Microsoft announces plans for first datacenter region in Greece

Microsoft announced its intent to build new data centres that will establish a Microsoft Cloud region in the country, adding Greece to the world’s largest cloud infrastructure footprint and delivering access to low-latency, enterprise-grade cloud services.

The Greece datacenter region will join Microsoft’s global footprint of cloud regions, now totalling 63 regions announced, with Microsoft Azure available in over 140 countries, and will provide companies local access to Microsoft’s full set of cloud services, all built on a foundation of trust:

  • Microsoft Azure: An ever-expanding set of cloud services that offers computing, networking, databases, analytics, AI and IoT services.
  • Microsoft 365: The world’s productivity cloud that delivers best-of-breed productivity apps integrated through cloud services and delivered as part of an open platform for business processes.
  • Dynamics 365 and Power Platform: The next generation of intelligent business applications that enable organizations to grow, evolve and transform to meet the needs of customers and capture new opportunities.
  • Compliance, security and privacy: Microsoft offers more than 90 certifications and spends $1 billion every year on cybersecurity to address security at every layer of the cloud. Microsoft’s Greece datacenter region will help companies comply with the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), and will also help customers store data at rest in our region.
  • Sustainably operated: As part of Microsoft’s global commitment to be carbon negative by 2030, the company will shift to 100 per cent supply of renewable energy for its data centres by 2025.
Window Virtual Desktop

Windows Virtual Desktop (WVD) – Working from Home Has Never Been Easier!

Windows Virtual Desktop (WVD) enables your workforce to access a desktop anywhere, with a superb user experience that is quite simply unmatched by other virtual desktop solutions.

Veracloud can help you get started. Our team is on hand to deliver a WVD solution that sets the strategic direction that organisations have for long term remote worker and developer access yet still supports the immediate need to add the capabilities to enable their remote workforce

Why WVD?

  • Support remote working in a fast-changing business environment
  • Reduce or eliminate on-premise capital costs
  • Reduce office overheads and drive more flexible remote working
  • Respond quickly to EUC break/fix events
  • Enable much more secure remote working
  • Deliver a headache-free virtual desktop user experience
  • Ensure staff have a consistent working experience – irrespective of location or how they access resources

Why Veracloud?

  • We are a premium Azure service provider and can onboard and support the solution seamlessly for you.
  • We have our own WVD customised portal included within our services where one can easily manage, expand and optimise the Azure-based WVD environment together with other resources.
  • We have experience in designing and managing the right cloud infrastructure of all types and sizes.
  • We can completely handle the Lifecycle Management for Azure, offering you peace of mind with a Proactive Managed Service.
  • True 24/7 Support from Microsoft-certified experts via phone, chat, and email followed by a quick resolution thereafter.
  • We are a Cloud Solution Provider (CSP), which means we get an immediate response from Microsoft than normal customers.
  • Unlike Microsoft, our support is not limited to just system administrators. Our Azure engineers offer direct support to end-users.

Read the Windows Virtual Desktop (WVD) frequently asked questions or get in touch to give your employees the access they need to systems, networks, and enterprise applications, today.

Windows Virtual Desktop FAQ’s

This article answers Windows Virtual Desktop FAQ’s.

Who would benefit from Azure-based Cloud desktops?

Businesses which typically have 10+ employee size benefit significantly from Azure virtual desktops offered by Veracloud. These businesses have IT limited budgets and limited Cloud experience but wish to allow access to desktops, servers, and applications for their employees from anywhere, without compromising security or user experience.

What is the advantage of Veracloud’s Azure WVD based Cloud Desktop plans?

Azure WVD is a service within Azure that can be used to create an environment similar to your on-premises IT infrastructure in the Azure Cloud. What Veracloud has done is to build typical environments with Azure WVD suitable for small to mid-sized organizations. We have packaged our design, implementation, monitoring and management services with Azure resources and Microsoft licenses, to offer organizations simple price plans for ready-to-go Cloud Desktop environments in Azure. Your organization does not need to know the nuts and bolts of Azure as Veracloud will take care of that. You get predictable month-to-month pricing for reliable, secure, Cloud desktops with 24/7 support.

