Virtual Desktop

MSU Virtual Desktop

The MSU Virtual Desktop service gives authorized students, faculty, and staff access to licensed university software and applications through an online portal at desktop.msu.edu. The service supports all devices including Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS, and Android.

Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) technology delivers a desktop image (icons, folders, toolbars, software, etc.) to an authenticated user remotely over a network. This approach allows people to interact with their desktop as if the applications and data were stored locally on their device.

Benefits & use cases

The MSU Virtual Desktop service can provide instructors and students with access to virtual labs on their own devices without needing to purchase and maintain software or applications themselves.

Once MSU Virtual Desktop is set up for an instructor to use with a course, then students would log into desktop.msu.edu with their NetID and password to access course-related software and applications.

This service can be beneficial for online courses or courses that require specialized and often expensive software programs. It also enables students to do coursework from anywhere without needing to go to a campus computer lab or purchase an individual software license.

Classes such as STATA can benefit from using the MSU Virtual Desktop service because it provides the ability for students to access the software in class and work on the data together.

Flexible configuration

Setup and access to MSU Virtual Desktop for colleges, departments, and specific courses is supported, hosted, and maintained by MSU IT. This creates a fully customizable service based on specific needs. Files can be stored on personal devices or in a shared drive/directory based on an instructor’s preference.

In addition, virtual access to software and applications allows colleges and departments to take advantage of existing enterprise licenses or reduce the cost and number of concurrent licenses needed.

Software and applications are provisioned on-demand through MSU Virtual Desktop so are easily changed as needed. The service also allows MSU IT to perform updates and patches to the software and applications without any disruption.