12: WVD Monthly: August 2021 Updates

Sep 16, 2021

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

Windows 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: hey everyone, welcome to episode 12 of wv monthly or, should I call it a vd monthly I got to figure out how to change that name but we’ll get that done i’ve got the john’s blown from is integral and john how’s it going.

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Spallone: it’s going good thanks.

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Andy Whiteside: john this is your second one of these right.

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Andy Whiteside: Yes, okay there we were wearing without rob last time and john did a good job he comes over from the citrix as your team, so he knows a lot about add to train myself, we got to have it like a tip jar every time you say web you got $1 in.

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Andy Whiteside: We also have rob show rob has been our normal guests on the show the last I don’t know four or five months and rob.

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Andy Whiteside: Well rob did work for Microsoft on the add sound side, but now he’s got a new job so we’ll keep talking to him as long as he keeps talking to us but rob what’s your what’s your new role.

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Robb Shaw MS: So still kind of GB now on the ABS team, which stands for azure vmware solutions so basically if you want to run your asx hypervisor on azure.

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Robb Shaw MS: Where the the team that can help you kind of understand that further.

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Andy Whiteside: yeah that’s great hey and sorry if you hear background noise, the the cleaning crew just showed up and they’re trying to break into my office to vacuum and they think i’m gone so if it looks like a looks like a robbery, is going to happen that’s what it is.

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Andy Whiteside: So let’s talk a little about your new job rob so that’s gonna be that’s vmware asx basically V sphere going to kind of call it the spheres that that.

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Robb Shaw MS: yep it supports V sphere, you know a lot of the the general tools that you would normally use for vmware.

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Andy Whiteside: So that’s V sphere running bare metal hardware in as your data centers.

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Robb Shaw MS: yeah yeah.

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Andy Whiteside: So if i’m a vmware customer Does that mean I set up a cluster that’s on Prem and a cluster and azure and it’s all one big data is that two data centers what does that look like inside of vmware environment.

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Robb Shaw MS: So it would it would kind of appear as a second data Center for ABS it’s a three node minimum right to to kind of create an array and azure.

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Robb Shaw MS: And you can scale up from there are scaled down as as demand, you know drop down, which is nice, you know you don’t have to you know build out on Prem hardware for peak peaks that that you otherwise might hit add say seasonal workload increases.

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Andy Whiteside: What about something as crazy as like a live migration from one side to the other.

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Robb Shaw MS: yeah yeah so using a lot of the tools, you might use normally like a cx still still functions, you can use, you know, obviously V motion up to azure as well.

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Robb Shaw MS: You know, and you know just about I don’t know I don’t know any exceptions, but just about every workload, you know would work that you could run on on your on premise X environment.

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Andy Whiteside: So my mind goes crazy thinking about that from a vdi use case, as well as from other use cases like literally live migrating at by the hour depending on where the cost is more affordable you think it’ll be that crazy.

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Robb Shaw MS: So you know we say to be saved, we say it’s about an hour, you know to see you say, I want to add a new node you know to my pod.

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Robb Shaw MS: And that’s just depending on you know kind of workload availability that kind of thing it is dedicated hardware so we’re assuming that there are you know spare nodes ready to go, you know to be deck enjoying your you know your environment.

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Andy Whiteside: yeah well i’d love to learn more and talk to you more about that I think i’ve already got a customer i’m texting right now that I want to just get on a call and have them talk to you and I can learn from from that call.

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Robb Shaw MS: yeah I think when I look at it is it’s kind of the easy button right hey I don’t have time to re host and refactor and and test everything I just I gotta get out of a data Center I gotta move somehow some way as it’s kind of that easy but it’s for that.

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Andy Whiteside: yeah well our topic for today is as your virtual desktops in the August updates I know john’s been prepping a little bit on this, and hopefully as well let’s let’s talk through what it is you guys released for updates for August of 2021.

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Andy Whiteside: first thing i’m seeing here is something I find very interesting, which is a windows 11 preview this thing’s coming right.

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Robb Shaw MS: Correct correct, so you know as an operating system it’s now fully supported in azure virtual desktop.

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Robb Shaw MS: Even multi user capabilities, you know, are also included.

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Andy Whiteside: So as a tech guy answered this question for me, you know, five years ago ish we were talking about windows 10 being the last.