Is Azure virtual desktop persistent or non-persistent?

Generally, Azure Windows 10 VMs supports complete desktop, RemoteApp, and persistent or non-persistent desktops, dedicated or multi-session Windows 10 instances. We can set the desktops to meet your specific requirements.

How does our Azure Virtual Desktop pricing work?

We have designed our plans for simplicity. Depending on the number of typical business users, we have suggested appropriate dedicated WVD plans based on certain configurations. There is a price you pay for the underlying managed resources and an additional fixed price per user to account for per-user licenses, bandwidth, and support. You can add more or less users per plan based on the actual resource needs of your users. At any time, you can upgrade to a more powerful plan if needed.

How does one move from on-premise to WVDs?

To replicate a well-run on-premise environment, the following elements need to be assembled and configured on the Azure platform. A large Azure VM that is configured for multi-session WVDs, Azure AD, Domain Controller, storage, backup storage, appropriate Microsoft licenses, and a support plan from an Azure partner such as Veracloud. For onboarding and continued support, an Azure Partner is a definite requirement, because you need someone knowledgeable to bridge the gaps in the two environments.

What if your existing virtual machines are on Azure?

If you already have existing virtual machines on Azure, opting for Windows Virtual Desktop on Azure reduces the complexities involved in profile management, application access, and load balancing. Everything comes under one roof including interface, control panel, Active Directory, and more.

What is the list of eligible licenses to access Windows 7/10 with Windows Virtual Desktop?

Generally, Azure Windows 10 VMs supports complete desktop, RemoteApp, and persistent or non-persistent desktops, dedicated or multi-session Windows 10 instances.

  • Microsoft 365 E3/E5
  • Microsoft 365 A3/A5/Student Use Benefits
  • Microsoft 365 F1
  • Microsoft 365 Business
  • Windows 10 Enterprise E3/E5
  • Windows 10 Education A3/A5
  • Windows 10 VDA per user

What if your applications are on Windows 7?

As Windows 7 is getting Extended Security Updates till 2023, there is enough time for upgrading applications from Windows 7 to Windows 10 on Microsoft Azure.

What if you already have Microsoft 365 license?

If you already have Microsoft 365 licenses, you can transfer those licenses to your Azure WVD environment.

How do we get the advantage of using Windows 10 Enterprise multi-session operating system?

You get the advantage of using Windows 10 Enterprise multi-session operation as part of Microsoft WVD entitlement. This can be used only within Azure and is available only through Azure Marketplace. If you attempt to operate it out of Azure, you will receive error message.

What levels of graphic virtualizations are available?

There are different levels of graphics virtualization options available in Windows Virtual Desktop. High-performance graphics virtualization is possible with one or more dedicated GPUs in the Virtual Machine. You can also use RemoteFX, which is a high-density graphics virtualization. Dedicated GPUs are performance-oriented while RemoteFX is density-oriented.

Where can I read more about WVD on Azure?

The official Windows Virtual Desktop FAQ’s together with other resources can be found here.

How does a partner like Veracloud add value to Windows Virtual Desktop?

A Microsoft Partner like Veracloud will help you integrate, deploy and build on the Windows Virtual Desktop capabilities. We also offer ProActive 24/7 support to the end-users and premium services for targeted solutions in the Azure Marketplace. You can pick one of our standard WVD plans, request a quote for your specific requirements, or talk to one of our Microsoft experts now!

Remote Work

Tips for Remote Work

Testing the waters of remote working for the first time – whether it’s due to a challenging day or a worldwide pandemic – can be a daunting prospect. At Veracloud, we understand the challenges all too well – we’ve been an almost entirely remote workforce since our get-go and have learned a lot along the way.

The good news is going remote could make your teams happier and more productive if you get it right. If your team needs to work from home or you’re considering trying it out for your business, here are our top tips for remote work to get you started.

