I purchased a Windows RT edition of the Microsoft Surface while in Texas for a training session. We don’t have a Microsoft store in Michigan so I was excited to have an opportunity to check out the Surface in person before buying one. This was before most of the commercials hit and articles were written so by now you know all of the basics of what Surface is all about. Here’s a few things you might not know. This list is geared toward business use of Surface.
- BitLocker Device Encryption is enabled and on by default. This means that the Surface RT is fully encrypted. This is not only cool but also means that it is compliant with SEC and other regulations that require you store data only on encrypted devices. Microsoft got this one right by putting security first. Make sure you go into the Control panel and backup your BitLocker key.
- You don’t need the official Video cables from Microsoft. The Surface has a Micro HDI port. So obtain a Micro HDMI to HDMI cable or Micro HDMI to VGA cable from anywhere and you are good to go. The Surface also support 1920×1080 in HDMI on the second monitor and WindowsKey-P still brings up your presentation menu. It makes a great and impressive presentation device. Just make sure you are connecting to external speakers.
- The Remote Desktop App is pretty good. For the busy IT profession, Remote Desktop is essential. This app is the same as the one that ships with Windows 8. While at first it seems limited because of the full screen, on the Surface this is actually a benefit. Let’s face it, the Surface isn’t a Laptop or a PC. It’s a companion and a well running Remote Desktop on a companion PC is a very cool tool to have.
- You can run Remote Apps on it. Because the Remote Desktop app is available and Remote Apps are really just a .rdp file you can run Remote Apps on Surface. This will be a big boon to businesses that are running apps that don’t have an RT version yet available.
- It’s pretty secure. Windows Firewall is enabled but it’s completely hidden from view and there’s no management tool for it on the device. All applications run under DEP, no exceptions allows. Windows Defender is installed and running. You can’t join and RT device to a domain but you can manage it through Intune – soon – so we’ll have to wait to see how extensive the control are. But RT does respond to a set of powershell commands.