Page 2 of 2
Roaming Rights also cannot be used on corporate networks, only public ones, such as those found in coffee shops and airports. Pica Communications' DeGroot advises his customers not to use Roaming Rights because he believes these restrictions create IT security risks.
"[Roaming Rights] can be exercised only on untrusted devices over unsecure networks," DeGroot told CRN. "This keeps most IT admins awake at night, so they stop it cold whenever and wherever they can."
The Windows RT VDA license does away with these restrictions, covering personal and company-owned devices in VDI scenarios, as well as usage on public and private networks. Although the CDL stands to increase costs for users of non-Windows tablets, DeGroot describes Microsoft's four-device licensing allotment as "generous."
For customers who do not have SA, the CDL may be a cheaper VDI option than Microsoft's Virtual Desktop Access license (VDA), which costs $100 per device annually, he added.
Microsoft's loosening of Roaming Rights for VDI, DeGroot said, is part of the software giant's well-established pattern of holding onto restrictive rules in order to slow competitors until its own technology is ready for prime time.
For example, before Microsoft added Live Migration to Hyper-V, it placed a 90-day restriction on moving licenses from one device to another. That crippled VMware, which had VMotion, but not Microsoft, which lacked the feature at the time, he said.
"In effect, they froze VMware until they were ready to compete," DeGroot said.
Likewise, now that Microsoft is ready to jump into the tablet market with Windows 8, it is relaxing its previously strict Roaming Rights terms.
"The SA Roaming Right rules never hurt Microsoft much, because it didn't sell a competitive tablet with an embedded OS," DeGroot said. "But when it does -- when Windows RT devices hit the street -- the SA Roaming Right restrictions suddenly disappear, and remote access to VDI from company-owned or personally owned devices over company networks is OK."