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Windows Server 2008 R2 Remote Desktop Services : Installing and Configuring Remote Desktop Services (part 1)

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1/26/2014 8:37:48 PM

In this section we will take a look at installing and configuring various components of Remote Desktop Services. We will discuss what features each provides and go through the actual setup process of these services.

1. Installing and configuring Remote Desktop Session Host

The Remote Desktop Session Host is what you might consider the traditional Remote Desktop Services (or Terminal Services) role. The Remote Desktop Session Host provides presentation virtualization by remotely displaying server-hosted applications or desktops to PCs and thin clients. By using RemoteApp capabilities, users can access a server-hosted application in a seamless window making the application appear to be running on the local PC (see Figure 1).

Figure 1. Remote Desktop Services RemoteApp.

To connect to a Remote Desktop Session Host, clients use the Remote Desktop Client which comes preinstalled on Windows XP, Windows Vista, and Windows 7.

To install the Remote Desktop Session Host, perform the following:

1.
Open Server Manager. Then select the Roles node in the left pane.

2.
Click the Add Roles link in the middle pane to launch the Add Roles Wizard.

3.
Select the Remote Desktop Services role. Then click Next.

4.
Click Next on the Remote Desktop Services Introduction page.

5.
Select the Remote Desktop Session Host role service as seen in Figure 2. Then click Next.

Figure 2. Remote Desktop Session Host role service.

6.
Notice the warning message about application installation. If you have already installed applications on this server, you may need to reinstall them after installing Remote Desktop Services. This is because adding the Remote Desktop Session Host changes the server configuration to support applications in a multiuser manner. After reading the warning and verifying that you have not installed any applications, click Next to continue.

7.
Next you must determine whether you want to enable Network Level Authentication (see Figure 3). Network authentication enhances security of Remote Desktop Sessions by performing user authentication prior to completing the full connection process. Network Level Authentication requires that the client operating system and the version of Remote Desktop Client support Network Level Authentication. Windows XP Service Pack 3, Windows Vista, and Windows 7 all support Network Level Authentication. In this exercise, we will choose to use Network Level Authentication. Then click Next.

Figure 3. Remote Desktop Session Host Network Level Authentication.

8.
In the next step, you will need to select your licensing mode for Remote Desktop Session Host. Just as with the operating system, each connection to the Remote Desktop Session Host requires a Remote Desktop Client Access License (CAL). You can choose one of three licensing options for Remote Desktop Session Host:

  • Configure later —Choosing this option will allow you to skip choosing a license mode at this time and select the mode you want to use after adding the role.

  • Per device —Using this option, each device such as computers or thin-clients will require a CAL to connect to the server. You may want to use this option when you have computers or thin-clients that are shared by multiple users. This allows you to have an unlimited number of users and buy CALs only for each device connecting to the Remote Desktop Server.

  • Per user —You use this option, when each user needs access to Remote Desktop Services. This is a better licensing option when you have a limited number of users who access Remote Desktop Services. This allows a user to connect from multiple computers, thin-clients, or other devices using only a single CAL.

In this exercise choose the Per device option. Then click Next.

9.
The next step is to select who should be able to use Remote Desktop Session Host services on this server. To control access, Windows uses a Remote Desktop Users local computer group. You can choose to add additional users or groups to this local group now (see Figure 4), or later. For now let us accept the default group of Administrators. Then click Next.

Figure 4. Remote Desktop Session Host user access.

10.
In the next step, if you want to enable enhanced Client Experience settings you can choose to do so (see Figure 5). These settings improve the user experience by redirecting audio and video from the server back to the client machine as well as redirecting audio recording from the client back to the application running on the server. You can also optionally enable Aero features by enabling the Desktop Composition option. The Remote Desktop clients will need to be running a Windows 7-based operating system to support these enhanced features. In this exercise, we will enable all options. Then click Next.

Figure 5. Enhanced Client Experience settings.

11.
Verify settings on the Confirm Installation Settings page, and then click Install.

12.
After the installation is completed, you will be prompted to restart the server. Select Yes to reboot. After the server restarts, logon where the installation will be complete. Click the Close button in the Resume Installation Wizard to complete the installation.

You will now see the Remote Desktop Services role in Server Manager (see Figure 6). You can use the consoles under this role to manage the Remote Desktop Session Host.

Figure 6. Remote Desktop Services role.


The Remote Session Host has three main configuration consoles. They are

  • RemoteApp Manager

  • RD Session Host Configuration

  • Remote Desktop Services Manager

 
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