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Knowledgebase: Windows Virtual Desktop
What is the difference between a virtual desktop and a virtual server?
Posted by Barry Bahrami on 12 December 2007 10:48 PM
The difference between a virtual desktop and a virtual server is the configuration, the software available and likelihood of reboots.|
Virtual desktops were initially created to reduce problems with new Windows VPS configurations, to be used as a desktop. We found that many new subscribers did not know what a SQL server was, but since it's an available software package for servers they ordered it anyway - along with everything else possible. This caused problems with the desktop performance because many software packages that were not intended to be run on one server were running on a desktop. It also opened the VPS to security risks.
From this, virtual desktops were created and customized. The applications available to desktops are desktop apps - not database or web servers. The desktops are also configured with dual firewalls where the servers are initially only behind a shared firewall and must enable the software firewall. Since our services are popular with traders, desktops are never intentionally rebooted between Sunday afternoon - Friday afternoon (FOREX hours). Where a traditional server may be rebooted at any off-peak time, as needed.
The price points are exactly the same. The same configuration side by side would cost the same. Our desktops actually include slightly more CPU then a base server at the same price (this is by design). The servers are intended to be customized, and rarely is a server actually ordered with a stock configuration. The best part of virtualization is the ability to customize. You no longer need to order an entire server, only to use a few key resources. Instead, a subscriber can order exactly what they need, and pay only for those resources. Some need more RAM, others more CPU or traffic - or both! It depends on what the server is being used for.
Our desktops are the best configuration for desktop users, based on our experience, monitoring and interaction with them. A standard windows VPS is probably not enough and will likely provide random errors normally associated with low resources.