Cloud and virtual technologies are starting to come of age, both from a capability and cost perspective. Virtual desktops – also known as desktop as a service (DaaS) – is a standardized computing environment that is accessible from almost any computer.
Virtual desktops allow a company’s employees to access their software systems and files in a standardized environment. VDI servers can live either in your office or in the Cloud – but today most companies use virtual desktops from large providers/data center like Microsoft or Amazon.
Virtual desktop clients are available for PCs, tablets, smartphones, and the nifty little credit card-sized Raspberry Pi.
Some companies can benefit from using virtual desktops; generally speaking these are technically diverse companies or those with a mobile workforce.
Why Would You Use Virtual Desktops?
A virtual desktop is secure and isolated. All data stored there is really on a server or in the cloud, so it’s difficult to steal data off of a lost or stolen device.
Applications are centralized, so users can access the same applications regardless of the endpoint device that they are using (PC, Mac, at home or in the office.)
Virtualization protects primary desktops from downtime. Application developers often use virtualization to run multiple desktops on the same device (physical computer) to test their apps. Code changes that may cause the application or operating system to crash will not affect the primary desktop.
Virtual desktops can solve application compatibility issues, such as when organizations move to Windows 10 but have all their legacy apps on Windows 7, or need to create virtual Apple Mac desktops to run Windows and related applications. It allows people to work on almost any computer and still access the same desktop/application suite.
Application updates and IT changes to make don’t affect the device. The VDI image is updated and new/updated applications become available the next time the user logs in.
There are also potential cost savings. Companies can save on endpoint hardware costs since processing happens on the virtual desktop in data centers or in the cloud; this alleviates the need to purchase high-performance PCs. However, the cost of deploying, maintaining and licensing virtual desktops must be weighed against this potential benefit. And your employees still need some type of endpoint to use the virtual desktop.
Issues to consider
As we said before, deploying virtual desktops is not for every business. Your IT service provider or your IT manager should evaluate your business model, users’ needs, application requirements, and evaluate the costs of going from physical to virtual desktops.
The fact is, virtual desktops are not a cost-effective solution for every company, but they can be if used in the right situation. The consultants at IND Corporation will evaluate your NJ company’s computing network and how it aligns with your operation, and help you determine your true computing needs—from virtual desktops to other solutions that enhance worker productivity and deliver a strong ROI on your business technology spend. Contact us to discuss your current and future IT needs or to review your current managed IT services plans.