Windows Virtual Desktop vs. Microsoft Remote Desktop Services

Windows Virtual Desktop vs. Microsoft Remote Desktop Services

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windows virtual desktop- RDS vs WVD

Microsoft has led the innovation in the desktop virtualization space ever since it became a thing! First, with its Remote Desktop Services (RDS) by bringing desktop virtualization to life for distributed endpoint users and now, with Windows Virtual Desktop (WVD) by offering the only multi-session Windows 10 virtual desktop experience, powered by Azure.

We’d like to take you on a walk-through on Legacy RDS, what it offers and entails before seeing how Windows Virtual Desktop has evolved to deliver advanced virtual desktop experiences for modern workplace employees.

The Premise of RDS

All due credit to RDS, it has made IT infrastructure management a cinch. RDS has standardized desktop virtualization with an intuitive GUI offering to endpoint users that enabled them access applications from remote devices.

However, RDS has its own share of limitations, ones that organizations have felt a sustained impact of.


  1. Requires specially trained resources to have it deployed and managed smoothly on servers
  2. Could not expand its single-session experience to multi sessions to cater the growing workforces and rising needs of multiple access instances at any single point in time
  3. Being hosted centrally on an on-prem server, it ensues maintenance & operating costs for organizations

Microsoft’s Next-Gen Virtual Desktop Offering – Windows Virtual Desktop

Powered by Azure, WVD brings the real-time desktop experience of Windows 10 to users, virtualized. Essentially, WVD enables desktops as a service to remote workforces. Windows Virtual Desktop is an enhanced offering from Microsoft in the desktop virtualization space with the following key takeaways:

  1. WVD has finally made the multi-session Windows 10 experience possible. WVD enables multiple users to a single virtual machine instance as a desktop.
  2. WVD enables users to optimize the entire Microsoft Office experience by offering Office 365 Pro Plus across multi-user virtual scenarios
  3. Organizations with legacy RDS in use can now leverage WVD to have their RDS environments migrated seamlessly with the promise of a simplified deployment and management experience
  4. WVD offers a cohesive, unified management solution in Azure to enable quick and easy virtualization of modern and legacy desktop applications on the cloud
  5. WVD comes with capabilities to manage all of Windows 10, Windows Server and Windows 7 desktops and applications with a unified management experience
  6. WVD can be brought home with simple licensing model; contrary to how RDS entailed a list of subscriptions. An eligible Microsoft 365 subscription or a Windows 10 Enterprise license will do!

The WVD Edge

We’ve charted out a comparison between RDS and WVD, although each has its own gallery to play to. This will help you understand why and how WVD is the next-gen thing!

Desktop Operating System Windows 10 Enterprise multi-session Windows Server 2016 Desktop Experience with RDS
Licensing options a. Microsoft 365 (E3, E5, A3, A5, Business)
b. Windows 10 (E3, E5, A3, A5)
c. Windows 10 Enterprise VDA
a. Windows Server via Azure, CSP Software Subscriptions or SA
c. CSP Software subscription 1- and 3-year RDS SAL
d. RDS CALS with Software Assurance (SA)
Cost – OS license (approximate) $7 per user per month (Windows 10 Enterprise) $5 to $8 per user per month
(RDS + Windows Server)
Cost – control plane (approximate) $0 (included in OS license) $2.50 per user for 100s of users, higher for small deployments
Desktop types a. Personal – dedicated VM
b. Pooled – shared VM
a. VDI – dedicated VM
b. RDS – shared VM
OneDrive installed client support Yes, supported a. RDS Collections: No
b. VDI & RDS: Yes
Windows search indexing Yes, supported a. RDS Collections: No
b. VDI & RDS: Yes
Skype & Teams No, but expected soon a. RDS Collections: No
b. VDI & RDS: Yes
Azure regions Desktop VMs – all
Control Plane – limited
Desktop VMs – All
Control Plane – All
Azure Hybrid Usage Supported Supported
Reserved instances Yes Yes
32-bit apps Supported Supported

Introducing Ubikite’s DaaS Manager – To efficiently manage WVD initiatives

Adopting WVD at modern workplaces is one thing and efficiently managing the adopted WVD environment is altogether another. An efficient management tool doesn’t just manage your WVD workload but also optimizes your infrastructure.

Ubikite has worked along with Microsoft’s WVD product engineering team in creating some key elements such as deployment scripts, scaling scripts, management, diagnostics UX etc. in order to enable a better adoption of WVD. Our experience with WVD has helped us build a comprehensive WVD management & optimization tool – Ubikite DaaS Manager. Ubikite DaaS Manager offers to be a centralized platform to manage and monitor your WVD infrastructure.

Ubikite DaaS Manager:

  • Offers a comprehensive WVD with M365 toolkit
  • Promotes total control over your WVD environment with a cost-effective pricing model
  • Exhibits a real-time virtualization ability to identify & fix issues on the go
  • Is ultimately a single, unified platform to manage your modern workplace

How Ubikite DaaS Manager optimizes your WVD environment:

  • By possessing ‘Autoscale’ ability – to intelligently adjust cloud consumption based on varying usage
  • By enabling automatic backup of your data and quick recovery time windows in light of disasters
  • By visualizing all your WVD resources’ utilization and performance in a unified dashboard

All in all, Ubikite DaaS Manager accelerates your WVD adoption by making it simple to manage your WVD infrastructure and monitor your modern workplace infrastructure! Team Ubikite is glad to clarify any questions you might have around leveraging WVD at your organization or how your existing WVD setup can be monitored and managed from a single pane of glass!

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