Last updated on September 9th, 2022

Why is the adoption of cloud-based infrastructure increasing in the global business world? Is virtual cloud infrastructure essential for enterprise growth? 

With the rise of cloud, many businesses have started to shift from on-premise virtual desktops to cloud-based infrastructure. The cloud has come a long way to deliver a secure and scalable IT environment for firms striving to face cutting-edge competition. The escalating need for mobility has given a hike to the usage of virtual solutions. 

However, businesses find it challenging to find a service that can equip them to meet corporate needs and deliver remote access to end-users anywhere and anytime. Here the cloud solutions such as Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) and Desktop as a Service (DaaS) can support remote working in the long run. Which solution works for them? 

So, let’s dive into the blog to find out what these both are and how they are viable for your business. 

DaaS and VDI: How Are They Different?

Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) Explained

Virtual Desktop Infrastructure, or VDI, is a technology that hosts multiple virtual desktops on a central server. In simple terms, you have virtual desktop software installed on virtual machines, which is delivered to end-users via a network. It is a conventional way of setting up servers in a local data center and offering virtual desktops to employees internally. 

VDI is a centralized form of desktop virtualization. It means that the IT department has complete control over licensing and setup. 

VDI: What features does it have? 

The VDI market has been seeing exponential growth for the last two years, reaching $10,154 million in 2023 with a CAGR of 16.5%. VDI is the most suitable solution for many firms, as it lets the company take total control over security. VDI keeps the data secure within the firm’s network with minimal latency. 

However, on-premise VDI gets a bit expensive and heavy to deploy. It requires a dedicated IT team to have hands-on experience to address contingencies. 

Desktop as a Service (DaaS) Explained

Desktop-as-a-Service, or DaaS, is a virtual desktop technology delivered by a third-party cloud service provider. In layman’s terms, a business hosts virtual desktops and applications on the cloud, and third-party cloud service providers handle all the deployment hassles. 

DaaS: What features does it have?

Desktop-as-a-service (DaaS) is a cloud VDI solution that delivers a multi-user experience to the organization. DaaS supports a hybrid workplace with virtual apps on-premises or in public clouds. It offers better scalability and eradicates the need to deploy in-house VDI infrastructure servers. 

Yet, DaaS gives less power to the IT team during mission-critical actions. However, it enables companies to provide virtual desktops with a single control portal for seamless management. 

This blog breaks down the differences between VDI and DaaS. Let’s see the benefits of implementing a virtual solution in your enterprise. 

VDI servers are hosted in an off-site private cloud. Servers are hosted in third-party service providers’ data centres.
Your IT department has to handle critical backups and computations. The DaaS provider manages critical management tasks and upgrades.
Ideal for those who need a high level of control over IT resources. Ideal for those who need to work on high graphics-intensive apps to work in remote areas.
Integrating applications into a VDI model can sometimes become difficult. You can integrate other applications easily into a DaaS model.
Scaling resources is challenging as it involves hardware upgradation. You can quickly scale-up and scale-down resources according to business needs.


VDI vs DaaS: Top 7 Differences


Single-Tenant vs. Multi-Tenant 

VDI delivers a single-tenant model that offers virtual resources of an organization or user. VDI is well suited for a business that wants extensive control over its hardware infrastructure and servers. It eliminates the burden on your IT team from deployments due to other users’ demands. 

On the other hand, DaaS is a cloud delivery model that gives an isolated space for multiple users. Various users from different industries can share the space but work differently. It means the user’s security is not compromised as each user works in a separate cloud space.


The underlying cost of any virtual infrastructure makes a big difference when deploying any solution. 

To begin with, VDI deployment involves the installation of high-end hardware. Also, you need physical space to set up the machines. For enterprise-grade businesses, setting up VDI on-premises is easier than it is for small-medium enterprises. Capital expenses are significant when purchasing or upgrading servers and data centers.  

Coming to DaaS, the capital expenses are comparatively less. While there are fewer capital expenses associated with deploying DaaS, some setup fee is still involved. The service provider handles the hardware upgrades and charges as per the subscription model, leading to low DaaS pricing. 

You can deploy it in less time because of the easy configuration of the infrastructure. Also, you pay for the number of virtual desktops you use. And the rest is taken care of by the cloud provider. 

Recommended Reading: Ian Moyse views on virtual desktop solution virtualization 

Control and Management 

With VDI deployments, your IT professionals get complete control over on-premise virtual desktops. From network performance to troubleshooting, every task is at your vigilance. However, it’s not an easy task for your in-house IT team as maintaining the virtual desktop infrastructure utilizes many working hours.  

