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Not All Hosted Desktops are Equal (Part 3)

Welcome to Part 3 of our discussion about hosted desktops. In Part 1 we looked at what a hosted desktop is, and the differences between Session Virtualisation and Full Virtual Desktops. In Part 2 we looked at the protocol and its impact on end user performance.

In this part we look at Graphics Performance in more detail.

Graphics Performance

In addition to delivering the graphics across the Internet, the graphics capability of the Hosted Desktop itself is key to providing a good end user experience.

Many more applications are using graphics processing (Including Internet Browsers, Office Applications and Google Earth) and therefore this perfomrance is key to business use as well as gamers.

Desktops, laptops, tablets and smartphones all incorporate graphics processing units (GPUs) to provide good graphics performance.

Hosted Desktops have traditionally not been supported by any dedicated Graphics Hardware, and have used a software methd to process the graphics on the normal processors. This is inefficient, but more importantly it introduces significant lag in any graphics display, which immediately impacts end user experience.

Recent developments have now made 3D acceleration for Hosted Desktops a reality, which high perofmrnace hardware-based Graphics Processing now being available from a small number of providers.

Hosted Workstations

By varying the level of graphic hardware made available on each desktop applications ranging from Google Earth right through to high-end CAD/CAM, Manufacturing, Architectural, Engineering and Graphic Design applications can be provided from hosted desktops.

These desktops are probably more appropriately termed Hosted Graphics Workstations, or Hosted CAD/CAM Workstations.

Mixed Environments

In addition to enabling these higher-end applications, organisations with a mixture of Hosted Workstations and more normal Hosted Desktops can be provided from the same environment and provider, allowing all to hsare in the benefits of a hosted IT system.