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Windows To Go: Microsoft Report

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To find more information about this report go to: http://www.govloop.com/group/productivity/forum/topics/microsoft-8-the-power-of-windows-to-go

To find more information about this report go to: http://www.govloop.com/group/productivity/forum/topics/microsoft-8-the-power-of-windows-to-go


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  • 1. D e velopingN ew andAff or d abl eOppor tuniti es for the Mobile Workforce in a Secure Environment
  • 2. Windows Go to 2 or IT profession- chitecture to the user interface reviewing Windows To Go, NSA als, there is an has been transformed. This re- states: opportunity for port highlights one of the latest government IT to features of Windows 8, Windows “Microsoft’s recommended us- be instrumental in To Go. Windows To Go allows age of Windows To Go focusescreating a modern, agile, and ef- the Windows 8 environment to on providing a managed Win-ficient government agency. How- be carried on an encrypted USB dows environment while allow-ever, IT professionals have great key, which can be plugged into ing users to roam to differentresponsibility to support agency- any PC to access information on machines either in the workplacewide success and meet federally their PC desktop. or at home. This includes scenar-mandated initiatives. With the ios such as managed free seating,launch of Windows 8, govern- This report highlights how temporary or contracted work-ment agencies are even better Windows To Go helps facilitate force, and working from home.positioned to be more agile, mo- agency continuity of operations A preconfigured and managedbile and secure, with a platform initiatives, opens new opportuni- Windows To Go device with areimagined for today’s govern- ties for government agencies and Virtual Private Network (VPN)ment needs. retains security in a mobile en- solution, such as DirectAccess, vironment to accommodate an can provide a trusted environ-Advancements in technology increasingly mobile workforce. ment for remote access into anprovide opportunities for gov- enterprise network.ernment agencies to modernize, With this feature available, em-become more agile and efficient. ployees can easily access and Travel amongst sites often re-These elements are essential to share information on the go, and quires a user to travel with a lap-meet organizational demand, es- not be confined to a single desk top or mobile device. Windowspecially as agencies operate with or location to access their desk- To Go could be used as a solu-leaner budgets. top, and without compromising tion allowing employees to travel security. There are many practi- lighter while still having access toIn the latest version of Windows cal implications of Windows To their desktop and managed net-everything from the system ar- Go. In a recent report from NSA work environment.”
  • 3. Facilitati n g Co n ti n u it y of O p e r at ion s With the explosion of technological capabilities in partnership with BYOD initiatives and telework and broader consumer adoption, there is an in- programs.3 creasing reliance on technology to deliver core services to citizens by government. Therefore, Considering that many government computers continuity of operations (COOP) has become in- have different versions of Windows, hardware creasingly important for the federal government. specifications and software, it is remarkable that The Federal Continuity Directive 1 (FCD 1) pro- Windows To Go can run in a variety of different vides direction to the federal executive branch on computing environments. Microsoft continues to how to best create and develop a continuity plan explain what kinds of devices can deploy Windows and program. A continuity plan is critical, as it al- To Go, stating, “Enterprise customers utilizing Vol- lows government to continue to operate during ume Activation Windows licensing will be able to emergencies that may disrupt normal work activi- deploy USB drives provisioned with Windows To ties. Windows To Go is one piece of technology Go workspace.” Microsoft states that a host com- that can help transform how governments operate puter for the Windows To Go environment does during a crisis. not require specific software. Microsoft continues to acknowledge that PCs certified for Windows 7 COOP initiatives have become increasingly impor- or Windows 8 can host Windows To Go. Microsoft tant for government agencies. In todays world, hav- provides some further details on what conditions ing the ability for employees to access their desk- a host computer must meet to use Windows To tops on any PC is essential. For many government Go: agencies, it is now imperative that employees find a way to securely access information and resources Computer is USB boot capable during a crisis. Windows To Go can help facilitate Computer is USB boot enabled in the firm- an effective COOP program. ware Meet Windows 8 minimum system require- Microsoft provides a great overview of Windows ments To Go, and the relationship to assisting in devel- Have compatible processor architectures (for oping COOP programs is clear. Microsoft states, example, x86 or AMD64) as the image used “Windows To Go is an enterprise feature of Win- to create the Windows To Go workspace. dows 8 that enables users to boot Windows from ARM is not a supported processor for Win- a USB-connected external drive. Windows To Go dows To Go. drives can use the same image that enterprises use Have firmware architecture that is compatible for their desktops and laptops, and can be man- with the architecture of the image used for aged the same way. Offering a new mobility op- the Windows To Go workspace. tion, a Windows To Go workspace is not intended to replace desktops or laptops, or supplant other There are many scenarios in which Windows To mobility offerings.” The end goal of Windows To Go can be used; Microsoft provides an overview Go is that it will allow government agencies anoth- of some of these scenarios.The first way is through er option for growing mobility trends, and work COOP. Microsoft states:
