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Azure Virtual Desktop vs. Windows 365: settle the battle in 5 questions!

Blogs
Marcel Eeken
30-1-2024
The virtual workplace: today it is more the rule than the exception. Now that we have fully embraced hybrid working, the average organization is dealing with the subject. The right technology is then, of course, indispensable. And when it comes to that, confusion soon arises. Indeed, both Windows 365 and Azure Virtual Desktop then come around the corner. The question is: which option is right for your organization?

Choice tool: what does your organization need?

Let's start with two clear definitions.

Azure Virtual Desktop is a PaaS solution ('PaaS' stands for 'platform as a service'). This variant gives you as an organization a bit more control and therefore a higher degree of flexibility in setting up your workplace environment.

Windows 365 is a SaaS solution ("SaaS" stands for "software as a service"). Here, your workplace runs on the same platform as Azure Virtual Desktop. But because of the SaaS principle, this option involves less management.

If you want to determine which variant is best for your organization, it would be wise to first identify your needs. By the way, it's not always an "either-or" issue: sometimes Windows 365 turns out to be a good complement to Azure Virtual Desktop (or even Citrix).

To get you started, we list some questions you can ask yourself. Use these as a starting point to make your choice!

1. Who do you want to provide a desktop to?

If the answer is the entire organization; then look at Azure Virtual Desktop.
For a specific use case, Windows 365 is probably a better solution.

2. How much do you want to do yourself?

Those who like to be in control and have flexibility will probably do best with Azure Virtual Desktop. If you don't want to worry about management, Windows 365 takes many tasks off your hands.

3. What pricing model appeals to you?

With Azure Virtual Desktop, you pay by usage. There is more dynamics in the price, with advantages and disadvantages. Windows 365 is offered in subscription form (with fixed-price model), so you always know where you stand in terms of costs.

4. Who uses a virtual machine when?

Azure Virtual Desktop offers the ability to work with multiple users on a single machine. If you work with part-timers, this can be advantageous: you turn off machines when people aren't using them. With Windows 365, you pay a fixed price for 24/7 use, which is more convenient if employees work with it frequently. Keep in mind that with Windows 365, one user per virtual machine applies.

5. Do you perform many graphic design tasks?

In the past, organizations bought expensive physical devices to perform such work. Now you can invest in a virtual workstation that has heavier resources (such as a graphics processor) built in. You turn these on only when needed. If a better machine is available in the meantime, you can use it without having to buy a new machine. However, such specific workloads are not available within Windows 365. For that, you need Azure Virtual Desktop.

Want to know more?

Have questions or want to try both options, contact us!