12: AVD Monthly: October 2021 Updates

Nov 2, 2021

These sessions discuss the following topics, blogs, and support articles: What’s new in Azure Virtual Desktop?

Azure Virtual Desktop updates on a regular basis. This article is where you’ll find out about:

  • The latest updates
  • New features
  • Improvements to existing features
  • Bug fixes

This article is updated monthly. Make sure to check back here often to keep up with new updates.

Host: Andy Whiteside
Co-Host: Jon Spallone
Co-Host: Rob Shaw

WEBVTT

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Andy Whiteside: Hello everyone and welcome to episode 13 of add monthly that’s right add month ever to train myself to say it that way It just seems weird still but I guess what rob it’s been three or four months.

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Robb Shaw: yeah I think about that.

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Andy Whiteside: And it makes sense right as your virtual desktop well windows Linux whatever comes next it’s it’s the right name I just got to make myself stop saying Web.

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Robb Shaw: yeah probably should have been there that name, to begin with yeah.

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Andy Whiteside: I think it was that name I think they changed it before it went live didn’t.

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Robb Shaw: I think you’re right like like something like two weeks or something and then the name changed.

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Andy Whiteside: But got the rob show the rob you’ve got a different role from when you very first started joining us what’s your role today.

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Robb Shaw: So still global black belt strange terminology to basically mean kind of a principal engineer on on two products add formerly wd and ABS, as your vmware solutions.

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Andy Whiteside: Both the both very important to the future of azure for sure.

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Andy Whiteside: i’m sure you’re busy guy.

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Robb Shaw: Like like everybody these days right.

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Andy Whiteside: yeah.

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Andy Whiteside: Yes, 100% true and I don’t know what happens when we get back to the real world, the normal world and we try to balance all the new busy with the old busy it’s going to be going to be interesting.

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Robb Shaw: yeah or is this the new norm, oh no.

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Andy Whiteside: I don’t know if I can survive the new norm.

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Andy Whiteside: Well, we skipped we skipped last month, two months, I think, and I think there was some good stuff some stuff to talk about let’s do this let’s jump into the October 2021 updates for azure virtual desktop.

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Andy Whiteside: And then we will blend in the Sep tember ones, if we have time, towards the end of this, so the first one on the list is as your virtual desktop support for windows 11 I feel like we talked about this a little bit in the past, but where does that stand.

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Robb Shaw: yep yeah I think you know the key thing is.

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Robb Shaw: You know, we made an announcement of it last time and now what’s Nice is you’ll see I believe three images that are available in the when you go into the gallery.

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Robb Shaw: So you can pick from I think windows 11 enterprise windows 11 enterprise multi session, and then the same thing with office 365 already baked into it so nice thing is, you know, the images are just right there for you to you know ready to start with.

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Andy Whiteside: No i’m glad you brought it up, I just got off a podcast with vmware a while ago gave can you two handles the horizon on azure as well as horizon horizon with the V sphere on azure.

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Andy Whiteside: Both fault within your world a little bit, if not totally and we were talking about the Multi session thing and whether or not that would work if you were running V sphere in an agile environment.

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Andy Whiteside: And he was probably the most succinct answer i’ve gotten is no unless you’re using your native azure.

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Andy Whiteside: And bill sudden on my team brought up a couple weeks ago that a lot of that has to do with the fact that you’re.

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Andy Whiteside: You know, using the image it’s made available through azure and then you just mentioned it here, so the windows 11 image through azure whether it’s single session multi session, and then the oh 365 image as well that.

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Andy Whiteside: that’s the key.

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In it.

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Robb Shaw: yeah yeah I think you know what what we find.

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Robb Shaw: With a lot of a lot of customers when they’re looking at a DVD whether it’s on with vmware natively or with citrix.

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Robb Shaw: What what we find is that almost all of them I think something like 95% of the vm that are running in add it by way of any one of those three control planes they’re leveraging the Multi session image right.

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Robb Shaw: So, you know that being now available with windows 11 that’s pretty cool and I think one of the one of the key drivers to that, I think, two things one I don’t have to skin a desktop to make it or sorry rescan a server image to look like a desktop.

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Robb Shaw: And I get the benefit of not having to pay for the RDS cal or the va cow, which is huge saving.

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Andy Whiteside: is important to you just pointed out, the lack of the need for vda I forgotten about that I was talking about last week, so if you’re running a virtual desktop that you’re connecting to this in as or whether it’s through vmware citrix or straight up add that vda money goes away.

