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View Full Version : Simultaneous Remote Users to Networkable App



Freehold Fred
03-28-2007, 05:10 PM
Background:

App currently working on an ordinary desktop computer. Plan to move it dedicated 'server' machine.

GotoMyPC ties up both the desktop and only allows 1 user at a time. (My gut feeling is that the app is NOT properly set up as a multiuser program).

Anyway,

Short of a Citrix Server or MS Terminal Server, what are some decent workarounds for a nominal number (2-4) of remote simultateous users to a networkable app?

Dan18960
03-28-2007, 06:18 PM
Fred,

There is NONE. You will have to either setup several workstation drones for each access or place a server with Terminal Service Licenses in production. The Terminal Services that "comes" with Windows 2003 is ONLY the Administrator access and is limited to 2 simultaneous sessions and then is NOT advised since Admin functions can cause lockups if 2 Admins are doing cross over functions.

Multi-user to a computer can be handled in several methods:

VPN tunnel from internet BUT only to a SERVER.
Terminal Services - BUT only to a SERVER.
Citrix (which is actually Terminal Services since Microsoft bought a license to use in TS anyway.) which is really the most expensive of the 3 options.This is one of the reasons I was "forced" into Network Administration. Sometimes there is NO option but to spend big bucks and do the job RIGHT.

Freehold Fred
03-28-2007, 06:37 PM
Whatsa workstaton drone?


Fred,

There is NONE. You will have to either setup several workstation drones for each access or place a server with Terminal Service Licenses in production.

Dan18960
03-29-2007, 09:59 AM
Whatsa workstaton drone?

Just a bank of computer(s) in the corner connected to the network and no one uses them.

For instance, you have 3 people that want to have access to a network remotely but don't want to invest the $6 - $10k in a server w/operating system "plus" terminal services - you go out and buy a couple of $600 machines, a KVM switch to connect all the computers to, and just let them be your connection per user accessing in.

AKA computer drone(s) - not workstations in production just floor weights.

Freehold Fred
03-29-2007, 07:22 PM
I thought it was going to something along that line.

:juggle: Suppose, I get a single Linux appliance with multiple users each connect to the Windows server.
:juggle: Or why not partition the server into a Linux partition. Can a separate multiuser Linux partition talk to the Windows partition?

:juggle:Why bother with Windows at all? Why not run a Citrix or Citrix-like server on a Linux platform (on the cheap).

Will any of this suffice? There's got to be another way. JTOL (Just Thinking Out Loud).


Just a bank of computer(s) in the corner connected to the network and no one uses them.

For instance, you have 3 people that want to have access to a network remotely but don't want to invest the $6 - $10k in a server w/operating system "plus" terminal services - you go out and buy a couple of $600 machines, a KVM switch to connect all the computers to, and just let them be your connection per user accessing in.

AKA computer drone(s) - not workstations in production just floor weights.

Dan18960
03-29-2007, 09:23 PM
I thought it was going to something along that line.

:juggle: Suppose, I get a single Linux appliance with multiple users each connect to the Windows server.
:juggle: Or why not partition the server into a Linux partition. Can a separate multiuser Linux partition talk to the Windows partition?

:juggle:Why bother with Windows at all? Why not run a Citrix or Citrix-like server on a Linux platform (on the cheap).

Will any of this suffice? There's got to be another way. JTOL (Just Thinking Out Loud).

Fred,

If you can get a computer to boot simultaneously to two different operating systems LET ME KNOW - I would love to free up one of my servers.

Linux is a good option - you can port over to the windows machine BUT you will have to have either Terminal services licenses (which I don't know is available for anything but a Windows Server 2000/2003).

You are really thinking this beyond what is available technologically today - maybe tomorrow there will be a dual boot simultaneously.

Freehold Fred
03-30-2007, 03:22 AM
Hmmm, Apple's got Parallels, and Linux can do it, and VMWare can do it, the future is now. Time to play...

"Run multiple virtual machines, simultaneously and independently, on a single x86 server. VMware virtualization (http://www.vmware.com/virtualization/)technology makes it possible to package a complete x86 server—hardware, operating system, applications, and configurations—into a portable virtual machine. Consolidation ratios often exceed 10 virtual machines per host processor."

Also, "http://www.vmware.com/vmtn/appliances/directory/304" uses terminal services.


Fred,

If you can get a computer to boot simultaneously to two different operating systems LET ME KNOW - I would love to free up one of my servers.

Linux is a good option - you can port over to the windows machine BUT you will have to have either Terminal services licenses (which I don't know is available for anything but a Windows Server 2000/2003).

You are really thinking this beyond what is available technologically today - maybe tomorrow there will be a dual boot simultaneously.

Dan18960
03-30-2007, 09:52 AM
Fred,

These examples are in the "desktop" arena - I need server based solutions.

Windows Server can not run in vmware effectively - it can if you don't incorporate wins, dhcp, and dns authentication of users as well as remote access. These functions would have a processor maxing out all the time.

AND what I am looking for is a real implementation in a production environment.

That is why I said if YOU get it running - Let me know. I am not looking to do research and development - schedule is way to busy with current work. And since you may have more r&d access than me I was looking for you to provide the solution. Or do you have the Apple and vmWare solution running?

Smokey
04-01-2007, 02:13 AM
VMWare Server will do it while being a free solution. If you want a higher end solution then the Virtual Server products from MS or higher end VMWare servers. No reason why you can't get a decent machine for 2g's, throw Linux on it and put VMWare on that. Then you can get 5 or 6 XP Pro's loading up at once and have the users log into them. We actually had a bank of machines I setup in the labs to do something similar for a class. It was used at the time for virus/malware detection and research. There was a bank of about 10 higher end boxes, each running linux and vmware, then anywhere from 4-12 vmware sessions loaded up on each at any given time. Then students would log into their assigned session to use (done via IP as each had their own public ip).

Dan18960
04-01-2007, 11:28 AM
Smokey,

So what you are saying is that "some" type of IP addressing (class C or static public) has to be applied to EACH vm session?

Smokey
04-02-2007, 02:02 AM
Yes, you need some way of connecting to each VM remotely via the network. You can provide an IP address that is routable to each, you can provide a forwarded port or set of ports through the ip of the host machine or you can provide a solution via nat if you only need certain ports access. For our purpose in this example, in the labs we setup a NAT environment. This classes servers were behind one routed ip address that had various ports open. Each port were forwarded to a different internal ip address and its port 3389. So a student was provided with 1.1.1.1 and port 5427 for example. That was that students VM. We had other security measures in place, from user level to machine source authentication (mac and ip) but thats pretty much it. Another option to secure it is provide a hardware vpn to get into the network and then just go to the internal ip directly or from there still have another router providing this nat setup. It can get real complicated real fast, but it doesn't need to. It can be designed as simply or as confusing as you want it.

Freehold Fred
04-03-2007, 01:24 AM
Wheww!
Fred