Remote Desktop vs. VPN

Remote Desktop vs. VPN, Which is better for my Business?

Since the COVID 19 pandemic began, remote work has become established as a useful option for many businesses. Two common ways that employees can work efficiently from home are using a VPN (virtual private network) or RDP (remote desktop). When making the decision to utilize either of these, it is important that you understand the key differences between the two. Remote desktop and virtual private networks are two very common applications that are also used for remote support. Third party vendors often use them to access customer networks and whether you are looking for remote support, remote desktop or a VPN, they both have similarities in usefulness, efficiency, and security. Read on to learn more about remote desktop vs. VPN.

Note: Remote desktop is also known as VDI or virtual desktop infrastructure.

What is remote desktop or RDP?

A remote desktop is a part of the software in the operating system of your computer that allows you to access it from another device. This is done by creating a connection between you and a remote computer. With remote desktop, the computer projects its screen to you and allows you to control all of it. It is especially useful for businesses that have to work on clients’ computers that are potentially thousands of miles away.

What are the benefits of using an RDP or remote desktop?

Remote desktop or RDP provides several advantages to businesses such as increased productivity, efficiency, reduced travel costs, and quicker problem resolution. The most beneficial thing about using remote desktop is that there is only one machine to manage for multiple users who need to work remotely. 

Since the beginning of COVID 19, the workforce has shifted to a remote and hybrid working environment and RDP has dramatically increased in usage. Remote desktop can also be used on mobile devices and on any Windows based application.

What is a VPN?

A VPN or virtual private network connects to a VPN server which connects users to the internet and implements security measures. A VPN will hide your IP address by letting the network redirect it through a specifically configured server that is run by the VPNs host. 

Your internet service provider and other third parties will not be able to see which website you visit or the data that you send and receive. A VPN is like a filter that turns all of your data you send into gibberish. Even if someone managed to get their hands on your data, it would be useless to them.

Remote Desktop vs. VPN

What are the benefits of using a VPN?

The most appealing thing about using a VPN is the encryption that it gives you. To look at any of the data that you have under the VPN, the user must have an encryption key. Even in the event of a brute force attack, your online information is hidden, even on public networks. VPNs are also great for disguising your whereabouts. They act as a proxy because the demographic location data comes from a server in a different location and that means your actual location cannot be determined.

Is a VPN the same as a remote desktop?

The short answer is no but they do serve similar functions. A VPN lets you access a secure network and a remote desktop allows you to remotely access a specific computer. Both will have the function to encrypt your traffic in one way and both will grant users access to a server or device that can be thousands of miles away. Both are very valuable to those who work hybrid or remote.

Remote Desktop vs. VPN

Remote Desktop vs VPN for Remote Access

RDPs and VPNs serve very similar functions for remote access, but VPNs allow users to access fully secure networks whereas the RDP grants remote access to a specific computer. When deciding on remote desktop vs VPN for remote work, you have to consider what you ultimately need. If you want complete control of a computer from a remote location, a VPN will not allow you to do so.

If you do not feel like sharing all the folders and files you may need to access in the field, then a remote desktop is the way to go. Remote desktops give you full access to your device wherever you are and in terms of flexibility, RDP is the way to go but if you are more concerned about security, then a VPN might be better for you.

Learn more about Tekscape’s own Tekcloud Workspace

Our TekCloud Workspace provides your team with remote desktop access anytime, anywhere. Regardless of your cloud deployment (Private or Hybrid) allows you to automate your workloads and process faster. Boost company agility and streamline operations while decreasing risks. 

Cloud technology helps cut annual IT operating costs and allows for reallocating resources toward more innovation. With cloud technology, your company’s playing field is now higher.

Learn about the benefits that come with implementing a VDI solution.

• Boost Productivity – Learn about the benefits that come with implementing a VDI solution.
• Lower IT Costs – Save overall costs when having your VDI managed for easy deployment.
• Enable Users Everywhere – Adapt to the changing needs of an increasingly flexible workplace.
• Secure Sensitive Data – Protect private company and user information from any location.

Tekscape is committed to providing proactive, responsive, and timely managed IT services support for our clients. We start with our comprehensive new client onboarding process designed to get your business up-and-running on our monitoring and management tools with as little disruption as possible. For over 15 years, we’ve successfully onboarded simple and complex IT infrastructure supporting multiple users including:

• Servers and Systems
• Networking
Collaboration (Phone, Video)
• Desktop, Email and Endpoints
Microsoft Office 365 & Azure
Security & Disaster Recovery

As your trusted partner, Tekscape becomes your go-to-guide for technology best practices aligned with your industry and your unique business goals. Our technology solutions can help reduce operational costs, eliminate downtime and decrease overall IT spend. Please feel free to leave a comment or question on remote desktop vs. VPN.