SBS 2003 and Terminal Services...ideas...

Posted on 2005-04-10
Last Modified: 2010-04-18
Hi All,
I have a project that's on the table and could be done a number of ways.  It consists of a need for 30 workstations, all on a lan.  I was considering using SBS 2003 on one box as the DC and another W2K3 box as a terminal server.  The workstations would be 100% thin clients using a RDP connection to the terminal server.

The type of apps being run in at least 90% of the workstations would currently be a terminal (telnet) session to a unix box (legacy app) using an IBM terminal emulation tool (light weight).  The remaining 10% would routinely use Outlook for email along with the gammut of Microsoft Office 2003.

My questions include (assuming no one dissents on implementing SBS/TS on a 2-box arrangement):

1)  what do you think the adequate hardware would be for the servers to accomodate the 30 thin-client (potentially 100% simultaneous usage)?
2)  In a terminal services environment (say, for 30 users), how would you expect antivirus licensing to be affected?  One license on the server to cover/protect every session?

For the hardware I have in mind a dual proc Xeon with 2GB ram (room for 4 gb) and a couple of raid 5 arrays holding at least 120 GB each and possibly a NAS in addition but this is just a guess.

Any input anyone may offer is appreciated.

Question by:colepc
    LVL 95

    Expert Comment

    by:Lee W, MVP
    Quite frankly, I have doubts about a dual processor Xeon being fast enough.  It MIGHT be... but if not... then what?  And 2 GB of RAM is a little low.  With 30 simultaneous users, that allows for 66 MB of RAM each with 68 MB for the OS (for example).  You might get away with it... but you might not... and if not, you've maxed out the system so then what?

    If you want to do this, I would suggest getting a 4-way server (Like a Dell 6650) and start out with dual CPUs (say 2.7 GHz/2MB Cache) and 4 GB of RAM using 1 GB DIMMs for easier expansion later.  This way, if it turns out it can't handle it, you can always and easily expand the RAM.  AND you can add more CPUs if that becomes an issue.

    Author Comment

    Great comment!!
    LVL 74

    Accepted Solution


    Rather than taking anecdotal suggestions from one or two of us here, why don't you use a proper "sizing" tool that will provide you with PROVEN operability.

    For instance, check out:

    Use the advice of an HP rep or partner that can provide REAL data based on your needs.  It'll save you a lot in the long run.

    Jeff @

    Author Comment

    Jeff's comment hit the mark exactly.  Thanks to both.


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