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Calling all terminal server experts

Posted on 2011-02-24
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Last Modified: 2012-05-11
what is the best environments for a TS install?

reason i ask is that we have a client who mostly use internet/sage and traffic software, there are less than 50 employees , an IT company has deployed 3 terminal servers with 5 adsl lines and a load balancer.

personally i think thats overkill but am happy to hear opinions.

they all run fat clients as well (Xp/Vista)

I'll give 500 to the best answer.
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Question by:snagsy1980
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by:sabby447
ID: 34977516
What is server OS and what is role of these terminal servers ?

My assumption : Windows 2008 or 2008 R2 with atleast 8 GB of memory each

2 servers are good in load balacing, 3rd can be added for extra layer or as gateway, web access and licensing server. Not required really

Hoping they are not running Outlook in cache mode as that is kill as most of my experience,

5 ADSL Lines : Which part of the world we are talking here ? What's the throughput and how people are connecting for outside ?

Assumption: You are using this for internet and not for yours to connect inside, The need is stable bandwidth with some redundancy, That's it .. 2-5 depends on client situation and location
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by:BLipman
ID: 34979708
Hello, it is tough to say what kind of server capacity you need without knowing the overhead of the applications you will be running.  I set up ERP systems with some farily powerful users.  On a server with dual CPUs (current technology) and 4GB of RAM I can comfortable host 30 concurrent users.  Less intensive applications for me scale closer to 45-50 ccu without suffering much performance loss.  
Just a general piece of advice, be careful with R2 since the 64-bit aspect can cause application and print driver compatability issues.  
Like the post above states, perhaps the design is for two terminal servers and one "helper system" running TSWeb, Session Directory, etc.  If it is indeed three application servers, perhpas the thinking was "we need to be able to tolerate one server loss and maintain full performance".  If this is the case, stay with three!  
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by:snagsy1980
ID: 34979871
server os is 2003 sp3 they also have a virtual sbs which is their exchange server

they are located less then 3 miles from an exchange, the lines are purely for internet traffic, they rarely use vpn and if they do its one user or two a time.

they use office on the ts and run a vehicle tracking app which isnt that intensive.

why cant they just have 2 stand alone seervers 2008 r2 with 10gb ram each, a load balancer and 2/3 adsl lines at most?
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BLipman earned 500 total points
ID: 34981318
10GB of RAM is way overkill, most terminal servers I work on make use of less than 4GB @ 50 concurrent users.  You can estimate this more accurately though: sign onto a server, launch all of the programs that will be run via TS, look in Task Manager and see what the most RAM your session takes (just your processes).  Then multiply by the max # of concurrent users, factor in 1-2GB for the OS and overhead.  If you indeed have very memory intense programs I suppose you would need 10GB of RAM.  
They can run with two TS boxes but can you afford for one to ever be down?  If so you are fine.  Here is another thought though, how about three VM terminal servers running in VMWare, that gives you high availability and keeps your footprint down to two boxes.  I am seeing our application take about a 20% processing hit in VMWare so the most intensive users do notice a bit but most have no idea they are not on a dedicated physical server.  
Really there are tons of ways to do what you are asking so there is no right answer, just advice you can take and apply to your unique situation.
For load balancing, you can use NLB but be very careful of port flooding; I have seen NLB take down a Cisco core switch with just 9 servers in the load balancing pool.  This can be mitigated but just a word of caution is in order.  I always prefer a physical LB device such as an F5 (they are crazy expensive so you can get into a Barracuda 340 model LB for under $3k).  
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by:snagsy1980
ID: 35008517
excellent thanks
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