What is VDI?

Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) is a desktop virtualization technology. In VDI, a desktop OS is managed in a cloud data center or on-premises. The VDI is delivered to an end-point device through a network, which makes it possible for users to interact with both the OS and its apps. There are three leading players in the VDI market: VMware, Citrix, and Microsoft.

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How Does VDI Work?

The following are characteristics that apply to all VDI deployments:

  • Virtual desktops stay in Virtual Machines (VMs)on a centralized server
  • The virtual desktop has an OS image. Usually, it is Microsoft Windows
  • The virtual machines are host-based. You can house multiple instances on the same server
  • The end client has to be connected to the server at all times to maintain access

Session Protocols

Every end-point device has to run an HTML5-based session or the client software to invoke the respective session protocol. Vendor offering platforms are based on display protocols that transfer session data from the computing resource to the client.

1. VMware

  • PC over IP (PCoIP)
  • Blast Extreme

2. Citrix

  • Independent Computing Architecture
  • Enlightened Data Transport

3. Microsoft

  • Remote Desktop Protocol

The Benefits and Limitations of VDI

One of the biggest benefits of VDI is that it promotes remote access and user mobility. You can reach from almost any compatible end-point and in different locations. It is a great option for workers who need to access a variety of apps and data on the go. It is like having a virtual office on demand.

It is a great fit for digital workspaces that regularly use web, cloud, and mobile apps across various contexts.

VDI can be great for cutting costs. Along with its benefits for end-users, a big part of VDI processing is server-based. You do not need any complicated hardware. You can access VDI through old personal computers. You don’t need to invest in any expensive equipment or adjust your budget.

Using VDI is a great way to improve security and centralization. It gives you a few improvements overrunning an Operating System and everything else locally. All data from your VDI connection remains in the server. It is, therefore, impossible for it to be stolen even at the end-point.

You can fully and centrally control the VDI environment from your data center. Administrators can always updates, reinforce policies, and change configurations for all virtual desktops to suit your needs. Having full control of your VDI means it is easy to maintain safety. The setup is not complicated.

Proper management and regular updating of OS images may help improve security and performance. Even when using VDI, you cannot afford to take security for granted. Pay attention to end-client authentication.

You may also need to put in some effort to improve performance if you rely on VDI for most of your operations. Since it became available in the mid-2000s, the performance of VDI has been lower than local operating systems. Even though it has improved significantly, you may need regular reviews and performance-tuning to address it.

In conclusion, VDI remains to be a valuable technology for workers in various industries. It is important for mobile and remote workers, medical professionals, teachers, contractors, and other professionals who may need to work on the go. Because of its versatility, it can be deployed in various forms. It may also be appropriate for users who need to access a non-persistent desktop. With the help of a proper VDI solution, you can scale essential services and applications to meet the new demands for remote and mobile teams. It allows you to deliver a consistent experience across devices such as tablets, thin clients, smartphones, and PCs.