Windows Thin Clients served up from SuSE 10.3 server - Suse

This is a discussion on Windows Thin Clients served up from SuSE 10.3 server - Suse ; houghi wrote: > Günther Schwarz wrote: >> So I'm still confused. What are your users supposed to do with a Thin >> Client running Windows CE or whatever and without any applications >> other than a web browser or a ...

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Thread: Windows Thin Clients served up from SuSE 10.3 server

  1. Re: Windows Thin Clients served up from SuSE 10.3 server

    houghi wrote:

    > Günther Schwarz wrote:
    >> So I'm still confused. What are your users supposed to do with a Thin
    >> Client running Windows CE or whatever and without any applications
    >> other than a web browser or a terminal emulation which might be
    >> included in the client's software?

    >
    > It could be that they use a website that forces them to use IE. Where
    > I work we have at least one site that works only with IE6¹
    > Or it could be that they must run an aplication that only runs on
    > Windows.


    But then the thing does not run any decent applications because of the
    small flash disk and not much RAM.

    > And that with 80% of the PC's only run the following: IE for webmail
    > to an Outlook server (No Outlook or Outlook Express, webmail), a
    > printer and a telnet to an AS 400 billing service


    For this a Thin Client like the HP mentioned in this thread should be up
    to the job. But with the exception of the Internet Explorer (and nobody
    will know for sure if the CE version is 100% compatible) any other Thin
    Client running a Linux variant will be as well. I have a Wyse on my
    desk. Works great as a web terminal with Firefox, consumes next to no
    energy, and is absolutely silent. BTW, does anybody how to get a shell
    on this thing?

    Günther

  2. Re: Windows Thin Clients served up from SuSE 10.3 server

    Jim Carter wrote:
    > "Nikos Chantziaras" wrote in message
    > news:fp61c5$hnt$1@volcano1.grnet.gr...
    >> Jim Carter wrote:
    >>> [...]
    >>> Again, my request is to serve the Windows O/S to diskless thin clients
    >>> from a Linux server.

    >> [...]
    >> You can serve any OS to the thin client; it's just a bunch of files served
    >> over FTP. However, the desktop that will be displayed remotely on the
    >> thin client, does not run on that thin client; it runs on the server. You
    >> serve the graphics of the desktop, not the OS.
    >> [...]

    >
    > So you're saying that I can not pxeboot a Windows image that resides on a
    > Linux server?
    >
    > My understanding of Thin Clients is that they boot their own O/S from a
    > network server then execute that O/S locally.


    No, that's not a thin client. What you described is just a machine
    booting from the network instead of its hard disk. A thin client
    downloads an OS and runs it in order to do a graphical login to an OS
    image/instance/copy/whatever that does *not* run on the thin client.

    In other words, you use the thin client to access the OS that runs on
    the server. Yes, you must download an OS locally to the thin client,
    but this is "just" to provide the thin client with the software and
    settings necessary to access the OS that runs on the server. As you can
    imagine, the OS that the thin client downloads from the server does not
    need to run on the server; it is served as files (through FTP). Once
    the served OS runs on the thin client, it does its magic to connect
    remotely to the OS that runs on the server.

    Therefore, the OS that the thin client presents to its user is the OS
    that runs on the server (that's the whole point of thin clients) and
    obviously if you want to present Windows to the users of the thin
    clients, Windows must be running on the server.



    > Doesn't that mean that the
    > network server does not necessarily have to run the same O/S as what is
    > booted by (served to) the Thin Clients?


    As described above, it depends on what you mean with "served". If you
    mean the remote desktop itself, then yes, the OS must run on the server.
    If you mean the files served to the thin client as the client's local
    OS, then no, they're just files sent over FTP, they don't run on the server.


