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WVD vs. RDS - a head-to-head comparison (when running in Azure)

Windows Virtual Desktop (WVD) is the modern, Azure PaaS based solution for virtual desktops. RDS is the traditional, mature, good ole solution. Let's look at how these two compare to each other when running in Azure.

  WVD RDS
Desktop Operating System Windows 10 Enterprise multi-session Windows Server 2016 with RDS
Licensing options a. Microsoft 365 (E3, E5, A3, A5, Business)
b. Windows 10 (E3, E5, A3, A5, Business)
c. Windows 10 Enterprise VDA
a. Windows Server via Azure, CSP Software Subscriptions or SA
b. SPLA RDS SAL
c. CSP Software subscription 1- and 3-year RDS SAL
d. RDS CALS with Software Assurance (SA)
Control plane
(Connection infrastructure)
Hosted in Azure, managed by Microsoft Hosted in Azure, managed by MSP/customer
Cost - licenses (approximate) $7 per user per month (Windows 10 Enterprise) $5 to $8 per user per month

Cost - control plane (approximate)

$0 (included in OS license) $2.50 per user for 100s of users, higher for small deployments
Desktop types a. Personal - dedicated VM
b. Pooled - shared VM
a. VDI - dedicated VM
b. RDS - shared VM
Profile management FSLogix (encapsualted) profiles a. RDS Collections: User Profile Disks (encapsulated)
b. VDI & RDS: Native
OneDrive installed client support Yes, supported a. RDS Collections: No
b. VDI & RDS: Yes
Windows search indexing Yes, supported a. RDS Collections: No
b. VDI & RDS: Yes
Skype & Teams No, but expected at GA a. RDS Collections: No
b. VDI & RDS: Yes
GPU desktops Yes Yes
Azure regions Some, where WVD is available All
Azure Hybrid Usage Supported Supported
Reserved instances Yes Yes
32 bit apps Supported Supported
Time in market New technology, GA summer of 2019 Stable, widely used technology for over a decade

 

For a more detailed comparison, refer to this KB article.

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