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Andy Whiteside: operating system with different versions, of course, as they came out that was you know what we saw happening, why is there a windows 11 what changed to make the marketing side of Microsoft say no, no, no there’s gonna be another one here comes windows 11 what what drove that you think.

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Robb Shaw MS: yeah I think what what’s been communicated to us is just a you know.

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Robb Shaw MS: further exploration and doubling down on security being able to bring things like that the trusted execution capabilities.

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Robb Shaw MS: And you know from a usability perspective really making it, you know.

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Robb Shaw MS: i’d say even more say tablet and touch aware that it can really give the user, the ability to kind of customize the desktop to a way that really works for them, instead of having to kind of stay within a certain you know.

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Robb Shaw MS: configuration gooey that doesn’t necessarily provide the customization they want right.

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Andy Whiteside: From a vdi perspective, what does that mean for us.

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Robb Shaw MS: So I think you know continuing on the add path of.

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Robb Shaw MS: Having operating system that’s pre configured for vdi right so it’s it’s you know got vdi you know baked into it at its core, as we, as we use, for example, the Multi user operating system to be able to leverage that virtual environment.

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Andy Whiteside: john you probably have some background and thoughts and comments on windows 11 and in the business and marketing side of that as well as the technology side from from a vdi and cloud perspective any anything you’d want to bring up.

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Spallone: yeah I mean I definitely I know what you were saying Andy about going away from you know the version releases and where we were going with it, I just think it’s it’s more consumable consumable this way it’s more.

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Spallone: easier to grasp because you’re not having to balance, a conversation about cloud and the features and functionalities of cloud and then.

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Spallone: How this os works out what I did find interesting though is that you know looks like there’s more support for the high end graphics with 11 coming in the DVD side.

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Spallone: And one thing I didn’t know too that was pointed out that this is preview now correct me if i’m wrong rob it looks like it’s for enterprise and education only at this time.

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Robb Shaw MS: um I believe that is correct yeah.

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Robb Shaw MS: It it does it does it’s interesting it still shows up as as windows 10 when I when I create a host pool, but I think that’s I think I had a first release of that and I think that’s been resolved.

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Robb Shaw MS: yeah i’m not sure you know what that path looks like today on how you know how soon that’ll move out of preview generally generally that’s about a one month timeframe, when we go from public preview to GA, this being a new os you know they’re there may be a longer longer cycle.

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Spallone: And it looks like initially we have three flavors the enterprise enterprise Balti session and then multi session with him 365.

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Andy Whiteside: And that makes sense right, I mean windows add is really for enterprise and by enterprise I don’t mean you have to be a you know 10,000 user company it’s just companies that have enterprise use cases.

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Andy Whiteside: yeah and that’s us for me we’re we’re 55 employees, now we have some of the same needs is i’m sure some of the big you know, value added resellers and lawyers out there.

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Andy Whiteside: So our next topic in the updates here is multimedia redirection looks like this is focused on chrome and chrome derivatives of browsers rob thoughts on this one.

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Robb Shaw MS: yeah, so this is one that i’ve been really looking forward to you know it’s something that when wv ED came out, it was based on the.

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Robb Shaw MS: kind of an RDP protocol, but but back to say version seven right so at version seven we didn’t we didn’t have multimedia redirection we have a lot of specific capabilities around some of those those items that had been baked into the traditional.

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Robb Shaw MS: Remote desktop protocol.

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Robb Shaw MS: Including multimedia redirection being one of the key ones and and a real big factor, and that was to be able to bring about that reverse connect capability to really make that.

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Robb Shaw MS: That that vm runs and azure but really you’re just getting proxy to access to it, so to provide you know kind of a high security environment.

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Robb Shaw MS: But once multimedia capability has come out we kind of first kind of snuck it in in in teams redirection if you had the right version of teams, and that was really kind of built.

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Robb Shaw MS: kind of as a widget to where that could be used by other vendors and as what they’ve now shown is to be able to port that over to things for traditional multimedia.

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Robb Shaw MS: So I think this is a, this is a big thing, where you know folks who are who are looking to have good graphic good video capability to be able to redirect to an end point that’s capable right.

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Robb Shaw MS: So it will, it will have to follow that edge and Google chrome capability to be able to redirect those those capabilities.

