Last year, NComputing released their third thin client solution based on the Raspberry Pi 3B, the RX-RDP for Microsoft-based remote desktop environments. Unlike the RX300 which used vSpace and NComputing’s own UXP protocol to connect to the desktop, the RX-RDP connects straight to the preferred session host. This move confused me slightly as essentially, they had two devices doing the same thing albeit at a basic level, i.e. giving you access to a shared desktop.
However, with this latest release, it’s now quite clear in which direction the RX-RDP is heading and having been able to see some of these features in advance, I think this is going to be a great product.
Traditionally one of the bigger issues around the RDP protocol is that it was never able to deliver rich multimedia content unless you were using the Microsoft Remote Desktop client, RemoteFX and had expensive server-side GPU’s.
I’ve been working in the thin client industry for 17 years now, and one of the first things I always do when testing a new device from any vendor is to see how well it can deliver video content from YouTube. In the past, system administrators will tell you, they don’t want users viewing this type of content during working hours, yet they will do the same tests I do. Typically, when using a Linux-based thin client, the video performance out of the box isn’t great, and when scaled up with multiple users it’s even worse.
In recent years things have changed and delivering multimedia content for things like training, or allowing users to watch content during a lunch break, is more commonplace but the issue remains the same and that is server performance.
NComputing SuperRDP is a server-side software solution, which improves the user experience in remote desktop sessions using the RDP protocol, powered by NComputing vCAST Streaming technology.
vCAST Streaming, supported by both RX-RDP and RX300 thin clients, reduces the overall server-side CPU usage for web videos like YouTube, Vimeo and local media content without the need for expensive GPUs.
By conserving server-side hardware resources and bandwidth, SuperRDP enables more concurrent user sessions to be run at the same time while ensuring the same high level of HD video streaming experience.
A separate license is required for NComputing SuperRDP Server Pack. The license is based on a per-server basis and key features include:
- Delivering HD quality videos to users and improving the user experience without the necessity to invest in expensive GPUs on the server side.
- Increasing the server user density by offloading the multimedia decoding and rendering work to RX300 and/or RX-RDP thin clients.
The above benefits are achieved thanks to two technologies contained in the SuperRDP Server Pack software:
- vCAST Web Streaming (for YouTube and Vimeo websites in Google Chrome browser)
- vCAST Media Streaming (for VLC player reproducing H.264 content)
- Enabling printing on printers redirected to RDP sessions with the Generic USB Redirection mechanism.
We carried out a simple test on our Server 2016 test machine, with 2vCPU’s & 8GB RAM and the results are clear to see. Below is the test with vCast disabled and the CPU levels are running at around 77% whilst viewing YouTube content at 1080p.
Below shows the same content with vCast enabled, and the CPU usage is much lower at just 7%. You can also see that vCast is active by the yellow rectangle just above the sign in box.
Super RDP is supported on the following hardware:
- RX300 with firmware version 3.4.7 (and newer)
- RX-RDP with firmware version 1.9.0 (and newer)
Supported Operating Systems:
- Windows Server 2016
- Windows Server 2012 R2 U1
- Windows Server 2012
- Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1
- MultiPoint Services Role – Windows Server 2016
- Windows MultiPoint Server 2012
- Windows MultiPoint Server 2011
- Windows 10 (64-bit) (One to One)
- Windows 8.1 (64-bit) (One to One)
- Windows 7 SP1 (64-bit) (One to One)
Dual screen is supported on the RX-RDP using the Secondary Display Adapter, which is based on the Pi Zero and connects to the RX-RDP using a micro USB cable and outputs to the second screen using HDMI. This flexible approach means that you can keep your costs down and only provide a second screen to those users who need it.
If you’d like to find out more about the RX-RDP or any of our other products, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or give us a call on 01480 585 555.