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RDP Thin Clients and a hot spare bedroom


DesertServer
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So I have three computers running in one room and it's getting too hot/consuming too much power. My primary server is fairly capable Xeon system with 12gb ram and 2008 r2 as host OS running vm-ware workstation. One machine, my freenas server, will be fairly easily migrated to a really small vm and it will then be shut down. The other is the primary desktop in the house. It's an older AMD system running (windows 7 pro 64 4gb ram) that is still fast enough for all my needs but it runs hot and consumes too much power I think.. I have two monitors hooked up to it and want to keep both of them setup that way. I want to get a cheap RDP thin client to replace my hot running power consuming desktop. Here are my questions.

 

1. Should I just make the desktop machine into a VM and setup like that? Basically would be a transparent switch, login and all other stuff would be exactly like it is currently. Only issue I could see is this will hog a pretty decent chunk of ram 2-3gb i would guess for decent performance.

 

2. Couldn't I just enable some additional role/ services (terminal etc) on 2008 r2 box and create some users? Yeah I'd have to install some other software on server (Office and maybe a few others) but this should use less resources right?

 

3. What are things to look for in thin clients? I understand I'm not going to be able to run graphics intensive games on this thing but I want a pretty full featured browsing experience (flash etc). Plus dual monitors, are there thin clients that can do this?

 

4. What am forgetting? Is there any reason not to do this? I love the idea of just pushing a button and rdp coming up instantly and with very little power..

 

 

Thanks for any info!

 

 

Trent

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Have you considered the option of replacing the AMD system with a more modern one that uses way less power; an i3 or i5? The old AMD chips did generate a LOT of heat and, consequently, a lot of noise from cooler fans. The new Intel chips are way more power efficient.

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That is an option certainly.. I also want to drastically reduce power consumption. So I'd like to spend no more than $50. I will probably end up selling existing system and my home theater pc. It needs to be migrated to something like this too.

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Interesting. I'm considering building a new desktop with an i5. My current system has an AMD quadcore with 8gb of ram and one 7200rpm 500gb drive. I checked it the other night with a killawatt and it was drawing 80-90 Watts at idle. It would peak at about 130 under load. Maybe a more power efficient psu would help me?

 

Sent from my ADR6300 using Tapatalk

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An efficient power supply would certainly help, especially with the idle draw. The Thin clients i've been looking at draw about 5-10 watts.. I just wonder how much of the 'desktop' experience i will miss..

 

Trent

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Most thin clients do not handle dual monitors and the ones that draw only 5-10 watts are typically arm based. My opinion is get a I-2100 with an SSD and add a low end graphics card that supports dual monitors if that is what you want. The 2100 system will idle at about 22 watts out of the wall plus what ever graphics card you have to add for dual monitor support. IT will be a low power as you can get for a dual monitor setup.

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Point taken on building a low power consumption pc. I could do that, but i've done that many times before and want to try a new solution.

 

A thin client is basically a very small computer running an embedded OS, like XP embedded. It has a limited function set, like an RDP client or two. It would allow me to log into a remote desktop session and use that as a desktop computer. It has no moving parts as a general rule and draws little power. They are used more commonly in business where you have a large number of users and wish to control what they install/use on their specific desktops. It also allows you to pass off most processing power to the server. Here is a comparison of some HP thin clients. http://www.thinclientforum.com/t5700%20series%20chart.htm

 

I like the idea, I'm just not sure how much i'd be giving up going to this solution. Wouldn't it be great to set one of these up anywhere in the house? You could access pretty much anything you needed and they are so low power and footprint. It might also make a nice web browsing device at the TV. I just wanted to know if anyone has had any experience setting one up in a home environment with 2008r2 or just using a vm image of a home system.

 

Trent

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Why the discrete GPU for dual monitors? The 2000/3000 Intel GPU supports dual monitors.

 

Usually because the built in boards have only one of each type so depending on the monitors you have you may have issues. I never had to good of luck with it.

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