3 Forgotten Advantages of Virtual Desktop Infrastructure

The concept of virtual desktop infrastructure has been around for years now, and with the rise of cloud services, most organizations have had some exposure to this architecture variation, even if they may not be aware of this fact. Even though it has not received the attention and buzz surrounding the cloud, VDI has enjoyed a quiet but steady rise into the upper echelons of the IT segment, and recent predictions from Infiniti Research show that the market is slated to expand at a compound annual growth rate of 32.47 percent from 2014 to 2019.

Despite such consistent growth and a widening variety of use cases that span industries, however, many IT leaders still don't recognize the power of VDI and the potential it holds for their organizations. Here are three benefits of the technology that may remind these tech decision-makers just how advantageous virtual desktops can be when integrated into their IT departments:

1. Gateway to cloud capabilities:
Virtualization has commonly been called the predecessor to cloud computing, and organizations that get a grip on virtual desktop functionality are much better equipped to leverage large-scale cloud solutions, whether they be homegrown or through a dedicated vendor. As IT World Canada stated, VDI has come a long way from its early iterations, as the delivery of these instances is now highly streamlined and manageable by IT departments of all sizes. This consumer-centric framework is the essence of the cloud and modern IT at large.

"There is still some uncertainty with what VDI today is like and how it is different from the early days of VDI," said Michael Berman, senior sales engineer for virtualization and Software-as-a-Service company Citrix, according to the news source. "There's still a lot of misconception and misunderstanding."

2. Enterprise mobile mastery:
While VDI offers endless value in the office environment, the real impact of these solutions is in the mobile domain, TechTarget recently asserted. Using Web portals, client applications or other VPN entry points, IT departments can deliver data sets and tools to end users on their smartphones, tablets and laptops without sacrificing any of the functionality that employees have come to expect from their services. As the source explained, VDI thrives with BYOD policies that many organizations have been so eager to promote.

By building an enterprise mobility plan based on VDI, an organization also exercises a much greater level of control over factors such as end user authorization, application deployment, as well as the privacy of end user information that becomes a controversial topic in such scenarios. Since instances are developed and maintained in a centralized location, these processes remain under the command of the IT department rather than unaware end users.

3. Enhanced security profiles:
It may not be intuitive to think that VDI can benefit organizations in this regard, but the software-based nature of virtualization actually works wonders for a company's cyber security footprint when implemented properly. This is because data and applications aren't actually stored or powered by end user devices themselves - they are merely displayed by data center systems that keep these assets safe from harm. When mobile devices serve as a conduit for information rather than a storage environment, risk is dramatically decreased.

Of course, VDI unto itself won't necessarily tighten up security controls unless organizations promote clear and stable mobile policies that make the most of the technology. Companies that use VDI in conjunction with strong access protocols will be most likely to enjoy the advanced security benefits of this technology, especially if they choose to deploy a solution developed by a dedicated service provider.