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Cloud Managed Desktops: Transitioning to a Better Future

Cloud-based solutions for the workplace are powerful and adaptable tools for corporate decision-makers. Cloud-managed services such as virtual desktops allow for a wide range of practical benefits--desktop compartmentalization, performance increases, enhanced security, and cost-savings to name a few--that traditional IT setups struggle to match.

Virtual Desktops (VD) are operating systems that run remotely, either via the Internet or a local network for the home or workplace. By running the systems on dedicated virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) servers, the entire system is handled remotely and all data is made accessible via the cloud.

The key elements to a VDI approach are the endpoints (user desktops) and the data center (servers). As the user endpoints are only required to run the software required to link with the backend servers, the user machines themselves do not require particularly high performance parts. In addition, with the computing load shifted to centralized data servers, maintenance and performance monitoring is centralized. Faults can be isolated and repaired quickly and without the need for extensive hardware analysis on the user's end.

Benefits from Virtual Desktops

Flexibility and adaptability are the name of the game for modern IT setups, and Virtual Desktops offer users a comprehensive increase in capability over conventional network designs. Compartmentalization and isolation of each virtual machine ensures greater worker productivity and security, while the centralization of vital hardware helps with easier maintenance and better performance of resource-intensive applications. Limited data outflow via a centralized hub enhances network security, and virtualized infrastructure can help reduce hardware budgets.

All in all, cloud migration services like Credexo offer users an appealing alternative to traditional IT setups and make the transition to Virtual Desktops and cloud-based solutions smooth and effective.

Compartmentalization

Virtual desktops work by mirroring the computing occuring on the VDI with the user's desktop. As such, each instance of the virtual desktop is completely isolated and distinct from others on the same server. This guarantees compartmentalization and isolation--users can create dedicated virtual desktops for specific tasks in order to increase productivity and reduce the likelihood the system will be used for distracting tasks. Role-based permissions, for example, ensure that system managers are able to designate exactly which users are able to access parts of the company's digital network.

For example, a user may opt to use one virtual desktop setup exclusively for communication purposes such as general work emails, video conferencing, corporate instant messaging. The same user can then have another virtual desktop optimized for primary production-related tasks, such as video or photo editing and yet another desktop organized for writing and research.

As a practical benefit, this compartmentalization is almost unmatched. The capability to pull up the specific desktop setup for a given task in incredibly powerful. For example, a user working on project "Vermilion" can use one desktop for it, and keep project "Magenta" on an entirely separate desktop. Users are able to better clearly delineate which project they are working on.

Isolation

Furthermore, services like Windows Azure limit the impact that any individual failure can have. A single security breach on any of the Virtual Desktops is limited by both software and hardware firewalls to just that one instance of the desktop--thereby preventing malware or tainted code from spreading to other parts of the network.

Compared to traditional IT setups, virtual desktops offer unparalleled compartmentalization and structure. The benefit for project managers, IT professionals, and general workers is unmatched.

Performance and Maintenance

Cloud-managed desktops and Virtual Desktops allow for the computing of the entire network to take place in a centralized location on dedicated hardware. For users engaging in resource-intensive computing, using a customized central network hub to handle the computing tasks of an entire operation is immensely beneficial--there's no need for each individual workstation to be a powerhouse equipped with expensive equipment. Instead, each individual workstation needs only be capable of running the VDI link while the central hub takes care of the actual computing.

Systems like Windows Azure Virtual Machine have the ability to pause the virtual machines, preserve the data in random access memory (RAM), and implement non-reboot updates and software patches without service loss for users. Furthermore, Azure notifies all Virtual Desktops when updates are pending, allowing system managers to maintain some working Virtual Desktops and transfer any relevant temporary data before the system resets.

While conventional network setups would require maintenance and troubleshooting on each individual workstation, cloud-based services focus almost entirely on the centralized hardware hub.

Safety and Security

Centralized computing helps to enhance the safety and security of company data. As all network traffic and computing needs go from user endpoints to the central node and only then out to the broader network, VDI allows for companies to more carefully control the flow of information to and from the network (REWORD). Controlling data flow is a critical element in modern network security, and VDI networks can help protect company and customer data.

In a system like Microsoft's Azure Virtual Machine, users are able to write data to persistent disks that retain that data throughout system. Such systems also allow users to utilize temporary storage, which is held on the host machine's drives. This temporary data is purged and reset anytime the Virtual Desktop cycles on/off, goes through a system reboot, or anytime the host machine experiences an outage due to any reason. Virtual Desktops do not typically last for more than one user session, ensuring that malware is generally hampered in its ability to survive on the network.

The compartmentalized structure of Virtual Desktops keeps any corrupted data, malware, or general security breaches limited to only the vulnerable VD. This ensures that the network as a whole is protected in the event of a security breach, protecting the cloud and the information stored therein.

Non-cloud based networks are far more vulnerable to security breaches and require careful inspection of each individual workstation in the event of anything going wrong. With virtual desktops, this difficulty is largely avoided.

Virtualized Infrastructure and Cost Savings

Virtual desktops and VDI help to reduce costs associated with computer hardware and computing power. Since each user endpoint is merely a link to the central networking hub, the hardware required is minimal. By avoiding the expensive necessity of equipping each individual workstation with high-performance hardware, users are able to reduce their up-front hardware costs.

Cloud-based services also make certain that, in the event of hardware loss or natural disaster, company data remains stored safely and securely in the cloud.

Transitioning to Cloud-Managed Services Using Credexo

Anything that can be done on a traditional IT setup can be done better on the cloud. Cloud-managed solutions are flexible, secure systems that integrate data accessibility across the entire network--companies that sacrifice cloud migration in favor of staying on outdated systems are hampering their company's technology plan.

Effective and timely transitions to cloud-managed services require expert technical help in order to best gauge specific customer needs. Credexo offers holistic and highly customized cloud-managed solutions to clients in fields ranging from retail to healthcare to manufacturing. Crafting a tailored cloud migration strategy to your specific needs is what we do, and we work to open up your workforce to the unlimited potential of the cloud.

Credexo's cloud-managed services guarantee that your business remains at the cutting edge of modern software application--better efficiency, lower costs, and enhanced security work in tandem with increased flexibility and data integration to empower your employees. Liberating their business from the shackles of obsolete IT setups is vital for companies looking to hone their competitive edge, and Credexo does just that--we bring your digital vision to life!

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