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How Desktop-as-a-Service (DaaS) Saves You Money in More Ways Than One

The number one reason why many businesses consider switching over to a desktop-as-a-service model has to do with the immediate cost savings they get to enjoy on the technological assets they depend on so heavily each day. In fact, part of the reason why DaaS works so well is because it frees an organization from the restrictions of physical hardware assets in the first place.

When you buy a computer for your office today, it can (and likely will) grow out of date as soon as six months from now. As time drags on, it will continue to get slower, and more issues will develop. Soon, it won’t be able to do what you need it to do anymore, and you’ll either have to invest money in upgrades or buy an entirely new computer in the first place. Multiply these costs by dozens of employees, and you can see what a significant restriction this really is.

But even beyond simply investing in desktop hardware, you also have to think about the purchasing and licensing of servers, the purchasing and licensing of applications, the money that you’re losing literally every day to the depreciation of assets, etc. To say that all of these costs can quickly add up is something of a dramatic understatement.

The immediate cost savings of Desktop-as-a-Service

With desktop-as-a-service, on the other hand, these costs evaporate. Your ability to run your mission-critical applications is no longer dependent on the quality of the computer you’re using — it’s dependent on the speed of your internet connection, instead. Desktop-as-a-service resources are usually delivered as a cloud service, right along with all of the apps needed for use on your virtual desktop infrastructure.

Hardware

This means that you’ll be able to use your existing hardware assets for significantly longer periods of time, decreasing your total cost of ownership across the board. Every time a new version of one of your enterprise applications is released, you won’t have to worry about all the features that will “break” because you’re trying to run that program on a five-year-old computer. At that point, the computer itself is totally irrelevant.

Operational

As all of these costs disappear, along with additional expenses like powering, cooling and hosting your own infrastructure, it should come as a surprise to absolutely nobody that using IT support services like desktop-as-a-service can save the average business up to 50 percent of operational costs within five years of adoption.

You get all of this in exchange for what is typically a fixed monthly fee that is easy to scale up and down at will. If you bring on new employees to account for seasonal fluctuations, you don’t have to worry about buying new hardware — you can make a single call to your DaaS vendor, and everything will be taken care of.

You have access to the latest technology at all times, allowing you to miss fewer opportunities and take advantage of the ones that do present themselves as quickly as possible. With one relatively simple switch, you’ve cemented your competitive advantage in your industry for a decade.

For many, these reasons alone make the switch to a desktop-as-a-service infrastructure more than worth it. But it’s also important to understand that there are many other ways in which DaaS can save an organization money, too — particularly in the long term. These are factors that many people don’t necessarily think about, but that doesn’t make them any less important.

The long-term Implications of DaaS

One of the biggest ways in which desktop-as-a-service can save an organization money in the long term ultimately comes down to a single word: productivity. DaaS isn’t just about freeing an organization from the restrictions of hardware in terms of total cost of ownership — because resources are being served up over the internet, users can essentially access the same “machine” from any device or location on planet Earth with an active internet connection.

This means that if one of your employees is halfway around the world on vacation but suddenly needs to contribute to a major project, productivity doesn’t have to grind to a halt while you wait for them to return. Provided that they’ve got internet access, they can be just as productive while they’re sitting in an airport lounge waiting for their flight to take off as they can be in front of the computer in their office. This is because the physical computer itself no longer matters — only the tasks that you can complete with those resources matter, and now you can do them anywhere.

Work from anywhere

This segues nicely into another one of the major advantages of the desktop-as-a-service model: a strengthened sense of business continuity. If your physical workplace suffers some type of catastrophe like a fire, you don’t have to worry about all of the progress that was lost on every project you were working on just because your computers are now damaged beyond repair.

While this will be a challenge to overcome on an organizational level to be sure, desktop-as-a-service offers both centralized data backup and ubiquitous desktop availability in one package — meaning that as far as work is concerned, you can pick back up from anywhere without skipping a beat. Your employees could work from home if they needed to while leadership gets everything else sorted out.

