Difference between Windows 2008 and Windows  2008 R2 with respect to Terminal Service Function

Posted on 2012-08-17
Last Modified: 2012-09-01
 Can you tell me if there is an advantage to go with Windows 2008 R2 over just Windows 2008 when I am trying to use it as a terminal server?
 I am going to have users connecting to the terminal server from their Windows 7 and Apple/Mac computers using Remote Desktop.
 When the users connect to the terminal server, I want them to have local printers and drives (C:) attached to the session.
 I have used Windows 2008 in the past as Terminal Server and was able to do what I wanted to do, but I am just curious if R2 does these jobs any better.

Question by:sglee
    LVL 17

    Assisted Solution

    by:Brad Bouchard
    The single biggest advantage that I can think of is the 64 bit support for R2.  Now granted, you can get 2008 Standard in 64 bit, but why?  I mean it doesn't cost that much less and R2 has more Group Policy features as well as a few other integrations that make it a no-brainer.
    LVL 77

    Assisted Solution

    by:Rob Williams
    Server 2008 R2 with SP1 will allow you to use remote FX if you have suitable hardware which is RDP on steroids. It will allow streaming media, running applications like AutoCAD and Photoshop, as well as auto-detecting remote USB devices.
    LVL 56

    Assisted Solution

    by:Cliff Galiher
    The very short answer is OF COURSE there are improvements in R2. Would you run Vista if Win7 is available? 2008 R2 has improvements large and small throughout the entire OS. Unless you have an old 2008 license just lying about and you *REALLY* are pinching pennies (and you'd have to be eating Ramen Soup every day to justify pinching pennies this much), then *MAYBE* you can justify using that existing license.

    From a support perspective, EOL on 2008 is coming much sooner than on R2. Again, it is a matter of how long do you plan on this server being used? Do you *really* plan on doing an upgrade next year? Because mainstream support on 2008 ends 7/9/2013...

    Go with R2. There is no reason not to.

    But if you are looking for specific reasons:

    RemoteFX. USB redirection and better performance.

    Per User RemoteApp filtering

    Fair Share CPU Scheduling (multiple sessions, one user can't launch a program that pegs the CPU and causes all the other users to lock up)
    Windows Installer is now "smart" with RDS. Fire up Win7, start an installer that takes a long time. Now *while* it is installing, start another install of a different program. You'll get an error saying "an installation is already in progress."  Well, in an RDS session, one user's installation used to block other users. That error made no sense because the user who got the error had no clue what other installation was running. Now Windows Installer queues installs from different users.

    Virtual IP addresses. Hey, some applications just don't like sharing their IP with multiple users. This was a *must* have for several of my sites.

    Like I said, improvements large and small. Some will apply to you. Some won't.
    LVL 10

    Accepted Solution

    In the latest release of Windows 2008 R2, Terminal Services has been renamed to Remote Desktop Services (RDS).  There are many enhancements in this release including enhanced multimedia performance and the ability to publish custom applications sets to specific users through Remote Desktop Web Access.  The Web Access role as the name suggests allows users to access Remote Desktop applications through a web site.

    More info:
    Remote Desktop Services Features
    What's New in Remote Desktop Services
    Introducing Remote Desktop Services, PPT

    Author Comment

    Thank you for the recommendations. It seems to be that R2 has overwhelming advantage.
    I was considering regular Windows 2008  because it is less than $200 on Ebay. But Sounds like it is worth spending money; therefore I will go with R2.
    Thank you for your advise.

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