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Andy Whiteside: So john you’re an old school virtual APP virtual desktop guy multimedia redirection is the ability to offload that and provide the user, a good experience and save on resources back on the back end it’s a must have right.

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Spallone: Oh definitely huge and again just like our last discussion, you can see the handshake with what we’re talking about as we step along you know with the windows 11 preview giving us more gpu capabilities now giving us the redirection it’s really a great time.

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Andy Whiteside: He says, do you think so Robin mentioned something just now about modulating some of these things, so it makes it easier for Microsoft to reuse and and maybe some of the other vendors, is there anything in.

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Andy Whiteside: In the azure virtual desktop today that only Microsoft can take advantage, I guess, one thing is the Multi session piece, where you know, using a true client ios they’re the only ones, you can do it with others can do on top of that.

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Andy Whiteside: But you can’t take that and do that in your own private data Center I don’t think.

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Andy Whiteside: You may know more about where that stands and where that’s going but are there any other secret things, or maybe not secret, but the things that Microsoft can do in azure virtual desktop that you can use and other promoting solutions.

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Robb Shaw MS: Well, you know just one thing to mention is that you know our partners like citrix and vmware they continue to be able to leverage those.

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Robb Shaw MS: You know those multi session, while in azure and that that’s a key distinction that that multi user windows 10 now windows 11 operating system, it does only, it is only capable in in azure today.

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Robb Shaw MS: You know, there are certainly some redirection capabilities that we’ve seen where.

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Robb Shaw MS: You know some of the some of the first pieces that have come available like teams, you know they were had to be on windows 10.

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Robb Shaw MS: correctly patched and the right version of teams in order to offload that, and you know now we’re seeing that with with the multimedia redirection.

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Robb Shaw MS: we’ve seen some vendors kind of step into that as well, like I Joe was one of the first ones to take that and be able to port that over two teams citrix and vmware kind of already done it, you know, in their own in their own protocol.

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Andy Whiteside: Okay.

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Robb Shaw MS: But that that that is the hope, though.

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Robb Shaw MS: There are some other collaboration type companies that have taken that kind of that.

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Robb Shaw MS: SDK, if you will, for redirection to be able to port it over to their own.

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Robb Shaw MS: Some i’m not sure how many have gone GA and have been formally announced, so I won’t I won’t put my foot in my mouth and say anything.

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Andy Whiteside: Well, just the fact that.

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Andy Whiteside: You know, as your Microsoft is allowing the other hypervisor is to do bare metal installed in their data centers because.

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Andy Whiteside: You know it’s the right thing to do, plus also increase revenue streams from Microsoft that where they can be part of everybody else’s story as well.

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Andy Whiteside: I mean that kind of shows that this, this is no longer my way or the highway kind of thing it’s Microsoft supporting the other players in the space and providing that that foundation that can be built upon.

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yeah.

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Robb Shaw MS: And we’ve kind of seen that from from customers that have started the adoption there it’s a i’ve moved some things like to Cooper nettie or to other container technologies or native azure based.

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Robb Shaw MS: But you know, maybe some of their other maybe the vdi workloads maybe there’s others that it was just easier to port over as as an asx vm decay file.

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Robb Shaw MS: same same for some of the vdi workloads we’ve seen you know first first horizon exclusively and now citrix certified that, from what I understand as well right.

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Andy Whiteside: So next one talks about windows defender application control and as your disk encryption, as you guys pointed out early on in this podcast windows 11.

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Andy Whiteside: Some element of that is to show that things are changing and in the names different and part of that is even a more serious take on security does that tie into what we’re talking about here.

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Robb Shaw MS: I think so, you know, one of the one of the things that we saw early on, was that.

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Robb Shaw MS: For defender when 10 multi user wasn’t wasn’t initially supported and took some time during coven to to get that out the door, you know it was.

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Robb Shaw MS: Some parts of defender side as a as a server os and some saw it as a desktop or less so, I took took a little time to get that through the through the process to get it, you know, to get that full support.

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Robb Shaw MS: You know, for defender.

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Andy Whiteside: And it helped me understand why that matters at least maybe the azure disk encryption support peace and justice back in a data Center I guess in theory it’s roped off from everybody else, but this is just in case it’s not.

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Robb Shaw MS: yeah you know, there are those folks that have.

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Robb Shaw MS: That have requirements that force them to run on a fully encrypted desk even though at at rest we are encrypted and the you know the communication is is encrypted.