Get the most from your team

The desktop-as-a-service model also has a number of important implications in terms of not just how your employees are able to work, but what they’re actually doing in the first place. Take your own in-house IT team, for example. Because technology is such a fundamental part of your organization, your IT employees are essentially the backbone of everything you’ve already worked so hard to build. With a conventional computing model, the majority of their time is monopolized in reactionary ways. Something breaks, they fix it. Hardware grows out of date; they update it. Applications need patched, they patch them. Rinse, repeat.

The problem is that the people who are largely responsible for your organization’s major competitive advantage are stuck “spinning their wheels,” so to speak. The majority of their attention is devoted to preserving the status quo, not making sure that technology is aligned with your long-term business objectives. With the DaaS model, all of the above tasks — from updates to maintenance and everything in between — are all handled instantly by a vendor. Suddenly, your IT staff has an infinitely larger amount of time each day to devote their attention to other, more proactive matters that deserve it the most.

Security cost savings

But perhaps one of the biggest advantages of the desktop-as-a-service model ultimately comes down to not the expenses that it saves your organization, but from the costs it helps prevent you from having to endure: namely, those related to cybersecurity.

According to a study conducted by the Ponemon Institute and sponsored by IBM Security, the average total cost of a single data breach came in at an astounding $3.62 million in 2017. This number breaks down to approximately $141 per stolen or otherwise compromised records. Many people fail to realize that oftentimes these breaches are not the product of a team of hackers sitting in a lab somewhere, working tirelessly to penetrate computer systems from afar. They’re the result of people taking advantage of weak, outdated, and otherwise vulnerable software and hardware.

When the developer of a piece of software you’re using for your enterprise issues an update, it’s always important to download and install it as quickly as possible. These updates don’t just add new features — they also patch security holes, fix bugs and address other exploits that people use to execute these types of breaches in the first place. Understanding that this is important is only half the battle — you (or more specifically, your IT team) actually has to do something about it. But under a traditional hardware model, making sure that absolutely everything is patched and updated at all times can be an uphill battle to say the least.

Thankfully, this is not something that you have to worry about with the DaaS model. Because all of your assets are being served up in an “on-demand” capacity over the internet, you and your team have access to the latest versions of everything from drivers to productivity suites at all times. All updates — along with patches, preventative and proactive maintenance — are handled by the third-party vendor of your choosing. You don’t have to worry about whether or not you and your team were updated the next time you read about a massive data breach in the newspaper — you’ll know beyond the shadow of a doubt.

In the end: DaaS is here to stay

Regardless of how you choose to look at it, the desktop-as-a-service model makes a great deal of sense for small- and medium-sized businesses in particular for a wide range of different reasons. For many, the immediate cost savings that come along with freeing themselves from the dependency of hardware resources will more than make up for the initial investment. But the long-term implications — namely the instant boost in productivity you can receive and the cybersecurity-related benefits in particular — make DaaS a step that is more than worth taking.

AVD MANAGEMENT

Multi-Cloud and On-Premises Deployment with Azure Stack HCI (Coming Soon)

Deploy Azure Virtual Desktop in Azure and extend the session host VM placement to on-premises and other cloud using Azure Stack HCI. Nerdio Manager automates deployment of session hosts, AVD agent installation, and full integration into the AVD deployment in Azure.

Create a brand new Azure Virtual Desktop environment or allow Nerdio Manager to discover an existing deployment, connecting to existing resources, and manage them.

Deploy Nerdio Manager from Azure Marketplace and configure a new AVD environment with an easy to follow, step-by-step configuration wizard. First group of users can access their AVD desktop in less than 2 hours.

Service providers, system integrators, and consultants can leverage Nerdio Manager’s scripted AVD deployment template. Create complete environments with desktop images, host pools, and auto-scaling in minutes.

Create and manage AVD environments that span Azure regions and subscriptions. Quickly link Vnets and resource groups and manage AVD deployments world-wide from unified portal.

