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Confused about RDS collections

Posted on 2016-08-23
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Last Modified: 2016-08-23
Folks,

Currently working on an 2012r2 RDS deployment - pretty much plain vanilla as far as I can tell, we have

PDC
BDC with RD licensing
RDP session host 1 with Connection Broker and RD Gateway
RDP session host 2

My issue is with the collections as appearing on server 1

Server 1
and server 2

Server 2
Note the discrepancy...

Where are those collection stored ? In the AD (I would suppose) ? Why would they not show the same thing on all domain joined machines ?

Any info / suggestion / pointer most appreciated !
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Question by:Alexandre Takacs
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Expert Comment

by:David Johnson, CD, MVP
ID: 41767748
PDC
BDC with RD licensing
PDC/BDC no longer exists

You also need a connection broker and set your session hosts in a round-robin/failover. When you create a collection you also say which servers
https://msfreaks.wordpress.com/2013/12/23/windows-2012-r2-remote-desktop-services-part-2/
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by:Alexandre Takacs
ID: 41767789
BDC with RD licensing PDC/BDC no longer exists
Fair point - let's say that we have two domain controllers, one being the operation master. We call it PDC.

You also need a connection broker and set your session hosts in a round-robin/failover. When you create a collection you also say which servers
https://msfreaks.wordpress.com/2013/12/23/windows-2012-r2-remote-desktop-services-part-2/

Are you referring to this or am I missing something ?

Load balancer
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Expert Comment

by:Cliff Galiher
ID: 41767798
No no. "Round robin" is dead for RDS in 2012. That advice is from 2008 era and keeps getting shared by blogs where the author doesn't know any better.

First the "where" question. Not in AD. In a database on the connection broker. That is why setting up a highly available connection broker takes some extra steps. They have to share the same database effectively.

Now, on to your "discrepancy." Simple mistake.

On your first screenshot, "Collections" is clearly highlighted/selected in the left pane. That will show *all* session hosts in any collection (or even not yet in a collection) in the main pane.

Second screenshot, a specific collection is highlighted/selected in the left pane. "Collection" is *NOT* selected. Therefore the main pane will adjust to that collection. It shows apps (calculator) which is not even a subsection in the first screenshot. And the hosts subsection will be filtered only to hosts in the collection selected in the left pane.

The differences you are seeing aren't because you are viewing them on different servers. It is because you selected different elements in the GUI. Thus the behavior observed is expected and by design.
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by:Alexandre Takacs
ID: 41767835
Thanks for your input

First the "where" question. Not in AD. In a database on the connection broker. That is why setting up a highly available connection broker takes some extra steps. They have to share the same database effectively.

Ok - probably somewhat out of the scope of my question but _where_ is this database living ?

Now, on to your "discrepancy." Simple mistake.

On your first screenshot, "Collections" is clearly highlighted/selected in the left pane. That will show *all* session hosts in any collection (or even not yet in a collection) in the main pane.
Quite correct - thanks for pointing this out.

let me however submit this new screenshot (sorry for the size) - both servers in the same UI state, taken at the same time.

two servers
Why is the size of the collection different (2 vs 1) between the two machines ? I guess I still have some problem here...
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Cliff Galiher earned 2000 total points
ID: 41767862
You also have two different collection names. Which can only happen if you have two difference connection brokers. They aren't going to be aware of each other and will each have their own database with different (unique" sets of data. As to where that database lives, as I recall it is a SQL express instance installed when you install the RDCB role. But it may be a jet database. I honestly no longer recall for certain as that is they type of implementation detail you usually don't want to mess with or it breaks badly.
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Expert Comment

by:johnnneyb
ID: 41767880
Cliff's right, you have 2 databases. When installing a RDS farm all your servers should be added to the servers section in server manager and all the roles should be deployed from that location initially to avoid confusion. Server manager can only connect to one broker database at a time.
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by:Alexandre Takacs
ID: 41767882
You also have two different collection names. Which can only happen if you have two difference connection brokers. They aren't going to be aware of each other and will each have their own database with different (unique" sets of data
Good catch - that was the problem !
Just removed one and things seem consistent now. Any other action you would recommend ?
. As to where that database lives, as I recall it is a SQL express instance installed when you install the RDCB role. But it may be a jet database. I honestly no longer recall for certain as that is they type of implementation detail you usually don't want to mess with or it breaks badly.
Don't want to mess there - just curious.
Also they seem to encapsulate settings which are also exposed in GPOs (say for instance printer redirection). Which one have precedence ?
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Expert Comment

by:johnnneyb
ID: 41767884
GPOs will usually take precedence.
You don't normally need to worry to much about the database unless you want HA which requires SQL always on (enterprise version and big money)
Backup your servers if they are prob, keep multiple backups (IE to go back before corruption if needed)
Always do everything thing through server manager and GPO for best stability
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