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Robb Shaw MS: We wanted to be able to meet the expectations we see in in, say, fed we see in financial sector where that that has to be on a on an encrypted disk.

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Andy Whiteside: yeah that requirements needs to be there yep absolutely.

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Andy Whiteside: john any thoughts on this or that the encryption or the defender application control piece.

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Spallone: Now I just said, I think it’s just another show of the value add of how Microsoft is taking narrow functionality and giving it over to the cloud.

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Spallone: And that whole virtual experience for the users, so I do think this is a great security step moving forward and I look forward to some some more things coming in the near future.

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Andy Whiteside: Alright next one on the list is smart card support does that as simple as what it sounds like.

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Robb Shaw MS: i’m not not exactly you know the.

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Robb Shaw MS: The The interesting thing is some things like.

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Robb Shaw MS: hdfs hdfs were initially supported in the initial release of add or which was vtt web at the time that later when we went to the more gooey based environment broke some of that capability with with a dfs, for example.

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Robb Shaw MS: So what what we ran into is especially again federal space probably pushes this more than anything, being able to support those cat cards.

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Robb Shaw MS: And authentication and that’s that’s handled via a K DC proxy that handles that token on behalf and presents it that that initially was that we saw as a workaround now the add product team has fully vetted and documented that process.

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Andy Whiteside: Okay, we.

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Robb Shaw MS: We we also see it as kind of a sidestep to right hey I i’m not not a customer that’s fully using.

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Robb Shaw MS: You know, as your active directory, I still use my my traditional ad environment but, but you know I want to be able to leverage that capability.

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Robb Shaw MS: Long term we see where some of that capability becomes easier, as we have those azure active directory domain join vm and even fs logics being able to support that that capability as well.

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Andy Whiteside: So it makes it smart cards in azure virtual desktop first classes and gets all the features everybody else gets.

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Robb Shaw MS: yeah.

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Andy Whiteside: At some point.

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Spallone: Now, with that rob is this.

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Spallone: Just on the commercial side of azure or I know you did bring up the Fed i’ve worked with the Fed a lot in the past Is this something that we’re seeing already in the.gov site.

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Robb Shaw MS: yeah yeah it is, in fact, it was the GM side that started this process that later the product group kind of follow that to make that you know to solidify that if you will yeah the the The thing that initially I do a good bed work on the HR last side on the healthcare life science side.

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Robb Shaw MS: doesn’t get us the you know the capability for things like Emperor bata support you know that that a lot of people are you know really hungry for.

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Robb Shaw MS: Just left a call earlier today, you know capability is something that that those conversations have begun to try and make that capability, but you know doesn’t mean that it’s broad support for all vendor.

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You know, smart cards.

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Spallone: And this is also just to support it within the Ad join the azure ad join devices correct yeah.

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Andy Whiteside: So guys, then the next and last topic here is screen capture protection I ran into that the hard way with citrix where I enabled that and then I went to do a DEMO via teams and nobody could see my screen.

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Andy Whiteside: And, to be honest, I I spent literally a minute or so trying to figure out what’s broken what’s broken like oh wait a minute this how supposed to work.

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Andy Whiteside: rob, I guess, this was something that was being asked for by your customers and made it to the URL made it to this point in the delivery that you guys put it in here.

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Robb Shaw MS: yeah yeah absolutely it’s been.

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Robb Shaw MS: want to say and preview.

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Robb Shaw MS: What seems like since the beginning of the year, but I know it hasn’t been that long, I know, probably, maybe that’s more like private preview.

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Robb Shaw MS: But yeah yeah it’s good to see it come out of public preview and into.

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Robb Shaw MS: You know, general release.

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Andy Whiteside: and rob How does that does that How does that work, in other words, is it part of the client that’s turned on by policy somewhere in the in the spectrum of things.

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Robb Shaw MS: yeah you, you have to have line of sight to your domain Controller and the you leverage the katie see proxy as part of that capability and.

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Robb Shaw MS: Initially, the documentation was just really what a couple best cloud solution architects that kind of you know, put together that are that are focused on the Fed side that they got blessed and you know turned into you know fully documented.

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Andy Whiteside: You know, as we’re talking through this katie sees come up multiple times I had to go look it up.

