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  • Writer's pictureJJC Systems

Understanding Persistent and Non-Persistent Azure Virtual Desktop Environments

Introduction: In today's fast-paced digital era, organizations are increasingly adopting cloud-based solutions for their computing needs. Azure Virtual Desktop (AVD) is a powerful service offered by Microsoft that allows businesses to deploy virtual desktops in the cloud. When setting up an AVD environment, you have two options: persistent and non-persistent. In this blog post, we will explore the differences between these two types of environments and their respective use cases.

Persistent Azure Virtual Desktop Environment: A persistent AVD environment refers to a setup where each user is assigned a dedicated virtual machine (VM) that retains its configuration and data across sessions. In simpler terms, a persistent environment offers a personalized desktop experience for each user. The VMs are unique to each individual and can be customized with specific applications, settings, and data that remain intact even after the user logs out.

Benefits of Persistent AVD Environments:

1. Personalization: Persistent environments allow users to customize their desktops, install

software, and save data. This personalization enhances user productivity and satisfaction.

2. Data Persistence: With persistent environments, user data is retained across sessions. This

means that users can resume their work exactly where they left off, even if they switch devices or log in from a different location.

3. Compatibility: Certain applications or workflows may require specific configurations or

dependencies. Persistent environments ensure that these requirements are met consistently for each user.

Use Cases for Persistent AVD Environments:

1. Power Users: Users who require high-performance computing resources or need to install

specialized software benefit from persistent environments as they can personalize their

desktops according to their specific needs.

2. Development and Testing: Developers often need a dedicated environment with specific tools and libraries. Persistent AVD environments provide an ideal setup for development and testing purposes, ensuring consistent configurations across different development cycles.

3. Data Analysis and Modeling: Data analysts and scientists who work with large datasets and

complex models can benefit from persistent environments to store and process their data


Non-Persistent Azure Virtual Desktop Environment: In contrast to persistent environments, non- persistent AVD environments do not assign a dedicated VM to each user. Instead, users connect to a shared pool of VMs, also known as session hosts, which are created and destroyed dynamically as users log in and log out. When a user logs out, the VM is reset to its original state, erasing any personalization or data left behind.

Benefits of Non-Persistent AVD Environments:

1. Cost Efficiency: Since VMs in non-persistent environments are shared among multiple users, fewer resources are required, resulting in cost savings.

2. Enhanced Security: With non-persistent environments, each user session starts with a clean slate, minimizing the risk of data leakage or unauthorized access. Any potential malware or malicious activity is eradicated as the VM resets after each session.

3. Simplified Management: Non-persistent environments are easier to manage since the session hosts can be standardized, reducing the complexity of maintaining individual user


Use Cases for Non-Persistent AVD Environments:

1. Task-Based Users: Environments where users perform simple, repetitive tasks or require access to specific applications for a short duration are well-suited for non-persistent setups.

2. Call Centers: Non-persistent environments are commonly used in call centers, where agents require access to a standardized set of applications and data, and personalization is not necessary.

3. Seasonal or Temporary Workers: For businesses that employ seasonal or temporary workers, non-persistent environments provide a scalable and efficient solution. The VMs can be provisioned dynamically based on demand.

Conclusion: When deciding between persistent and non-persistent Azure Virtual Desktop environments, it is essential to consider the specific requirements and use cases of your organization. Persistent environments offer personalized desktop experiences and data persistence, making them suitable for power users and development scenarios. On the other hand, non-persistent environments provide cost efficiency, enhanced security, and simplified management, making them ideal for task-based users and situations where personalization is not critical. By understanding the differences and benefits of each option, you can make an informed decision that aligns with your organization's needs and goals.

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