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Microsoft Windows Virtual Desktop Specialization

Program Overview and Requirements

Program Updates

Update July 1, 2021

New audit checklist 2.0 available for use
Microsoft released the current version 2.0 audit checklist into preview on May 5, 2021 for the Windows Virtual Desktop Specialization. Version 2.0 went into effect July 1, 2021 and is now required.

What’s New:

We introduced a new modular format to the Azure specialization audit, built on the Cloud Adoption Framework for Azure. This benefits your business by:

  • Validating your business’s ability to follow cloud adoption best practices and help ensure smooth cloud transition for your customers.
  • Streamlining the Azure specialization audit process to reduce the need to re-validate the same skills across multiple areas if your organization is seeking to earn more than one Azure specialization.

The format has been broken into two modules:

  • Module A evaluates and assesses a partner’s implementation of cloud adoption best practices, following foundational principles in the Cloud Adoption Framework for Azure. This module is workload-agnostic, which means a partner can audit on Module A once and their passing result will apply to multiple Azure specializations.
  • Module B evaluates workload-specific capabilities. These are periodically updated to align to industry best practices. Module B also includes a requirement to conduct Well-Architected Reviews of customer workloads as part of the deployment.

Update March 24, 2021

ISSI provides extensive, in-depth consulting engagements to help partners prepare for Azure specialization audits. Partners work directly with ISSI to schedule this remote session (via online web conference). For more information about this type of in-depth consultant engagement, click here.

Alternately, partners can participate in an optional, one-hour, live overview session provided by ISSI. This Audit Preparation Overview session provides a high-level overview of key aspects of the specialization audit process. The session includes a discussion of the checklist requirements along with best practices to help partners prepare for the audit. Partners work directly with ISSI to schedule this remote session (via online web conference). For more information about this overview session, click here.

To ensure objectivity, audits are conducted by a different ISSI auditor than the one engaged for consulting.

* Please note there is a cost associated with the consulting and audit preparations services. See Payment Terms and Conditions.

Program Overview

Partners who demonstrate deep knowledge, extensive experience, and proven success in deploying, optimizing, and securing virtual desktop infrastructure on Azure with Microsoft Windows Virtual Desktop (WVD) may seek the Windows Virtual Desktop specialization.

The Windows Virtual Desktop specialization allows partners with an active Solutions Partner for Infrastructure (Azure) designation to further differentiate their organizations, validate their capabilities, and build stronger connections with customers.

Partners who meet the comprehensive requirements to earn a specialization receive a customer-facing label they can display on their business profile in the Microsoft Solution Provider Finder, gain access to specific Microsoft go- to-market programs, are prioritized in customer searches to drive new business, and can generate a certified letter from Microsoft that verifies the specialization that they have earned.

Learn more about specializations.

How do I apply?

Only administrators of an organization’s Microsoft partner account can submit an application for the Windows Virtual Desktop specialization on behalf of the organization. If you are the administrator for your organizations’ Microsoft partner account, you can apply here.

What are the requirements?

Eligible partners must meet the highest standards for service delivery and support. All requirements will be verified by Microsoft and/or a third-party vendor, either automatically or by manual review, and are subject to change.


Your organization must have an active Solutions Partner for Infrastructure (Azure) designation.


Your company must show a monthly average of at least USD2,500 of ACR in the previous three (3) months from at least three (3) customers (aggregated from across your customers).

Learn more about Azure ACR.

ACR can be achieved through Digital Partner of Record, Partner Admin Link, and Cloud Solution Provider.

Government subscriptions (i.e. Fairfax) are not eligible for ACR via PAL association.


Your company must have at least three (3) individuals who have passed the following certifications (each certification listed below is held by at least one individual):


Your company must also have at least three individuals pass the following certification:

You can have a combination of the same individuals or different individuals meet these certification requirements.


Your company must pass a third-party audit. Please see the audit checklist for more details.