Once upon a time, and not so long ago, “desktops” were terminals to mainframes or midrange computers running Unix. Then came the PC and everything changed. That is, until now. Today, Desktop-as-a-Service (DaaS) is making a comeback. And Red Hat is joining this trend with the general availability of Red Hat Enterprise Linux for Workstations (RHEL WS). Amazon Web Servicesannounced on Tuesday.
It’s not the only one. Canonical, the parent company of Ubuntu Linux, now also offers their Ubuntu desktop on AWS. And if you looked closely, Microsoft has the same plan.
Forget Windows on your PC, Microsoft’s plan for the future is to subscribe to you Windows 365 Cloud PC or the Azure Virtual Desktop. Microsoft doesn’t care if you’re running “Windows” on a Windows PC, Mac, or an old-school Linux desktop like Linux Mint.
The same goes for Red Hat. The traditional desktop hasn’t played a major role in Red Hat’s business plans since the move from Red Hat Linux to RHEL in 2004. Today, Red Hat is pleased that you can run RHEL WS on any of the operating systems provided by Amazon BEAUTIFUL DCVthe high-performance AWS Remote Display Protocol client or your favorite web browser.
NICE DCV supports both Windows and Linux remote environments. It is available with native clients for Windows, Linux and macOS. These native clients support up to 4K resolution, multiple monitors and features such as pen/touch support, USB devices, multi-channel audio, smart cards and file redirection. It can also work with any modern web browser, although not as well.
So if you really wanted to run a RHEL WS from say your iPad Pro, you could do that. Regardless of which platform you use, you get a high-end RHEL WS desktop for running performance-hungry workloads like animation rendering or data visualization.
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This is a long way from when I used vi to write on a VT-102 terminal attached to an AT&T 3B2 minicomputer. These AWS RHEL WS instances use GPU-accelerated hardware instances to handle graphics-intensive processes. This is done with powerful Amazon EC2 instances, including Accelerated instances of the G family With Graviton processors.
This is far more powerful than traditional DaaS you may have used in the past, such as B. the Linux-based Chromebooks or the Windows-enabled Critix. Red Hat and AWS can achieve this because of NICE DCV, AWS’ high-end processors, and the growth of high-speed last-mile internet. This service is not for everyone who still uses DSL!
No, this new desktop version of Red Hat is intended for remote workers in animation studios, visual effects companies, and industrial design firms who need workstation-class power for their users at home. This is a work-from-home offering for high-end 21st-century users. On this new platform, you have equal access to the full RHEL software suite and Independent Software Vendor (ISV) applications.
Would you like to try? It is available today through the AWS Marketplace with support for RHEL WS 8.6 NETWORK and Tesla Driver. In both cases you see an average price of 56.4 cents per hour.