Microsoft Answers Your Terminal Services Questions

Microsoft Answers Your Terminal Services Questions

Q: When will we see better tools to monitor responsiveness of Terminal Services (TS) from the client end?
A: Microsoft currently has no plans for any new tools. Citrix will be introducing tools in the recently announced technologies code-named “Constellation.” No date has been set for the release of these technologies.

Q: How can I get a better response when accessing a video file or sound file over TS?
A: Citrix Presentation Server 4.0 can help in these scenarios. However, if you're constrained by bandwidth or latency, you might not be able to get much improvement.

Q: How can I strengthen RDP security such as higher encryption?
A: In Windows Server 2003, make sure to choose the high encryption setting on the Terminal Server RDP properties in the Terminal Services Manager tool. On Windows 2003, choose the FIPS for FIPS 140-1 encryption option. With Windows 2003 Service Pack 1 (SP1), you can now set Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) encryption and server authentication. The combination of these options ensures that RDP is encrypted to a very high standard.

Q: How can I improve printing on a slow network? My application runs on Terminal Services on a central location, but I need to print locally.
A: Citrix Presentation Server 4.0 and some of the solutions from other vendors, such as ThinPrint ( and Provision Networks (, might be able to help.

Q: How can I restrict (such as with a firewall) which IP addresses a user can access according to user or group? This would be similar to IP Security (IPSec) filtering, but on a user level, not a machine level.
A: This kind of filtering isn't possible with native TS.

Q: Is there a profiling tool like Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 Load Simulator (LoadSim) that I can run with an application that will tell me approximately how many users a computer will support when running that application?
A: No; however, take a look at the Windows Server 2003 Terminal Server Capacity and Scaling page, available at, for more details on capacity planning.

Q: Small Business Server (SBS) 2003 has access to Terminal Services via HTTP Secure (HTTPS). Why don't you have the same for regular Windows 2003?
A: This is a feature that will be introduced in the Longhorn timeframe.

Q: Why aren't the undocumented ports listed in all the Knowledge Base articles? I had to search all over the Web to find the additional port to open on my firewall to get Remote Desktop to connect.
A: You shouldn't have to open any additional inbound ports other than 3389. Return ports are randomly assigned, like many protocols.

Q: Why does TS leave keys in the registry for each session? There needs to be a way to manage registry size to improve performance!
A: TS should leave keys only for the profiles that remain on the machine. Deleting unused profiles or using the User Profile Hive Cleanup Service tool, or UPH Clean, should help. You can download a free copy of UPH Clean from In addition, you can use the User Profile Deletion utility (Delprof.exe) to script the deletion of all profiles older than a certain date. You can download a free copy of Delprof.exe from

Q: Why was TS taken off SBS 2003? This requires very small businesses with only one server to increase their hardware requirements to perform the same task.
A: This was changed for two reasons: First, Terminal Services mode in SBS (as opposed to Remote Desktop) changes many elements of the system and causes incompatibilities with other server services such as the Exchange Server service. Second, having user mode Terminal Services sessions on a domain controller (DC) could present a potential security risk. If you want to use Terminal Services in Application Server mode, we recommend that you purchase an additional Windows 2003 license and install an additional server running Windows Server in the SBS 2003 domain. For more information, see the Microsoft article "Deploying Windows Server 2003 Terminal Server to Host User Desktops," available at

Q: Are you going to enable saving files locally in TS?
A: You can already enable this functionality by using the Drive Redirection feature of Windows Server 2003 Terminal Services.

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