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Don’t Lift & Shift Your VDI! Simplify with Cloud-Native DaaS

Remote working has always been controversial. Because of technology limitations and workplace cultural preferences, only 20% of all employees worked remotely before the pandemic. As COVID-19 risk grew and stay-at-home orders were abruptly issued, that percentage exploded to 75% practically overnight, and IT teams scrambled to accommodate so many people working from home. Our massive work-from-home experiment has been a great learning exercise for illuminating the significant benefits of remote working for people and for business productivity. Consequently, the post-pandemic forecast is that 40% of all employees and more than 50% of knowledge workers will continue to work remotely. However, the traditional ways of supporting remote work are only short-term band aids; instead, a long term solution that delivers amazing performance, enforces your Zero Trust Security policy, and scales easily across cloud regions is the right path to be on so you’re prepared for the next business challenge that comes your way.

Ready for cloud-native DaaS transformation

The widespread acceptance of remote working is driving dramatic changes in the technology landscape. Most companies have enabled remote work in two primary ways: They use a Windows PC and a VPN, or they implement VDI to enable remote Windows PC access. Unfortunately VPNs bring security risks and don’t scale easily, and VDI is complex and therefore resource-intensive and expensive to manage. Neither solution is ideal for the long term, and it’s clear that IT teams are discovering the weaknesses and risks of these approaches.

As a result, most companies are now designing for a zero-trust architecture, where the remote employee uses a device of their choice or a zero-trust device, such as a Chromebook, to access a Windows PC running in the cloud. To achieve this end user computing transformation, companies are faced with the question of whether they should take a lift-and-shift, do-it-yourself (DIY) approach and move their existing VDI stack to the cloud or choose an entirely new, built-from-the-ground-up, cloud-native DaaS solution architecture.

Old architectures can’t keep up

When you think about it, VDI architectures were developed well over a decade ago. While technology has marched on around them, they didn’t change; they can’t change. VDI was built for a single data center, and that’s how it works best – when everyone is close to that single data center, users may have a decent experience. While there are real security benefits for traditional VDI, there are also serious scalability difficulties. And we all know about the complexity that IT teams have to manage on a day-to-day basis. When you lift and shift legacy VDI to the cloud, these problems don’t go away – they just get moved to someone else’s data center.

This is why old VDI architectures can’t keep up. For the cloud era, a new architecture was needed, and Workspot built it: The Desktop Control Fabric™ architecture. This white paper describes our innovative architecture in more detail. Here are 5 reasons why you should choose the most up-to-date, cloud-native architecture for your cloud DaaS implementation:

  1. DIY is complex; SaaS simplifies everything
  2. Avoid lost productivity & save money
  3. Hyper-local performance is great for users
  4. Utility billing models give you predictability
  5. Ongoing partnership guides your cloud journey

Bonus reason: Multi-cloud Strategy!

DIY vs. SaaS

Are you tired of operating the dozens of software and hardware components of your DIY VDI stack? Could those IT resources be put to better use? We often hear from our customers that even though they have the in-house skillsets to do it themselves, they just don’t want to spend their time upgrading and troubleshooting brokers, load balancers, licensing servers, and the many other components of their infrastructure. 

Workspot has built the only multi-cloud SaaS platform for Desktop as a Service (DaaS). The difference is that when you simply lift and shift your existing VDI to the cloud, you take with you all the same performance, scalability, and resource-intensive troubleshooting problems with you. There’s no getting away from them. Alternatively, you can leave all these issues behind when you choose Workspot’s SaaS cloud-native DaaS platform. You can deliver cloud desktops and workstations from Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud, or both, and leave all the platform upgrades and support to us. Why DIY when someone else can do it better, and you can reallocate those precious IT resources to other projects?

