Microsoft RDS licensing and how to equip your work environment

Microsoft’s Remote Desktop Services (RDS) is a Microsoft Windows Server service that allows users to log into their device to access Windows applications. For example, as a user you can log in to a ‘virtual’ desktop, which gives you anywhere and anytime access to your documents and applications that you use for your work. This is very useful if you want to be able to work anywhere. 

There are various licenses within the Microsoft RDS environment: There is Microsoft RDS User CAL and Device CAL license. To determine how many licenses, you need within your company, it is useful to know how these licenses work. Are you curious how many licenses you need from Microsoft RDS? Read below on how both licenses work. 

What is a ‘CAL’ and what are Users and Devices CAL? 

CAL stands for the term Client Access License and means that the person who purchases this license from Microsoft can access the Windows Server service with the added users or devices. A ‘User CAL’ is a license for a user, such as your employee, and a ‘Device CAL’ is a license for a   device that is used, such as a smartphone, desktop or tablet.  

What is a Microsoft RDS User CAL? 

A Microsoft RDS User CAL means you pay per user of the service. Suppose you have an employee who has access to the server via a PC, tablet or smartphone, you pay for the user who logs in to the server. This can be especially useful for your organization when your employees need to access your work environment. 

What is a Microsoft RDS Device CAL? 

You purchase a Device CAL license per device. This is more beneficial to you if you plan to put multiple employees on one device. So you use the license on one device, regardless of how many users use this device. A Device CAL license can be more useful for companies that are in the Retail or Hospitality industry. Often, several employees work on one or a few devices, so you do not pay per user, but per device. 

How can I combine both licenses? 

Suppose you want to give multiple employees access to your environment on multiple devices, then it is recommended to combine both licenses. What’s the best way to do that? First of all, you can see which employees should have access to your environment and put them in a list. It is then best to view per employee which devices they have and whether they also need access to your environment with those devices. 

This requires good IT Asset Management from your organization, because you have to carefully check how many licenses you need to purchase per model. After all, you must comply with Microsoft’s license compliance (enough licenses). 

How many licenses do I need? 

To know how many licenses you need for your company, it is useful to make a good inventory of how many devices you want on your RDS environment and how many users you want on your RDS environment. If you do not have a clear overview of this, you may be purchasing too many or too few licenses. It is also useful to know whether you want to buy licenses based on devices, users or a combination of both. 

We help you purchase Microsoft RDS 

Q-Advise is happy to help you purchase the right amount of Microsoft RDS licenses. Did you know that you can save up to 72% on pre-owned software? These work the same as new licenses, only the price is cheaper! Are you interested in purchasing Microsoft RDS, or do you need help determining the right amount of licenses to purchase? We would like to help you! 

Curious about how much you can save on Microsoft RDS? Would you like to buy used Microsoft RDS, or would you like to know more about Microsoft RDS? Contact us! 

What are the components of Microsoft RDS? 

In order to use Microsoft RDS you need a network connection and the right license. Microsoft RDS is a suite of services that allow remote users to access applications and data from multiple physical computers over the web. It consists of several components as stated below and their uses.  

a. Remote Desktop Session Host (RDSH)

The RDSH ensures that the virtual desktop and Windows applications are accessible by multiple users remotely, because it hosts a ‘session’ each time.  Users are able to use applications, files stored in a shared centralized location, data, or configuration setting hosted on the same server. This ensures that multiple users can access desktops and applications at the same time.    

The RDSH enables businesses to increase their productivity by allowing multiple users to access the same set of resources without compromising security. Additionally, it also helps organizations save money by reducing hardware costs as fewer physical machines are needed for hosting services.  

With RDSH, users can connect from almost any device such as laptops, tablets, or smartphones while still being able to access the same resources they would otherwise have access to in their office environment.  

b. Remote Desktop Connection Broker                                     (RD Connection Broker)

This component of Microsoft RDS is a role service component of Microsoft RDS. It handles the incoming desktop connection requests and forwards them to the requested desktop and applications. Every time you try to log in to your remote desktop, the Connection Broker handles your request. It is the ‘man in the middle’ component of RDS. 

