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VincentWalker-6048 asked prmanhas-MSFT edited

Windows 356 Cloud PC vs Remote Desktop Services - Azure Virtual Machines (IaaS)

Hi All,

I would like to clarify whether a Windows 365 Cloud PC and Remote Desktop Services still use the back-end Resource "Azure Virtual Machines", and would this be an IaaS solution, or is it a grey area. From looking at the Shared Responsibility Model, I would categorically say that any form of Virtual Machine is classed as an IaaS solution, however, I've noticed Microsoft is basically making new "As a Service" offerings. For instance DaaS (Desktop as a Service) and ITaaS ( IT as a Service). I'm under the impression both Windows 365 and Remote Desktop Services both use the Azure Virtual Machine resource, which means the Virtual Machine itself is an IaaS offering, but the portals are the actual PaaS solutions.

For those people who like Cloud , Security, and Architectural documents, is there anywhere on the MS website that categorically says that Windows 365 Cloud PC is IaaS or PaaS and equally the same question applies to the Remote Desktop Services resources. I think there needs to be a clear distinction between the different Services, for Audit purposes.

For instance, I would be really interested in seeing a table with the following information, this is an example -
Service Name | Service Type | Description
Windows 365 Cloud PC | IaaS / PaaS | To clarify the front-end system is seen as a PaaS solution, but the backend is IaaS.
Azure Virtual Machines | IaaS | Please check the MS Description for Virtual Machines.
Office 365 | SaaS | Please check MS Description for Office 365.

The reason I suggest this would be so that, when having professional discussions everyone can easily go to a new Webpage with the information in front of them, instead of having to read loads of text, which does provide insight but maybe not as much insight as we need. Espically, at a glance.

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@VincentWalker-6048 Apologies for the delay in response and all the inconvenience caused because of the issue. I have reached out to our internal team and will keep you posted once I have an update.


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Thanks, I look forward to your reply.

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prmanhas-MSFT avatar image
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prmanhas-MSFT answered prmanhas-MSFT edited

@VincentWalker-6048 I had discussion internally and below is the response I got :

Currently we do not have any MS web site that gives that definition that the customer might be looking for but we will consider it as feedback for our documentation.
The perspective on when to define a service as IaaS, PaaaS and SaaS is based on the degree of responsibility that the customer takes vs. the provider of the service.

Based on that, our definition is:
Azure VMs: IaaS
Azure Virtual Desktop (the service itself): PaaS
Windows 365: SaaS (DaaS)

While all of those services can consist of various components that might be IaaS on their own, what makes up the definition is the service that is provided.
With AVD, MS provides a managed service to connect securely to VMs and Apps. The customer is responsible to manage the VMs, but is not responsible to manage e.g. the Broker infrastructure, Gateways, licensing, Web Access etc.

With Windows 365, even the VM is itself is not running in the customer subscription and is provisioned by MS. The customer only takes care about installing apps and updates.
If you would call Windows 365 a DaaS service is really depending on what definition for DaaS you like to follow.
Some would say, W365 is DaaS as it offer a subscription based access to a Desktop incl. flexible monthly billing, a pre-configured environment and management tools to deploy the apps.
Some might say, W365 is not DaaS, as the customer would still need to install the apps & updates via MEM themselves and the end user cannot call MS directly if they have an issue using their Cloud PC.

Hope it helps!!!

Please "Accept as Answer" if it helped so it can help others in community looking for help on similar topics.

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If MS decided to create a page on this, could you kindly share it with the community.

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prmanhas-MSFT avatar image prmanhas-MSFT VincentWalker-6048 ·

@VincentWalker-6048 I will for sure keep community posted on same :)



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