Avoid Lost Productivity

VDI is one of the most mission critical workloads in the enterprise. If people can’t access their PCs or virtual desktops, they can’t work, and that costs the business serious money. One of our customers told us that they lose $150/user/hr when their on-premises VDI is down. Another customer calculated lost productivity for a day of downtime at $1 million. That’s why they made the move to Workspot. Here are some key questions to consider:

  1. What tools do you use to monitor and troubleshoot your on-premises VDI? Are they available in the cloud?
  2. How do you know when a user is unable to connect or is having a poor experience with their virtual desktop?
  3. Can you quickly troubleshoot the problem when a user complains?
  4. Are you prepared to troubleshoot IaaS and other software components in the cloud?

Reliability is crucial. Our industry-leading 99.95% cloud desktop uptime makes all the difference, but we don’t stop there. At Workspot, we monitor our cloud desktop service globally, with the only real-time Network Operations Center for end user computing. By proactively monitoring our service operations, we can  ensure your users are always able to access their cloud desktop. 

Hyper-Local Performance for Users

We have yet to meet a customer whose users are happy about the performance of their VDI solution. It’s unfortunate that the IT team has to spend so much time dealing with performance issues. If all your users are close to your data center, their performance may be acceptable, but what about people who are remote? Are those VDI users happy? Because they connect to your data center via high latency connections, their productivity is surely suffering (and that costs the company money!). So, what do we mean by “hyper-local”? Our customers tell us that their cloud desktops and workstations perform better than their physical desktops, which is as local as you can get! 

Given the opportunity to keep users happy and productive, why would you settle for anything else? When the public cloud is comprised of tens of data centers all over the world, just waiting  to serve you, why would you settle for a single data center? This is why you need to choose an architecture that allows you to deploy virtual desktops into the public cloud region nearest each of your users. This reduces latency between the user and their desktop, which gives every user amazing performance. That’s what a SaaS cloud-native DaaS solution will do for you!

Utility Operation & Billing Models

You understand how to plan for and procure perpetual software licenses and on-premises hardware for peak usage. It’s an unfortunate reality that because you’ve been forced to over-provision, it’s likely that you see less than 20% utilization of your on-premises infrastructure. The servers, storage, and software sits idle for more than 80% of the time! Additionally, on-premises infrastructure is ill-suited to rapid expansion and contraction. Workspot’s cloud desktop platform offers a utility pricing and operation model where you pay for what you actually use and everything just works, so you don’t have to think about it too much. Plus, you’re able to take advantage of best-of-cloud features in both Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud. Does your legacy infrastructure do all that?

Ongoing Partnership & Guidance

Today you buy software and hardware from a variety of vendors. You may pay a consultant to help you install it, but then everything else is your problem. If you run into an issue, you are on your own to solve it. That’s a foreign concept at Workspot.

Our customer success and support teams will be with you on your entire journey. We will help you deploy new use cases, and we’ll jump right in to help you troubleshoot a problem. We find that 99% of the time, when a problem arises, it’s with the cloud provider, or your network provider, or an upgrade to your DNS, but that doesn’t mean we won’t help. We have built tools and telemetry so that our teams can help you more rapidly analyze the problem. Because of our monitoring capabilities and big data analysis, our team can spot patterns that indicate issues beyond the Workspot platform. For example, a cloud region may go down, or a new Windows update is causing problems, or a Zoom update is wreaking havoc. We spot the pattern affecting our users and we can help escalate the issue faster with those vendors because we see that multiple customers are experiencing the same issues.

Why do we do this? It’s simple; we want your users to be happy and productive. That’s our mission.

Multi-Cloud Strategy

Once you have decided to look for a cloud-native DaaS solution, it is important to choose a multi-cloud solution. Why? The clouds have very different capabilities, and there can be as much as a 3-5x difference in price/performance between clouds. You’ll want to be able to take advantage of these differences and optimize your cloud desktop deployment accordingly. Our Customer Success Team can help with that decision process. Lastly, planning for business resilience is another reason to go multi-cloud. Workspot is the only cloud desktop platform that spans Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud, delivering the best of all worlds for your end user computing transformation. Here’s a recent article published on Network Computing describing why a multi-cloud approach helps IT teams deliver reliable service, while minimizing complexity and strengthening security.

Ready to learn more? Schedule a demo and we’ll have a discussion about your challenges and requirements. It will be time well spent!