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Net Booting - The future?

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  • User profile image
    moksha

    Hello all,

    I am relatively new to Channel 9.

    One of the topics that has caught my attention in recent times is "Net Booting". I was wondering if anyone over here has had success with it.

    Any pointers/resources would be great.

    The way I see it, considering great network speeds in the near future, the need for one to have a hard disks would/could be eliminated.

    Hope to hear back from you all.

    Vishnu

  • User profile image
    trippparks

    Booting off the network has been around for awhile. Old X workstations could boot using bootp and tftp.You can install Windows 2000 and above using RIS which uses PXE (basically DHCP and tftp). Sun sells / sold a workstation (SunRay) that booted from the network as well. Even though network bandwidth is increasing, latency isn't decreasing so that will probably be the major factor in adoption of diskless workstations.

  • User profile image
    littleguru

    They did it also here at university. Somehow they changed to linux since they said it's easier there and they need not to pay the licenses Sad

  • User profile image
    sbc

    Not good for Microsoft, net booting. No client license fees.

  • User profile image
    W3bbo

    Wouldn't it just be eaiser to run Citrix or Terminal Services to a load of "dumb clients"? Like it used to be back in the 70's Smiley

    Although I would like to see latency reduced in TS... it can get annoying when you're doing it over a 56K

  • User profile image
    figuerres

    a few things:

    I used to do a lot of work over a modem with an older program called Timbuktu and it was very good.

    with windows terminal services you can tune the connection to work better with slow links.
    turn off window drag, backgound bitmap and other "eye candy"

    really any "thin client"  be it X Window or Microsoft or Citrix or VNC etc... needs a real computer with an OS....

    just that you can get them where the OS in ROM or FLASH so there are no moving parts.

    for some tasks they are great....

    another way to do it is to build a big display and keyboard on top of a "Pocket PC" ....
    in other words for example Linux Embeded or XP Embeded so that the client has a local OS that can do some tasks localy and only needs remote for some apps to run ...

    I used to run a data-entry room where we had rows of PC's with tiny cases, no floppy,CD, serial ports, or hard disks, power supply's were tiny 60 watt things.
    at that time the real power draw was the CRT displayes -- at that time only laptops had LCD / flat panel tech.

    shop around for "Windows Thin CLient" and you will find what amounts to a PC w/o a hard disk, some with touch screens.... tend to be low res on cheap ones (640x480) VGA  -- built for finger tip inputs.
    and others that are top of the line screens with x86 cpu's

  • User profile image
    figuerres

    W3bbo wrote:
    Wouldn't it just be eaiser to run Citrix or Terminal Services to a load of "dumb clients"? Like it used to be back in the 70's

    Although I would like to see latency reduced in TS... it can get annoying when you're doing it over a 56K


    drop the color depth down to say 256 / 8 bits
    turn off the eye candy.

    then it should run better.

  • User profile image
    AndyC

    W3bbo wrote:
    Wouldn't it just be eaiser to run Citrix or Terminal Services to a load of "dumb clients"? Like it used to be back in the 70's


    Yes and no. Smiley

    If you're doing something like word-processing or simple office type task then Terminal Services is probably a better solution.

    On the other hand, if you're doing a lot of heavy duty processing, keeping things client side might be a more scalable option. I'm not entirely convinced that diskless booting is necessarily a better solution to this than a push technology like AD or Ghost though - they have much more resilience in the event of a server failure or loss of network connectivity and are less likely to provide a laggy end-user experience.

  • User profile image
    littleguru

    W3bbo wrote:
    Wouldn't it just be eaiser to run Citrix or Terminal Services to a load of "dumb clients"? Like it used to be back in the 70's

    Although I would like to see latency reduced in TS... it can get annoying when you're doing it over a 56K


    They are using Citrix here to run Ms Office and IE from a Linux machine. It's never working like it should. I always get a lot strange exceptions from Citrix like for example a message saying something about "BadCursors".

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