DaaS - Desktop as a Service
DaaS (Desktop as a service) is a cloud computing offering in which a third party hosts the back end of a virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) deployment.
With DaaS services, 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 in the cloud. As with on-premises VDI, a DaaS providers stream virtual desktops over a network to a customer's endpoint devices, where end users may access them through client software or a web browser.
Though it sounds a lot like VDI, there is a vital difference between DaaS and VDI. VDI refers to when virtual desktops are served through on-premise servers maintained by in-house IT teams. It’s the traditional way to deploy and manage virtual desktops. But since it’s on-premise, VDI technology technology must be maintained, managed, and upgraded in-house whenever necessary.
DaaS service on the other hand, is a cloud-based virtual desktop solution that separates virtual desktops from on-premise servers, enabling brands to leverage a third-party hosting provider. It’s like VDI, but in the cloud instead of in the back of the office.
However, it’s not necessary to choose one or the other. These two approaches can complement each other. Some users prefer to have a DaaS desktop overlay of their VDI deployment. For example, the Desktop as a Service providers allow the user to modernize legacy applications with zero code refactoring. Not all legacy Windows apps perform well in a DaaS environment, due to latency or hardware requirements.
The modern workplace requires agility, leading to many companies embracing mobile working and Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policies against a backdrop of increased concern about security risk, compliance requirements and the ever-present need to reduce overheads. This is why, over a decade after analysts predicted the rise of remote desktop as a service, it is now finally being taken up in volume.
By adopting Desktop as a Service, companies can address the issues associated with end-user computing while giving their staff more freedom and increasing productivity. The pain associated with managing a multitude of devices, including those not supplied by the company, is eliminated. While remaining compliant, companies can greatly reduce risks.
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F.A.Q. about DaaS - Desktop as a Service
How does desktop as a service work?
DaaS architecture is multi-tenant, and organizations purchase the service through a subscription model -- typically based on the number of virtual desktop instances used per month.
In the desktop-as-a-service delivery model, the cloud computing provider manages the back-end responsibilities of data storage, backup, security and upgrades. While the provider handles all the back-end infrastructure costs and maintenance, customers usually manage their own virtual desktop images, applications and security, unless those desktop management services are part of the subscription.
Typically, an end user's personal data is copied to and from their virtual desktop during logon and logoff, and access to the desktop is device-, location- and network-independent.
The benefits of Desktop as a Service
Many organisations are undergoing digital transformation, and modernising the workplace is often a stream within the wider strategy. In order to manage remote and multi-device workforces using DaaS, you should think about the following seven benefits and how this will change, and hopefully improve, your currently way of working.
The modern workplace. Digital transformation is redefining what we think about the workplace. At the heart of this evolution is technology and the introduction of digital-first natives into the workplace. Allowing staff to work remotely, through DaaS in cloud and via their own devices is a surefire way to attract and retain the best talent.
Cost. As with many cloud initiatives, DaaS pricing moves from CAPEX to OPEX, leaving you more cash in the bank to spend on growing your business. Per desktop pricing enables you to know exactly what workforce expansion will cost the IT department, removing unforeseen infrastructure or hardware purchases as this is handled by the provider, who bundle everything in with the price of each desktop.Virtual machines use the compute power of the data centre rather than their local machines, placing less demand on the endpoint.
Scalability. Due to the ‘...as a service’ delivery model, DaaS platform enables you to add user workstations fast and easily. This is particularly handy when your organisation utilises contract resource or temporary project teams, as there’s no hardware to procure, meaning you have the flexibility to create a desktop almost instantly and delete it when no longer required. This also puts you in control.
Control. DaaS helps you manage the risks that naturally come with giving your staff the freedom to work anywhere and on any device. It enables you to control the essentials such as data access and compliance without being overly restrictive. You no longer have to worry about what data is held on a user’s device as the data remains in the data centre at all times. This gives you control over all company assets because access can be revoked with the touch of a button.
Management. With an increasingly dispersed workforce, rolling out new applications or patching existing software has become more of a logistical problem than a technical one. Trying to coordinate people bringing in physical devices to be patched is a real issue for many companies, something which is eliminated completely with DaaS. You operate on one central image (or a small number of images based on persona), a change is made once, and everyone is on the latest version. It removes the need to standardise builds of end-user compute hardware as DaaS applications will run on almost any device no matter its configuration.
Security. DaaS moves the security risk from hundreds of end-user devices and put it all into the controlled and managed environment of a data centre. Lost or stolen laptops no longer provide a security risk. No data is on the local machine. As DaaS removes the need to create VPNs to access applications and data held by the company it also removes the problem of users trying to bypass the security in the belief that it will make their life easier.
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