Communicate

Keeping communication open and collaboration going can be one of the biggest challenges of working from home – teams can begin to feel siloed. Luckily, there is Microsoft Teams that make collaborating remotely a lot easier.

Set Expectations

Whether fixed or flexible working hours teams will depend highly on the type of business you run. Your customer service team may need to be available between specific hours, while others might pick up a project any time of day. Some types of work may be possible from home, while others might not. Whatever your expectations communicate them clearly from the start.

Wellbeing

Difficulty unplugging is one of the top struggles of remote workers, so make sure to encourage people to take proper breaks and time away from their desks. Even if working from home means you can be flexible with your time, setting your own hours and sticking to them helps maintain work-life balance and mentally untangle at the end of the day. It would be ideal if you can dedicate some space or a spare room for work. Think how you use devices, ideally having two, so it can serve as a mental cue to separate work and personal time.

Secure your setup

Remote working inevitably brings new security considerations. Every worker needs to remain safe online while working from home, and we at Veracloud can make that happen. Dont let the remote-working rush create a playground for spies and cybercrooks.

Trust

Remember, remote working may take a little time to get used to. There are new ways of working and communicating for everyone to get to grips with. The love of doing good work just doesn’t go away because teams are working from home, values remain regardless of where you work.

Remote working also brings benefits to your business and employees such as increased productivity, happiness and better health – and may even be worth considering long-term.

How can Vercloud help?

We’re a Microsoft MSP and our #1 goal is helping you thrive in the cloud through COVID-19 and beyond through many options such as remote working. After your Windows Virtual Desktop deployment, you’re not alone — our Managed Services team is available around the clock if you need us, so you can stay focused on doing business.

multi-cloud optimisation

Multi-Cloud Optimisation

Organizations are rapidly increasing public cloud adoption, but the promise of agility and elasticity often comes with a lack of insight into what is needed from an application resourcing perspective. This leads to poor performance and higher than budgeted bills. With cloud deployments beyond human scale, intelligent automation is needed to deliver world-class application performance.

Veracloud can help you continuously optimise cloud compute, storage and database resources based on application demand across AWS, Azure and your private cloud. We can eradicate idle and forgotten cloud assets, provide real-time insight of your environment and eliminate cost leaks across your multi-cloud environment.

Read more about our Multi-cloud optimisation solution and let us demonstrate how we help customers accelerate their journey to the cloud and then continuously optimize once they get there.

Why Shift to a Modern Workplace

Productivity and collaboration are of the utmost importance in today’s office environment. No longer are the days where you only sit at your office desk, in front of the same desktop computer, during the same time frame. You are mostly like a person who is working on a variety of different end user devices, from anywhere at any time.

In today’s world having this ‘work wherever you are’ luxury is not enough. Users still need to be connected in real-time to their colleagues but this must be done in a secure and reliable way whilst keeping simplicity at the forefront of the solution. Users expect this from their employer. How is this possible? Leveraging the cloud through Microsoft’s Office 365 makes it easy.

At #Veracloud, we enhance your team’s productivity and collaboration
in a secure and reliable environment. We do this by:

  • Allowing you to securely access your applications and data with almost any device, anywhere, anytime
  • Giving a fulfilled Modern Workplace service where you only pay for the services you actually use
  • Offering non-binding consultation to discuss the possibilities of the Modern Workplace in a personal conversation to explain how the journey takes place
  • Supporting you and your employees with competent and professional staff at an affordable monthly price

For further information, please view our Modern Workplace page or simply contact us for your free consultation. Simply email us at [email protected] and leave the rest to us!

AWS RDS SQL Server to Azure SQL Database

Users can now migrate Amazon RDS for SQL Server to Azure SQL Database Managed Instance with minimal downtime by using generally available functionality in the Azure Database Migration Service. To learn more about how to use Azure Database Migration Service to perform online migrations from Amazon RDS for SQL Server to Azure SQL Database Managed Instance with minimal downtime, read the associated tutorial in the Azure Database Migration Service