Windows Virtual Desktop was a big feature at Microsoft Ignite in late 2018. Its one of the many use cases of adopting Azure that were presented.
We are still waiting for a release date when this will be available in preview, this we understand is immenent. But here’s a reminder of what we already know about Windows Virtual Desktop (WVD):-
- WVD will only be available on Azure. There are no plans to extend to other cloud providers (AWS or Google, or to On-premise/Azure stack… for now anyway)
- WVD gives users a virtual desktop experience and remote applications to any device.
- WVD combines Microsoft 365 with Azure to provide a multi session, Windows 10 desktop.
- Management overheads associated with managing VDI environments are reduced or removed (diagnostics, networking, connection brokering, and gateway)
- You can use existing licenses, WVD is free to use for customers with Microsoft 365, E3, E5, or F1. You’ll just need to setup your Azure Account and allocate compute resources.
- If you are running windows 7, you’ll extend your Windows 7 Security Updates free of charge, allowing more time to plan and execute the migration to Windows 10.
- Managing the WVD environment is performed either with PowerShell or the Azure management console. Availability of features in the Azure management console is rather limited (at this stage)
Microsoft retain their partnership ecosystem with VMWare and Citrix as well as a number of other alliance partners to enhance the platform, but this will surely overlap with offerings from these partners such as Horizon Cloud. Citrix have announced that their DaaS offering will leverage WVD, the announcement is here if you missed it. For the time being Microsoft will need their 3rd party parters (vendor and managed service providers like us) to bridge some of the gaps that exist. Some of these gaps include:-
- Limited profile management
- No Application Management
- No Resource Management (CPU/Memory)
- Endpoint Analysis only available with the inclusion of InTune
- Limited Printing Solution
We are hoping to be able to perform some tests later this quarter and provide some feedback on functionality and user experience.
More updates to follow as we learn more.