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Thin Client and Virtual Machines Thread, Thin client basic question in Technical; Hello: we're running citrix presentation server 4.0 and thinking about switching out PCs to thin clients - is it possible ...
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    Thin client basic question

    Hello: we're running citrix presentation server 4.0 and thinking about switching out PCs to thin clients - is it possible to have the thin client use citrix desktop seamlessly - that is when a user boots up the thin client they are on the citrix desktop and not the thin client desktop?

    thanks.

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    yes, you publish the desktop.
    It's not the most efficienct way of doing things - it uses more resources, and rather defeats the point of purchasing those expensive citrix licenses.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CyberNerd View Post
    yes, you publish the desktop.
    It's not the most efficienct way of doing things - it uses more resources, and rather defeats the point of purchasing those expensive citrix licenses.
    thanks: the desktops are published applications but a user would have to go into citrix PN to get to that desktop. the thinking here is to make the thin client look just like a normal PC to the end user.

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    you could create an .ica file that has the full screen published app. then have then run it from startup or. (HKLM/software/windows/currentversion/run)

    A neater trick would be to pull all the hardisks out of the PC's and have them boot directly of the network. less moving parts.
    http://thinstation.sourceforge.net/

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    Quote Originally Posted by CyberNerd View Post
    you could create an .ica file that has the full screen published app. then have then run it from startup or. (HKLM/software/windows/currentversion/run)

    A neater trick would be to pull all the hardisks out of the PC's and have them boot directly of the network. less moving parts.
    http://thinstation.sourceforge.net/
    the HP thin client we are testing with does not allow me to get into startup or registry so the second option you suggested is pretty slick. we can keep existing desktops that way while achieving managed solution

    thank you!

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    Axel's Avatar
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    We'd be happy to send you an Axel thin-client for testing/comparison. It has no "local" desktop, or operating system.

    Simply switch on and after 10 seconds it connects to a published application, which in your case would be the Citrix desktop. (Which is how most users run Citrix)

    There are various other posts about the M70w in this forum, other benefits it has over the HP model is:

    -much smaller - comes with bracket to attach to rear of screen
    -no local admin - ie you don't log into the terminal so easier setting up
    -intuitive remote management s/w (free)
    -costs less !!!

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    The Axel is an interesting looking device, what price do they start roughly?

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    Quote Originally Posted by cookie_monster View Post
    The Axel is an interesting looking device, what price do they start roughly?
    My thoughts exactly. I'm in the market for a 110 Thin clients to talk to our nice shiny 2008 server boxes we'll have in our new school in the summer

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    The RRP for the M70wis £136 ex VAT.

    We do have a special "Education Price" which if you send me an email I will gladly pass on. I am not permitted to post it "publicly".

    Matthew@axel.com

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    @ Axel: These look pretty good. What is the process for them working do they PXE to a server to download a minimal OS and then connect to Citrix/TS?

    Why do HP thin clients not work like this and what are the plus points of your units over other thin client offerings (other than price which seems pretty keen).



    @ CyberNerd: We don't use Citrix yet so can you explain why a published desktop uses more resources and if was are talking a large increase?

    Thanks.
    Last edited by cookie_monster; 9th May 2008 at 09:41 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cookie_monster View Post
    @ CyberNerd: We don't use Citrix yet so can you explain why a published desktop uses more resources and if was are talking a large increase?
    A published application only uses the application that is being streamed from the server, other application such as web-browsers will run happily on the thin clients. It depends upon what extent this is done, if the client is capable of running basic application it would be prudent to do so as this spreads the load better.
    most of the functionality that differs citrix from MSTS are things like application isolation environments, where individual application load can be tailored. In a way - not using this functionality is a waste of resources , as it was a rather expensive investment. I'm only talking citrix here, with TS2008 it is arguably more expensive to run published apps because the high needed for the clients

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    Axel's Avatar
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    @Cookie Monster

    .....we have simply written the RDP/ICA protocols in assembly language and embedded in hardware.... So no network booting, no linux, no CE, no Xp, no LTSP. It could be described as an RDP/ICA standalone appliance.

    ICA/RDP requires 3Mb to run in - Linux at least 128Mb, WindowsCE at least 256 and XP a lot more. If you remove the operating system from the TC you need a lot less hardware to do the same job. This approach wouldn't work for PCs as PCs need flexibility to run 100s of different applications so need an operating system to provide this flexibility - thin-clients only need run RDP & ICA so don't need the flexibilty.

    I guess you could draw a vague parallel between gaming on PC's and consoles - PCs can do everything a gaming console can do equally well - but a console designed specifically for games is cheaper and faster (better) than a PC. Console developers optimise their hardware specifically to run games, Axel develop specifically to run RDP/ICA. In both examples you lose fexibility over the PC, but if you only want to play games or RDP/ICA this is not a problem....

    HP are predominantly a PC manufacturer and are relatively new to the TC market, I can't speak for them, but I guess it was easier for them to modify their PC hardware into a TC - rather than design a TC from scratch.

    The benefits of Axel's technology are desribed in the "Axel - New Forum Sponsor" post.

    Axel have been manufacturing terminals for 20 years and have sold approaching 1,000,000 devices - so although we don't have the immediate impact of a well known name like HP - we have been designing and manufacturing terminals for well over a decade longer....

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    surely the benefits of Citrix are for Citrix to perform load balancing, and being able to quickly and easily publish applications to new users and create farms by combining multiple servers....

    So to take advantage of this you would want everyone to run the browser on the server - not have dozens of local "uncontrolled" browsers from each TC.

    It must also be easier to control content, viruses, access and keep updated one central browser on the server than multiple browsers spread around the estate.

    Regarding resources - running 50 instances of IE will take a certain amount of computing resource - it must be more efficient to focus that "resource" as extra shared hardware on the server than having it spread around the network - only being used when the TC user is actually surfing...

    Maybe I am missing the point.....

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    Citrix does do load balancing very nicely, and adding servers to a farm is a real bonus. But some of the advantages are taken away if it running pure dektop mode because the servers have to be set up identically - with published apps they dont, and some servers can have some apps and other servers have other apps.

    I take the point with centralised web-browsers. it's pros and cons. I see it as a downside to have hundreds of 1Ghz clients that only run a 8-10MB operating system , but if the webbrowser ran from a thinstation and was booted PXE it can be centrally controlled (there is a firefox plugin for thinstation)

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    @ CyberNerd: so are you saying that with the Axel box that all of our Citrix boxes would have to be identical and we couldn't have one hosting a different application?



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