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Buying clients to use with terminal services

Posted on 2007-07-26
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We use terminal services & from my understanding, users don't need great PCs since all applications are on the server, correct?  When we've purchased new computers, we've been getting OptiPlex PCs from Dell for $800+.  Is there a reason for doing that?  Couldn't we just get a $500 home user-type desktop?  
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Question by:TinaSC
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by:Pber
ID: 19579116
Yes as long as it can run the terminal server client you should be good.  I've run clients 300Mhz machines and it's as fast as can be.

You could also look into thin clients:http://h10010.www1.hp.com/wwpc/us/en/sm/WF05a/12454-12454-321959-338927-89307-3221863.html

They usually have no moving parts and never die or need patching/upgrades.
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by:Pber
Pber earned 100 total points
ID: 19579120
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Lazarus earned 140 total points
ID: 19579147
You can buy HP t5725 Thin Client machines for about $450 then the cost of the monitor. Depending on size and all should be between $150 to $175
So your at $625 right there. Not a huge savings but a savings.
I can buy a VERY decent computer that is much better than a Optiplex for $385 with 3 year warranty and nice wide screen Monitor for $175 and OS for about $67 if your buying Vista Upgrade from CDWG. So you at $675. I'll buy my Full on computers at and everything I need that way. That will run Terminal Server and anything else you can through at it. Unless you just want a computer that no one can mess with then Thin client is the way. But I'm thinking your just buying computers for to much.
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by:TinaSC
ID: 19579298
This is helpful - thanks.  I've been in my position for <1 year &  had never heard of TS until I came here (no, not a whole lot of experience here).  When we bought the last few computers, we bought the OptiPlex because that's what we've been doing & I simply didn't know any better.  I'll look at CDW too.  Dell was supposedly giving us a nonprofit discount, but I don't see much of a price difference compared to just buying online like anyone else.
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by:Lee W, MVP
Lee W, MVP earned 260 total points
ID: 19579562
Don't ever order online from Dell.  Configure something if you like, but GET YOURSELF AN ACCOUNT TEAM!  You can get MUCH better discounts from Dell through an account team - you can usually talk them down a few bucks too.

As for buying lesser systems, what exactly does your company do?  Are there ANY applications that run locally?  Are there any applications that MIGHT run locally better?  I'm a huge fan of Terminal Services for Remote Access and specific applications, but running the ENTIRE business off it leaves me a bit uneasy.

As for discounts, have you seen TechSoup.org?  If you're a non-profit (and if you qualify), you can get used/cheap computers from them, as well as HUGELY discounted software.
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by:TinaSC
ID: 19582839
I guess I just haven't been impressed with our account team at Dell - maybe I need to push them a little harder on pricing.  We're a nonprofit foundation with 14 people.  We have software specialized for nonprofits & are big users of Msft Office - all thru TS.  There are a few people who have software on their own system only (Contribute, Quicken, etc...) but I don't know if anyone has more than 1 or 2 packages.  We are big fans of TechSoup.  We do pretty well with software purchases, but have some limitations.  For ex., with Msft, we can only buy once a year so we need to plan pretty well.  I think their PCs are pretty old but maybe I need to take a closer look.
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by:Lee W, MVP
Lee W, MVP earned 260 total points
ID: 19582854
If all you're using is Terminal Services, you need almost NOTHING for that.  You could use Windows 3.1 on a 486.  The "power" is all on the server (ok, that said, you wouldn't really WANT to use Win31 with a 486 primarily due to printing abilities).

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