What is VDI? Virtual Desktop Infrastructure and Business Operations

April 14, 2022
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Industry Trends
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GCSIT Staff
What is VDI? Virtual Desktop Infrastructure and Business Operations

What is VDI, anyway? VDI – an abbreviation for virtual desktop infrastructure – is becoming an essential technology for organizations across industries as workforce demands evolve. Whether your business adopts Microsoft VDI, Amazon Workspaces, VMware or other software options, here’s what you should know about VDI.

The working paradigm is changing rapidly with the proliferation of hybrid cloud ecosystems and work-from-home options. An organization's security, infrastructure, and functionality have become more difficult due to the growing number of employees and environments. Information technology managers seek solutions to avoid incurring unnecessary costs while simplifying the management of these environments. Among the most effective solutions is virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI).

What is VDI, and why is it used?

In the simplest terms, this technology is developing and maintaining desktop environments and applications. Users can work and access applications and resources outside the office, working there, or working from home. It allows users to access their desktop environments and applications from wherever they are, anywhere in the world. To facilitate VDI implementations through virtualization solutions, technologies create a virtual computing system - called a virtual machine (VM) - that allows organizations to run different operating systems and applications on a single physical server within a data center. The VDI model works on the reasoning that a desktop operating system - like Microsoft Windows Desktop - can be hosted within a set of virtual machines, all of which operate on the server that hosts them.  

It is simple for IT managers to conduct a broad spectrum of work activities in a virtual data center. These activities might include data collection and distribution related to corporate data. IT managers need never travel from desktop to desktop making upgrades and performing troubleshooting tasks; they can manage the entire network using a virtual machine. Compared to how a standard personal computer typically operates, where users connect from a locally-located personal endpoint device to the internet, this is a significant shift.  

With access to desktop imagery, such as Microsoft Windows, a user can securely access these desktop images from any device or location. You don't need to be on your physical desktop with an endpoint machine to access your applications at any time. Accessing them whenever you want is of great benefit to you because it means you do not need to go to the office with a physical desktop. You can BYOD - bring your own devices - (including a laptop, tablet, or thin client terminal) from wherever you are.

VDI's advantages

VDI provides a variety of beneficial features, including:  

  • Maximum efficiency. Due to centralizing system administration, a great deal of time is saved with VDI. IT staff no longer needs to spend hours patching and updating programs on end-user computers. It is also easier to back up data. Data and applications are stored and retrieved from a central database, simplifying backup and restoration processes.
  • Cost efficiency. In most cases, the endpoints do not require much computing or storage. Endpoints can often be recycled from older or less powerful desktops. The recent increase in BYOD and remote work practices has enabled organizations to scale up the number of users by purchasing and assigning less expensive machines to them.
  • Increased reliability. Endpoint failures are reduced to a minimum. An endpoint device that experiences a problem can easily be swapped out for another readily-available device without worrying about compatibility issues.
  • Heightened security. VDI offers substantial advantages in terms of security because critical data is always housed on the server. Theft of a device does not result in data loss unless an attacker has compromised a live session. By taking this approach, organizations are protected from malware and ransomware.
  • Improved user experience. The greatest advantage of VDI is that it allows users to access their workload seamlessly and while improving their mobility - whether they are using a desktop, a laptop, or a smartphone.

There are many reasons why virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) is becoming an important component of many companies' IT strategy, one of which is the ability to reduce expenses and simplify the management of these systems. Companies are looking at enabling a more flexible work model to enhance their productivity through the use of virtual desktop infrastructure. These factors can provide the accessibility, security, adaptability, automated capabilities, and simplicity needed for fast and efficient execution.

GCSIT helps businesses integrate Microsoft VDI into their IT infrastructure, helping improve operations and data security for remote working environments. To discuss your IT needs and how upgrading could benefit your organization, please contact the team at GCSIT for an in-depth consultation. To learn more about the benefits of an agile infrastructure, please download our whitepaper.

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