Feeds

Virtually yours: Microsoft unveils Windows-as-a-service

Are you Azure about this?

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

Microsoft has uncanned its desktop-a-service, giving mobile users a preview edition of Windows apps on the go.

The software giant yesterday announced the pilot of Azure RemoteApp, previously codenamed Mohoro. It was announced in a slew of news from at the company's TechEd North America conference in Houston, Texas.

The Azure Remote service is due by September this year and it is currently just for Windows but support promised for a "range" of devices that Microsoft has said means Mac, Windows Phone and Windows RT.

Apps delivered in the pilot are Office 2013 ProPlus and you get 50GB space on Windows Azure Storage.

The pilot is for organisations that want to test groups of up to 20 users and it is planned to support up to 1,300 Windows-based applications. Desktop as a service pilot is available in Microsoft's Windows Azure US West, US East, Western Europe, North Europe, East Asia and Southeast Asia regions.

In a statement, Microsoft said: “RemoteApp will help end users stay productive on the go and enable IT to easily scale and meet customer needs.”

The service runs on Microsoft’s Remote Desktop Service (RDS) a collection of technologies in Windows Server 2008 to open, maintain and manage remote sessions over a wide-area network.

All of this will sound familiar to anybody who has ever heard of remote terminal services.

During the 1990s, Microsoft invested in Windows Terminal Services (WTS), allowing customers to serve their Windows apps to desktops from their central servers so customers supposedly wouldn't have to invest in fat clients.

Back then Microsoft’s WTS licensed technology from Citrix Systems, which also offered thin-client computing.

This time, Microsoft is competing on remote access with Citrix and VMware as well as Amazon, which released its desktop-as-service Workspaces in March.

Amazon’s offering serves up a Windows 7 desktop using Windows Server 2008 R2 on the back end and apparently suffers from a few niggling problems.

Microsoft, meanwhile, has now put Office on Apple’s iPad – not linked to the Azure back end but bringing the familiar features and desktop functionality to fanbois.

This has spurred Google to action. Mountain View has built Docs and Sheets applications for Apple's iOS as a pair of standalone apps for the iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch.

You can read more about Microsoft's desktop-as-a-service here. ®

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
'Windows 9' LEAK: Microsoft's playing catchup with Linux
Multiple desktops and live tiles in restored Start button star in new vids
New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone
No data plan? No WiFi? No worries ... except sluggish download speed
iOS 8 release: WebGL now runs everywhere. Hurrah for 3D graphics!
HTML 5's pretty neat ... when your browser supports it
Mathematica hits the Web
Wolfram embraces the cloud, promies private cloud cut of its number-cruncher
NHS grows a NoSQL backbone and rips out its Oracle Spine
Open source? In the government? Ha ha! What, wait ...?
Google extends app refund window to two hours
You now have 120 minutes to finish that game instead of 15
Intel: Hey, enterprises, drop everything and DO HADOOP
Big Data analytics projected to run on more servers than any other app
Mozilla shutters Labs, tells nobody it's been dead for five months
Staffer's blog reveals all as projects languish on GitHub
SUSE Linux owner Attachmate gobbled by Micro Focus for $2.3bn
Merger will lead to mainframe and COBOL powerhouse
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.