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Andy Whiteside: I guess that was kind of new to me john thoughts on this as well as the concept of the key etc, and where that plays roles today and into the future, when we have these remote data centers that thanks to remote in protocols don’t feel remote.

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Spallone: yeah and I think this is another good enhancement, especially you know with that just disabling the print screen on the device side.

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Spallone: For that connection now, you said, Robert it’s a line of sight that needs to be there from that device.

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Robb Shaw MS: yeah and I kind of crossed that back over to the to the.

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Robb Shaw MS: smart card capabilities, but yeah for the.

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Robb Shaw MS: For turning off screen capture it’s just a just a setting much like we would see on our normal RDP settings in the in the policies for the host cool.

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Robb Shaw MS: sorry about crossing the streams on that and confusing you guys.

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Spallone: don’t cross the streams.

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Robb Shaw MS: yeah so it’s.

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Spallone: it’s it’s not good yeah.

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Robb Shaw MS: i’ll do that a movie and the end of the movie it’s okay.

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Spallone: it’s always foreboding i’m wrong, is there any limitations that are that are known on this right now.

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Spallone: As far as getting this enable.

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Robb Shaw MS: i’m not that i’ve seen right.

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Robb Shaw MS: I didn’t have a lot of customers really requesting this so I wouldn’t say it’s something that i’ve i’ve seen you know fully implemented out there.

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Spallone: yeah I think it’s more that there it’s not as much as the user doing the screenshot as more and, like the key loggers or the ranch where’s that are doing it for that security side house correct yeah it’s more like that external threat versus the internal threat.

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Robb Shaw MS: yeah and it was, it is a feature that I believe I know I know citrix add as had for some time.

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Robb Shaw MS: vmware i’m not sure, but you know, probably also but, but as a result, we had customers ask for it not my customers, but more probably more again in that that high security, you know type environments.

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Andy Whiteside: Oh key loggers in screen captures i’ve always been that one element of security that we we chased in the remote computing world, and those are those are being solved.

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Spallone: yeah especially chasing recently with with all the events so it’s become more prominent.

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Robb Shaw MS: yeah good point.

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Andy Whiteside: So guys we’ve covered the the meaty part of this and i’m going to just try to summarize this part I skipped in the very beginning, all the agent side the virtual desktop agent updates and.

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Andy Whiteside: there’s looks like there’s about I don’t know 25 or so bullets here is there anything that’s happened on the agent side that’s this sexy part of the beginning of the blog that either one of you would call out as must must see TV pieces.

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Robb Shaw MS: You know I.

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Robb Shaw MS: You know it’s always been.

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Robb Shaw MS: The principal objective to make the platform more stable right.

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Robb Shaw MS: You know, so these many times, you know, unless you unless you’ve run into them they happen and get fixed before you realize many times yeah.

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Andy Whiteside: Well, I think the thing to highlight here that I probably brought up in this podcast and others before is, this is an asynchronous solution.

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Andy Whiteside: Yes, most of the hard works, then on the back end but without that endpoint intelligence and connectivity and and, in this case the agent.

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Andy Whiteside: If you can’t take advantage of what’s on the back end.

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Andy Whiteside: A lot of people don’t seem to understand how that works in this promoting emc world but it’s certainly asynchronous right there’s a.

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Andy Whiteside: there’s a ton of stuff that has to happen on the agent for whatever operating system, it is it it’s on and Oh, what a virtual desktop am I saying that right, this is this the agent that runs in the vdi or is this the client that runs on the employment.

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Robb Shaw MS: spruce up.

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Andy Whiteside: This is the vdi yeah okay well just pretend I didn’t say any of that.

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Spallone: yeah it looks like it’s it’s more for just beyond the the general bug fixes and may you know add ins that we have it’s we’re getting a lot more.

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Spallone: Actual Health Check diagnosis coming in from the agent to the back end infrastructure for the admins to be able to get more info and more detail on what’s really happening out there from that that virtual device.

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Andy Whiteside: yeah.

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Robb Shaw MS: yeah no good, and I think to your point and the.

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Robb Shaw MS: If you scroll up I believe you’ll see the updates to the actual clients.

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Andy Whiteside: Oh there it is.

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Robb Shaw MS: yeah and those are done and broken out by different operating systems, so you can see hey what changes have happened in windows and MAC and you know, whatever.

