WS2016: What Is New For RDS? | Parallels Answers

Because Windows Server operating system plays a dominant role in business network administration, administrators across the globe closely follow Microsoft’s announcements regarding when new Windows Server OSes are coming out. Microsoft released the first technical preview of Windows Server 2016 (WS2016) in October 2014. Over the last two years, Microsoft has released five technical previews providing a glimpse of the WS2016 innovations. The wait finally ended when Microsoft announced the release of Windows Server 2016 on September 26, 2016. Learn More “What is new in Microsoft RDS 2016 and Parallels RAS” Webinar Series 

ws2016What’s new in Windows Server 2016?

The main theme of the new features in the latest release is related to cloud optimization. Windows Server 2016 is packed with features that make it suitable for cloud networks. As a result, it comes with tight integration with Windows Azure cloud service. There are several other improvements as well. First, to combat increasing cyber-attacks, the new OS comes with advanced multi-layer security. Furthermore, it comes with features such as virtual machine shield, key storage drive, privilege-based access control, and other security policies to protect the infrastructure from sophisticated cyber threats.

WS2016 offers a cloud-ready application platform wherein organizations can use Windows Server containers and Hyper-V containers to quickly build and run applications in the cloud. In addition, the lightweight Nano server deployment comes with enhanced features to build Nano server modules while separating VM and physical host functionalities. Download White paper “Whats new in Windows Server 2016”

RDS & RemoteFX in Windows Server 2016

Remote Desktop Services has also been improved with the WS2016 release. For instance, the virtualization tool from Microsoft comes with enhanced graphical performance. Furthermore, in the Hyper-V environment, IT administrators can run multiple server sessions using graphic-rich applications on the same server, as each VM has its own GPU driver, thanks to OpenGL 4.4 and Direct Device Assignment (DDA) technology. RDS is easier to implement, as the High Availability Connection Broker can use the Azure SQL database or any existing non-dedicated SQL server instead of its own SQL server cluster.

Due to cloud integration, scalability is also significantly improved. Another important feature is the tight optimization between RDS and the Azure platform. Not only can RDS use an Azure-hosted database, but the setup can also use the Active Directory Domain Services of Azure instead of an actual domain controller. Finally, Azure quick start templates help you set up RDS as quickly as possible.

Areas of improvement

At the outset, WS2016 comes with increased security, cloud-ready platform integrations, improved scalability, and better graphics performance. However, an organization cannot fully rely on WS2016 to manage remote virtual networks. First, the complexity in configuring and managing the tool remains the same as before; IT administrators must install and configure multiple components to set up the tool. For RDS load balancing, you should install and configure an additional component called Network Load Balancing (NLB) .

Moreover, the improved graphical experience only supports limited devices. For instance, when the network is connected to Chromebook, the tool offers limited functionality, so seamless experience is not delivered across all devices. Finally, organizations have to rely on third-party tools for security when delivering desktops and applications to remote users, and WS2016 also lacks reporting tools and device redirection features.

Parallels RAS brings out the best in WS2016

Parallels Remote Application Server (RAS) is a comprehensive virtualization solution that reduces the limitations of WS2016 while leveraging its performance benefits. In contrast to RDS, Parallels RAS is easy to deploy and use.

From a central dashboard, you can monitor and manage the entire infrastructure with ease. Moreover, the tool offers 14 types of reporting modules to give clear insights into resource usage. Parallels RAS supports a range of devices, including iOS, Android, Mac, Linux, and Chromebook. Not only that, but the application delivery solution provides native-like controls, such as swipe and drag, for a top mobile user experience.

Support for all hypervisors means organizations can easily integrate existing RDS infrastructure with Parallels RAS at little to no risk. High Availability Load Balancing (HALB) comes auto-configured, so you don’t have to worry about configuration hassles. Furthermore, the tool supports two-factor authentication, Deepnet, Radius and SafeNet for a higher level of security. Most importantly, Parallels RAS is the lowest-cost option for a powerful virtualization solution. With Parallels RAS, IT administrators are making the best use of WS2016.

Want to try Parallels RAS? Download a free trial.


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