Amazon AppStream 2.0: The Computer Lab for Students

Posted by C1 on Nov 17, 2020 10:00:00 AM

During this year of uncertainty and the COVID-19 pandemic, there have been many issues within schools, colleges, and universities globally on how to deliver student applications.

I have seen many issues in performance and bottlenecks, as well as applications not functioning or working with certain platforms and vendors.

Well, the answer is here……

There is a new service introduced by AWS (Amazon Web Services) that solves every educational nightmare with delivering applications to students. The service is named AppStream 2.0.

AppStream 2.0 is a fully managed application streaming service that allows IT departments to centrally manage their applications and securely deliver them to any computer. End users are able to access the applications through a compatible HTML5 web browser and launch them on their computer (including Chromebooks, Macs, and PCs).

AppStream 2.0 can integrate with your current licensing servers, ensuring that the application being streamed is using the proper licensing. The service can scale to any number of users, and the service ensures that each user has a responsive experience with the application. Institutions can integrate AppStream 2.0 with their SAML-compliant identity access management system, including the use of Google’s GSUITE SAML 2.0 federation, which provides a mechanism to allow only authorized access to the applications. In using SAML, you can also restrict which applications are made available to users. You can show a subset of available applications to engineering students while showing another set to computer science students. There are many other features available in AppStream 2.0, such as shared drives to house application data and home folders. This service can act just like a virtual computer lab for your students. The functionality also extends to running multiple applications simultaneously with no plug-ins. AppStream 2.0 also provides options for the use of clipboard, file transfers, and printing.

AppStream 2.0 uses the NICE DCV protocol to stream pixels of the desktop application(s) to end users. NICE DCV is recognized for supporting large 3D visualizations. The pixel streams are encrypted via SSL over HTTPS between the application instance and the end-user device via the streaming gateways. This secures both pixel and end-user inputs using end-to-end AES-256 encryption. AppStream 2.0 streams both audio and video using the H.264 protocol over HTTPS.

Amazon AppStream 2.0 lets you run your applications on virtual machines called streaming instances, which provide the GPU, CPU, memory, storage, and networking capacity you need. With AppStream 2.0, you can choose from a selection of them to optimize the performance of your applications and reduce your overall costs. You can use General Purpose, Compute Optimized, Memory Optimized, Graphics Design, Graphics Pro, and Graphics G4 families based on your use case. Users access all their applications from the same streaming instance, and a streaming instance is assigned to only one user at any time.

AppStream 2.0 allows end users to access the applications using HTML5-capable browsers such as Google Chrome, Mozilla, Microsoft Edge, Internet Explorer, and Firefox. Users can also access their desktop applications using the AppStream 2.0 Windows Client to use dual monitors and USB peripherals.


AWS AppStream 2.0 is the key differentiator in this pandemic for education. The students are able to have their applications delivered securely while working from home. Whether it is an Adobe application, Microsoft Office, or a large 3D modelling application, it gives the students the flexibility to continue with their educational studies.

AWS Educate is now part of Project Lead the Way as a transformative partner. AWS Educate and PLTW are helping provide access to cloud-computing educational content for K-12 students across the United States.

To see how ConvergeOne can help you deliver Educational Labs or applications to your students, please contact Martin Townend or Mike McGuire.

For more information on how AppStream 2.0 can help you achieve your goals to deliver your applications and labs to your students, please click below.

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Topics: Cloud, Data Center, K-12 Education


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