If I received a dollar for every time I’m asked this question you and I can both retire! Things are changing in the world of data center outsourcing, but for some reason this is still stuck in the mud. Why no VDI today?
1) I have no idea
2) See answer 1
I wrote about this topic earlier, but my hunch is it has something to do with the OEM manufactures. OEM is a big piece of Microsoft business, and they protect it. (Although Surface kind of muddies that theory). As an example of this, if you were to “lease” a desktop to an end customer, you would first need a OEM license pre-installed and use SPLA and/or volume licensing as an upgrade license. So even under a rented desktop model, OEM is still a requirement. If everyone used VDI and dummy terminals – OEM manufactures would be left out of the game. (at least in volume)
The only thing that would change this model is if they received a very high number of requests to offer this through Azure. Look at what happened with Remote Desktop Services (RDS). RDS was never part of license mobility. Azure comes along and before you know it- RDS has mobility rights! Check it out here
That being said, Microsoft can make the rules of their own game, and even know Microsoft can do it does not mean the service provider/partner community can do it. Office 365 is a prime example of this. Under O365, you can take Office and install it on up to 5 PCs. Try that under SPLA and you have to license every PC with a separate Office license, use Windows 7/8 upgrade license, have a OEM on the machine that you own, and sign a rental addendum. That’s why I wrote “office needs mobility rights”
One new capability in the latest SPLA agreement is you can install software on customer owned hardware. BUT guess what? That does not apply to PCs.
I’m not sure if this will ever change. Every conference that I’ve attended the past 10 years partners ask the same question – “Can I provide VDI under SPLA?” I don’t like the word “no” but unfortunately, the answer is “no.”
Would love to hear about your thoughts on the topic. Have you tried Windows server and RDS as an alternative? What about dedicated environments for VDI?
Thanks for reading,