  • 4. In this scenario, selected employees receive a USB drive with a WindowsTo Go workspace, which includes all of the applications that the employeesuse at work. The employees can keep the device at home, in a briefcase, orwherever they want to store it until needed.When the users boot their homecomputer from the USB drive, it will create a corporate desktop experience 4so that they can quickly start working. On the very first boot, the employeesees that Windows is installing devices; after that one time, the Windows ToGo drive boots like a normal computer. If they have enterprise network ac-cess, employees can use a virtual private network (VPN) connection or Di-rectAccess to access corporate resources. If the enterprise network is avail-able, the Windows To Go workspace will automatically be updated using yourstandard client management processes.Microsoft continues to provide other examples as to how Windows ToGo can open up new opportunities for agencies. Microsoft states thatWindows To Go can also assist with contractors and temporary workersaccessing information. Microsoft states, “In this situation, an enterpriseIT pro or manager would distribute the Windows To Go drive directlyto the worker where they can be assisted with any necessary additionaluser education needs or address any possible compatibility issues.” Thiswould certainly be extremely helpful for workers and contractors who are highly mobile, and often onthe move. Microsoft continues, “While the worker is on assignment, they can boot their computer ex-clusively from the Windows To Go drive and run all applications in that environment until the end of theassignment when the device is returned. No installation of software is required on the worker’s personalcomputer.”Opening N ew Oppor t u nit ie sIncreasingly, government employees desire flex- tal Government Strategy released by the Whiteible work styles and access to information to House, agencies are now tasked to move citizen-work on the device and place of their choosing. facing services to a mobile environment. Susie Ad-The Windows 8 environment goes well beyond ams, Chief Technology Officer at Microsoft, recent-COOP initiatives and aligns with many elements ly spoke with Chris Dorobek of GovLoop, Susieof the Digital Government Strategy. With the Digi- comments that Windows 8 can help agencies fully
  • 5. align with the Digital Government Strategy. Susie on employee need. With Windows To Go, agencies states, “The Digital Government Strategy pushes will already have a built in technology infrastruc- for agencies to look at bring your own device and ture that provides remote work in a secure en- mobility. The directive calls for federal employees vironment, and will not have to worry about the to have access to the data they need anywhere, associated costs of wireless and data. Likewise, to anytime on any device.” support mobile work initiatives, like BYOD, agen-5 cies must provide security and IT support for a Additionally, Windows To Go may be an afford- variety of devices and operating systems. With able solution for many agencies to consider while Windows To Go, an employee can seamlessly con- adopting a mobile strategy, especially as opposed nect to their desktop from a variety of different to ongoing BYOD efforts. Although BYOD cer- work scenarios, all on the same operating system tainly can provide improved productivity to allow and accessed securely. Windows To Go sticks can employees to work on the device of their choice, be purchased at a low rate, and avoid some of the BYOD does have hidden costs. challenges and hidden costs we have seen with BYOD. One of the hidden costs relates to the pricing structure of wireless plans. To avoid shifting data Another instance that Microsoft identifies is tele- and wireless plans to employees, agencies are be- work, stating, “The Windows To Go drive can be ginning to offer reimbursements for data and wire- provisioned for employees using various methods less. For agencies, this reimbursement rate can po- including System Center Configuration Manager tentially be higher than if the agency were to buy or other deployment tools and then distributed devices in bulk and optimize service plans based to employees. The employee is instructed to boot “Windows To Go could be used as a solution allowing employees to travel lighter while still hav- ing access to their desktop and managed network environment.” National Security Agency “The Digital Government Strategy pushes for agen- “In this situation, you have employees who are cies to look at bring your own device and mobility. moving from site to site, but who always have ac- The directive calls for federal employees to have cess to a compatible host computer on site. Using access to the data they need anywhere, anytime Windows To Go workspaces allows them to travel on any device.” without the need to pack their PC.” Susie Adams Microsoft Chief Technology Officer, Microsoft
