Following six months of development and consultation, Microsoft launched the public preview of Windows Virtual Desktop, available 21 March 2019. Development has focussed on the ability to scale and deliver a true multi-session Windows 10 and Office 365 ProPlus virtual desktop and app experience on any device in any location using the power of Azure.
The aim of the new Windows Virtual Desktop (WVD) is to provide a rich, user-centric, seamless desktop and application experience from any device regardless of Operating System or location. Leave the desktop, use your phone where you left off and finish on the iPad later.
Administration of the solution can be easily managed and supported from the Azure Portal, setting up desktops and apps quickly and efficiently within seconds. This allows organisations to remotely access Windows 10 desktops (as single sessions or multi-sessions) or Windows 7 desktops (as single sessions). It also provides application virtualisation support for remote access to Office 365 ProPlus and other apps.
Take a closer look at Windows Virtual desktop from Microsoft
What do you need
Microsoft has invested heavily in its Cloud Infrastructure in Azure and is expanding the capabilities of the offering. So unsurprisingly Azure is the key to the provision and delivery of the new Windows Virtual Desktop.
To deploy and manage your virtualisation environment, you just need to set up an Azure subscription. You can choose the type of virtual machines (VMs) and storage you want to suit your environment. You can optimise costs by taking advantage of Reserved Instances and by using multi-session Windows 10.
For users accessing the Windows 10 and Windows 7 desktops and apps, the required licenses for the adoption of this service have been revised and built up into existing subscription and licenses products. You will, however, have to commit to the full Microsoft 365 services to access the new Microsoft Virtual Desktop.
Windows 7 End of Support
An important feature that comes along with the announcement is that there has been a consideration around Windows 7 End of Support due on 14 January 2020. Microsoft have provided a method of supporting Windows 7 legacy applications, while migration to Windows 10 is planned and executed. To support this need, customers will be able to use Windows Virtual Desktop to virtualise Windows 7 desktops with free Extended Security Updates (ESU) until January 2023.
This support provides a comprehensive virtualisation solution for Windows 7 alongside Windows 10 and Windows Server desktops and apps.
For organisations who are not ready to move away from Windows 7 before 14 January 2020 the Microsoft Windows Virtual Desktop solution will prove an appropriate solution to help them protect their data and applications during this transition.
Take your preview
Full details of the Microsoft information around the preview is referenced in the overview resource here, which runs through the capabilities and requirements in technical detail. Microsoft are inviting customers to test and provide feedback against the public preview, where you can also read comments from their technical community and provide your own feedback to Microsoft here.
If you would like further information or support with Windows Virtual Desktop please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or your Trustmarque Account Manager.
By Rob Kershaw – Trustmarque Licensing Sales Specialist