This is probably the first benchmarking effort on an AWS WorkSpaces standard instance. I used the cross platform benchmarking tool Geekbench for the test.
Before we go ahead. let me clearly state that, this offering from AWS is still in its restricted beta and you have to request for an invite to try this out. And this offering is still not filly bug free.
Ok, so here is the result. And believe me, the result is not pretty satisfactory. What we got was even worse than a new age Core i3 machine.
You can check out the full result here: http://browser.primatelabs.com/geekbench3/430728
Just for the sake of comparison – The standard instance of AWS WorkSpaces gives you one single core with 2.0GHz processing power and 3.75 GB of RAM along with 50GB of storage capacity. And you have to pay $35 per month for this performance and specs. You can also but 2 Cores, 7.5GB RAM and 100GB machine configuration, for $60 per month.
And one interesting aspect here is. If you are going by the standard AWS EC2 norms. Then please don’t assume you will be paying per hours for these Desktop instances. Rather they are charged flat at a go for an entire month. Pretty much like the way you buy storage in AWS.
Also, if you want MS Office and an Anti-virus, pre-installed along with your WorkSpaces instance, you have to add $15 in either of the above planes. Below is a quick look at all the 4 variants of WorkSpaces available
Ok, after saying all this. I can clearly state that, for a geek or an individual this might not be of any interest based on the only 2 performance brackets we can get. Also based on the fact that we cannot actually do a “pay-as-you-go” model here and have to pay for an entire month for the resources (for both compute and storage).
But for Entreprises this actually could be a boon. It have the potential to become the key enabler for BYOD in small and mid-sized organizations.
Secondly this could also be very well used by Mac and Tablet users (both Apple and Android) to access Windows application on a demand basis. Though I am surprised to see there is no client available yet for accessing AWS WorkSpaces via Linux machine.