    With all that said, I'm not sure if you actually want a thin client
    setup, or an array of machines that boot from the network. If you want
    a central machine that provides a remote desktop to clients, and you
    want those clients to do their everyday job just as if they were sitting
    in front of the central server machine, then you're talking about thin
    clients. There are various ways to achieve what you want. One such way
    would be to install Windows on a thin client, set it up the way you want
    and make it connect through RDP to the central server (Windows can run
    there inside a virtual machine on top of Linux if you want)
    automatically, and then copy that Windows installation to the server and
    serve it in a way the thin clients can access.

    I'm not familiar with Windows-based thin clients so I can't offer exact
    details, just the overall approach. But I assume Microsoft must provide
    some kinds of tools to make all of the above easier.

  3. Re: Windows Thin Clients served up from SuSE 10.3 server

    Nikos Chantziaras wrote:
    > [...] One such way
    > would be to install Windows on a thin client, set it up the way you want
    > and make it connect through RDP to the central server (Windows can run
    > there inside a virtual machine on top of Linux if you want)
    > automatically, and then copy that Windows installation to the server and
    > serve it in a way the thin clients can access.


    Actually, you can even serve a Linux distribution as the local OS to the
    thin clients, and have Linux connect to the Windows OS that runs on the
    server with RDP (there are RDP clients for Linux too). The user will
    not see Linux on the thin client screen, but the RPD initiated Windows
    session.

    Your choice.

  4. Re: Windows Thin Clients served up from SuSE 10.3 server

    Darrell Stec wrote:
    > Have you tried the IE only website using Firefox with the User Agent
    > Switcher? That works many times except when the web site insists on using
    > ActiveX.


    Have you tried to convice an IT department to do this and then if the
    site does not work have the nightmare of not being suported?

    Also as far as I can tell I am the only one who A) Uses the program and
    B) has Firefox installed.

    > I don't know about laws where you live, but in the US a website requiring a
    > program that can cause damage like ActiveX is legally liable for any
    > damage, or even virus infection that causes damage.


    The worst that can happen if I look to close into it is that I loose my
    job, because waasting time, installing things on the PC that is not
    allowed or wasting other peoples time. The best that can happen is
    absolutely nothing.

    > There is no reason whatsoever for a website to require an IE only browser.


    Or a Firefox only one for that matter (we have one of those as well).
    However those are the facts and that is what you have to deal with. If
    ypu promise to pay my salary if I get fired till I retire and then some,
    I will promise to stand my ground and NOT run IE anymore.

    > The only is excuse is the incompetence of the programmers or they want more
    > control of the visitors computer than they should have.


    I know it is both. The website also has the posibilaty to connect to
    launch other programs on your PC. That is buil in and on purpose. It is
    even something I send out requests for.

    A small example: I look up one of our products. I then can click on it
    to see if we still have it in stock. This launches the program where it
    will do the lookup and give me feedback wether it is.
    Obviously I also want to know the sales price, so it can launch a
    different program, get the info and get that data.

    Those will be programs that run localy.

    If the item is not in stock, I want to know if our suplier has the item
    in stock. That will launch (at this moment) the website to the suplier,
    look up the data and give the feedback. That sipliers website is remote
    and protected by a password. We are working on a better solution
    (probably xml)

    So it basicaly a site where I can go and let people do their job and
    only use that one site, instead of running many programs at the same
    time that connect to different sorts of information.

    houghi
    --

    You are standing at the end of a road before a small brick building.
    Around you is a forest. A small stream flows out of the building and
    down a gully.

  5. Re: Windows Thin Clients served up from SuSE 10.3 server

    Günther Schwarz wrote:
    > For this a Thin Client like the HP mentioned in this thread should be up
    > to the job. But with the exception of the Internet Explorer (and nobody
    > will know for sure if the CE version is 100% compatible) any other Thin
    > Client running a Linux variant will be as well. I have a Wyse on my
    > desk. Works great as a web terminal with Firefox, consumes next to no
    > energy, and is absolutely silent. BTW, does anybody how to get a shell
    > on this thing?


    Does it run Windows or Linux. If Linux, what distro?

    houghi
    --
    If God doesn't destroy Hollywood Boulevard, he owes Sodom and
    Gomorrah an apology.

