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remote access

By neal1lb ·
we are entering into an outsourcing
solution for win2000 servers, exchange,
database, and doc. management servers.
since the servers will be housed off site
we are getting into discussions (quotes)
about different ways for users to connect.
there is a line from here to there however,
am not sure about bandwith. they claim
that there should be more than enough.
they keep trying to push a product called
citrix for client access. we would like
users to be able to utilize what has already
been put in front of them (ie. office)
in this senario would citrix be a necessary
component or could other means (better,
cheaper) be used to connect to the server
i have seen alot on vpn but not sure how it
works
any info would be greatlyappreciated
thanks

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by erikdr In reply to remote access

There's two OSI-layers and two types of app, so confusion is almost guaranteed :-)

1. The bandwidth and connection style.
On infrastructural level, you need TCP/IP. You can choose between several ways of making the IP connection - e.g. classic dial-in remote access, or VPN (using an existing Internet connection), or leased line. For all of them, bandwidth comes at a price. Look at 2. to see how much you need.

2. The types of apps accessed remotely.

For database/web applications, generally spoken 'remote node' is enough. That means that locally only a web browser and maybe a thin client app runs, and all storage on the server side is accessed.
For more rich interactive appps (e-mail, groupware, doc management) there are two schools of thought, in case everyone agrees web-enabling is not enough:
* run locally, 'fat client'. Again remote node needed. Now the outsources *does* have a problem with client PC management, sw distribution etc.
* Windows terminals. Windows 2000 offers a bare-bone solution for this (Terminal Services), Citrix Metaframe is the luxury (and more expensive) version.
Things like Office do run under Windows Terminals though not at their fastest, things like video editing etc. just don't.

So that's a number of the choices. Have fun!

<Erik> - The Netherlands

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by pete In reply to remote access

Sounds like they are selling a good solution. The Citrix metaframe, like Eric said is DE-Lux. The Microsoft version is simply Citrix watered down (only 256 colors, not multimedia).

What you will get as a user on your PC, or Mac or Linux or thin client terminal, are a constant update of screen shots - graphics updates. The 'thin-client' does nothing more than become an update of the old dumb terminal, only it receives graphics rather that text.

All the Office Suite will be available, you'll never need to update a PC, Mac or whatever (Citrix has terminal clients for almost everything) ever again. If fact, new client purchases would be thin client terminals which is smaller than a personal pizza box, USB key board and monitor connection. No nasty hard drive, no floppy, no fan, no noise, low power >>NO SUPPORT<<

Load the terminal client on your computer at home and dial-in to your desktop. Pickup where you left off at work.

VPN has a lot of overhead = bandwidth associated.

Have fun.

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