Link multiple Azure tenants under the same Nerdio Manager instance and manage AVD deployments that span Azure AD tenants. User identities and session host VMs can run in separate tenants for maximum flexibilty and security.

Deploy and manage AVD environments that span across sovereign Azure Clouds. Cross-sovereign cloud support allows identity (e.g. users and groups) to be in one Azure Cloud, while session host VMs are in another Azure Cloud.

Management of workspaces, host pools, app groups, RemoteApps & custom RDP settings

Administer every aspect of AVD with Nerdio Manager including workspaces, host pools, application groups, RemoteApp publishing, RDP properties, session time limits, FSLogix, and much, much more. Every Azure service that AVD relies on can be managed with Nerdio Manager.

Deploy and manage AVD session host VMs. Hosts can be created manually or with auto-scaling, deleted on-demand or on a schedule, re-imaged to apply updates, run a scripted action, resized, put into or taken out of drain mode, and more.

Manage user sessions across the entire AVD environment, within a workspace, host pool or on a single host. Monitor session status, disconnect or log off the user, shadow or remote control to provide support, or send user an on-screen message.

End users have the ability to log into Nerdio Manager with their Azure AD credentials and manage their own session, restart their desktop VM, or start a session host if none are started in a host pool. (Ability to resize and re-image own desktop is coming soon.)

Create, link, and manage Azure Files shares including AD domain join. Synchronize Azure Files permissions with host pools, configure quotas, and enable SMB multi-channel. Manage file lock handles and configure Azure Files auto-scaling to increase quota as needed.

Create, link, and manage Azure NetApp Files accounts, capacity pools and volumes. Configure provisioned volume size, monitor usage, and use auto-scaling to automatically adjust volume and capacity pool size to accommodate the needed capacity and latency requirements.

FSLogix configuration can be complex and overwheling, but not with Nerdio Manager. Create one or more FSLogix profiles with all the needed options, point at one or more Azure Files, Azure NetApp Files, or server locations and select from VHDLocations, CloudCache and Azure Blob storage modes.

Multiple identity source profiles can be set up and used automatically on different host pools. Active Directory, Azure AD DS, and Native Azure AD are all supported. Choose the appropriate directory profile when adding a host pool and all VMs will automatically join this directory when being created.

Create a copy of a host pool with all of its settings: auto-scale config, app groups and RemoteApps, MSIX AppAttach, user/group assignments, VM deployment settings, etc. Save time by creating host pool “templates” that can be cloned to any Workspace, Azure region or subscription instead of starting from scratch.

Apply user session time limits at host pool level. Automatically log off disconnected sessions, limit the duration of idle sessions, control empty RemoteApp session behavior and more.

Assign Azure AD users to personal desktops to ensure the user will log into a pre-configured VM. Un-assign personal desktops from users who leave the organization and re-use these VMs for new users.

Pre-configure custom Azure tags for all Azure resources associated with each host pool. Tags can be used for charge-back and cost allocation by host pool.

When creating session hosts using NV-series VMs NVIDIA and AMD GPU drivers are automatically installed.

Move existing host pools from Fall 2019 (Classic) object model to Spring 2020 (ARM) object model. Choose to whether to move or copy user assignments. Existing session hosts are automatically migrated or new ones can be created in the ARM host pool.

Automatically enable and configure AVD integration with Azure monitor. Zero configuration required. Azure Monitor Insights for AVD can be used instead of or in conjunction with Sepago Monitor.

AVD personal desktops to Windows 365 Cloud PC migration (Coming Soon)

Migrate users from AVD personal desktops to Windows 365 Enterprise Cloud PCs using an existing image and user assignment. (Coming soon)

WINDOWS 365 ENTERPRISE MANAGEMENT

Cloud PC License Usage Optimization (Coming Soon)

Cloud PC device lifecycle management

Cloud PC user group assignment

Intune primary user management on Cloud PCs

Migrate AVD personal desktops to Cloud PCs (Coming Soon)

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