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Considering a serious network redesign...

Community Veteran
Posts: 14,385
Thanks: 714
Fixes: 10
Registered: 01-08-2007

Considering a serious network redesign...

Hi all
After years of having noisy PCs I've nearly had enough. My main beast has been at least 50% quieter since a pal donated me an AMD Athlon 2200XP and fan/sink years ago but it is still noisy.
My 2nd beast sounds like a vacuum cleaner. 3rd isn't so bad but its only 833MHz..
Laptop.. along with being knackered has a little fan on board which sounds like a turbine the moment it kicks in.
Recently our work place has started installing thin clients all over the place. To use them we login via a webpage and launch a citrix viewer once logged in and do all our things remotely on a server.
So... I'm considering going down a similar route and dumping my noisy PCs under the stairs out of sight where whirring fans won't be a problem at 1am in the morning. Like many people though, I have questions...
Do you need any special hardware to do something like this? - I was thinking just run the thin client using Remote Desktop to connect to my main PC. Is there a better way?
Can think clients send Wake on lan packets to wake up the main PC?
I am also considering the use of a thin client PC to act as an internet gateway - 56k dial up and ADSL connections. Obviously it depends on the exact hardware I use but can the majority of thin clients use 56k? (I have a USB broadband modem so not worried about that). Do I need a special PCI modem for the 56k?
Do thins have any over heating problems?
Any other tips or advice you can give me?
Obviously thin clients won't be suitable for gaming so I would be stuffed in that respect. I suppose I could still keep a PC at the desk but just minimise its use and stick with the thin client for all other things...
I need a new signature... i'm bored of the old one!
3 REPLIES
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,576
Thanks: 3
Registered: 13-04-2007

Re: Considering a serious network redesign...

A thin pc is basically using RDP but known as terminal server. To do it properly which is what I think you want you need wink2k server or greater ie server 2003 etc. I say win2k as you should be able to pick this up cheap. You can use XP but you can only connect with one pc were with win2k you can as a lot.
If you setup a win2k server install terminal server in admin mode you only get 2 connections add it in full mode and you can have as many as you want be they must be licensed which doesnt matter as win2k/xp has a license built in.
So you setup the server a nice beefy pc and you install all your software on it ie office etc. You then connect via ethernet from your other pc's which can be very low spec pc's even 200mhz pc will do. All the software runs on the server and you use the internet on the server so all pc can connect to the server and all use the internet.
You have to watch you drop the session when you are done as one of the good bits of TS is you can logon start a download and log off but the session stays active which you pick up when you login again.
I dont understand what you mean by gate way and the use of 56k? All clients connect via network cable they could use a modem but its a bit silly.
A TS is a normal pc so heat is no problem.
You can use it for gaming no problem providing the main server has a beef to run the game as all you send down the network to the client is a screen refresh. The only restriction on gaming is what you see on the client pc in terms of quality.
You can get dumb terminal for TS which have basically no O/S HD etc and only boot into the server you can often get these on a car boot very cheap as no one uses them
Community Veteran
Posts: 14,385
Thanks: 714
Fixes: 10
Registered: 01-08-2007

Re: Considering a serious network redesign...

Quote from: samuria
You can use XP but you can only connect with one pc were with win2k you can as a lot.

Actually there is a hack for that (which I've been using for ages) which allows you to run multiple sessions via RD on the same machine Wink
Hit google using the words: concurrent remote desktop Wink Very useful Cheesy
Thanks for the other tips... quite a lot of it I already knew but there were some other good points I hadn't thought of!
With regards to gaming I've found in the past many games won't run via RD as they cannot communicate with the physical graphics card. I found this very frustrating...
The 56k gateway... Basically my network grows and shrinks all the time and our address changes frequently leaving us without ADSL etc. It would be handy to have one little box (mini-itx based) which has both ADSL and 56k connectivity options. Just plug it into the network, turn it on and the network is all online - even if it is only 56k! It saves having to reconfigure 3 or 4 PCs TCP/IP settings and changing the default gateway Wink
I need a new signature... i'm bored of the old one!
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,576
Thanks: 3
Registered: 13-04-2007

Re: Considering a serious network redesign...

Thats the best bit of TS you are all using the same pc so there is no need to change any setting on the network for the clients as they run everything via the server just setting it to dial when there is no network could make it dial using a 56K modem.
I know the hack you refer to but its not the same as having TS as there is a lot more built into a server which is designed to run TS services. For game sis there a transform file for any of the games? A lot of software wont run on TS unless you apply a transform file to it. Having one for a game may solve some of the problems. Running high end games may well be a problem but you could run them on the server and sit in front of it for the game.