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Robb Shaw: that’s that’s exactly.

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Robb Shaw: And I think you know the the key differentiator there is if it’s if it’s I as.

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Robb Shaw: Then, then you may you know you may still need that or require that that license if it’s the winter and multi user image which is really only by way of a DVD and and can be connected via citrix or vmware as well that’s how you can eliminate that that cost now.

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Robb Shaw: that’s due to entitlements you get from other things, say, like em 365 you know other licenses that give you access, so if your licensing a lot of times a full desktop in.

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Robb Shaw: In support than your cover you know so generally, what we saw in the past was folks would have that license as well as then they buy a vda or a session cow, to be able to deliver, you know broker virtual desktops are published Apps.

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Andy Whiteside: Oh well, so I guess I love the fact that you didn’t go out the vda tax I get tired of people calling you that.

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Andy Whiteside: it’s an entitlement that you get from one way or another, in this case in 360 bucks gets you that.

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Robb Shaw: window time.

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Robb Shaw: And I think, for you know a lot of times for on Prem environments where you feel like hey I already I already own this license for desktop you know here.

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Robb Shaw: You know that that becomes true on the on the winter multi user that you know it, it gets eliminated.

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Andy Whiteside: next topic here, well, I did I can’t pass up somebody said just now, he said windows multi session, and he said windows with 365 billion is there such a thing is a windows multi session with over 365 built in, where you get the best of both.

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Robb Shaw: yeah so you know with that that pre built image and I guess you know defend to close the loop on that fun.

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Robb Shaw: You know folks can start with the gallery images and that and that way office is already baked in or can be, if that’s the way you want it.

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Robb Shaw: And it’s already optimized for vdi or you know for a session host you know so there’s there’s.

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Robb Shaw: steps that are made to help that run you know run better that you don’t have to go through and meticulously do the way you would have to do in the past when you’re running say, you know as an APP server or a vdi deliver you know vm yeah.

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Good.

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Andy Whiteside: yeah next topic on here, and you mentioned it, as we went into the podcast recording RDP short path now generally available, what is this thing and what does it do.

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Robb Shaw: yeah so it’s a it’s a name that’s so it’s a little cloudy right when you hear it, what does that really mean and and.

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Robb Shaw: To explain it we kind of go back to the roots of wv right and that in the very beginning, what we went to from a protocol standpoint is we went to an early kind of.

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Robb Shaw: let’s call it version seven of RDP that was it that, even though we might have been, whatever the version was at the time 1011 you know were predominantly RDP in that instance and RDP in the wild has been.

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Robb Shaw: leveraging UDP for for several years right but that version of RDP that we went back to was actually tcp based, and that was done for some specific reasons for some architecture.

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Robb Shaw: pieces, so that we can make some changes to it, so the development team could and to create the the the azure virtual gateway connection, so that it brokers everything and.

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Robb Shaw: You know, does you know add kind of a layer of security, where you’re not actually hitting that vm your proxy seeing.

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Robb Shaw: That connection to your session host or to your full desktop in this case, what short path does RDP short path does is it makes a direct connection to the vm right there’s reasons why you might not want to do that.

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Robb Shaw: But certainly there are reasons, where you we want to do that some of the things that have been driving this our requests for enhancements to multimedia.

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Robb Shaw: You know, audio video type connections UDP as probably everybody here knows you know handles that better it doesn’t need to do acknowledgments of what packets were sent.

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Robb Shaw: Because what happened two seconds ago is irrelevant in a video conference right, you know it’s what’s coming next that’s important so.

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Robb Shaw: Short path kind of gives us that ability, where we make a direct connection from you know from the endpoint to the vm that the user is connecting to.

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Robb Shaw: Some of the benefits of that we can set quality of service, so it enables you to set some some of those markings using some of the.

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Robb Shaw: Other tools to be able to you know, to set quality of service know on the.

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Robb Shaw: Whatever the packets are that are that are crossing over your your network.

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Andy Whiteside: And does that work does it reach out over the local the short path connection in try to see if that works, and if it doesn’t then it flows back to the gateway do you know how that typically happens.

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Robb Shaw: So it’s it’s it’s set up as a predominant connection for that.