Having hosted desktops or DaaS offloads the server maintenance tasks as a cloud service provider manages them. Desktop on the cloud reduces the day-to-day burden on in-house teams so they can commit to more crucial and strategic endeavours. 


As the employees function from various locations; cybersecurity is critical for every business. In-house VDI gives secure access to sensitive applications as it isolates the software. But, if the virtual machine is exposed to a security threat, it will also impact the operating system. All security measures are in your hands. 

On the other hand, the DaaS providers deploy multi-layered security like multi-factor authentication, data encryption, and intrusion for the hosted VDI solution. It keeps your corporate information secure with privacy regulations, including files, data, applications, and credentials. 

Suggested Reading: VDI Security 

Business Continuity 

Enterprises have strived hard to implement business continuity in the COVID crisis. From ensuring security to backing up data is vital to achieving business continuity. With VDI, you need to employ a dedicated team and deploy backup servers. Moreover, the team will have to identify risks and methods to mitigate them. 

A portion of disaster recovery gets solved with cloud VDI. The desktop provider backups the data to ensure no hassle in business processes when disaster hits. Moreover, they back up the data on redundant servers to ensure swift recovery for mid-level to enterprise firms. 

Flexibility and Scalability 

As remote working evolves, so do the technology needs. While deploying VDI for the long run, the company has to look forward to the flexibility of having it for ‘work from home’ employees. 

VDI setup comes with maintenance, device up-gradation, IT team hiring, and increasing costs. No wonder VDI makes you a person in control, but it can also slow business down if you have fewer workers or cannot secure your servers. Also, it is pretty challenging to increase or decrease the number of desktops used as per the business needs.  

DaaS is an efficient business model for companies fluctuating and anticipating sharp growth. Since the cloud service provider is the one deploying it, a growing business can focus more on supporting its workforce remotely. With a DaaS pay-as-you-go model, firms can scale their investment as per the resources they use.  Cloud-hosted desktop solutions are tailored to meet every firm’s dynamic needs. It makes DaaS a scalable model for constantly changing or evolving organizations. 

Use Cases of VDI and DaaS solutions

Virtual technology is like a coin, and DaaS and VDI are its two faces. But they do have some typical use cases like remote working, BYOD, and mobility in work. Other than this, let’s have a look at the difference in practical use cases of both.

Running High Graphic Intensive Apps 

Running a graphical application in VDI could be more complex as it requires high-end hardware in your office premises. So, it can be time-consuming to manage the complexities of creating virtual desktops.  

If you are a small and medium-sized company, you can save considerably with DaaS as the virtual desktops come with built-in design or development apps as per your subscription model. And that means you don’t have to spend a vast part of the funding on hardware. 

Scaling Temporary Workers 

In companies, many employees work on a contractual or freelance basis. So, that requires time and funds to provide the resources with the up-to-date software.  

If you are a large enterprise, you may have the resources to manage the deployment time without worrying about costs. But a medium enterprise may not bear the cost of every time deployment. In this case, DaaS providers help you with flexible pricing plans. 

Running business optimally 

With on-premise VDI, serving the workforce with the designated tools and apps may become a challenge. Suppose a new employee joins, then you have to go through a lengthy deployment process. DaaS allows you to have the utmost resource optimization. You can provide your employees with only those resources they require, saving your business expense. 

Contractors or Partners Access 

With VDI, your IT team creates secure access for partners or contractors to work virtually. If you don’t have a full-time support team, you might face issues resolving users’ problems. 

DaaS solves this problem by offering continuous support for all user queries. Hence, your contractors or partners get constant accessibility to virtual desktops. For instance, you can get round-the-clock support even on holidays without additional charges with ACE. 

Recommend Reading: Top Use Cases of Desktop as a Service or DaaS 

Which one to choose: Desktop as a Service vs. VDI  

Since you know the differences between VDI and DaaS, making an excellent choice is easier. Which factor helps you make the best choice for your remote business model? 

We would suggest you go for DaaS if you are looking for a cost-effective solution that offers a great user experience working remotely or office. 

However, if you wish to have underlying control over your resources and have a workforce to operate a VDI on-premise, you can go for it. 

Now you can address the challenge of handling complex infrastructure by adopting our DaaS subscription model. Our Citrix Managed Desktop helps organizations meet the challenges of 2022 by building a digital workplace.  

If you wonder how DaaS solves your problems, get in touch with our experts.  Our team is always there to guide you in making the best decision and delivering fully managed desktop solutions. 

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