Remote Desktop Connection Broker (RD Connection Broker) is a Windows Server role that allows administrators to manage and maintain user sessions in virtualized environments. RD Connection Broker works in conjunction with other roles such as Remote Desktop Session Host (RDSH) or Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) to provide users access to their virtual desktops or RemoteApp applications. RD Connection Broker is responsible for managing the connection between the client and the server, authenticating users, authorizing access to resources, maintaining session state, and providing load balancing by distributing connections among available RDSHs or Virtual Machines (VMs). RD Connection Broker also acts as an intermediary between the client and the RDSH or VDI, enabling secure communication between them.  

c. Remote Desktop Gateway

The Remote Desktop Gateway ensures that a connection can be made between an external network and the internal server of your company. This means that if you want to log in to your remote desktop from the outside, the RD Gateway will take care of it for you. 

Remote Desktop Gateway (RDG) is a type of secure gateway that enables users to connect to remote computers from any internet-enabled location. It does this by providing a secure tunnel between the user’s device and the remote computer, allowing for a secure connection over the public internet. The RDG also provides additional security measures such as access control, encryption, and authentication. This ensures only authorized users can gain access to the remote computer and that data remains safe and confidential while in transit. 

d. Remote Desktop Web Access (RD Web Access)

This enables users to connect with RemoteApp and Desktop Connection. Remote Desktop Web Access (RD Web Access) is a feature of Windows Server that allows users to securely access their remote desktops, applications, and data from almost any device with an internet connection. RD Web Access enables organizations to provide their users with easy access to corporate resources from virtually any location, regardless of the user’s device. It is an easy-to-use solution for securely connecting remote users to corporate resources, such as applications and files, without the need for complicated VPN software or hardware infrastructure. 

e. Remote Desktop Licensing

This component comes with an application called Remote Desktop Licensing Manager. This application can be used to check how many licenses have access to the RDS Host Server. Remote Desktop Licensing (RDL) is a feature of Microsoft Windows Server used to provide access to remote desktop and application services. This feature allows users to access desktops and applications hosted on the server from any location, as long as they have an active internet connection. It also provides administrators with the ability to centrally manage licenses across multiple servers and devices. RDL works by authenticating users when they log in and issuing them a license for each Remote Desktop Service session they create. The RDL license is tied to the user’s account, so if they log out, the license will be freed up and available for use by another user. 

f. RemoteApp

This is an application that ensures that all applications are presented to the user in one window. Instead of logging in to a desktop, log in to the RemoteApp and you will see all the applications you are entitled to. 

RemoteApp is a Microsoft technology that allows users to access applications over a network connection. It enables the use of remote applications, which appear as if they are running on the local computer. RemoteApp provides an easy way for applications to be accessed from anywhere, while still providing all the benefits of running locally on a user’s computer. 

Now that you have a good idea of ​how Microsoft RDS can help with your daily work, it is good to know how you can purchase Microsoft RDS. You can purchase Microsoft RDS on a device-based basis or on a user-based basis. Our experience shows that this can be more challenging in practice than theory dictates. 

Get Microsoft RDS cheap now 

Are you interested in purchasing Microsoft Remote Desktop Services? At Q-Advise we are happy to help you with RDS licenses for your company. 

We are happy to give you independent advice in the field of purchasing Microsoft RDS licenses and used software & license management. In addition to new licenses, you can also use second-hand Microsoft RDS licenses. These work the same as new licenses, only the price is cheaper! You can easily save over 50% on the software package you purchase. 

Curious about how much you can save on Microsoft RDS? Would you like to buy used Microsoft RDS, or would you like to know more about Microsoft RDS? Contact us! 

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