The user would always like to have the VCL image available
*immediately* after requesting a "Now" reservation. The current
implementation does not always provide for this, and therefore there is
a need for management of user expectations. Without attention to this,
users often get quite annoyed.
Since the user is always sitting at a network attached computer, this
is an ideal time to check e-mail, look up a reference on the web, or
just surf for the few minutes it takes for an image to load and get set
up for the user.
While image load time, when an image is not immediately available,
can take a while - perhaps 8-18 minutes for a bare metal image, or up to
11 minutes for a VMware image, looking at the top of the range is unduly
Often an image is available much sooner - in about one minute for bare
metal images which are pre-loaded, or for VMware images which are
locally available for loading.
Our experience is that over 80% of the time the load time is 2 minutes
However, for the approx. 20% of the time when it takes over 2 minutes,
we need to have the user know in advance that this happens, and use the
wait time productively (I include enterainment in this category. :-)
With this built into user expectations, there is easy acceptance of wait
time and better appreciation of the VCL.
P.S. I often get to involved in whatever I'm doing to pass the time,
that I don't get back to check before the reservation is cancelled for
lack of my response! Luckily, the image is usually sitting there, and I
can get 1 minute access.