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Thin Client and Virtual Machines Thread, Laptops Into True Thin Clients? in Technical; I work for a school system and we just implemented a Xen Desktop infrastructure. We have a bunch of older ...
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    Laptops Into True Thin Clients?

    I work for a school system and we just implemented a Xen Desktop infrastructure. We have a bunch of older laptops, Latitude D510, D531s, E5500s. Is there a way to turn these laptops into true thin clients? I am looking for some tiny/minimal little OS that can sit on these laptops that will basically allow the system to join wireless and then request and load a VDI desktop automatically from Xen Desktop. I have seen Windows Thin PC and have used Ubuntu but really don't want a visible underlying OS that the user will have to interact with and I will have to maintain. I just want something invisible to the user that will load the VDI desktop automatically at startup and will shutdown the computer once the user closes the VDI desktop. Does anyone know of such a thing? Thanks for your help.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mcbmoreno View Post
    We have a bunch of older laptops, Latitude D510, D531s, E5500s. Is there a way to turn these laptops into true thin clients?
    It sounds like you something like ThinStation:

    :: Thinstation - a light, full-featured Linux thin client OS ::

    This will boot via the network or from a small amount of solid state storage in the laptop to load up a client to connect to your servers. Most Linux distributions, will, in fact, be quite capable of connecting to an RDP server with RDesktop - I've used Slax, SystemRescueCD (best for driver support) and Debian in the past. All you need to do is to get them to run RDesktop on startup, that way there's no part o the client OS the user needs to do anything with.

    It depends on exactly how "true" you want your thin clients - RDesktop doesn't support the latest snazzy features of RDP, and you theoretically won't get as good graphical performance. In practice, I found that on a modern client with built-in dedicated graphics graphics performance was little, if any, different between Windows' RDP client and RDesktop. I doubt that holds for servers with snazzy new RemoteFX graphics cards in, though, I think you'll need a newer RDP client to take proper advantage of those.

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