CSE498, Collaborative Design, Fall 2021
Computer Science and Engineering
Michigan State University

Headquartered in Midland, Michigan, Dow is a world leader in the innovation, creation, and distribution of specialty chemicals, advanced materials, and plastics.

As a large company with over 35,000 employees worldwide, Dow provides its employees with a service called Dow Virtual Computer, which is a virtual machine array. These virtual machines grant access to anyone with Dow credentials and a device with internet connection to a physical Dow work computer without the use of a VPN.

Currently, Dow has a personal structure for assigning virtual machines to their employees and clients on Microsoft Azure. This means that each user has access to their own virtual machine.

Dow is moving to a non-persistent state, meaning a single virtual machine’s resources can support multiple users, cutting down the required number of virtual machines running and therefore saving money. In order to do this, there are many manual processes that need to be managed.

Our Virtual Computer Service Enhancements software automates the previously manual processes associated with the transition to a non-persistent state by tagging user information, such as Dow identification number and login location, on each virtual machine. These tags help Dow with their billing process and the location assignment of the virtual machines.

Along with the automated tagging, our software generates weekly reports of users with multiple virtual machines. Dow’s support teams use this data in their transition to a non-persistent state.

Our automation process is built within the Microsoft Azure Cloud Computing Platform and runs through Azure Automation Runbooks using PowerShell. The generated reports can be viewed through our mobile Microsoft Power App.