The idea behind this service is that companies can outsource the provision and management of a Windows desktop environment for their workers, complete with applications, to ThinkGrid. It could prove especially useful for smaller companies that do not have a dedicated IT staff.
I tried the service using a sample account provided by ThinkGrid, and found it pretty much like using a thin client session, except you have your own desktop that can be customised (within limits) to appear how you want it.
Access is via a login from ThinkGrid's web site, which requires you to enter a username and password. All being well, you gain entry to a full-screen session on your own virtual PC running in ThinkGrid's datacentre.
The virtual desktop looks and feels exactly as if it was running on the computer in front of you. I perceived no lag in either mouse movements or keystrokes when accessing the desktop, but for this hands-on I was using the corporate network in our central London office.
Each user has their own 5GB of disk space with their remote desktop, and it automatically maps to the local drives on the computer you are using so you can easily transfer files if necessary.
ThinkGrid costs £49 per user per month, or £490 for an annual contract. Applications are an extra charge, with Microsoft Office Pro costing £17 per user per month.
A full review of the ThinkGrid service will be posted to our web site at a later date.
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