In the Fall 2016, Student Computer Labs transitioned to a Virtual Desktop Infrastructure or VDI, which means that most of our computers, nearly 90%, do not have an operating system natively installed on their local hard drive.  Instead, these computers are pulling down a desktop running on a server located across campus, essentially a streaming video of a computer.

A list of available software can be found at the following link

When using Microsoft 365 applications on Student Lab computers and the Horizon VMWare, you will need to ensure you sign in to OneDrive appropriately in order to retain your work and get full access to the licensed Microsoft 365 products. Information on signing in can be found at

The Benefits

  • Near instant software delivery
    • Every student computer is a clone of a master computer, allowing us to update a single machine.  Once that occurs, a short update will bring every other computer to the most recent update, allowing us to install new software overnight.  In some cases, it can be pushed out mid-day, even mid-class, allowing for greater access to the tools students and professors need.
  • Security
    • Since the desktops are not installed anywhere, they can be deleted and remade rapidly.  Viruses are no longer major threats to a machine as it can simply be deleted.  User information is not stored locally on a hard drive, allowing it to be behind the safety of a protected server.
  • One-size-fits-all
    • It has long been the mission of Student Computer Labs to offer the same experience in all of our labs, regardless of a student's major.  With VDI we can take that one step further, as the hardware no longer matters.  The endpoint can be as simple as a phone and offer the full power of our desktops, as all of the computing power is on the server.


Our Goal

It is Student Computer Labs' goal to use VDI to provide a better lab experience for our users.  The logins are faster, the software is more readily available and easier to update, and the labs are more accessible.  We understand that this is a change from normal computer use and we are working very hard to make your experience as productive and simple as possible.

If you have any questions about VDI, or are concerned with some aspect of its performance, please let us know.  We want to do everything we can to make you succeed using this software and are dedicated to constantly improving the service we can offer.  Thank you for your help.