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Step By Step Guide On How To Deploy Windows 10 In The Cloud On Amazon AWS

Nowadays many organizations around the world have employees who work from home, on the go or spread across multiple office locations. The challenge that IT faces is creating a stable and easy to access environment that allows users to reliably access important applications and data. A solution that many organizations have since adopted is the concept of virtual desktops. Virtual desktops can be deployed in the cloud thereby ensuring maximum reliability and availability for end users. With virtual desktops, it is possible to install desktop applications and services in the same way that you would on a physical desktop PC and access the virtual desktop from any device (Windows, Mac, iOS, Android or any other device with an HTML5 web client) . Windows 10 is a good operating system that can be used to setup a virtual desktop environment. Read this step by step guide to learn how to deploy a Windows 10 virtual desktop in the cloud on Amazon AWS. You will also learn how to enable and connect to the Windows 10 virtual desktop using the remote desktop protocol (RDP).

Requirements.

In order to complete this tutorial successfully the following items are required. Please ensure to have these items available before taking implementation action on this tutorial:
1) A windows 10 disk image file (ISO) or physical Windows 10 DVD.
2) A type 1 or type 2 hypervisor capable of exporting a virtual machine into an OVA file. (e.g VMware ESXi, Workstation, Fusion, CITRIX, Hyper-V, Azure)
3) An AWS free tier account.
4) An AWS IAM user account.

Overview.

1) Go to the Microsoft website and download the Windows 10 disk image file (ISO)
2) Create a new Windows 10 virtual machine using a type 1 or type 2 hypervisor such as VMware ESXi, Workstation, Citrix or Hyper-V
3) Export the Windows 10 virtual machine to an OVA file and upload it to an Amazon AWS S3 bucket
4) Using the AWS command line interface, create a new AWS EC2 instance using the OVA file saved in the S3 bucket
5) Power on the Windows 10 EC2 instance , activate Windows using a license key and check for windows updates.

Step 1: Download Windows 10 Or Purchase An Windows 10 Disk.

1) Click HERE to go to the official Windows 10 disk image file (ISO). On the SELECT EDITION option choose WINDOWS 10 and click on CONFIRM.

You will be asked to choose a product language, choose a language that you would like and click on CONFIRM.

A 32bit and a 64bit download button will be displayed. We recommend that you click on the 64bit download button. Please note that the ISO file is about 6GB in size.

2) An alternative to downloading Windows 10 would be to purchase a Windows 10 flash drive or install DVD. A great place to buy a Windows 10 disk is on an online store such as Amazon.  Amazon offers services such as same day or next day shipping and this means that if you purchase the Windows 10 disk, you can get it without having to wait for a long period of time. Click HERE to purchase a Windows 10 disk on Amazon

Step 2: Create A Windows 10 Virtual Machine.

3) The next step is to create a Windows 10 virtual machine on a type 1 or type 2 hypervisor e.g (VMware ESXi, Workstation, Fusion, CITRIX, Hyper-V, Azure). In this tutorial the virtual machine will be created using VMware Fusion. 

Open VMware Fusion, click on FILE > NEW and on the SELECT THE INSTALLATION METHOD window click on the ‘CREATE A  CUSTOM VIRTUAL MACHINE’ option.

Click on CONTINUE to proceed. 

4) On the CHOOSE OPERATING SYSTEM window, click on MICROSOFT WINDOWS then choose WINDOWS 10 X64 if you are using a 64 bit Windows installation disk or WINDOWS 10 if you are using a 32 bit Windows installation disk.

On the CHOOSE FIRMWARE TYPE window, click on the UEFI radio button and click on CONTINUE.

5) On the CHOOSE A VIRTUAL DISK window,click on the CREATE A NEW VIRTUAL DISK radio button and click on CONTINUE.

Click on the CUSTOMIZE SETTINGS button then click on the SAVE SETTINGS button when prompted.

On the SETTINGS window, click on the HARD DISK SCSI button and adjust the DISK SIZE to 25 GB. Ensure that the SPLIT INTO MULTIPLE FILES checkbox is checked then click on APPLY.

 

6) Click on the SHOW ALL button, then click on the CD / DVD SATA button. Click on the CONNECT CD / DVD DRIVE check box and There is a drop down menu where it says “THIS CD / DVD DRIVE IS CONFIGURED TO USE THE FOLLOWING:” choose the WINDOWS 10 disk image file or drive.

Click on the SHOW ALL button and close the SETTINGS window.

7) On the virtual machine library, right click on the WINDOWS 10 virtual machine and click on START UP. The virtual machine will turn on and boot up using the WINDOWS 10 disk image file (ISO) or drive.

Once the boot process is complete, choose the LANGUAGE TO INSTALL, TIME AND CURRENCY FORMAT as well as KEYBOARD INPUT METHOD and click on NEXT.

Click on the INSTALL NOW button, choose a version of Windows to install on the SELECT THE OPERATING SYSTEM YOU WANT TO INSTALL window and click on NEXT.

 

8)  Windows Setup will ask that you type in a product key. If you do not have a product key at this stage, click on where it says “I DONT HAVE A PRODUCT KEY” 

9) Before you can start using the Windows operating system, you first have to accept the Microsoft software licence terms. To do this, click on the I ACCEPT THE LICENSE TERMS checkbox and click on NEXT.

10) Next, WINDOWS SETUP will ask that you choose where to install WINDOWS 10. Click on the virtual hard disk labelled as DRIVE 0: UNALLOCATED SPACE and click on NEXT.

 

11) WINDOWS SETUP will start copying Windows system Files  to the virtual hard disk and also install features as well as updates. Wait for the installation process to complete. Do not shutdown the virtual machine until the process is complete.

Upon completion, complete the Windows 10 post installation setup process and power off the virtual machine.

Step 3: Export The Virtual Machine To An OVA File And Upload IT To An AWS S3 Bucket.

12) The next step is to export the virtual machine to an OVF file then upload that OVF file to an AWS S3 Bucket. 

Select the WINDOWS 10 virtual machine then click on FILE > EXPORT TO OVF. Type a f name that will identify the OVA file on the SAVE AS text box. Choose a folder where the OVA file will be saved on the WHERE folder selection box then click on the EXPORT button.