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With the death of RemoteApps through Azure Knowall offers alternatives
July 4th, 2018

Azure RemoteApp was a feature of Azure and was available only via Azure Service Management (ASM) and not in Azure Remote Management (ARM/CSP). It provided a very easy way to deliver Remote Desktop Services connections to desktop applications that were hosted in a collection of Remote Desktop Services (RDS) session hosts.

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There were a few nice features about the Azure solution, including:

  • The licensing was a simple, all-inclusive, per-user charge. If you used the service, you were charged based on how many users had access and how much they used the service. If you didn’t deploy the service (maybe for “normal” times in a DR scenario), then there was no charge. And the cost of the RDS CAL was included with the cost of the VMs (including Windows license and CAL) that powered the service.
  • It was simple to deploy and design compared to a normal RDS farm. There are a lot of pieces in an RDS farm. With Azure RemoteApp, Azure handled the connection broker, SSL gateways, and all the other RDS pieces behind the scenes; all you needed to provide RemoteApp with was an image of your session host, user accounts (via Azure AD), a domain to join (for optimal usage and management), and a virtual network to connect to.
  • It made for a nice way to provide users with a way to connect to legacy client-server applications that are hosted in the cloud, bypassing the effects of latency by moving the client experience to the same virtual network as the services/data.

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Microsoft announced the deprecation of Azure RemoteApp, and as one would expect, marketing told us that this was a good thing. The easy package of RemoteApp, the wrapped up pricing that didn’t require another licensing program outside of Azure, and the ability to fire up RemoteApp on demand using a PowerShell script or Azure Automation was a service liked by many.
Now customers need an alternative to Azure RemoteApp. Knowall IT provides its clients with a Turnkey RemoteApp solution; which is easy to deploy, fully managed, less expensive than a typical Azure deployment and the licensing is simple, you pay for the number of users per month combined with the amount of storage space used

Knowall vs RDS in Azure

Knowall offers a cost effective alternative to the now retired Azure RemoteApp service. You could create your own RDS farm within Azure, using Azure virtual machines, however, you will need the necessary skill set to design a scaled out RDS farm with all of the RDS components running in their own virtual machines which can be very complex.

In an Azure deployment you will typically require Virtual machines (VMs) with Active Directory domain controller and DNS roles, an RD Connection Broker and RD Licensing Server, an RD Gateway and Load Balancer, and a customisable number of RD Session Hosts along with setting up file storage, backups, and getting your Office licensing from elsewhere.

We’ve done a quick cost comparison for a typical 20 user RemoteApp solution with Office 2016 Standard, Hosted Exchange Mailboxes and file storage.

Azure RDS Farm – £949 PCM vs Knowall’s RemoteApp Solution – £800 PCM

With Knowall offering a lower price point with it’s Turnkey RemoteApp solution, when compared to building your own RDS farm, via Azure, our solution looks a lot more appealing as It’s a fully managed solution combined with 24×7 telephone and remote support, 99.99% SLAs and simply scalability, the case to build your RDS Farm just doesn’t stack up.

Looking for an Azure alternative? Book a FREE demo

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