What are Virtual Desktops?

You’ve heard of the cloud, and you know remote work is taking over the business landscape. But how do businesses pull off complex tasks without a corporate device? The answer is virtual desktops. Decision-makers are discovering how virtual desktops optimize their teams by providing a platform for employees to access vital company data and software with remote access. The process involves using a collection of fancy acronyms from DaaS and SaaS to VDI and RDS. You don’t have to be a computer scientist to see how these acronyms translate into real solutions to the challenges rapidly advancing technology poses to your organization. That’s why we explore virtual desktops in the cloud to show you how they work, who finds the most functionality from virtualized desktops, and the benefits you can experience should you decide virtual desktops are right for you!  

How Do Virtual Desktops in the Cloud Work?

A virtual desktop that runs in the cloud has several components to ensure successful operation. These components start in a remote data center that houses rows of servers that power desktop virtualization and data storage. Here’s how the typical virtual desktop works in the cloud:
  1. The servers in the remote data center run operating systems like Microsoft Windows or Linux. IT professionals maintain these servers to maintain optimal performance using various tools, including upgrading individual components.
  1. A server with an operating system is only so good. Desktop virtualization infrastructure manages the operating system and assigns users. The desktop virtualization infrastructure can be server provisioning, virtual machine (VMs) management, or data transfer.
  1. A gateway software secures access from outside the data center, only allowing authorized users entry. At Summit Hosting, this gateway comprises multi-factor authentication, high-level encryption, and VPNs. This software is vital in data security and is challenging to maintain without expert IT teams. Summit Hosting provides specialist support to ensure critical security software is always on and always connected!
  1. The virtual desktop functions as a local physical device, only without a location restriction. This desktop virtualization provides a platform for remote work as applications and files no longer need local devices for access. Users access virtual desktops through an endpoint device, typically a Mac or other laptop.
  1. Remote protocol assists in translating input and output devices to and from the server. This control means users can use mice and keyboards and watch videos or listen to audio. Without this protocol, a virtual desktop experience would be impossible.
Virtual desktops that run in the cloud operate as part of a desktop as a service (DaaS) or virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI). In traditional data centers and VDI setups, the centralized server that powers the virtualization remains on-premises. Likewise, DaaS and the remote desktop protocol rely on third-party cloud infrastructure.  

Who Uses Virtual Desktops?

You might think “I have a big office building explicitly built for my company. Who even uses virtual desktops?” Indeed, cloud desktops and cloud services aren’t for every business. However, there are far more businesses where cloud solutions can make a difference, including:
  • Contractors using BYODs – For years, the contractor-organization relationship took place over inefficient e-mail services or collaboration apps. These insecure apps often lead to data leaks, unclear workflows, and wasted money. A DaaS solution provides a secure platform for contractors to work. And a virtual workstation is far more secure as you can control access for each user.
  • Employees transitioning ownership – Mergers and acquisitions are nothing new, but absorbing more workers can lead to performance issues. A cloud solution makes the transition seamless without interruption to business continuity.
  • Task workers – Task work takes place most commonly in shipping and logistics. For example, Amazon workspaces rely on AWS cloud computing which demands workers use a limited set of apps to perform their jobs. Using a virtual desktop, Amazon employees can sign in for single sessions to access workload tools.
  • Call centers – Customer service agents use desktop environments to handle interactions. And many companies are employing remote agents who need a stable workspace to be successful. These employees use multi-session virtual desktop solutions to customize their user experience.
The number of use cases and end users that can benefit from DaaS and cloud desktop services is increasing daily. That makes quality hosting companies, like Summit Hosting, more valuable than ever. Everyone working in professional services to healthcare can find benefits in hosting software with Summit Hosting. Summit Hosting is the public cloud-managed service you can rely on to power your organization!  

The Benefits of Virtual Desktops in the Cloud

It’s natural to have some hesitations when it comes to new services. Using a cloud-based hosting solution for your desktop virtualization has many benefits over a traditional data center. Enjoy these most significant returns on your investment:
  • Expert IT support – Running complex networks and high-performance data infrastructures is not for the faint of heart. Hiring an expert involves an expensive recruiting and onboarding process, and even then, you might still need to hire multiple employees. A cloud-hosted virtual desktop service provides expert support; in Summit Hosting’s case, that support extends 24/7-365!
  • Scalability – Allocating resources for computing can be a logistical nightmare. However, you can automate the process with cloud computing. A cloud-based hosting provider has on-demand scaling options that allow you control over data storage and bandwidth options.
  • Lower cost – The cost of running even small data centers is the source of much debate. But, the average cost is around $1,000 per square foot or upwards of $12 million per year with power consumption. A more cost-effective method involves the subscription-based pricing structure of desktop virtualization. You save money on operating costs and maintenance fees; your bottom line will thank you!
  • Advanced security – As we’ve seen, the cost of data centers can balloon rapidly. When you include security, the costs become even more astronomical. A virtualized solution offers advanced protection you can’t afford with on-site machines, such as multi-factor authentication, SSAE-18 server certifications, and state-of-the-art encryption. You’ll get these features and more when you partner with Summit Hosting!
Additionally, a robust, real-time disaster recovery plan will help you prevent catastrophe if you run into problems. Live monitoring means you can address issues before your customers even realize there is a problem. Pair that with Summit Hosting’s 99% uptime, and you have a solid business case for sticking your head in the clouds!  

Take Your Business to the Cloud with Summit Hosting

The clouds are coming, and the storm they bring results in blooms of benefits for your business. Although the concept of cloud computing can be a challenge to grasp, the process simplifies into a few components in a warehouse to software gatekeepers and remote protocols. By providing virtual workspaces, you eliminate the need for local devices, improve security, and reduce costs simultaneously. There are many cloud services out there, like Citrix and Microsoft Azure. But only Summit Hosting boasts the perfect blend of high-performance and knowledgeable support. Summit Hosting provides dedicated servers, nightly backups, and robust security that give you confidence in moving your business to the cloud.

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