Microsoft MDOP Helps SMBs Address the Challenges of Multiple Offices and Mobile Employee
On December 8, 2014, Microsoft announced the availability of MDOP 2014 R2 which includes significant enhancements to the included App-V and UE-V solutions.
MDOP (Microsoft Desktop Optimization Package) is a suite of virtualization and security technologies available as a subscription for Software Assurance customers that helps maximize the benefits offered by Windows. It continues to grow in popularity with customers, recently increasing to over 56 million customer licenses worldwide.
Small and mid-size businesses (SMBs) increasingly use the powerful features of MDOP to cope with the challenges of multiple offices and mobile employees.
Microsoft Application Virtualization
App-V, a powerful tool in MDOP, makes it easier for companies to access, manage and personalize key business applications across devices. It enables “anywhere access” to virtualized applications on authorized devices without requiring that the application be installed on the machine.
Application virtualization with App-V creates some attractive benefits for businesses, including:
- Improved data security
- Simplified licensing and reduced application licensing costs
- Improved functionality and access
MDOP 2014 R2 includes the following enhancements:
- App-V management improvements
- Streamlined virtualized Microsoft Office deployment
- Performance updates
App-V Management Improvements
In App-V 5.0 SP3, Microsoft focused on improving integration between applications by updating the management of Application Connection Groups, which enable virtualized applications to work together like locally installed software.
Other management enhancements include improvements to the integration between virtualized and locally-installed applications, publishing control, App-V Server infrastructure and performance enhancements.
Last year Microsoft announced App-V support for Windows 8.1 and Office 2013, streamlining the deployment of virtualized Office 2013.
Benefits to SMBs
With the Microsoft Desktop Virtualization suite of solutions, companies can enable their employees to work anywhere, on a range of devices, while simplifying compliance and management through centralized control.
A variety of virtualization options deliver applications and desktops to modern users who expect anytime, anywhere, any-device access to the software they depend on to do their jobs.
According to Techaisle, desktop virtualization generates an impressive set of benefits, including cost reductions, improved data security and increased availability of applications. Users see mobility, security, flexibility, and manageability as key factors driving implementation of the technology.
For example, retail operations use virtual desktops to ensure that customer information remains confidential. Professional services firms deliver on-site functionality to at-home or mobile employees. And schools can leverage low-cost, session-based desktop solutions to enhance student performance.
In addition to providing access to business customers’ desktop and business applications and personalized Windows environments from anywhere, MDOP also offers sizeable, long-term cost savings.
IDC recently estimated that the increased productivity and automation of systems using MDOP solutions can reduce annual PC costs by $200, a 36% reduction. Added to productivity gains and less dependence on third-party software, less hardware, and reduced software licensing costs, annual savings can exceed $500 per PC.
Growth of Virtual Desktops
SMBs face many of the same challenges as larger organizations when managing end users. They are turning to desktop virtualization to meet security and compliance concerns, moving data off of user machines to centralized servers to increase efficiency and improve security. Although SaaS is a driving force, SMBs prefer an on-premise desktop virtualization solution.
According to Gartner, the convergence of cloud and mobile computing will continue to promote the growth of virtual desktops and applications that can be delivered to any device. In the future, applications will evolve to use multiple screens and connect to wearable tech and IoT devices to deliver an enhanced user experience.
Multi-site Enabling Technologies
Companies with multiple offices face a host of challenges. In addition to desktop and application virtualization solutions, a variety of technologies can be employed to overcome the distance.
Microsoft Lync –Lync is a secure video conferencing, instant messaging and screen sharing system. It uses “presence” to let users know whether someone is actively using their computer. Easy-to-use video conferencing with Skype compatibility connects workers, customers and vendors in dispersed locations.
Microsoft SharePoint – SharePoint helps teams collaborate while they share and discover company information like employee handbooks, forms, brochures, spec sheets and project documentation. Other capabilities such as discussion boards and application web access help dispersed employees work together.
Microsoft Outlook – Email, shared calendars, task management, contact lists and Microsoft Office integration help employees coordinate activities.
User Experience Virtualization – Microsoft UE-V, an on-premise solution in MDOP that captures and centralizes application and Windows settings for users across each of their devices, enables users to change devices without reconfiguring their application or OS settings.
Remote Desktop Services (RDS) – Previously called Terminal Services,Microsoft RDS is remote PC access software that uses a different technology than App-V to allow employees in branch offices or other locations to access centralized server applications.
VoIP (Voice over IP) Phone System – VoIP phone systems use the same network cabling as office computers. Extension dialing and outside line transfer among locations strengthens communications between offices. Employees who are only “an extension” away become much more accessible.
eMazzanti Can Help
eMazzanti is ready to show you how modern collaboration and productivity tools will cut costs and open up new growth opportunities for companies with multiple locations. See your business prosper by taking advantage of desktop and application virtualization technologies built around Windows 8.1, Office 365 and Office 2013. If you would like to explore your options, pleasecontact usor call 1-866-EMAZZANTI.
Carl Mazzanti is Co-Founder and President of eMazzanti Technologies, Microsoft’s four time Partner of the Year and one of the premier IT consulting services for businesses throughout the New York metropolitan area and internationally. Carl and his company manage over 400 active accounts ranging from professional services firms to high-end global retailers.
eMazzanti is all about delivering powerful, efficient outsourced IT services, such as computer network management and troubleshooting, managed print, PCI DSS compliance, green computing, mobile workforce technology, information security, cloud computing, and business continuity and disaster recovery.
Carl Mazzanti is also a frequent business conference speaker and technology talk show guest and contributor at Microsoft-focused events, including frequent prominent roles at the Microsoft Inspire (Worldwide Partner Conference / WPC).
Carl, a serial Entrepreneur, gives back to the community through Entrepreneur teaching engagements at Georgetown University, the company’s ocean wildlife conservation effort, the Blue Project, and Tree Mazzanti.