In one of our previous articles, we introduced the concept of the Azure Virtual Desktop (AVD).  Essentially, this a Virtual Desktop (VD) that emulates a Windows 10 OS based workstation.  But rather than accessing it a local level, it can be accessed through Microsoft Azure.  But setting this up can prove to be a rather complex and time-consuming process for the novice, so Microsoft has introduced a friendlier version, which is called the Windows 365 PC Cloud.

What Is It?

The Windows 365 PC Cloud is a simpler version to fulfill the Desktop as a Service (DaaS) needs of any sized business.  One of the greatest conveniences of this is that any Cloud based desktop that is created can be accessed through any Web browser, whether it is Edge, Safari, Chrome, or Firefox.  Also, it can be accessed from just about any device as well, which includes the following:

  • MacOS;
  • Android;
  • Linux;
  • The iPad.

Another nice feature of this is that the state of the desktop will remain unchanged.  For example, if you are accessing your PC from Edge, but need to log off, the current environment will be saved.  Then, when you log back in again at a subsequent point in time, say through an iPad, that same environment can be pulled up again, and you can continue working where you left off earlier.

But currently, the Windows 365 PC Cloud will only be available for businesses, not for consumer use.  There are two versions that will be available, which are the Business and Enterprise versions. The former is meant for the small to medium sized businesses, and the latter is meant for those organizations with at least 1,000+ employees.

There will be up to 12 unique configurations that a business can make use of, but the following are the features that will be common to all of them:

  • 1 CPU;
  • 2 GB of RAM;
  • 64 GB of storage.

The above are just the minimum settings.  If an organization needs to have more than that, the maximum features that are available are:

  • 8 CPUs;
  • 32 GB of RAM;
  • 512 GB of storage.

Although there are other services which offer the creation and deployment of PC Cloud Desktops, Microsoft’s primary market differentiator will be in the ease of use and configuration.  Thus, one of the sweet spots for the Windows 365 PC Cloud will be for those businesses that want to try virtualization to some degree or another but could not because of cost or the lack of know-how.

Creating new PCs in this fashion will only take a matter of minutes, and there are no other accessories that will be required.  As a result, the Remote Workforce will be able to access their own, customized PCs with any device, even if it is their own.  Also, a key advantage here is that there are no other specialized protocols are needed to be put into place such as endpoint security or even VPNs.  All connections from the device to Cloud based PC (and vice versa) are secure, from end to end.

This can be seen in the illustration below:

(SOURCE:  1).

The Pricing and Features

As previously mentioned, there are two flavors of this that are currently being offered.  To view the pricing and features of the Business Edition, click here. To see the same for the Enterprise Edition, click here.

One of the other key features of the Windows 365 PC Cloud is that it has been designed primarily for those businesses that make heavy usage of temporary employees, such as freelancers, seasonal workers, and contractors.  Normally, it would take quite some time to set up an Azure Virtual Desktop for each and every employee that had  a finite work contract with an organization.

But with this new subscription, you can set up multiple instances of Cloud based PCs in one shot for these kinds of employees.

Conclusions

Windows 365 PC Cloud was just recently launched by Microsoft, and because of that, many businesses are still treading the water experimenting with it.  If you find yourself in that situation, and need more help, contact us today.

Sources