lewis hamilton at October 14, 2021 at 3:28am PDT

It already had Azure Virtual Desktop (AVD) and one of the most advanced infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) clouds in the business, so what prompted Microsoft to push out another desktop as a service (DaaS) platform in Windows 365 Cloud PC? The answer is simple: Ease of use for the broadest possible customer adoption. And the fact that Microsoft had to suspend trial accounts because initial demand was skyrocketed so unexpectedly proves that theory correct.

Businesses of all sizes are looking for the path of least resistance when it comes to hybrid work." We started working on Windows 365 back in late 2019 because after talking to our managed service partners, we saw a new opportunity," says Scott Manchester, Partner Director of Program Management, Windows 365 who was previously the Group Program Manager for Microsoft AVD. "We kept hearing that these partners had much more on-hand staff expertise in endpoint management than they had skilled experts in virtualization."Endpoint management encompasses the typical IT help desk tasks associated with administering corporate desktop and laptop PCs, which covers everything from user login issues to patch management.

Those tasks are still necessary in a DaaS scenario, but now the underlying technology fabric is virtualization since every DaaS desktop is a virtual machine (VM). That can become a problem since managing a virtualized environment can get complex, especially at scale. Microsoft's partners were top-heavy on physical endpoint management but too weak on virtualization skills to be able to roll out an effective DaaS service. According to Manchester that ratio averaged out to seven times more endpoint talent than virtualization professionals. The upshot was that not only Microsoft's customers but also many of its partners needed a simpler desktop virtualization solution.

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