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Back to the future: Microsoft moves to push Windows 10 users to the cloud


As the months and years go by, Microsoft keeps steadily moving away from its old model of PC operating systems, which started with buying Seattle Computing Products’ 86-DOS, aka Quick and Dirty DOS in July 1981 and renaming it MS-DOS 1.10, toward  Desktop-as-a-Service (DaaS).

If your home office doesn’t have a fast Internet connection yet, get one. You’re going to need it. 

Even after writing about the PC-to-DaaS transition for what seems like ages now, I’m still not sure how much people really get what a fundamental change this represents. Back in the ‘80s, compute power lay on mainframes and Unix-powered mini-computers. PCs were a revolution. But in the 2020s, we’re going back to a model where all the real computing happens on the cloud, and your device — even if it’s a $1,399 top-of-the-line iPhone 12 Pro Max — is just a glorified VT-102 dumb terminal.

The Microsoft DaaS programs, along with their Citrix Systems cousins, have been here for decades. But the new Azure-based model,  Microsoft Cloud PC, is a strategic, new offering built on top of Windows Virtual Desktop to deliver Windows 10 DaaS for everyone.

Of course, it’s easy to declare, “We’re all going to move to a desktop paradigm this summer.” It’s a heck of a lot harder, as anyone who’s ever done a desktop migration knows, to actually do it.



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