Windows Virtual Desktop has boomed over the past year as businesses across the globe turned to the ‘Desktop as a Service’ solution to allow them to quickly transition to a remote workforce. Since its release in September 2019, WVD has given large and small businesses the ability to meet their computing requirements via the cloud without the need to install additional hardware or the need for extensive IT support.
Windows Virtual Desktop offers a variety of benefits including reduced costs, improved user experience and premium security features. In this blog, we’ll cover :
- What a Windows Virtual desktop is
- What businesses use it for
- What benefits it offers
What is Windows Virtual Desktop?
WVD enables businesses to:
- Give employees access to their existing Remote Desktop Services (RDS) and Windows Server desktops and applications on any computer
- Set up scalable multi-session Windows 10 deployment
- Virtualise Microsoft 365 Apps for enterprise
- Deliver Windows 7 virtual desktops including free Extended Security Updates
- Provides a unified management interface that allows administrators to manage Windows 10, Windows Server and Windows 7 desktops and apps
Why Should my Business use Windows Virtual Desktop?
Regardless of company size and sector, WVD gives organisations the freedom to scale their virtualisation requirements and effortlessly manage their desktop image, applications and users. Some of the most common user scenarios are:
1) To enable a remote workforce
One of the key reasons to move to Windows Virtual Desktop is because it gives employees the ability to access their office desktop and applications on any device from any location. By using your existing Active Directory for authentication it ensures your systems and data remain secure.
2) To facilitate a global business
WVD is set up in Microsoft Azure which is a global service. With multiple data centres worldwide it can sufficiently support users that are working from another country.
This can also be useful for employees who travel for business meetings and don’t want to carry laptops with them. By using Windows Virtual Desktop they can hot desk from any location on any device as long as they have an internet connection.
3) For security and regulatory requirements
Sectors such as government, healthcare, legal and financial will handle sensitive data on a daily basis. Windows Virtual Desktop offers all of the Microsoft security features meaning businesses can guarantee the integrity of their data whilst allowing employees to work remotely.
4) For software testing
Windows Virtual Desktop can be used as a test environment prior to rolling out software. This reduces hardware costs as users do not need separate devices for testing and it ensures that new applications are trialled in a safe space before deployment to the wider organisation, reducing any downtime.
5 Benefits of using Windows Virtual Desktops?
There are several ways an organisation can reduce costs using Windows Virtual Desktop. Firstly, by hosting your services in Azure you reduce infrastructure costs needed to maintain and store legacy servers. Businesses are also able to cut down on labour costs as employees can configure virtual desktops with the latest versions of applications already installed.
With many businesses allowing employees to bring their own devices (BYOD), the budget spent on new devices can be reduced.
Businesses can also benefit from simplified licensing as they can use their existing Windows or Microsoft 365 licences to access Windows Virtual Desktop.
Windows Virtual Desktop enables users to access their desktop on any device regardless of whether they are using a company device, personal laptop or shared computer. Their virtual desktop will offer all of the personalisation and functionality that they are used to without tying them to the office.
Windows Virtual Desktop gives employees access to all of the data, resources and apps that they need to work productively. The full suite of Microsoft 365 for enterprise apps including Microsoft Teams can be accessed from personal devices.
In the event of a disaster that prohibits people from accessing the office, employees would be able to continue working uninterrupted, keeping downtime to a minimum. By hosting all of your information and systems in the cloud you can also prevent data loss as you are not reliant on physical servers.
As your business expands Windows Virtual Desktop can be quickly deployed to new users without the need to procure and install new hardware. Likewise, if people leave the business or your company downsizes you can quickly reduce the number of users, and you will not be left with technical debt.
Microsoft Azure is paid for monthly meaning you can also optimise costs by paying only for what you use.
Simple IT Management
Windows Virtual Desktop can be simply managed via the Azure Portal. Systems administrators can assign personal desktops or pools of desktops and automatically power them on and off based on session counts and peak hours.
Administrators can also apply access controls to users and they can use a variety of security solutions such as Azure Sentinel and Azure Security Centre to reduce vulnerabilities, improve compliance and protect company assets.
How can Conosco help?
We’ll help you configure a cloud environment that aligns with your business objectives, offers a superior user experience, adds value to your business and is underpinned by resilient security. Get in touch with our team to find out more.