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Robb Shaw: Typically, for a specific host pool so if that host pool is going to be predominantly audio video or hey we just want to use that for everything we’re doing the net host pool will be identified to leverage short path, and then it would be a fallback to use an access gateway.

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Robb Shaw: connection I just said access gateway did not yeah wow.

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Andy Whiteside: that’s so that’s showing your lineage i’ll leave it like that.

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Robb Shaw: yeah exactly.

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Robb Shaw: But yeah so you’d set it up in some of the connection settings there’s some some really interesting information if you if you check out the.

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Robb Shaw: The blog that comes with that RDP short path announcement and then some additional.

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Robb Shaw: links that you can follow as far as how to configure it even how to set up quality of service, using some of the markers.

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Robb Shaw: In your environment.

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Robb Shaw: Again we’re just kind of getting on board with it so it’s kind of a new service but it’s something we’ve been waiting for for a while, especially.

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Robb Shaw: You know, especially for those those audio video you know type requests.

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yeah.

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Andy Whiteside: i’m screen capture protection updates, I think I know what this is, but when you tell us.

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Robb Shaw: yeah so on the endpoint right I.

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Robb Shaw: You know, to provide higher security.

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Robb Shaw: I can block the ability to do a screen capture from certain devices and in the beginning it was really just windows devices.

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Robb Shaw: When we made the first announcement, so that the addition here is that now it’s available in gov cloud, as well as in China clouds for azure.

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Robb Shaw: And additionally for MAC or less right that’s that’s been something that’s been requested, as well, so i’m really it’s preventing me from being able to do a screen capture while i’m in my session so that they did a screen capture they just get a black window.

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Robb Shaw: Right.

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Robb Shaw: that’s what they would see in place that.

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Andy Whiteside: You have to tell you the first time at the DEMO with that turned on and found out I couldn’t DEMO was quite a, it must be broken moment and then realize oh that’s what it’s supposed to do.

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Robb Shaw: Exactly yeah yeah.

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Andy Whiteside: Alright, the next one is azure active directory domain join seems like something that would be a no brainer this actually refers to China, a little bit tell me what this means.

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Robb Shaw: yeah so.

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Robb Shaw: Avi add.

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Robb Shaw: Basically, does a couple of things, the user accounts are actually coming from azure active directory that’s not just that’s not your normal just active directory that’s azure active directory, which is a slightly lighter version and based in azure only.

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Robb Shaw: The origin of the of the user accounts, of course, would be synced from a traditional ad environment.

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Robb Shaw: The vm in azure virtual desktop are actually still based as members of.

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Robb Shaw: Your traditional domain right so active directory those are you know, those of you who are joined to active directory, so what what’s happening here is that the vm now can.

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Robb Shaw: now have the additional option of being azure active directory domain joined and it sounds like we’re you know we’re kind of parsing words here about this, but it’s it’s really a big thing.

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Robb Shaw: In that what what we see today is that you know big connections are needed to connect back into the on Prem environment and and link to.

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Robb Shaw: To cloud, and there may still be other reasons for that, but that at least I may not have to have that for my my vm joins right, if I can have them just join.

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Robb Shaw: azure active directory it might reduce the dependency on say some of those express routes or you know expect expensive, you know connections to on Prem environments.

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Andy Whiteside: Will they have the extensive group policy management pieces, or will it be very light when it comes to that aspect.

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Robb Shaw: fairly light, to begin with, but the but the goal is to kind of you know, continue to add that and you’ll do most of that instead of then in really system Center some of those configs you’ll be doing more of that in men today right the there’s a couple last hoops here in that.

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Robb Shaw: Things like profiles so leveraging fs logics today it’s still not there it’s coming, but today, you know you’ll be limited to things that don’t require you know roamed profiles it’ll be really just those things that will.

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Robb Shaw: Be local profiles and and partly and at least have that would be related to some of those policy connections yeah.

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Andy Whiteside: But that’s.

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Robb Shaw: that’s been a big that’s been a big one coming and and some really large government agencies.

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Robb Shaw: are really interested in this where they don’t want to bring the legacy active directory forward, they want to, they want to shift and.

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Robb Shaw: And really if you think about those folks that are kind of greenfield azure companies, you know, this is a great way they don’t have to you know kind of you know, build something that they may not mean the future.

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Andy Whiteside: I guess to be really specific this one’s talking about specifically being available in gov as well as as your China, it was available already in your you know other deployments.

