Microsoft Windows Remote Desktop Services - license & software assurance -
License & software assurance
1 device CAL
Microsoft Windows Remote Desktop Services - license & software assurance - is rated 3.5 out of 5 by 2.
Rated 4 out of 5 by Brett Tomes from The most valuable features are resilience and thin provisioning.Valuable Features:* Resilience: Has alllowed our 24/7 acute hospital to run electronic prescribing on the wards with limited downtime or post-setup configuration.* Thin provisioning: Our core applications mean that our WiFi connected devices can drop-off the network without causing patient record locks.Improvements to My Organization:It has enabled our clinical staff to get real-time medicine prescribing information at the patients' bedside with a near 100% service uptime.Room for Improvement:I think that the Single Sign-On (SSO) could be improved.At release time, there was not a lot of information around. We invested some long hours researching. The documentation from Microsoft was difficult to find. Now there are plenty of step-by-step guides around.Use of Solution:I have used it for four years.Stability Issues:Initially, the configuration I setup used DNS round-robin. This was changed to a NLB setup on our session hosts.This has improved the stability of the clients' Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) connectivity. It has given us granular control over stopping connections for downtime/maintenance windows.Scalability Issues:We did not encounter any scalability issues.Technical Support:We actioned this with a limited budget. We completed it all in-house with no external technical support other than searching on the internet and testing.Previous Solutions:We run Citrix alongside this solution for our internet connected clients. Microsoft Remote Desktop Services (RDS) was used primarily over our LAN/WAN.Initial Setup:The initial setup was a little complex. Like any thin client setup, some applications are trickier than others.Cost and Licensing Advice:I could not see the benefits of using Citrix as you require RDS CALs regardless. We see this solution as a very good value.Other Solutions Considered:We evaluated Citrix.Other Advice:* We have found this to be very stable with a quite straightforward setup. However, Single Sign-On (SSO) certificates are a little fiddly.* Ensure that the underlying infrastructure is fully tested, robust, and scalable.* Our early problems stemmed from our hypervisor issues. Because clients only heard it was the RDS farm, I took a lot of heat on issues that were out of my control.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Date published: 2017-03-30
Rated 3 out of 5 by Johan Vanaken from It offers load balancing among RDS Host servers, with optional High Availability. Installation of applications on an RDS farm should be controlled and automated.Valuable Features:Load balancing: RDS Broker servers divide user sessions evenly among the RDS Host servers that host the applications. You can install multiple RDS Broker servers in an RDS cluster; this is built-in and no extra resources are needed. Optionally, the cluster can be made Highly Available if needed.High Availability (HA): easy to set up - once the MS SQL database is created and the RDS Broker servers have the needed rights, the database is created automatically and HA is enabled.Improvements to My Organization:Applications are ready for BYOD scenario’s, since RDP is a multi-OS/device technology. No more app testing for client OS migrations.The valuable features I mentioned assure a stable and highly available environment with maximum uptime for business users. Also, they assure that assigned resources (application RDS hosts) are optimally used, without the need for any extra administrator intervention or monitoring.Room for Improvement:Currently, installation of applications on an RDS farm must be performed manually on each server. This should be more controlled and automated.Also, application sources are mixed on the file system and registry level. They should be in separate ‘containers’.Stability Issues:We did not have any problems with stability.Scalability Issues:There are no issues with scalability. At any time, an RDS Host server can be added to any server collection. Also, some additional parameters allow us tocontrol and scale the expected user load (session limit, RDS Host weight).Technical Support:Technical support is OK if you have MS Premier support.Previous Solutions:We did not previously use a different solution.Initial Setup:Installation of the RDS farm was pretty easy. Configuration is a little harder; you need to configure trusted certificates (RDS 2012 allows HTTPS only), add groups and group policies for users, RDS hosts, server collections, etc.Once configuration is done, management is easy.Cost and Licensing Advice:There are two choices for RDS CALs (Client Access Licenses). Device CALs are cheap but allow low user mobility and require a high management effort (‘static’ or ‘task station’ scenario). User CALs are 20% more expensive, but offer high mobility and low management cost (‘dynamic’ or ‘mobile’ scenario).Other Solutions Considered:We did not evaluate any other options.Other Advice:My advice is to start in a lab environment to thoroughly test your infrastructure setup and configuration.Use User CALs, they give much lower TCO.Also, for applications you envision to provision on RDS, test whether they install correctly on Windows Server.Disclaimer: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer:We have a partnership with Microsoft.