Monday Oct 15, 2007

Green FUD

CLAIM:  The Sun Ray has no on/off switch, thus wastes power.

They've got us there, at least with the Sun Ray not having an on/off switch.  Since administrators don't need to touch Sun Rays our customers have told us there is no need for one.  Sure there is the occasional complaint, but nothing that merits a change.  Power cycling the Sun Ray can be controlled via the keyboard.  We'd be interested in hearing scenario that would require an administrator to require that Sun Ray to be powered off.  What this really sounds like is the competition taking their own instructions on how to fix a broken thin client by installing a base OS image from a flash drive and trying to apply it to a Sun Ray.

The “green” argument doesn't hold water either since a majority if not all of the competitive devices and Sun Rays use external power supplies that continue to draw power whether the device is on or off.  Only solution is to unplug the power supply or does what Sun does in our campus offices.  We have motion detectors that cut power to the whole room if it is unoccupied.  Even the best made external power supplies consume a couple of watts when nothing is connected.  But since it is Blog Action Day, I'll throw out an eco-friendly fact about Sun Ray.  The Sun Ray 2 draws roughly 4 watts and the 2FS draws about 8 (4.6 and 8.4 to be exact).  That's something the competition can't match.

The on/off switch is a legacy holdover from most thin client vendors PC heritage.  Besides being unnecessary, not having one also means one less thing that break which increases the MTBF and decreases cost (including warranty costs).
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