Founded in 1967, Sheridan College is one of Ontario’s leading postsecondary institutions, educating approximately 18,000 full-time and 35,000 continuing and part-time studies students every year on its campuses in Brampton, Mississauga, and Oakville.


As its current on-site virtual desktop infrastructure was due for replacement, Sheridan College decided it was time to explore different cloud-hosted VDI (Virtual Desktop Infrastructure) solutions that would better meet its needs and align with its recently initiated cloud-first strategy.

Sheridan College was also looking for a more cost-efficient solution. Its on-premises solution was getting increasingly expensive and updating its current VDI environment would involve high expenses to replace all the hardware and the licenses. In addition to the cost, the ongoing maintenance and patching of its VDI solution were time-consuming for its IT team.

As a long-established partner for educational institutions, Softlanding was recommended by Microsoft to help Sheridan implement Azure Virtual Desktop (AVD).

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Sheridan College opted for Azure Virtual Desktop (AVD) to replace its ageing VDI solution as Microsoft Azure was its primary cloud provider. Softlanding was selected to help with the implementation and while the project went well, it was slightly delayed because of a Teradici layer that had to be deployed. Indeed, Sheridan College had some old endpoints (zero clients) that could only use PCoIP (PC over IP protocol) technology that was not native for an Azure environment. Therefore, the Softlanding team had to coordinate the efforts with Teradici and Nerdio to ensure a smooth and successful implementation. Letting Softlanding handle this technical challenge made the project easier for the Sheridan team.

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  • Timesaving

With AVD, there is no need to do any server or hardware maintenance, and patching to the VDI infrastructure is no longer required which results in fewer IT resources to maintain the environment and, therefore more time for the team to dedicate to other tasks.

  • Scalability

Sheridan’s former VDI environment was ‘fixed’ as there was a limitation to the number of resources they could host. With AVD, Sheridan College can scale up or down depending on its needs.

  • Greater efficiency

With AVD, Sheridan College can also provide application pools. In its old environment, Sheridan could only supply virtual machines with software that the students would connect to. With the new AVD environment, it doesn’t need to supply a whole virtual machine to a student, it can just supply the application that is needed which results in saving resources and provide a better student experience.


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