AppStream & GO-Global

Last Updated:
January 22, 2024

AppStream & GO-Global: a Comparison

Amazon® AppStream 2.0 for Windows® and GO-Global® both provide end users with remote access to Microsoft® Windows applications but use different technologies to deliver those applications.

Application Streaming – AppStream

As its name implies, Amazon AppStream uses application streaming to deliver Windows apps to users. Application streaming enables an application stored on a remote server to be utilized on demand by an end user. Much like a video streaming service, a user initiates a request to start steaming the app, and in response the remote server begins to download the app to the user’s device.

Application streaming does not install the entire app. Instead, the server will transfer enough of the application’s program code and data to enable the end user to perform the actions the user requests. As the end user uses the application, the code and data needed by the user is streamed to the user’s device in the background.

At first glance, application streaming appears to be a very lightweight technology when compared with remote access enablers like VDI. In actuality, however, application streaming relies on complex desktop virtualization technology to run. To use application streaming, the user’s device must have a dedicated client installed, and IT must make the same investment in time, money, and expertise to implement application streaming as they need to do for VDI.

Other drawbacks include the fact that application streaming relies heavily on a stable and fast network connection to deliver a good user experience because the application’s program code and data is streamed to the user’s device as needed. Additionally, some Windows applications may not be easily streamable due to their complexity or reliance on user device resources. Finally, since application streaming downloads application program code to the user’s device, users are limited to using Windows devices when using a streamed Windows app.

Application Publishing – GO-Global

GO-Global uses application publishing technology to deliver Windows applications to end users. Published applications are executed entirely on the server but behave as if they are running locally. Users can access and use a published application via a thin client installed on their device, or can dispense with a thin client altogether by using a web browser for access.

Because published applications run solely on a server, and don’t utilize desktop virtualization in order to run, they are much simpler and cost-effective to implement, run, and manage than application streaming. End users do not need to install a dedicated client to run published applications. Published applications are also far less dependent on network quality to deliver a great user experience. And, since published applications don’t rely on the local device to run, application complexity is not a barrier to a Windows ISV wanting to adopt a SaaS delivery model. Additionally, users can utilize any device they'd like to run published Windows applications.

Other Differences Between AppStream and GO-Global

In addition to application delivery approach, there are other meaningful differences between AppStream and GO-Global.

Cloud Platform

AppStream is only available on Amazon Cloud Services. GO-Global publishes Windows applications from any public, private, or hybrid cloud, allowing Windows ISVs to select the cloud(s) that works best for them.

User Devices

As noted above, AppStream users must use a Windows device to stream applications. In contrast, users accessing Windows applications published by GO-Global can use a wide variety of devices.

Communication Protocol

AppStream utilizes multiple protocols to stream applications to users depending on use case. Protocols include STX, a proprietary protocol to stream application video elements; NICE DCV, a proprietary streaming protocol; UDP when using the Windows native client; HTTPS when using internet endpoints to stream; TCP, to stream data and messages over NICE DCV; Inbound TCP, when using ports 8000 or 8300; and Inbound UDP, when establishing a connection using port 8300.

GO-Global utilizes one protocol, RapidX Protocol (RXP), which is proprietary and used for all client-server data communications. RXP is adaptive, uses multiple layers of compression, and is optimized to ensure the lowest possible bandwidth utilization on all connections. The RXP display protocol is almost entirely asynchronous, which means the server and the client are never waiting for a response from its peer. By default, the RXP protocol runs over TCP port 491.

While utilizing multiple protocols allows AppStream to stream over a variety of networks to a variety of user devices, it can also create issues. First, it can be harder to pinpoint the cause of a communication problem when multiple devices are using different protocols. Packets can be corrupted or lost during transmission. Hidden implementation details in each communications layer can cause performance issues.

In contrast, GO-Global’s RXP is designed to adapt to any communication protocol scenario to simplify configuration and implementation and deliver consistent application performance.

Computing Platform

Since AppStream is Windows-based, it utilizes Microsoft Remote Desktop Services (RDS) to deliver and manage Windows applications to users. Companies using AppStream will have to pay for Microsoft user licenses for each named user in addition to the AppStream licensing and related service fees.

GO-Global, however, does not use RDS to deliver Windows applications, so Windows ISVs using GO-Global don’t need additional licenses to publish their application. Additionally, GO-Global is licensed by concurrent user, not named user, for additional savings.

Built for Windows ISVs

Unlike AppStream, GO-Global was purpose-built for Windows ISVs who want to publish Windows applications from any cloud—simply, easily, and cost-effectively. GO-Global’s client-server architecture and highly efficient proprietary communications protocol provides customers with a great user experience, even on low-bandwidth connections.

GO-Global doesn’t limit Windows ISVs to customers using only Windows devices. By publishing applications rather than streaming them, GO-Global enables users to utilize any device using any OS to run a Windows application.

GO-Global doesn’t limit Windows ISVs to a specific cloud, either. When deployed on any cloud service, GO-Global leverages that cloud service’s existing infrastructure and security and scalability features to deliver high functionality with less complexity and cost.

Don’t limit your options—get GO-Global.

To learn more, request a demo here or download a free 30-day trial.