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Andy Whiteside: yeah and then you just hit on a good topic around greenfield deployments where you know if everybody could just start from scratch.

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Andy Whiteside: Having it in azure ad and it be on par with the number, the amount of policies, policies that could be deployed.

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Andy Whiteside: That would be ideal I guess the likelihood of that is somewhat low, but as people start to make this move there are going to be situations where they can start at least part of their environment over.

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Robb Shaw: yeah yeah we’ve we’ve seen like in divestitures and things we’re starting to see that come up where hey we really like to just do it this way, and if we can.

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Andy Whiteside: yeah alright, the next topic is breaking change in as your virtual desktop as a resource manager template what I have no idea what that means.

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Robb Shaw: yeah I think there’s just if you’re leveraging as as a resource manager templates there may be some some items that you’ll have to modify to move forward.

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Robb Shaw: I haven’t really you know kind of invested in that I haven’t run into folks that are really you know, having issue here, but it, it may be things that if you’re.

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Robb Shaw: You know, maybe using automated tools that are leveraging those templates you may have to make some slight changes yeah.

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Andy Whiteside: Okay, and then the last one here for October is auto scale preview public preview.

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Andy Whiteside: This is something that some of the more legacy players have had just for a little while, and now it looks like Microsoft is showing again the commitment to to try to keep this up to speed and best of breed tell us about auto scale.

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Robb Shaw: yeah obviously the goal here is to save costs.

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Robb Shaw: Right, you know if you’re in an on Prem environment shutting off the EMS is is a nice to have during cloud it’s a must have right to be able to turn off unused vm so we’ve had, of course.

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Robb Shaw: You know citrix and vmware and other partners and some partners who only focus on things like auto scaling have been doing this, but today, this this announces the public preview of an auto scale feature that will turn off or turn on vm based on scale or based on demand.

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Robb Shaw: You know, as as needed.

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Andy Whiteside: So you know things like this features like this, these are big steps and being on par with the other vendors, in the space, I mean other than I mean obviously there’s there’s more, but you know microsoft’s investment in the protocol microsoft’s investment with.

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Andy Whiteside: With auto scale microsoft’s investment in things like maybe session recording either now or in the future, things that are you know some checkboxes features, the other guys have.

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Andy Whiteside: I mean, other than the fact that the on premises and multi cloud which you can kind of tell us if Microsoft ever plans to go into that direction you guys are really nipping at the heels of the legacy players.

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Robb Shaw: yeah I mean you know you know, certainly not to take anything away from our partnership with you know.

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Robb Shaw: The different is he’s out there, like citrix and vmware who’ve you know, been at this a long time, and you know we were constantly making improvements to the core.

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Robb Shaw: features of course citrix and vmware continue to you know increase you know the sets of tools that they that they deliver, but it is these are tools that that customers have requested from the beginning.

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Robb Shaw: You know improvement in audio video improvement in the protocol stack you know, being able to turn off on us vm these are these are key and soon you know we may be talking about being able to hibernate some of those as well that you know that’s another feature down the road type thing.

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Robb Shaw: You know, so I think these are important they’re they’re the features that customers have been asking for and and the product team is delivering on yeah.

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Andy Whiteside: But I dropped one little one in there, I was kind of hoping to sell to see if you answered it the on premise deciding to you and I had a brief conversation around like azure stack hub.

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Andy Whiteside: kind of stuff I think that’s what you might call it, these days, i’m not sure what the actual name is but, to be able to do some on premises add is that something you’ve heard any more about or so that you can comment on.

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Robb Shaw: So I think I think we’re getting closer to that, I know, like the hyper converged azure is now a reality and that that team is anxious to start working with the possibility of putting vm there.

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Robb Shaw: I haven’t seen it yet so you know we’ll have to stay tuned, for you know where that goes, but I think you know now that that on premises.

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Robb Shaw: kind of HC is space exists for azure now you know could be.

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Robb Shaw: And those are I know there’s some good topics for anybody who’s attending ignite next week I know there’s some topics there for H ci which is really the azure stack on Prem.

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Robb Shaw: You know, and I think some of our partners like Dell have some have some meetings available for those yeah.

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Andy Whiteside: So rob can you go on record and commit to ignite in person in 2022.

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Robb Shaw: By what What do you mean.

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Andy Whiteside: i’m joking i’m just.

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Robb Shaw: i’ll just.

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Andy Whiteside: i’m ready for in person conferences, I can’t I can’t.

