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Lesson 4

Windows Server 2003 Terminal Services

The direct successor to Windows 2000 Terminal Server was part of Windows Server 2003, under the name "Terminal Services". In Windows Server 2003, Terminal Services expanded upon the functionalities introduced in Windows 2000, offering improved application compatibility, better session management, and more efficient use of network resources.
With Windows Server 2003, Microsoft continued to enhance the remote desktop and application deployment capabilities that were first popularized by Terminal Server in Windows NT 4.0 Server and later in Windows 2000 Server. Terminal Services in Windows Server 2003 laid the groundwork for what would eventually evolve into Remote Desktop Services (RDS) in later versions of Windows Server, incorporating more advanced features for virtualization, session management, and security.

Remote Desktop Services (RDS) as part of Windows Server 2008

After "Terminal Services" in Windows Server 2003, Microsoft introduced "Remote Desktop Services" (RDS) as part of Windows Server 2008. RDS was an evolution of Terminal Services and expanded on its capabilities, offering a richer end-user experience and providing better management tools for administrators. Remote Desktop Services allowed for both session-based connectivity (similar to Terminal Services) and virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI), which enabled each user to get a separate virtual machine instance.

Update RDS in subsequent versions of Windows Server (2012, 2016, 2019, and 2022)

After "Remote Desktop Services" in Windows Server 2008, Microsoft has continued to update and improve RDS in subsequent versions of Windows Server (2012, 2016, 2019, and 2022). However, the next significant evolution in Microsoft's remote access solutions is Azure Virtual Desktop (formerly known as Windows Virtual Desktop), which is a cloud-based desktop and app virtualization service running on Azure. Azure Virtual Desktop represents a strategic shift by Microsoft to provide remote desktop and app capabilities as a managed service in the cloud. It allows users to set up a scalable and flexible environment to deliver desktops and applications to users, without needing to manage the underlying infrastructure as you would with traditional on-premises RDS deployments. Azure Virtual Desktop integrates with other Microsoft services and offers enhanced security, compliance, and management features.

Identify Client Applications for Planned installation

The Windows 2000 Terminal Server is very easy to install and configure. However, the real value of using the Terminal Server is to provide applications for users that might not otherwise be available on their client operating systems. There are a number of factors you must consider before implementing a Terminal Server solution for your organization. In this lesson, we will discuss some of those issues.
Planning an Installation The key to successful Terminal Services installation is proper planning. Before you install Terminal Services, you should perform the following tasks.
  1. Identify the client applications that you need to install on the server
  2. Identify the hardware requirements for clients
  3. Determine the server configuration that is required to support clients
  4. Identify the licenses that are required for Terminal Services
You will learn to identify the issues involved with installing various applications in this lesson. We will cover steps 2 through 4 in upcoming lessons.

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Deploying Applications

Most applications that run properly on Windows 2000 run on a Terminal Server. However, some applications may require minor modification to run successfully in a Terminal Services environment. Install applications on a test server before you deploy these applications in your production environment to ensure compatibility with your existing applications.

Windows-based Applications

Applications that you install on a server running Terminal Services must be compatible with Windows 2000. If an application does not run on Windows 2000, it will not run in on the Terminal Server since the Terminal Server must itself run on Windows 2000. Windows-based, 32-bit applications operate more efficiently than 16-bit applications by taking full advantage of 32-bit hardware and operating systems. Running 16-bit applications on a Terminal Server can reduce the number of users that a processor can support by as much as 40 percent and increase the memory required per user by 50 percent. The best example of a 32-bit application is Microsoft Office 2000, which is optimized for Terminal Server deployment.
Tip: Microsoft has set up a testing program with Man in the Middle Attack
Resources.aspindependent testing companies to assist organizations in deploying applications with Terminal Services.

MS-DOS Applications

Because MS-DOS applications were never designed for a multitasking environment, applications can slow the performance of a system with idle processes. You may need to adjust settings to increase performance. Many organizations still use DOS-based accounting packages, and you must consider any implications before deploying Terminal Server.
Note: Microsoft does not specifically test or support any MS-DOS-based applications for use with Terminal Services. It is recommended that you replace MS-DOS-based applications with 32-bit Windows-based applications.

Other Application Issues

Some applications have features that may prevent them from working with Terminal Services or cause them to perform poorly. The following types of applications need careful consideration:
Type of application Issues
Single-user applications Some applications, such as older text-based applications, were designed to run in a single-user or single-desktop environment and may not install or function properly in a Terminal Services environment.
Applications that require special hardware Devices such as bar-code scanners or smart card readers can be used with a Terminal Services Client only if:
  1. The devices are connected to the computer or terminal in such a way that the peripheral device is recognized as a keyboard-type device.
  2. The connecting software and hardware support the connection to the client.
Custom applications Custom applications may need to be modified to run in the Terminal Services environment.

Microsoft maintains a site about creating your own http://microsoft.com/ntserver/terminalserver/application compatibility script for older applications. Note: This resource applies to the Windows NT 4.0 Terminal Server, and there may be differences between it and the Windows 2000 Terminal Services. The next lesson looks at how hardware requirements affect the installation process.

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