DaaS: The New Face of Terminal Services
Terminal Services has been used in multiple variations for a while now. Requiring physical or virtual servers to host end user desktop environments. With new offerings from Microsoft coming soon, as well as leveraging cloud services that offer better connections across the world. Desktop as a service (DaaS) is coming into a different playing field.
Desktop-as-a-service (DaaS) is a cloud computing offering in which a third party hosts the back-end of a Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) deployment. With DaaS, desktop operating systems run inside virtual machines on servers in a cloud provider’s data center. All the necessary support infrastructure, including storage and network resources, also lives within the cloud. As with on-premise VDI, a DaaS provider streams virtual desktops over a network to a customer’s endpoint devices, where end users may access them through client software, web browser or inexpensive physical device (Thin Client).
Cost and inventory management reduction is key with DaaS. Leveraging cloud resources for client connections with resource auto scaling and location redundancy, we can see an inexpensive investment into physical inventory of end user workstations. What would normally cost $700 to $1000+ depending on specifications. Inexpensive thin client devices can be implemented which reduce overall hardware costs. With these devices, upgrading said hardware will be a thing of the past. IT inventory refreshments will not be as required as it previously was. Leveraging cloud resources will be the only requirement to increase response within the desktop environments.
IT administration times are reduced as well. There will be no further need to apply images to new devices. Or go through strenuous application installs. Simple automated firmware updates are all that would need to be handled from a support desk perspective when deploying physical connection devices. With initial server configuration being the only investment that is needed. Cloud services allow the ability to clone systems quickly and easily. Creation of server pools and load balancers help with reduction of bandwidth and compute resources. There are multiple other service applications that can be applied to drive the overall cloud service cost down as well.
Microsoft outlined in February 2018, regarding modernization of their RDS services, that they are working on capabilities within Windows 10 to allow multiple remote sessions to the workstation OS. This helps remove the need for traditional server infrastructure in a terminal server deployment. This is another nudge in the direction of reducing overhead and technical requirements to deploy remote workstations.
DaaS is coming into its own, with more options for administration teams to deploy remotely as well as support staff in remote location that do not operate physically on their local area network. Tapping into cloud services that can bring required software to staff more reliably and with globalized access. This allows reduction of IT administration time to deploy and support. More and more positive steps are taking place to bring this service into a reality for businesses around the world.
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