If you’re new to the world of VPNs and VDIs, things can look quite similar to you.
But, since the market for VPN usage is expected to expand by 16% between 2020 and 2027, it’s time to have a thorough understanding of what VPN vs VDI is all about. After all, if you don’t, you won’t be able to pick the right system for your business.
Yet, if this is the first time you hear about VPNs and VDIs, and you’re wondering which one would be better for remote workers, don’t worry. You’ve come to the right place. Keep on reading to learn all about the differences between a VPN and VDI. We’ll also into the benefits and drawbacks of each service.
What Is a VPN?
Before we delve through the nuances of what makes VPNs and VDIs different from one another, let’s make sure that you have a solid understanding of each service on its own.
In the simplest of terms, a VPN refers to Virtual Private Network. It is used to establish a secure connection between a device and another network. It’s also frequently used to provide workers secure remote access from various devices, such as PCs or laptops.
Because users are accessing a private network that may include sensitive information, it is critical to guarantee that data is safely sent from one network to another.
Since many risks are associated with doing so via the internet, establishing a “tunnel” guarantees that business assets do not fall into the wrong hands. A VPN creates a link between two networks by encrypting all communication and disguising IP addresses.
Administrators set up the shared resources and define the VPN access rules. As a result, users can only access resources inside the specified system from afar. They may save the data on their PCs and work on it when they are not connected to the internet.
However, to get the best results out of your VPN usage, you’ll want to pick one of the best VPN providers on the market.
What Is a VDI?
On the other hand, we have VDI.
The term “virtual desktop infrastructure” refers to a system where hosted desktop environments are virtualized and distributed to users via the internet. Multiple virtual machines are hosted on a single dedicated server in a data center (or office). Each VM hosts a desktop environment and offers workstations that you may access remotely.
This virtual network computing solution ensures excellent performance by providing dedicated workstations and resources. Any remote device may connect to a user’s virtual desktop. VDI does not depend on end-user hardware and is device neutral.
Administrators handle OS upgrades and settings in VDI through a centralized management system. The golden picture makes it easy to deploy new software and maintain computers. Within a cluster, this golden picture is duplicated across many PCs.
VPN vs VDI: Elements of Difference
Now, you’re ready to compare and contrast the two services and see what makes them tick.
We’ll explore the difference between both services in terms of their hardware, performance, security and data storage, costs, and even maintenance.
Because all processing takes place on client devices, VPN is heavily reliant on user hardware. Performance and productivity may be harmed by obsolete hardware and operating systems.
VDI, on the other hand, has minimum hardware requirements and does not rely on end-user devices for the entire experience. The virtual desktop’s processing is done on the server, with dedicated resources allocated to the virtual machine that runs it. Thin clients, which are inexpensive or old machines, are often used for VDI.
VPN, without a doubt, loses the race in terms of performance for bigger workloads. Because virtual private networks depend on end-user devices, their resources and connection speeds are constrained.
Consequently, depending on their gear and connection quality, different users may experience varying levels of performance. For instance, if you’re used to encrypting and decrypting giant quantities of data, then this may also slow down the entire process.
Because each user has allotted resources for their workstation, VDI offers a quicker environment with a better user design. Rather than relying on the user’s devices, VDI uses dedicated server resources to boost flexibility and speed.
The Security and Data Storage
The way VPN and VDI handle data is vastly different. While data is in transit, VPN encrypts it and sends it through an encrypted tunnel. While the traveling data reaches the user securely, it has no security restrictions after it reaches the client’s computer.
It is unrestrictedly transferable and copyable to the client’s devices. Copying business files on a home drive may put you at risk of a data breach.
The Cost and Price Points
Because the costs of VPN and VDI are so different, the cost may be a major consideration. VPN is the way to go if you’re looking for a cost-effective option. VPN is the most cost-effective solution because of its low hardware needs and cheap maintenance costs. It makes use of the gadgets of the users and may cover numerous devices with a single account.
VDI, in contrast to VPN, is a more costly remote work option. It costs a lot of money to add a layer of software for running the VDI system. As well as the dedicated resources and server hardware for each workstation.
Management and Maintenance
The VPN server is simpler and less costly to operate when it comes to VPN administration. On the other hand, the client devices are more difficult to manage since they rely on off-site resources. For troubleshooting or upgrades, you’ll need to connect to the device.
Unlike VPNs, administrators can quickly update and repair problems on a virtual desktop infrastructure since it is managed centrally. Admins may update numerous devices at once and maintain tight control over the system with centralized access.
VPN or VDI for Your Business?
We know that the technical terms can be overwhelming for those who are new to network technology.
However, we hope that our explainer has shed enough light on the battle of VPN vs VDI and helped you make the right decision for your business’ network infrastructure.
And, if you enjoyed this article, you can check out our additional tips and strategies. All of those will be available to you in our technology section.