Work from anywhere: Remoting workers with Windows Virtual Desktop

Author: Lawrence Laverne

As the COVID-19 pandemic rapidly unfolded in 2020, Beyondsoft management took swift action to protect their global workforce. The office doors were shut, locked, and employees were notified to work from home. In moments, employees needed to work remotely and securely, and do their jobs from anywhere in the world.

A large number of Beyondsoft personnel rely on a custom, Windows-based application. Employees without a Windows PC or laptop at home can’t run that application to do their job.  Additionally, this custom application requires steady and rapid data throughput to run well. Some employees are limited to using a data-metered cell phone connection from home. The company needed a flexible solution that was easy to manage with rapid deployment.

Windows Virtual Desktop

Microsoft provides the ideal solution with Windows Virtual Desktop (WVD). WVD is a new cloud Desktop-as-a-Service (DaaS) offered by Microsoft as part of Azure and Microsoft 365. Even better, WVD is free to anyone with a Windows 10 Enterprise or MS 365 subscription.

WVD is optimized to work with Windows 10, Office 365, multi-session virtual machine images. The platform was perfect for our employees who only needed O365, Web, and network access. We deployed this desktop type for anyone who didn’t need specialized tools nor a persistent desktop.

For those employees who required the custom application, we deployed a customized virtual desktop to WVD.

Employees with Windows laptops at home can easily access these virtual desktops using any modern Web browser. A free HTML5 client allows anyone with a MAC, iPad, Android, and others, access to Windows Virtual Desktops in the Azure Cloud. This solves the problem of the differing hardware and operating systems that our employees use from home.

Windows Virtual Desktops, and the software running on them, are hosted in the Azure Cloud. This means that data consumed by Beyondsoft’s custom Windows application passes to the cloud desktop, and not the employees’ local device. Only the desktop visuals are sent over the Web to the employees’ device at home. Our employees can now use the custom application without requiring a high-speed data connection to their home since they only see the remote desktop screen.

Security, performance, and availability

WVD offers multiple security features to protect company data and resources. We took advantage of WVDs latest security technology by enabling dual-factor authentication and Mobile Device Management for our employees. If a device is lost or stolen, corporate resources won’t be compromised.

To maximize availability and performance for remote users, WVD is deployed simultaneously to many regions around the world. We chose the closest area to each workforce to minimize latency.

Managing Windows Virtual Desktop

WVD is a brand-new Azure service and is continuously being updated and improved. One such improvement is the WVD management portal or UI. The UI allows us to navigate our WVD deployments and perform basic tasks such as adding and removing users.

Beyondsoft is a Microsoft partner offering Windows Virtual Desktop (WVD) services in the Azure Marketplace, so WVD seemed the ideal solution for our own needs. WVD provides many benefits that we can take advantage of to minimize costs while maximizing security and availability. As COVID-19 continues to impact people and businesses across the world, remote work has become more prevalent and important than ever. Join our team of experts on Thursday, May 21st at 1:30pm PT to learn how you can set your team up for future success!

How we do it

Our success factors over the years are a testament to driving your return on investment. Singapore is our global head office and we have 15 regional offices around the world.

Nearly 3 decades of strong IT consulting and services

40+ global delivery networks across four continents

Certifications* in CMMI 5, ISO 9001, ISO 45001, and ISO 27001

~30,000 global experts

Microsoft Azure Expert MSP

ISO 9001 and 45001 (certificates issued to Beyondsoft International (Singapore) Pte Ltd). ISO 27001 (certificates issued to Beyondsoft International (Singapore) Pte Ltd, Beyondsoft (Malaysia) Sdn. Bhd., and Beyondsoft Consulting Inc., Bellevue, WA, USA)