With the widespread adoption of Microsoft Office 365, OneDrive, Google Drive, Dropbox Enterprise, etc., Windows user profiles are now more bloated than ever before. In virtual workspace environments this can be a big challenge because if your users don’t have very fast access to their large user profile, user experience suffers greatly. Some type of profile containers/disks are now available from most desktop virtualization vendors. Profile disks, offloading the user’s profile to a virtual disk hosted on an SMB or in the cloud, is the very baseline type of profile that you must have to have a profile persist in virtual non-persistent desktop environments.
Brief Overview: Windows Virtual Desktop (WVD) was announced a few days ago at Microsoft Ignite in Orlando. We at Liquidware think it’s a really big deal. You may have seen that Liquidware is mentioned in Microsoft’s announcement blog as already having incorporated support for WVD.
What is Windows Virtual Desktop and Why It’s a Really Big Deal!
With Microsoft’s announcement they are evolving their modern desktop technologies (formerly RDmi) to deliver, for the first time ever, a turnkey Windows Virtual Desktop hosted exclusively on Microsoft Azure Cloud. More specifically, WVD is a multi-user version of Microsoft Windows 10 that is only available on Microsoft Azure – workloads and storage will be hosted on Azure. This is significant because previously customers had to procure everything they needed on prem or in the cloud of their choice and then assemble the parts. The solution is touted to be cost-effective because, as of now, any customer with a Windows 10/Microsoft 365 and E3/E5 or F1 subscription is eligible for WVD at no additional charge except for Azure compute and storage costs (which you’d have to pay in any cloud scenario).
Microsoft is marketing WVD as truly turnkey saying you can, “Quickly virtualize and deploy modern and legacy desktop app experiences with unified management—without needing to host, install, configure and manage components…”
If you missed VMworld 2018 this year, you missed some great End User Computing momentum! This was Liquidware’s 10th VMworld but it was personally my 12th show. The week before leaving I came across my VMworld backpack from the second VMworld in 2005 and decided it was time to put it to use, more on that below.
We’re proud to have been asked and to be participating in a speaking session on Remote Desktop Services (RDS): Partner business opportunities for hosting Windows desktops and applications on Microsoft Azure.
The panel will be chaired by Microsoft’s Principal Program Manager Lead, Remote Desktop Services, Clark Nicholson.
If you are a former AppSense or RES customer and are uneasy about changes from your longstanding UEM solution in the wake of acquisitions by Ivanti, consider Liquidware ProfileUnity.
We’ve made it Easy to Switch
We’ve recently on-boarded several large customers with 5,000, 10,000 and 20,000+ user desktops. We’ve even developed a best practice methodology to get your users switched for minimum or zero downtime. We even have trained AppSense and RES staff to help you with the transition! Furthermore, we now have an additional European office in the Netherlands to service this area. Continue reading
Many Citrix, VMware, and Microsoft RDSH customers leverage ProfileDisk and Profile Containers to handle large profiles for non-persistent VDI and RDSH environments. ProfileUnity accomplishes this by containerizing all or part a users profile to virtual disk. One of the use many ProfileDisk use cases that has been proven over the years is Office 365 Cached Mode & Indexing. ProfileUnity also has the ability to “containerize” parts of the profile onto VHDs that the solution automatically manages.
Office 365 cached mode is especially useful for Outlook by placing a local copy of your mailbox(es) on your desktop. This local copy performs more seamlessly than relying on a network/cloud copy of the same mailbox(es). The problem with this on with non-persistent VDI comes because mailboxes are rather large, often gigabytes in size. Folder redirection, roaming profiles, profile tools from Citrix & VMware, and Microsoft UE-V can’t handle this use case for many reasons.
Last week Citrix Synergy 2018 happened in Anaheim, California. This was the 21st Citrix Synergy by my calculation. I was at the first Citrix “Thinergy” in 1998 at the Swan Hotel in Orlando. The conference remains one of the most Windows desktop focused conferences in the industry.
Summary: Today we’ve announced the availability of options to have your user profiles hosted as a service on Object-based Cloud storage (Amazon S3, Google Cloud, or Microsoft Azure Blob). This industry first innovation is not BETA, it’s available now and only from Liquidware.
DaaS is now inevitable for most enterprises. The value proposition is maturing to the degree that DaaS is now viable for most organizations. Not all desktops will be the right fit for DaaS at first but the early mover desktops that Liquidware is seeing move to DaaS are call centers and task workers. Knowledge workers and power users will follow quickly as the world feels comfortable and DaaS offerings more fully mature. You’ll likely end up a hybrid approach – with some on-prem desktops and some DaaS desktops.
One of the many feature benefits in ProfileUnity is its ability to persist Office 365 Outlook Search Indexing from non-persistent desktop, DaaS, RDS, and Citrix XenApp sessions. This is very helpful to end users because in a non-persistent environment you would not want to keep indexing or OST files in the users roamed or streamed profile because the files would be quite large and cause a slow logon. If you turned on local indexing for each non-persistent Outlook session, the indexing process would need to start over again, causing many resources to be used each desktop session.