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Durham University

Computing and Information Services

Using the Managed Desktop

Getting to know your desktop environment

We hope you'll find the windows 10 desktop environment to be an intuitive and modernised experience. The main differences you will notice between this and other desktops is that applications are streamed to your computer at the time you need to use them, and you'll find them using 'AppsAnywhere'.

There are two brief video tours below: one to help you navigate your way around the desktop, the other to show how to use the AppsAnywhere. There are also links to useful information below and you can also find answers to some frequently asked questions here.

Find your way around the managed desktop

Introduction to New Desktop

Introduction to New Desktop

Views: 515

Introduction to the new desktop: quick tour of the University’s managed desktop.

Using AppsAnywhere

App Hub Introduction

App Hub Introduction

Views: 2072

Introduction to the app hub.

What is AppsAnywhere?

The AppsAnywhere is the best way to find and launch University software. If you’re familiar with smart devices, you’ll find it’s a similar sort of experience to using an app store. You can launch all of your applications from AppsAnywehre on any computer that uses CIS Windows 10 Managed Desktop, but not only that on almost any device more information can be found here.

Finding the AppsAnywhere

When you log onto a computer that uses the new Managed Desktop, you can access the AppsAnywhere via the icon on the desktop. It may take a few minutes the first time you launch it and we suggest that you minimise it and leave it until you need it. You can also access AppsAnywhere by entering the web address in any web browser.

Using AppsAnywhere

AppsAnywhere is simple to use and is the recommended way to find and launch software on the new Managed Desktop.

Opening the App Hub

Opening AppsAnywhere

  • On a managed destkop click on the AppsAnywhere icon or browse to this address
  • When you first open AppsAnywhere, you’ll go through a quick process to check you’re a valid user.
  • Once this is complete, you’ll see that your session has been validated.
    • If your session isn’t validated, or you experience an error, please try refreshing the browser.
    • If you continue to experience problems, contact the IT Service Desk.
    • If after opening AppsAnywhere, the ‘Cloudpaging Player’ box pops up, simply minimise it to continue using the AppsAnywhere. Note that Cloudpaging used to be called ‘Application Jukebox’ so if you see this term used, it is referring to the same thing
  • Finding applications

    • There are a few options. You can:
    • browse the alphabetical menu of all applications,
    • search for an application using the Search function in the menu in the top right hand of the page,
    • choose applications that you’ve added to your favourites, by using the relevant tab from the top of the page.

Finding Applications in the App Hub

  • Viewing application information

    • Once you’ve found the application you want, you can find out more by placing your mouse over the application tile and then clicking the ‘More info’ button which will appear. This will tell you about any system requirements or licensing restrictions that you need to be aware of (see the image below).

    • From here you can either launch the application, or use the cross at the top right to close the information box.

More application details

  • Launch an application

    • Simply select the ‘Launch’ button which will appear when you place your mouse over the application tile.

Launching your application

    • Once you’ve selected ‘launch’, you’ll see the ‘Cloudpaging Player’ pop up. This is the software that streams applications to your computer at the point you want to use them.
    • After a moment you’ll see that your application is ‘virtualising’ and preparing to open. There will be a short delay while this happens, as the software is streamed – this will only happen the first time you open the piece of software in each session.
    • Once virtualising is complete, your application will open. Note that Cloudpaging used to be called ‘Application Jukebox’ so if you see this term used, it is referring to the same thing.
The cloudpaging player will show your app is opening

Windows 10

The Managed Desktop is based on Windows 10, which many of you will already use on your own personal laptops and PCs.

If you haven't seen Windows 10 or would like to learn more about it, Microsoft have a useful online demonstration here and a summary of its features here. A few of the features of Windows 10 will be disabled within the University environment such as Cortana and Edge, but you'll get a good idea of how our computers will look and feel.

(Please note these links are to an external site and we are not responsible for the content).

Office 2016

The new desktop also brings an upgrade to Office 2016, compared to Office 2013 which was previously used for student and teaching (NPCS) machines and Office 2010 which is currently used by a lot of staff (MDS) machines.

If you haven't used Office 2016 or would like some further guidance the University training team (CAROD) run useful familiarization sessions illustrating the differences between Office 2010 and 2016.

You can book on them via the University’s Training Course Booking System under Digital Skills or on this web page:

They have also produced some handy guides which take you through the key differences, and you’ll find them here:

Microsoft’s own support web pages have a lot of good information too, you'll find a whole range of online training courses, videos and tutorials from Microsoft here.

You'll also find quick start guides for Office applications here:

(Please note these links are to an external site and we are not responsible for the content).

To access files you'd saved on the desktop before it was upgraded to the new Managed Desktop, click the 'Old MDS desktop' shortcut on the desktop.

If you're opening a file from a specialist application (anything other than Microsoft Office documents or PDFs), rather than clicking on the file itself, you’ll first need to open the application associated with the file from AppsAnywhere. Once the application has been loaded, you can open your file. If you find this causes a particular issue and certain file types are problematic, please let us know by contacting the IT Service Desk.

The method of logging out in Windows 10 has changed from Windows 7.

  • Click on the Windows menu icon at the bottom left of the screen,
  • Click the power icon,
  • Select Sign out.