Desktop virtualization or a virtual desktop solution is a process by which a personal computer desktop environment is mirrored on another personal computer by means of a network connection. Through a virtual desktop all files and services available on the computer that is being mirrored are available on the networked computer that is accessing it. A virtual desktop is a great way for employees to stay connected and productive even at home or abroad.
A virtual desktop involves encapsulating and delivering either access to an entire information system environment or the environment itself to a remote client device. The client device on a virtual desktop may use an entirely different hardware architecture from that used by the projected desktop environment and may also be based upon an entirely different operating system.
One of the most common and simplest uses of a virtual desktop involves remote administration. Remote administration on a virtual desktop is where the controlling computer will work almost the same as on a duplicate desktop, except that the actions of the controlling computer may be almost unnoticeable on the remote computer display. This virtual desktop setup differs from the simple remote desktop software in that several people using a virtual desktop can use the same controlling computer at once without disturbing each other's work. This virtual desktop situation is probably ideal for several administrators doing different tasks on the same server. A virtual desktop can also be used for using hardware attached to the controlled computer without disturbing a person who may already be using the computer.
A virtual desktop has many advantages over a typical workstation environment. In a virtual desktop model every computer operates as a completely self-contained unit with its own operating system, peripherals and application programs. Overall hardware expenses may diminish as users can share resources allocated to them on an as-needed basis. A virtual desktop can also improve the data integrity of user information because all the data can be maintained and backed-up in a data center.
Additional advantages of a virtual desktop also include: simpler provisioning of new desktops, reduced downtime in the event of server or client hardware-failures, lower cost of deploying new applications, desktop image-management capabilities, longer refresh cycle for client desktop infrastructure as well as secure remote access to an enterprise desktop environment.
Conversely, a virtual desktop environment also has several drawbacks. Among them are: potential security risks on a virtual desktop if the network is not properly managed, challenges in setting up and maintaining drivers for printers and other peripherals, difficulty in running certain complex applications such as multimedia, increased downtime in the event of network failures, reliance on connectivity to corporate or public network and complexity and high costs of VDI deployment and management. These are all virtual desktop issues Horizon Private Cloud is fully aware of and has addressed in past virtual desktop setups. For more information on how a Horizon Private Cloud virtual desktop can help your business, contact us today!
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