Amazon WorkSpaces Core FAQs

Q: What’s difference between WorkSpaces and WorkSpaces Core?

A: Amazon WorkSpaces is an all -inclusive virtual desktop service. Amazon WorkSpaces Core is a set of VDI APIs for third-party software. WorkSpaces Core enables customers and partners to build customized VDI solutions using purpose built compute instances optimized for virtual desktops.

Q: Is purchasing VDI infrastructure (WorkSpaces Core) and VDI software separately going to increase my total spend for VDI?

A: Amazon WorkSpaces Core does not include the virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) software and management layer, so we’ve lowered the cost by 20% compared with the all-inclusive Amazon WorkSpaces. You can apply the cost savings towards the purchase of third-party VDI software licensing. Additionally, WorkSpaces Cores supports granular billing, down to the hour, with no upfront costs. This reduces the total cost of ownership, saving you more money over time.

Q: I’ve already built my own VDI infrastructure on Amazon EC2; how does WorkSpaces Core improve on that experience?

A: WorkSpaces Core integrates directly with third-party VDI management consoles. There is no AWS architecture learning curve for IT administrators. They can deploy desktops on AWS directly from their existing VDI management solution in fewer steps compared to Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2). WorkSpaces Core offers granular hourly metering with no upfront costs, which is differentiated from build-your-own VDI infrastructure on Amazon EC2.

Q: How does Tech Support work?

A: AWS will work with our Amazon WorkSpaces Core VDI solution partners to provide coordinated support.

Q: How does billing work with WorkSpaces Core?

A: You can pay for Amazon WorkSpaces Core either by the hour, or by the month. You only pay for the instances you launch, and there are no upfront fees and no term commitments. The fees for using Amazon WorkSpaces Core include use of both the infrastructure (compute, storage, and bandwidth for streaming the desktop experience to the user) and the software applications listed in the bundle. Billing for any third-party VDI software you purchase is handled by the third-party VDI provider.

Q: Does WorkSpaces Core support hourly metering?

A: Yes, you can pay for your Amazon WorkSpaces Core by the hour. Hourly metering is available for all WorkSpaces Core bundles, and in all AWS Regions where Amazon WorkSpaces Core is offered. Partner integration of hourly metering features, via API, is required.

Q: How much does an Amazon WorkSpace Core cost?

A: Please see our pricing page for the latest information.

Q: Can I bring my own desktop licenses?

A: Yes, you can bring your own Windows 10 desktop and Windows 11 desktop licenses to WorkSpaces Core if they meet Microsoft’s licensing requirements. WorkSpaces Core gives you the option to run Windows 10 and Windows 11 desktop images on physically dedicated hardware, which lets you maintain license compliance for your Windows desktops when you bring your own licenses to WorkSpaces Core.

You can see more information on the Bring your own License (BYOL) process in our documentation.

Q: Does WorkSpaces Core support the same Windows Bundles and Application Bundles that are available with WorkSpaces?

A: WorkSpaces Core supports bringing your own software licensing (BYOL). Windows Bundles and Application Bundles, currently available with WorkSpaces, are not currently supported with WorkSpaces Core.

Q. Can I use Microsoft Teams on Amazon WorkSpaces included as part of the Windows 11 image?

A. If your licensing agreement with Microsoft allows it, you can use Microsoft Teams on Windows 11 BYOL WorkSpaces.

Q: What software is available as part of the Office bundle for BYOL versions of WorkSpaces Core?

A: Windows 10 and Windows 11 BYOL WorkSpaces support Microsoft Office Professional 2019.

Q: How do I migrate from Windows 10 to Windows 11?

A: You will need to create a new image and follow the WorkSpaces Core setup process. WorkSpaces Core does not currently support the Amazon WorkSpaces Migrate API. 

Q: How are the Plus software bundles charged when I pay hourly for my Amazon WorkSpaces Core?

A: Plus bundles are always charged monthly, even if you’re paying for your Amazon WorkSpaces Core by the hour. If you selected a Plus bundle when you launched WorkSpaces, you will incur the listed fee for the Plus software bundle even if you do not use those Amazon WorkSpaces in a particular month.

Q: Will WorkSpaces Core allow Microsoft Office Professional 2019 applications to be added to an existing image?

A: You will import a new image with the Application Parameter set to include Microsoft Office Professional 2019. 

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