Whats new in RDS 2012 R2


Its been a while since my last Remote Desktop Post so i thought it would be good to mention some of the new features coming with RDS 2012 R2.

Reductions in Storage and Network Bandwidth:

Microsoft have focused on reducing Storage and network costs for desktop deployments. Data Deduplication has been introduced to VDI (personal Desktops) allowing storage capacity reductions of up to 90% when using SMB to store VHDs.

Tiered storage Spaces has been introduced allowing the use of fast and slow disks to provide flexibility to VDI environments. This reduces costs on Disks and allows VDI demanding workloads to move to a faster set of Disks when required.

RemoteFX Media Streaming bandwidth has been reduced by 50% compared to Server 2012. This enables improved performance from VDI over the WAN.

Microsoft have also introduced some RemoteFX codec improvements.

End user experience improvements:

Transparent windows is now fully supported allowing applications like Office 2013 to appear as local apps.

Microsoft have been working on the resizing of RemoteApp Windows to make them look & feel like local apps.

RemoteApp functionality has been improved to provide users with the same experience as local apps. This includes thumbnails, aero peek, and the live taskbar.

Dynamic Monitor and resolution changes have been added to improve the end users visual experience. This includes adding and removing a second display, changing the resolution or rotating a display when using a tablet.

ClickOnce setup technology is now supported in remote apps.

DirectX 11.1 is now supported extending the ability to virtualise a GPU in a Hyper-V host to provide hardware acceleration using Direct 11.1 for full desktops.

The Remote Desktop Application located in Windows Store been improved.  Including simplifying the ability to bring up the Touch Keyboard and the management of desktop connection subscriptions from within the application rather than the control panel.

Quick Reconnect has been introduced to speed up the process of reconnecting when the network drops. Previously it could take 70 + seconds to restore a connection, now it can reconnect in less than 10.

Nested RDP Support has been around for a while now, but never supported. Microsoft have now stated that this is supported in Sever 2012.

Enhancements to the RDS 2012 Infrastructure:

Microsoft have added a cool new feature called Session Shadowing. This allows administrators to shadow session-based, virtual based desktop & RemoteApp programs. This is a great tool for troubleshooting enduser problems. It also supports multiple monitors.

Remote Desktop Gateway Pluggable authentication. Two factor authentication now works seamlessly with RD Web Access or RDP file Resource launching.

Microsoft have now enabled the connection Broker role to be installed on a 2012 DC. for all those wanting to reduce costs and use DC’s….. you now can. One new feature i am really excited about is the ability to use a RD session host Server with out a connection Broker.

Microsoft have even thought about how current clients and customers are going to upgrade to R2. Server 2012 R2 supports in place upgrades of RD Session Hosts from 2012.

Look forward to september when Server 2012 R2 is released. …..

2 thoughts on “Whats new in RDS 2012 R2

  1. Hi Rayn,
    Thanks for the great post and all the others. The RDS posts have been very helpfully as I build & test a new RDS environment for our department.

    Also it was announced today 2012R2, Win8.1 and System Center 2012R2 will be released October 18,2013. No word on if RTM will be sooner….. I hope so.

    Richard Leos
    System Administrator
    IET – Enterprise Applications and Infrastructure Services
    University of California, Davis

    1. Thanks for the post Richard, your feed back is greatly appreciated.

      Yes some exciting stuff coming soon, TechED showed some of the new features and I hope to demonstrate these in posts soon.

      all the best

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