Initially known as terminal services, the remote desktop is a Microsoft service that allows users to have a virtual session by accessing files and applications through a server. The experience of using remote services is more or less like using a local desktop; the only difference is that the session is processed on a server not the desktop.
Remote desktops are relatively simpler as little infrastructure requirements are needed to be met; thereby reducing implementation costs. Moreover, it helps in enhancing remote worker’s efficiency because it is most suitable for remote workers, contractors and corporate workers working from a remote location.
However, the biggest drawback of a remote desktop is that it has compatibility issues. Since it has a terminal environment, many applications fail to work. Nonetheless, improvements have been made over the years and many applications have started working, but still some applications do not work till date.
Also known as VDI, the virtual desktops are basically interfaces that run on a virtual environment and not on a local desktop. However, the virtual desktop environment and infrastructure tends to be more convoluted than the remote desktop. The administrators are responsible for managing numerous virtual desktops
Some of the important benefits of a virtual desktop are: the administrators find it easy to adapt or allocate the RAM capacity, disk space and various other peripherals; the data on the virtual desktop can be backed up and easily restored using snapshots; virtual desktops are easily deploy able as it has the capability to replicate and develop templates in a span of a few minutes.
Although VDIs are a costly option, they have the capability to provide numerous benefits that outweigh this drawback.
It is important to understand that both desktops are meant to be operated in a different environment; therefore, your needs and requirements must be matched to the features of these desktop services before deciding which one to go for.