Microsoft launched Windows 365 at the start of the Inspire conference. It is now clear what the group has been working on in terms of “cloud PC” and online desktop service. However, the new Windows is not intended for end-users.
Just a few weeks ago we reported that Microsoft was making headway in terms of Windows Cloud PCs. At that time it was said that the group had its new hybrid operating system, which was developed under the name “Project Deschutes”, now ready. Windows 365 has now been officially presented, and the offer itself will be available from August 2nd. Microsoft showed how hybrid work should work from now on – with Windows 365, streamed to every possible device.
SaaS, OS in the cloud
“With Windows 365 we are creating a new category: the cloud PC,” says Satya Nadella, Chairman and CEO of Microsoft, at the launch of the Inspire. “Just as the applications came to the cloud through Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), we are now bringing the operating system to the cloud. This gives companies more flexibility and a secure way to empower their workforce, regardless of their location to be more productive and better connected.”
Behind Windows 365?
The new service called Windows 365 is basically nothing more than a thoroughly optimized remote desktop access to a virtual machine with Windows 10. The Microsoft solution should be particularly fast and can be adapted to individual needs. Companies of all sizes have the option of getting Windows 10 or later Windows 11 directly from the cloud, including apps, data, and settings.
Obtaining from the cloud means that all data remains in the cloud and is not synchronized. You need constant internet access. You also have access via the Windows 365 web portal. According to Microsoft, users can then choose via the portal whether they want to access their cloud PC via the browser, macOS, Android or the remote desktop client (MSRDC). This also makes it clear that Windows 365 is not limited to the classic “Windows PC”.
You are platform-independent. In the first information on the cloud PC, however, there are no details of the minimum requirements that must be met for the executing hardware.
Change device and continue from where you left
The Windows experience is always consistent, writes Microsoft in the announcement – regardless of the device. You can continue exactly where you left off, because the state of the cloud PC remains the same, even if you change the device. The advantage is that the new Windows 365 runs completely without any self-hosted infrastructure in the company. It is offered as Windows 365 Business and Windows 365 Enterprise and, like other Microsoft license services, is billed by user and month.
The prices for the licenses are based on the area of application and the required performance. With Windows 365, the performance of the VM makes the biggest price difference. It starts with a virtual machine with 1 vCPU core, 2 GB RAM, and 64 GB storage space. In several steps, it then goes up to 8 vCPU, 32 GB RAM, and 512 GB memory. The performance is therefore independent of the end device that is used. Some of it had already leaked in advance and has now been confirmed. The group has already published a good overview in the tech community. The cloud PC is immediately switched on and ready for use.
Licenses Required for using Cloud PC/Windows 365:
- Windows Pro Endpoint users: Windows 10 E3 + EMS1 E3 or Microsoft 365 F3 / E3 / E5 / BP
- Non-Windows Pro Endpoint users: Windows VDA E3 + EMS1 E3 or Microsoft 365 F3 / E3 / F5 / BP
The individual license prices have not yet been named. If you want to use the cloud PC with Windows 365 in your company, you can start using it from August 2nd. Azure with Virtual Network is mentioned as a prerequisite. Microsoft recommends administration via Azure Virtual Desktop.
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