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Andy Whiteside: let’s let’s click on one and see what.

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Andy Whiteside: yeah we’re gonna skip that but anybody know what they want.

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Robb Shaw MS: Now it’s it’s it’s really becomes useful when it’s hey I need this.

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Robb Shaw MS: You know xyz widget that’s in windows, can I do it in back you know, for example, you know you can kind of track that down.

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Andy Whiteside: When you cross pollinate even between different endpoints it’s really important or when you have something that broken you go find that it was fixed in the next release.

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Andy Whiteside: Which nine times out of 10 that’s the right answer occasionally you upgrade the client find that you create a new issues but, for the most part with regression testing and things, these days, those those those like old school problems when we were when we were kids.

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Spallone: yeah and I know you jumped off that page real quick and the but I actually dug down a little bit deeper, at least on the windows side.

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Spallone: It looks like it’s going into some more detail on the multimedia read redirection and also some bug fixes and the direct X term black for teams on the add client to windows so yeah there’s definitely some more details for the geekier people that want to dig into it yeah.

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Robb Shaw MS: And you know interesting you know you mentioned mentioning teams it’s it’s always been that.

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Robb Shaw MS: You know what we’ve gotten from the teams teams is that you know teams is kind of an amalgamation of a lot of different capabilities and.

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Robb Shaw MS: As different you know particular you know aspects get fixed that gets fixed and we see it in in a DVD but you know, like one of the laggards has been.

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Robb Shaw MS: Like session sharing, for example, or we had some pieces where cpu was spiked and certain less type, so you got to see those those kind of my new pieces, you know broken out by by ios update.

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Andy Whiteside: takes two to tango and that clients really important and let’s do this real quick, I just want to test this theory, like the.

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Andy Whiteside: The the client that most people don’t think about at all is the Web client let’s see if we look at that what we got for updates really nothing, maybe since July, but that’s the interesting one i’ve never had a chance to play with that.

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Andy Whiteside: In the world of web DVD how how good is the Web only client Robin have you did you see stopping that and is it making progress.

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Robb Shaw MS: I do see it a good bit right it’s I would say it’s probably the number two client, you know generally it’s windows first and then it’s the the Web client next.

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Robb Shaw MS: Surprisingly, because it’s also probably one of the least feature rich capabilities, but it covers everything you know if i’m on a chromebook at work if i’m on a toaster it’ll work.

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Robb Shaw MS: If you have a toaster like I do anyway.

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Robb Shaw MS: But I think one of one of the big announcements for web was a drop of support for.

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Robb Shaw MS: IE fairly recently, you know, ie, as you know, kind of a lot of hooks and capabilities and so.

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Robb Shaw MS: I don’t think I think that was a couple of revisions ago but, but that was a That was a key one right yeah really so we really lean on the.

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Robb Shaw MS: The.

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Robb Shaw MS: html five base browsers that are chromium based in those cases.

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Spallone: yeah and it’s funny Andy great minds think alike, like, I guess, I went to the red web client as well, and looking through here.

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Spallone: What was in July file transfer your support for the Web client, which I think that’s that’s pretty big, especially from a web client access to my vdi.

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Spallone: And then the one previous to that again goes to this theme of the user experience redirection of the microphones and remote session so.

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Spallone: it’s just amazing when you think about where we’ve come from fat clients to now everything is so streamlined it’s just it’s amazing how fast we get there.

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Robb Shaw MS: yeah microphone to the web clients was the feature that.

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Robb Shaw MS: yeah it was one of the key things that came out, I think that folks were requesting that so yeah.

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Andy Whiteside: Well, it shows that.

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Andy Whiteside: All the players in the space, but Microsoft, in this case is taking it taking the space, serious and got to get those features in there, if you want enterprise adoption.

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Andy Whiteside: Even for customers of all sizes.

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Andy Whiteside: Well, gentlemen, I appreciate it it’s a it’s.

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Andy Whiteside: Six o’clock on the east coast almost and it’s it’s time to go home, but I really appreciate you jumping on once a month doing this with us rob if if there’s someone else we need to be working with, let us know but we’ll we’ll keep bugging you until you tell us we gotta stop.

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Robb Shaw MS: Always always good to talk to you guys.

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Andy Whiteside: All right, Sir, have a good one.

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i’ll take I guess.