Windows 10 Enterprise for Virtual Desktops

A few months ago, news leaked out that Microsoft will enable multiple remote sessions (or connections) into a Windows 10 desktop flavor of the operating system. For those who are new to this (read, who have been in a cave :)), history is that up until now, multiple remote sessions (or connections) were only allowed into Windows 2012/2016 Server flavor of the operating system. For the desktop flavor of the operating system, only one remote session (or connection) was allowed, basically rendering the desktop flavor a single (concurrent) user OS.

With the advent of the cloud and more and more customer wanting to run desktop OS in the cloud, Microsoft is on the verge of creating history again! Windows 10 Enterprise for Virtual Desktops is going to be a reality. This will offer better app compatibility, better continuous support, and (in my opinion) better cost model for the cloud based desktop and app delivery.

We at Chromotif have developed an end-to-end multi session application and desktop delivery framework (Chromotif Nebeula), and we decided to take the Windows 10 Enterprise for Virtual Desktops (Insider Preview build 17758 for a spin.

We installed the OS on virtual box,


And enabled, remote sessions (or connections)



We then attached the Windows 10 instance to a Chromotif tenant.

and simply “published” a desktop session via Chromotif to remote end users. Note: with Chromotif, you can also “publish” application sessions to remote end users instead of full desktops. Publish is just another fancy word for “deliver” or “make available remotely”. Chromotif’s unique multi session framework can enable application and desktop delivery via any delivery or remoting protocol. The productized version uses a variant of Google backed Chromoting protocol.

We then had end users, fire up their Chromotif client (some other folks call this receiver or workspace app) and access the shared, remotely or cloud delivered desktop on a Windows 10 Enterprise for Virtual Desktops flavor of the OS


And with a single click, multiple users can access shared desktop or applications (in concurrent unique secure sessions) on a Windows 10 Enterprise for Virtual Desktops instance.



And Chromotif’s unique multi session framework also support sharing GPUs (NVidia leads the pack for the cloud based GPUs for now) across multiple concurrent user sessions. Unlike other technologies that are purely single user (1 user tied to 1 OS and GPU instance), Chromotif makes application and desktop delivery a lot more affordable and simple.

By the way, we’ve even made a short video of a previous Windows Insider build we tried and successfully connected multi-user sessions with Chromotif into a Windows 10 instance.

Microsoft will provide more visibility into this flavor of the OS at Ignite in a few weeks. This is the session of great interest. A lot of people have already written about the benefits of Windows 10 Enterprise for Virtual Desktops. A few of those links are mentioned below for your reading pleasure.

Mary Jo Foley for ZDNet — Foley’s sources say that Windows 10 Enterprise users will still have the rights to run one virtual desktop but also to provide remote access to win32 and UWP apps for a small set of multiple users.

Brian Madden — knowledge workers, professional users, power users – all can benefit from Windows 10 Enterprise for Virtual Desktops.

Petri — while Azure could be an option for organizations that are happy with a cloud solution, Windows Server can be too expensive and difficult to maintain for SMEs that need to host a limited number of remote sessions onsite.

Bas van Kaam — The option to run a single Windows 10 (Enterprise) instance virtually, will still be there as well


If you’d like to learn more about Chromotif, feel free to drop me a note from our “contact us” section of the website.


Update: Windows 10 Enterprise for Virtual Desktops is also referred to as Windows Virtual Desktop service.