or localized, print servers. This is a common printing infrastructure choice in corporate printing circles. But, similarly to the problems with VDIs, these create an inefficient, fragmented print environment that moves further and further away from the ideal of centralized print management.
Avoid server sprawl in your print environment
To avoid server sprawl in corporate printing, you have to eliminate print servers.
Easier said than done, right? I mean, if it were that simple, everyone would just adopt a consolidated print server model. Sure, you’d get something close to centralized print management. But you’re also introducing a major single point of failure—not to mention all the frustrations that come with increased WAN dependence.
What I’m talking about, though, isn’t exchanging one server-based model for another. I’m talking about eliminating print servers completely through a serverless, enterprise-class print solution like PrinterLogic. Just like Schnader did. Now they have the print management they always wanted without any of the cumbersome infrastructure. Read the case study here.
Eliminating print servers—and all their related cost and hassle—is how PrinterLogic stops server sprawl at its source.
PrinterLogic achieves far more with far less
Your first assumption might be that reducing print infrastructure would mean compromising on stability and features. But it’s actually the opposite. Serverless printing is how PrinterLogic achieves its unprecedented scalability, availability and flexibility over legacy print solutions.
By pairing centralized print management with a direct IP architecture, PrinterLogic brings benefits like these to your corporate printing:
- Effortless print management: Monitor and control the entire print environment from a single pane of glass.
- Location-based printing: Automatically deploy printers based on dynamic criteria like IP address.
- Reduced print infrastructure: Advanced reporting offers printer consolidation guidance to boost the gains of print server elimination.
- Enhanced VDI printing: Deploy native drivers to workstations, spool jobs directly on clients and much, much more.
- Optimized WAN usage: Direct IP print jobs travel straight from the client to the printer on the local network.
- Self-service printer installation: Empower end users with the ability to install printers themselves.
With PrinterLogic, it’s truly a case of less is more. Less infrastructure and headache. More functionality, ease of use and cost savings.