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What custom services do DaaS vendors offer?

It takes a lot of work to learn how to secure and manage cloud-hosted desktops. But, if it's an option financially, organizations could consider some of the upgraded services DaaS vendors offer to make IT's job easier.

Most DaaS vendors offer the same basic capabilities, but they usually offer some special services, too, that can...

simplify cloud desktop management.

For example, some desktop as a service (DaaS) providers deliver a fully managed desktop that is customized for the client. They may dedicate hypervisor hosts and even full infrastructure to large clients. This is like having a personalized VDI deployment a specialized provider manages. The cost per desktop per month is higher than with more basic services such as Amazon WorkSpaces, but the service is much more extensive.

Security and compliance are some of the top challenges when using cloud services from DaaS vendors.

With a dedicated service, it is also much easier for companies to get customized hypervisor and desktops builds. It also means that one organization -- the DaaS provider -- is responsible for security and compliance for the whole infrastructure stack.

Also with a dedicated build, companies get back all the visibility that commodity DaaS takes away. IT can control the hypervisor configuration and set policies. Shops get visibility into all the logs and can choose the hypervisor-based introspection that suits their needs.

Once the hardware is dedicated to one business, it may even choose to have the hardware in its own data center, although this is more like a conventional managed service desktop. Customers can still have all the VDI management completed as a service, but host the hardware on premises. It is important to focus on fulfilling the business requirements rather than being dogmatic about using commodity DaaS.

Security and compliance are some of the top challenges when using cloud services from DaaS vendors. Each organization has its own collection of requirements that it must satisfy before it delivers desktops from the cloud, and these requirements may mean that certain DaaS providers are unsuitable for certain organizations. Alternatively, some parts of an organization might need to take a different approach to desktop delivery, such as using on-premises VDI or sticking with physical desktops.

There is no single DaaS provider that can satisfy all customers' needs, and a compliant and secure DaaS platform does not absolve the business from managing compliance and security. But investing in fully managed desktops or custom desktop and hypervisor configurations gives IT a good head start.

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This was last published in March 2016

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