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Virtual Desktop Infrastructure VDI

Virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) is defined as the hosting of desktop environments on a central server.

It is a form of desktop virtualization, as the specific desktop images run within virtual machines (VMs) and are delivered to end clients over a network. Those endpoints may be PCs or other devices, like tablets or thin client terminals.

Key Functions

In all VDI deployments, the following characteristics apply:

  • The virtual desktops live within VMs on a centralized server
  • Each virtual desktop includes an operating system image, typically Microsoft Windows
  • The VMs are host-based, meaning multiple instances of them can housed on the same server within the data center
  • End clients must be constantly connected to the centrally managed server in order to maintain access to the virtualized desktops it’s hosting
  • The VDI implementation’s connection broker finds a virtual desktop within the resource pool for each client to connect to upon its successful access of the VDI environment
  • Meanwhile, a hypervisor creates, runs and manages the various host machine VMs that encapsulate the individual virtual desktop environments


VDI supports enhanced user mobility and remote access, as a standardized desktop can be reached from almost any approved and compatible endpoint in any location. For workers who are frequently on the go and need to pull up a virtual desktop containing a full range of virtual apps and data, VDI is like having an office available on-demand. In that regard, it fits right into their digital workspace workflows that already feature similar, regular consumption of cloud, web and mobile apps across multiple contexts, especially if it’s persistent VDI.

  • Cost savings and lower hardware requirements
  • Security and performance considerations
  • Improved security and centralization


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