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MS Terminal Services Linux Equivalent

I have some time on my hands and was wondering if there is a linux equivalent to Microsoft's Terminal Services?

Have you ever used it, and how good does it work?
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JoshDale
Asked:
JoshDale
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9 Solutions
 
wesly_chenCommented:
VNC runs on Linux/Unix as well as Windows. So you can start vncerver on Linux and use vncviewer on Windows PC to
login Linux machine.

For Linux to login M$ Terminal service, you need rdesktop.
http://www.rdesktop.org/
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JoshDaleAuthor Commented:
Ok, but using vnc, does it support multiple simultaneous users? For example using VNC for windows, only the console can log in, but using ms terminal server in application mode I can have 20 users on the same machine...
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wesly_chenCommented:
Use vnc for Linux, you can start maany vncserver (sessions) so manay people can login their own session.
When you start vncserver on Linux, you will get session number such as :1, :2, :3 ....
Then from VNC client (vncviewer), you just type in
<remote machine>:1
or
<remote machine>:2
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JoshDaleAuthor Commented:
How can this be done automatically? I am looking into migrating our thin client environment from Windows to Linux after I learn more about the costs and learning curve involved...
Sorry, I am very new to Linux.
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wesly_chenCommented:
> How can this be done automatically?
How many vnc session you need?
Which user or a generic user account, say guest?
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kfullartonCommented:
If you have tsclient installed, use that.  It is what it says...terminal services client.  Located at /usr/bin/tsclient on redhat distributions.
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JoshDaleAuthor Commented:
> How many vnc session you need?
Right now we are running 80 of our employees on 2 terminal servers.
> Which user or a generic user account, say guest?
Not sure... I just got back into Linux when I tried out the SUSE 9.1 Live CD... I really don't know a whole lot about Linux other than to do basic tasks.
The reason I am considering the transition is 1. Our users use MS Office, IE, and Calyx Point... I figured I could move them to Open Office, Firefox, and Wine for Point. Licensing for Microsoft is a bit over the top, so I am evaluation other options.

> If you have tsclient installed, use that.  It is what it says...terminal services client.  Located at /usr/bin/tsclient on redhat distributions.
Is this just the client app, or the server software.

I should probably explain the environment the users are working out of.
We are running 2 Windows 2000 Servers running Terminal Services in Application Mode. 80 of our employees are running WySe Thin Clients to access these servers. At any one time we probably have around 30 employees on each server.

I am pretty much just looking to see if there is a Linux equivalent to what we are doing right now.
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JoshDaleAuthor Commented:
I found a project and it looks like what I am looking for.
http://www.ltsp.org/index.php

Do any of you have any experience with this?
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yuzhCommented:
Have not tried LTSP myself, not sure how good it is. but I have use VNC, XDMCP or secure shell with X tunnelling between *nix boxes or Windows PC and *nix box for years without  any trouble.
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kfullartonCommented:
If you can get wine working for all of your windows apps, tunneling X through SSH should do the job.
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fixnixCommented:
>> "or secure shell with X tunnelling between"...

I was wondering if anyone was going to mention X....I was almost yelling at the monitor as I scrolled down this thread ;)
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DonConsolioCommented:
If you want software really close in functionality to MS-TS, you might also want to have a look at NoMachine's NX Server/Client at http://www.nomachine.com/.

If you don't need the remote access features you might as wll use plain old X11 :-)

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JoshDaleAuthor Commented:
Cool, thanks for all the input. It looks like I have alot of things to go over.
Since I am really a linux n00b I will just split the points. Thanks for you help, I appreciate it.
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fixnixCommented:
Thans for the split.

Since you're new to 'nix, let me clarify a little about just using X.  The X windows system (the GUI for 'nix-like os's) has always been *designed* to run multiple instances of graphical environments by the same or different users, on the local machine or elsewhere on any connected network, just like console terminals.  Windows terminal services basically copied the idea from the 'nix world (or at least copied an existing technology from *somewhere*...I'm not 100% certain remote GUI's actually started in 'nix...but they *definately* didn't start in doze!  The only thing necessary to run an X desktop remotely (necessary in today's world) is to "tunnel" the connection through an encrypted connection supporting tunneling like SSH (there are other methods, but SSH is pretty straightforward and very well time-tested).  There are many free X clients for windows machines, as well as SSH clients for wondows.  Tunnels are simple to set up once you understand the concept.  Basically, computer A establishes a connection to computer B via SSH.  Now all traffic between them is encrypted.  A tunnel makes traffic local on A appear to be local traffic on B.  Example: VNC uses port 5900 by default.  Instead of sending traffic from A to machine B's port 5900, the SSH tunnel from A could be set to listen for traffic on itself (127.0.0.1) on port 5900 and forward that traffic to B...and B would see the traffic as if it were comming "from" itself (also 127.0.0.1).  The VNC user on machine A would then type in 127.0.0.1:5900 for the connection address instead of 123.234.34.56:5900 and VIOLA!  all that traffic is now encrypted and tunnelled.  To further lock things down, the listening VNC server on B can be set to *only* allow connections from loopback (127.0.0.1) and that would make the service inaccessable to everyone except those that establish an SSH session and the appropriate tunnel.  Much more secure...SSH would have to be broken in to first before an attacker could even try to exploit anything else.
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fixnixCommented:
(I probably should have used Terminal Services instead of VNC in my example since you're familiar with it, but it's the same thing, just replace VNC w/ TS and 5900 w/ 3389)
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JoshDaleAuthor Commented:
Ok, I think I got it.
Linux can run multiple simultaneous users right out of the box... sounds good. I think my next step is picking up a good Linux book and digging into it this week.
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