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    Thin Client Solutions

    We are currently investigating thin client solutions. It needs to be able to run multimedia application smoothly. What solutions are people using?

    We are looking at Microsoft Hyper-V 2008 R2 running ZenDesktop. How about VMware View, 2X or Remote Desktop Services?

    We have already virtualised our server environment using VMware vSphere 4 and are running a vanilla Windows 2008 R2 domain with Windows 7 clients. However a lot of our clients are now over 3 years old so we would like to convert these into thin clients.

    Any ideas/experiences greatly recieved.

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    Quote Originally Posted by chrisgoodrich View Post
    It needs to be able to run multimedia application smoothly. <snip...> However a lot of our clients are now over 3 years old so we would like to convert these into thin clients.
    Using your old machines as thin clients won't improve their graphics performance - if they struggle at the moment then they will struggle just the same when used as thin clients. It's best to test beforehand. A new graphics card is a relativly cheap upgrade these days, though (20 each?) - maybe set up a test machine with a new graphics card as a test before you buy a whole lot.

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    Quote Originally Posted by chrisgoodrich View Post
    We are currently investigating thin client solutions. It needs to be able to run multimedia application smoothly. What solutions are people using?

    We are looking at Microsoft Hyper-V 2008 R2 running ZenDesktop. How about VMware View, 2X or Remote Desktop Services?

    We have already virtualised our server environment using VMware vSphere 4 and are running a vanilla Windows 2008 R2 domain with Windows 7 clients. However a lot of our clients are now over 3 years old so we would like to convert these into thin clients.

    Any ideas/experiences greatly recieved.
    With multimedia although the application is running on your virtual server if you use HDX/Windows RDP 7.x all it does is sends the data for the video onto the client for it to render (called client side rendering).
    The other option is host side rendering but this has the draw back of if your network isn't fast enough then you could come across bandwith problems however the main problem is simply running out of processing power on your virtual server.

    However.........stay tuned on Server 2k8 R2 SP1 - it will allow you to use a graphics card in your server to do all the hard work however details so far haven't been very clear on how well this scales.

    So...your best bet would be to get some new thin clients as part of the solution to.

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    Thanks for the replies. Forgeting about what we use as thin clients what server side technologies do you or would you use?

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    We have some 2X - if money had been no object, I would have bought Citrix - but I didn't have the budget..

    Having said that, 2X works fine and is getting better all the time.. there are some new clients now (still in the beta downloads, I think) that incorporate RDP7 - though still not ICA/HDX it is quite acceptable for graphics speed.. Nice mid-range Thinstation client boxes are better than re-purposed PCs as they can load the later/beta RDP7 2X clients..

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    Quote Originally Posted by chrisgoodrich View Post
    what server side technologies do you or would you use?
    For the system I set up over the summer at my last workplace, Windows 2008 R2 running Remote Desktop Services worked just fine - we had a room of clients all running different YouTube videos okay. Video performance seemed to mostly depend on the hardware available client-side to do the rendering - even a Linux-based client running RDesktop supporting RDP 5.2 (or whatever version it supports) worked fine, although obviously you didn't get the snazzy USB port redirection stuff. Personally, I'd go for clients running a web Linux-based browser locally and then connecting via RDP to a server to run MS Office or anything else you couldn't get to be web-based.

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    We run something called Kaviza - think of Citrix XenDesktop in a box - includes all the provisioining services, connection clients and so on all in one thing without having to worry about running anything on Server 2003 and it breaking.

    You can use it with Citrix HDX or RDP both of which work great (although HDX is a bit more) and the 10zig clients even have the connection client built in.

    As far as desktop hosting goes the whole system runs off XenServer however we are going to move to Hyper-V when they release the next version.

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    Last edited by Dos_Box; 7th February 2011 at 08:44 PM.

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