It’s like learning the desktop support once again. I frequently find myself playing with tools that I used to when I started my career in IT, providing onsite and personalised desktop support.
Besides using VNC or Remote Desktop to connect to Windows based servers it’s been a long time since I last used the toolset for any type of user support. VDI brought those days back and I am now continuously re-learning how to best support the user, but now in a virtual environment.
In the evolving world of Windows, desktop support has almost standardised on Microsoft’s Remote Desktop Connection – after Microsoft provided a powerful incentive in Windows XP. Additionally organisations also used VNC, PCAnywhere, Laplink etc… to take control of the user’s workstation.
Most of those tools won’t work in a VDI environment because the Console session, also known as "Session 0", is not in use anymore. Most of the VDI solutions are based on Terminal Services.
Some of the options to connect to Terminal Services sessions are:
- Real VNC Enterprise (Offers chat and file transfer but $$)
- Windows Remote Assistance (see this article – but I find quite complex)
The tools that don’t support Terminal Services include: Funk Proxy, VNC, RealVNC Free Edition and many others.
PCoIP does the trick!
Now, If you are connected using PCoIP Display Protocol from Teradici you will be able to maintain your organisation’s procedures and best practices. Why? Because PCoIP utilises the Session 0 “Console” to provide host based rendering to users.
That may seems like a little change but if you run an organisation with thousands of employees worldwide and a global follow-the-sun approach helpdesk, then you will love that nothing had to be changed in your operation.
I have seen little procedure changes to become a giant monster to manage in large organisations.