In the fast-evolving world of remote work, businesses are seeking secure and scalable solutions to enable workforce productivity. Microsoft Azure Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) emerges as a game-changing solution, offering centralized security, cross-platform accessibility, and cost-efficient multi-session capability.
This blog, Part 1, explores the key features and advantages of Azure VDI, highlighting the perquisites for Microsoft Azure VDI deployment. In Part 2, you can check out the complete deployment process for Azure VDI.
What is Azure Virtual Desktop Infrastructure?
Microsoft Azure Virtual Desktop is a cloud-based virtual desktop infrastructure that enables seamless access to enterprise computer systems from a variety of devices, such as personal computers, smartphones, and tablets. By eliminating the necessity for physical machines and their management, VDI empowers authorized users to securely access company servers, files, applications, and services through a secure desktop client or browser from any approved device.
This centralized approach has become the preferred choice for businesses, supporting remote and branch office workers and facilitating access for contractors and partners. Azure VDI caters to remote and in-house teams, fostering seamless collaboration and efficiency.
Key Advantages of Azure VDI Solution
- Centralized Security and Full Infrastructure Control
Azure VDI offers centralized security with full administrative control, safeguarding data and applications from potential threats.
- Scalability for Dynamic Business Needs
AVD's ability to scale resources as per business requirements ensures organizations stay agile and responsive to changing workloads.
- Customizable Workloads and User Experiences
Azure VDI provides four configurable workload profiles: Light, Medium, Heavy, and Power.
- Cross-Platform Accessibility
AVD supports a wide range of devices and operating systems, including Windows, MacOS, Android, iOS, and web clients. Users can access virtual desktops and applications from any modern browser, enhancing flexibility and productivity.
- Simplify Administrative Tasks
Reduces complexity as admins no need to manage web access, diagnostics, Gateway management, and Load Balancing on Servers.
- Cost-Efficient Multi-Session Capability
Azure VDI enables multiple users to share a single VM with multi-session capability, optimizing resource utilization and reducing infrastructure expenses, making it a cost-effective solution.
Azure VDI Solution Enhancing User Experience and Security
- Seamless App Integration
With AVD, applications can be fully integrated with users' physical Windows devices, providing a familiar and smooth experience. Apps open seamlessly on Azure VMs, enhancing productivity and collaboration.
- FSLogix Profile Container for User Profile Migration
Azure VDI employs FSLogix Profile Container to ensure consistent user experiences even when VMs change. Users don't have to wait for profiles to populate, simplifying user onboarding and maintenance.
- Monitoring Features
Administrators can access VM and infrastructure performance analytics through Azure Monitor, facilitating proactive decision-making.
- Security Features
Azure Virtual Desktop (AVD) provides top-notch security measures to protect your data and applications. With Conditional Access and Multifactor Authentication, user logins are fortified against unauthorized access. Additionally, AVD employs HTTPS encryption through Reverse Connect transport, enhancing the overall security of remote connections.
Prerequisites and Deployment Considerations
Before implementing Microsoft Azure Virtual Desktop, it is essential to consider a few prerequisites and deployment considerations. Ensuring that you meet these requirements will help streamline the set-up process and ensure a successful implementation of the VDI solution.
Azure account with an active subscription
Microsoft Desktop Virtualization resource provider registration is required for the subscription.
It is needed for User authentication. Below are the scenarios which are supported for Identity configuration:
Supported operating system and Licenses requirements:
- Windows 11 Enterprise multi-session
- Windows 11 Enterprise
- Windows 10 Enterprise multi-session
- Windows 10 Enterprise
- Windows Server 2022
- Windows Server 2019
- Windows Server 2016
- Windows Server 2012 R2
You can also use our own custom images stored in an Azure Compute Gallery as a managed image or storage blob.
- No need to open any specific ports for incoming connection.
- This uses a Reverse connection and works securely on Port Number 443, which is for HTTPS Connections.
- Virtual network configuration before deployment of the session pool and VMs.
- The virtual network should be able to connect with Domain controllers and DNS Servers for smooth joining of session host to domain.
- Some of the required URLs need to allow in Firewall along with TCP port 443.
- RTT from the Azure region should be less than 150ms.
- Microsoft recommends not to open inbound port 3389 and also don't assign any public IP addresses to the Session host.
Remote Desktop client:
Users need a Remote Desktop client to connect to virtual desktops and remote apps. The following clients support Azure Virtual Desktop:
- Windows Desktop client
- Web client
- macOS client
- iOS and iPadOS client
- Android and Chrome OS client
- Remote Desktop app for Windows
- Azure Virtual Desktop Store app for Windows
In conclusion, Microsoft Azure Virtual Desktop (AVD) emerges as a game changing VDI solution, offering a secure, scalable, and cost-efficient approach to streamline remote work and enhance collaboration for businesses. Microsoft AVD empowers organizations to adapt to the evolving workplace landscape, fostering productivity and agility in today's digital era.
Jade, a certified Microsoft partner, provides comprehensive Microsoft Cloud Services, enabling businesses to leverage the full potential of the Azure ecosystem. Jade's expertise in Microsoft Azure Services ensures seamless integration and a smooth transition to VDI, enabling your organization to thrive in the modern digital workspace.