  • 6. the Windows To Go drive initially at work, whichcaches the employee’s credentials on the Win- A final example is that with Windows To Go, gov-dows To Go workspace and allows the initial data ernment employees can travel lightly. Microsoftsynchronization between the enterprise network states, “In this situation you have employees whoand the Windows To Go workspace. The user can are moving from site to site, but who always havethen bring the Windows To Go drive home whereit can be used with their home computer, with or access to a compatible host computer on site. Us- ing Windows To Go workspaces allows them to 6without enterprise network connectivity.” travel without the need to pack their PC.”I mp ro ve d S ecu ri ty F e at u r e sYet, with all these great innovations from Win- BitLocker with your Windows To Go drives todows To Go, the core concern for any government protect the drive from being compromised if theagency is security. Retaining security in a mobile drive is lost or stolen. When BitLocker is enabled,environment is a necessity to meeting organiza- the user must provide a password to unlock thetional demands. With increased collaboration and drive and boot the Windows To Go workspace,providing mobile and multiple channels to access this helps prevent unauthorized users from boot-information, agencies are faced with increased ing the drive and using it to gain access to yourrisks of government data being compromised. network resources and confidential data.”Microsoft has made significant security updates Microsoft continues, “You can enable BitLockerto protect information, and ensure that security while using the Windows To Go creator wizard asis number one for government employees. This is part of the drive provisioning process before firstespecially true with Windows To Go, Susie Adams use; or it can be enabled afterward by the userof Microsoft states; “Windows To Go is protected from within the Windows To Go workspace.”and encrypted with BitLocker, so you can plug intoany device that could run Windows 7, and then Another key feature about Windows To Go is thatyour Windows 8 desktop is there for you to ac- no information can be transferred between com-cess.” puters. Susie states, “Windows To Go runs in your own sandbox, and no information can move be-Microsoft continues to provide insights to im- tween devices, so when you shutdown and unplug,proved security features throughthe use of Bit- you have your desktop in your pocket.”Locker, stating, “We recommend that you use
  • 7. The Way F o rw a rd Across all areas of government, services rely on technology, such as Windows To Go, there is much dependable and efficient technology. In todays digi- reason for optimism that technology can enable7 tal world, it is essential for government to have agencies to tackle their most complex challenges. reliable systems for improved governance. At the In many ways, government technology is at the core speed at which technology moves and with height- of enabling agencies to meet their agency wide ened citizen expectations of government, agencies objectives. As technology like Windows 8 contin- need to be become more flexible and agile in tech- ues to evolve, it is critical that agencies adopt and nology adoption. modernize technology to meet the growing needs of the agency. There is no doubt that the current government landscape is complex, and contains significant chal- lenges for improved services, cost reductions and modernized infrastructure. Yet, with emerging Fo r m o re i n fo rma ti on on M i c r os of t W in d ows 8 , p le ase see the f ol low in g r e s ou r c e s : 1. Overview: Windows To Go 2. Windows To Go: Frequently Asked Questions 3. Windows To Go: Prepare Your Organization 4. Windows To Go: Deployment Considerations 5. Windows To Go: Security and Data Protection Considerations 6. Windows To Go: Best Practice Recommendations 7. Configuring Windows To Go as a Mobile Desktop Solution Windows To Go Step by Step 8. How to Create a Windows To Go USB Drive 9. Ask the Performance Team Blog. Windows 8 / Windows Server 2012: Windows To Go 10. Security and Data Protection Considerations for Windows To Go 11. How to Securely Configure Microsoft Windows Vista BitLocker GovLoop Resources 1. Microsoft Productivity for Government 2. Windows 8 Apps 3. Most Anticipated Features of Windows 8
  • 8. About MicrosoftEvery day at Microsoft we are motivated and inspired by how our customers use our software to findcreative solutions to business problems, develop breakthrough ideas, and stay connected to what’s mostimportant to them. Check out the Microsoft Productivity for Government group on GovLoop as well as 8the Technology Sub-Community of which we are a council member.About GovLoopGovLoop’s mission is to “connect government to improve government.” We aim to inspire public sectorprofessionals by serving as the knowledge network for government. GovLoop connects more than 60,000members, fostering cross-government collaboration, solving common problems and advancing governmentcareers. GovLoop is headquartered in Washington D.C with a team of dedicated professionals who share acommitment to connect and improve government.For more information about report, please reach out to Pat Fiorenza, GovLoop Research Analyst, at pat@govloop.com.GovLoop
734 15th St NW, Suite 500Washington, DC 20005Phone: (202) 407-7421Fax: (202) 407-7501