Technology Partners

Creating alliances that deliver value

NoPC

With the help of NoPC and NoMachine technology, 3,500 secondary schools and 1.2 million children in Tanzania can now get access to hosted computing resources.

NoMachine's NX technology enables NoPC to provide Tanzanian students with first-ever computing technology and Internet access.
About the Organization
A non-profit social enterprise based in the UK, NoPC was founded in 2008, and with key partners like NoMachine, provides inadequately funded schools across Tanzania and other territories with low cost, low power computing resources via NX and other various technologies. In Tanzania, NoPC worked closely with the Ministry of Education and Vocational Training to increase student attendance and classroom engagement through promoting the idea of self-driven learning. NoPC's goal is to improve the access and quality of education available to every Tanzanian using Information and Communications Technology (ICT).

ICT is recognized as a critical factor in developing human capital throughout the African continent; progress is seriously constrained by a lack of computer stations, a lack of access to affordable high speed Internet connectivity and a shortage of trained ICT professionals. In response to this need, NoPC has designed an energy efficient, low cost computing solution to provide these resources important to the students' education. NoPC is committed to helping Tanzania overcome the challenges through the effective use of technology and providing every Tanzanian student who wants to learn access to a computer and the Internet.
The Challenge
NoPC needed a tool to deliver the remote desktops and applications hosted within the server-constructed data center in Dar es Salaam, TZ to a local school's network of NoPC thin client terminals. Transmitting data over a mobile Internet connection, it was very important to find a remote desktop and application delivery solution with superior bandwidth efficiency.

NoPC evaluated a wide variety of options, but many were too bandwidth intense, compression was too slow or not enough options were offered to allow for flexibility in creating this remote computing solution. NoPC needed a flexible, bandwidth-efficient remote access solution with high compression and caching features to provide Tanzanian schools with an effective computing solution.
The Solution
After testing many possible tools, NoPC decided that NoMachine NX provided the best solution since it performs well even over low bandwidth and provides a unique combination of compression and caching, allowing for real-time remote computing over a mobile Internet connection. Without the bandwidth efficiency NX provides, NoPC wouldn't be able to deliver desktops and applications to as many concurrent users per school as they currently do. NoMachine NX also provides flexibility to meet individual needs with the option of accessing the whole desktop environment or just specific applications.

Systems architect for NoPC, Dennis Furr, said, "Without the bandwidth efficiency of NX, we just wouldn't be able to deliver these computing resources to children who truly need them. NX is a perfect fit for the delivery agent of this solution and plays a major role in providing the technical solution that these kids in Tanzania require and deserve."

Using thin client terminals instead of full PCs, NoPC's solution transforms traditional computing, greatly reducing the need for maintenance, support and upgrades. Creating an energy and cost-efficient PC substitution, NX delivers desktops and applications to these thin client terminals, eliminating the typical high failure components and reducing power usage to under 100 watts for five workstations.

Using NX as the remote delivery tool, each school is offered Edubuntu, an Open Source software package specifically designed for the classroom giving students first-time computer access to support their studies in new and efficient ways. Teachers have the opportunity to access critical information about education budgets, objectives and priorities sent to their e-mail accounts. With Internet access, they can also participate in discussions about best practice with colleagues at other schools and continue their professional development through on-line resources.

NoPC's computing solution with NX technology empowers students to develop their skills at their own level and speed with an unlimited number of learning tools at their fingertips. These computing abilities create a fun and interactive learning environment where students and teachers have access to up-to-date resources, information and communication tools.
Results
Currently this solution is deployed in 10 Tanzanian schools including the Mtwara Technical Secondary School and provides students from age seven to college level access to the Internet, e-mail and education resources that allow for collaboration with other schools around the world. A vital part of the solution, NX provides fast and secure access to applications stored on the server. With these new computing resources, students can engage in new forms of learning and communication that were never available to them before.

NoPC's former Tanzania manager, Ben Everard, said, "After bringing computers and the Internet to a place like this, I've really seen it make a difference to the students and to the teachers. We have truly created a revolution in African computing."

There are 3,500 secondary schools in Tanzania and with the help of NoMachine and other partners, NoPC hopes to install computer systems in all of them providing the Internet and new computing resources for over1.2 million children to improve their academic experience.

Co-founder of NoPC, Andy Lindsell, said, "NoPC, with the support of key partners like NoMachine and the Linux community, has demonstrated the ability and determination to address social inequality based on education, in what we hope will become a successful and important economic region and global trading partner."

The NoPC solution is being expanded with the latest project in Grenada in the West Indies. NoPC plans to increase and improve education for under-funded schools around the world by providing them with ICT.
Networking Environment Key Benefits Applications Delivered

Edubuntu
Internet Access

 

Bandwidth efficiency for effective use over a
mobile Internet connection
Unique compression and caching features to
provide high performance
Provides remote access for PC replacement to
reduce energy use and cost
E-mail
OpenSource Office applications