Virtual desktops and SSO: how they complement each other

Virtual desktops have become extremely useful in many different industries. They allow for many users to login and work from a single computer. This is quite common in hospital settings, where doctors are moving from room to room and need to work from different computers in different locations. Though virtual desktops can be beneficial, if used alone, they can produce many issues and limitations. For example, in an industry where employees move to different desktops frequently, logging in to the workstation all applications each time they switch computers is a major inconvenience, not to mention time consuming. This is why many organizations have realized that the benefits of a virtual desktop can be made even greater if used in conjunction with a Single Sign-On solution. Why is this?

Easy Movement: In the healthcare industry especially, clinicians need quick access to their computers. While a virtual desktop allows them to easily move around to different rooms. An SSO solution allows the end user to provide their credentials a single time and automatically be authenticated each time a program is launched. So, when an employee moves to another workstation, they simply need to enter their single set of credentials and have access to everything they need to perform their jobs.

Increased Productivity: Another reason that organizations have implemented SSO with virtual desktops is because they have seen an increase in productivity. End users are able to quickly access what they need and complete their work, without needing to repeatedly log in to each system and application. The login process becomes even more of a hassle when a user forgets their password to one of their applications and is locked out of their account. SSO makes it much easier for end users to remember their credentials since they only are required to know one set instead of several sets of complicated user names and passwords. This alone can saves users a tremendous amount of time each day. Several vendors also offer an open session on a virtual desktop to be easily moved to another workstation. If the user needs to change locations, he has the ability to have the session “follow”’ to another workplace easily without needing to even open all of these applications again.

Security: Lastly SSO can actually make a virtual desktop more secure. SSO can be paired with two factor authentication to add an additional layer of security. Two factor authentication requires users to enter a PIN as well as present their access badge in order to access the computer. This ensures that the user is who they claim to be.

Learn more about Single Sign On and how it can work with a virtual desktop.