Leaked details shed light on Microsoft's rumored 'Cloud PC' service

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What you need to know

  • Details recently leaked surrounding Microsoft's rumored "Cloud PC" service.
  • The service will allow people to use PCs to access remote Windows desktops.
  • A job listing spotted earlier this year shed more light on the Cloud PC rumors.

Earlier this year, a job listing sparked interest in a rumored "Cloud PC" service from Microsoft. The service will allow people to run a cloud-based Windows experience that they can connect to through their PC. Today, more details emerged about the service, thanks to a leak from well-known leaker WalkingCat.

The leak shows off screenshots of a couple of pages from the service. The first screenshot reads, "Welcome to CMD IWP ... Access your work apps and programs online, from any device."

A second screenshot states, "Choose your device to download Microsoft Remote Desktop" and includes icons for Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android.

ZDNet reports that the Cloud PC service will be built on Azure on top of Windows Virtual Desktop. A job listing spotted by ZDNet's Mary Jo Foley earlier this year described the service as a "modern, elastic, cloud-based Windows experience [that] will allow organizations to stay current in a more simplistic and scalable manner."

Microsoft has not officially commented on Cloud PC, but WalkingCat discovered webpages that appear to be connected to it, including cloudpc.microsoft.com (opens in new tab) and deschutes.microsoft.com (opens in new tab). WalkingCat also states that there will be three different tiers for the service; Medium, Heavy, and Advanced.

The Medium tier has two virtual CPUs, 4GB of RAM, and 96GB of SSD storage. The Heavy tier comes with two virtual CPUs, 8GB of RAM, and 96GB of SSD storage. The advanced tier has three virtual CPUs, 8GB of RAM, and 40GB of SSD storage.

We'll have to wait to see if Microsfot will share any details about Cloud PC.

Sean Endicott
News Writer and apps editor

Sean Endicott brings nearly a decade of experience covering Microsoft and Windows news to Windows Central. He joined our team in 2017 as an app reviewer and now heads up our day-to-day news coverage. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at sean.endicott@futurenet.com (opens in new tab).

  • So it's this like a native version of Citrix? Knowing MS there's probably more to the story. Anyway, interested to see how this goes.
  • Yeah it's gonna be especially relevant for Enterprise at first so they can finally deploy thin clients including Windows on ARM and still get good performance.
    Later on for consumers when 5G takes off and internet is more reliable.
  • It is notable the service level starts at "Medium".
    Leaves room for lighter workloads (say for K-12) and for consumer service for mobile users on non-Windows tablets and phones. One advantage of the service for Organizations is the ability to use deployed hardware well past the expected obsolescence point or use dirt cheap hardware, such as Wintabs and StickPCs.
  • Citrix performance on an ultrabook is pretty awesome (that is, with good Wi-Fi or Ethernet at home). Often it's hard to tell you're in a remote virtual machine. And the Windows Store seems to have an ARM version already.
  • I wish I can say the same about Microsoft's own Remote Desktop client(s) -- the old one doesn't do screen scaling well and every time I switch out of the new one, I come back to the bright orange frame and have to wait up to 10 seconds to reconnect. This is on the 1Gb wired network with the client being yesteryear Core i7 with 16GB of onboard RAM. And, before you ask, all of this was duly reported to Microsoft through Insider program. And don't even get me started on the Microsoft Remote Desktop over high-latency semi-stable connection -- at some point in my life I've spent quite a bit of time on the long distance trains and came to the conclusion that carrying around 3.5 kg laptop is much preferable to RDC over LTE.
  • Advanced has the least SSD storage?
  • I was wondering about that too. Perhaps a typo. Or perhaps MS expects Advanced Tier users will use some other storage system and don't need as much onboard the VM.