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Andy Whiteside: wait till ones and pay.

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Andy Whiteside: attention and not get distracted I need I need the real deals back.

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Andy Whiteside: He can make that happen to agree.

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Robb Shaw: I know I don’t think you and I shook hands and two years now, my friend.

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Andy Whiteside: Well, that that wraps up the October of 21 let’s hit the Sep tember one’s kind of played the first one is azure portal updates I think that’s just kind of a consistent work in product progress around the arm platforms or arm templates or arm versions of the azure portal right.

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Robb Shaw: yeah i’m not sure you know what we’re really kind of pointing to hear.

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Robb Shaw: There will always be azure portal changes anybody who’s worked in azure for any length of time.

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Robb Shaw: You know folks have ideas of how to streamline the ui and the interface So those are inevitable and constant as far as some of those updates that happen.

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Andy Whiteside: that’s where the benefits, you get this constantly improving place to the business and you don’t have to be the upgrades.

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Robb Shaw: It is sometimes you sometimes it looks a little different when you go in there to do something.

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Robb Shaw: But but yeah.

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Robb Shaw: Hopefully, always for the better.

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Andy Whiteside: yeah you can’t be that old it curmudgeon that wants nothing to change if you are then you’re in the wrong business.

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Robb Shaw: that’s for sure.

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Andy Whiteside: This next one kind of highlights back to something we talked about in October and that’s as your active directory join this must be the generally available for the non.

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Andy Whiteside: My government in China, which we covered even government in China now available so it’s just going to reach rehashing of it.

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Robb Shaw: yep yep.

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Andy Whiteside: As your China well it’s really interesting if we do the month and then the month before because we just kind of steam kind of roll between the two, as your China add.

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Andy Whiteside: sounds like that’s was made available in September, and then by October we’re already adding features to it that’s that’s interesting.

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Robb Shaw: yeah and and and generally what not china’s a new thing for us from a bd side, but for the, at least if it falls in line with the same.

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Robb Shaw: trajectory that we’ve seen with gov cloud things that release in commercial it’s ideally that there are about a month behind so when we go GA it should go preview and then a month later, should go GA is generally what we’re seeing.

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Andy Whiteside: And then the last one here for September automatic migration module tool, what is this thing.

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Robb Shaw: yeah So if you had.

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Robb Shaw: vm that you had in the earlier version it just gives you the ability to migrate those I don’t really see folks that have had a requirement requirement to that.

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Robb Shaw: Most mostly I saw folks just build new and they didn’t migrate, the old version.

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Robb Shaw: So far away, I don’t even think about it anymore.

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Andy Whiteside: yeah now always good to build from scratch unless it’s too much work and you can’t for some reason, but always good always good to start over, especially the world where you just spin them up and down and you’re not installing things 5000 times.

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Robb Shaw: yeah I would agree.

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Robb Shaw: yeah there was one one other little update to on the fs logics side.

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Robb Shaw: So one we mentioned that you know we’re not.

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Robb Shaw: You know, as we do, as your active directory domain join you know fs logics the profiles not not yet there for a D join.

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Robb Shaw: But some some things that did come out, I think, like size and megabytes when you make the change and i’m not sure i’ve got to look into how it happens, but the.

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Robb Shaw: When you make the change, I think that it’s it’s going out and actually resizing and for you.

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Robb Shaw: In the past, you can make the change, but you actually had to go and inflate that yourself, so I haven’t tested that yet I was kind of surprised to see that.

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Robb Shaw: pop up the certainly because I thought it was going to be a little further out I think it’s the third one down that change the PhD sighs.

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Okay.

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Andy Whiteside: I mean, I think some, if not all of our listeners are aware of this, but the the invention of fs logics and the ability to put that into a virtual drive and.

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Andy Whiteside: Have the thing follow you anywhere across the spectrum of things that you’re working on, or just be fast and accessible at a at a kind of a symbolic link right is that the best way to say it access level is.

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Andy Whiteside: it’s a game for those of us had been as industry, for a long time, and we had this file transfer redirecting thing that we had to rely on that just never quite was optimal.

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Robb Shaw: yeah I like to say that it’s kind of the.

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Robb Shaw: The the smashing together of profile capability, like a roaming profile and a streamed application, if you will, and putting that profile in a PhD.

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Robb Shaw: and keeping it hidden from the application and the the ios that it’s actually not local so everything thinks that it’s local so things like one drive and.

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Robb Shaw: teams and other applications that are kind of finicky about where the repository is the all work, you know when they’re putting a container and that tends to be pretty good.

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Andy Whiteside: To help me with that on fs logics I was under the impression early on that it wouldn’t go in between different profile or different operating system versions universally.

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Andy Whiteside: It it does they’re ready goes from windows 10 X the windows 10 why and then now windows 11 and that seems to be no issue.

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Robb Shaw: yeah the the these these version changes in windows 10 and I haven’t tested when tend to win 11 just to see if there’s any profile issues, I will you know by our next meeting, hopefully have an answer to that.

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Robb Shaw: But yeah the we’ve always had issues like like when we would say you know when seven to win 10 that was problem problematic.

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Robb Shaw: You know, some things may work some things may not but it’d be better to you know get a new profile but yeah these iterative changes and when 10 We found that fs logics can handle that fairly well.

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Andy Whiteside: So rob dumb question for me i’m not in the trenches as much as they used to be, but do you still do folder redirection type stuff we just let everything ride in the fs logics virtual drive.

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Robb Shaw: You know, we still see a little bit you know it depends right on your architecture, because, like in on Prem environments, you may have reasons why the data needs to go out to different places for backup and recovery.

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Robb Shaw: If you’re leveraging one drive it gets a little bit trickier right, because if if it’s all in one drive anyway, then then maybe some of those folder redirects we’re seeing customers are doing less of that.

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Robb Shaw: And even some of the custom folders for specific applications they’re just pointing those back to one drive in some cases, so it’s it depends right.

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Robb Shaw: And again fs logics is something that you could leverage on Prem in your citrix and vmware environments or in your cloud environment either way.

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Andy Whiteside: Because it only low.

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Robb Shaw: It works both yep.

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Andy Whiteside: So I have kind of a question for you regarding fs logics What about like user initiated installs so not just application data, but if I give users in a in a non persistent world access can they can they go install an application, and can it be captured within the fs logics right.

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Robb Shaw: No i’m not yet we’re looking at maybe that that might be something we see in the future with would really be a feature of.

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Robb Shaw: APP attach right where it would be a rideable volume today what we’re seeing with with APP attaches that fs logics will keep some of the settings related to those Apps.

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Robb Shaw: In the container in the profile container but, but today we really don’t have those rideable volumes, you know today, you know something similar to you know, a DVD or a.

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Robb Shaw: rideable user volume, you know not not yet.

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Andy Whiteside: That will you mentioned DVD that used to be the answer and that wasn’t even 100% space is near and dear is there anything out there that.

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Andy Whiteside: That truly allows you to do that today that you would depend on to the rollout thousands of desktops.

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Robb Shaw: so that you know as far as I know, there’s a couple options, but I don’t think that i’ve seen 100% success with either I mean vmware has has one and citrix has up D or not up, as I did you user.

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Andy Whiteside: I don’t know what the marketing term is, but then that evolved into user personalization disk or whatever.

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Robb Shaw: yeah and and up D used to be wasn’t that a Microsoft thing in the past but yeah I think that’s still a difficult thing to you know to capture everything at least today.

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Andy Whiteside: So in that case you’re like just just go persistent, for now, and hopefully by the time you revisit it, it will be there’ll be something real.

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Robb Shaw: yeah hopefully I think we’ve been saying that, for you know I don’t know.

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Robb Shaw: A number of years there used to be one of the closest things I saw there was a company mocha five that had something that was pretty cool.

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Robb Shaw: But again, it was kind of local but it ran it put it into its own desk so it kind of straddle the fence but yeah I still haven’t seen it.

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Robb Shaw: And what I and i’m basing it more on customer feedback that they can get some things to work, but not everything yeah.

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Andy Whiteside: rob I appreciate you going down that path with me it’s good to talk to you, as always, and we’ll do this again in about a month.

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Robb Shaw: awesome good good talking with Andy.

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Andy Whiteside: Right now hey citrix can have a sales kickoff, I hope, maybe in your new role, you can find a way to get there, if not we’ll see you soon oh.

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Robb Shaw: Sales kickoff call.

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Andy Whiteside: in person.

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Robb Shaw: In person can’t wait.

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Andy Whiteside: Thanks.

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Robb Shaw: All right.

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Robb Shaw: you’re a fan.