  6. Re: Windows Thin Clients served up from SuSE 10.3 server

    houghi wrote:

    > Günther Schwarz wrote:
    >> I have a
    >> Wyse on my desk. Works great as a web terminal with Firefox, consumes
    >> next to no energy, and is absolutely silent. BTW, does anybody how to
    >> get a shell on this thing?

    >
    > Does it run Windows or Linux. If Linux, what distro?


    Linux, their own variant based on something, see .
    AMD Geode CPU, so it is X86 compatible and not openwrt for embedded
    devices. Still it fits in the small flash disk as even without network
    the thing boots just fine.
    With a shell I could try to set it up with an external hard disk as an
    favorably energy efficient file and streaming server for home use as an
    replacement for my Asus WL-HDD which is nice but slow to the extreme in
    file transfers.

    Günther


  7. Re: Windows Thin Clients served up from SuSE 10.3 server

    Günther Schwarz wrote:
    > houghi wrote:
    >
    >> Günther Schwarz wrote:
    >>> I have a
    >>> Wyse on my desk. Works great as a web terminal with Firefox, consumes
    >>> next to no energy, and is absolutely silent. BTW, does anybody how to
    >>> get a shell on this thing?

    >>
    >> Does it run Windows or Linux. If Linux, what distro?

    >
    > Linux, their own variant based on something, see .


    That does not help very nmuch. So if you then look at
    http://support.wyse.com/ and search for `Linux shell`, I get to
    http://tinyurl.com/3c76vw "Solution 10827: 5440 modem setup" where at the
    configuration it says on line 19 an 20:
    19. Click on the menu Winterm à User Applications à New Shell
    20. Type `su -l root` and press `Enter` to login as root

    Ctrl+Alt+F2...F12 does not work, because the device does not suport
    multi console.


    houghi
    --
    If God doesn't destroy Hollywood Boulevard, he owes Sodom and
    Gomorrah an apology.

  8. Re: Windows Thin Clients served up from SuSE 10.3 server

    "Nikos Chantziaras" wrote in message
    news:fp7pot$bue$1@volcano1.grnet.gr...
    > Jim Carter wrote:
    >> "Nikos Chantziaras" wrote in message
    >> news:fp61c5$hnt$1@volcano1.grnet.gr...
    >>> Jim Carter wrote:
    >>>> [...]
    >>>> Again, my request is to serve the Windows O/S to diskless thin clients
    >>>> from a Linux server.
    >>> [...]
    >>> You can serve any OS to the thin client; it's just a bunch of files
    >>> served over FTP. However, the desktop that will be displayed remotely
    >>> on the thin client, does not run on that thin client; it runs on the
    >>> server. You serve the graphics of the desktop, not the OS.
    >>> [...]

    >>
    >> So you're saying that I can not pxeboot a Windows image that resides on a
    >> Linux server?
    >>
    >> My understanding of Thin Clients is that they boot their own O/S from a
    >> network server then execute that O/S locally.

    >
    > No, that's not a thin client. What you described is just a machine
    > booting from the network instead of its hard disk. A thin client
    > downloads an OS and runs it in order to do a graphical login to an OS
    > image/instance/copy/whatever that does *not* run on the thin client.
    >
    > In other words, you use the thin client to access the OS that runs on the
    > server. Yes, you must download an OS locally to the thin client, but this
    > is "just" to provide the thin client with the software and settings
    > necessary to access the OS that runs on the server. As you can imagine,
    > the OS that the thin client downloads from the server does not need to run
    > on the server; it is served as files (through FTP). Once the served OS
    > runs on the thin client, it does its magic to connect remotely to the OS
    > that runs on the server.
    >
    > Therefore, the OS that the thin client presents to its user is the OS that
    > runs on the server (that's the whole point of thin clients) and obviously
    > if you want to present Windows to the users of the thin clients, Windows
    > must be running on the server.
    >
    >
    >
    >> Doesn't that mean that the network server does not necessarily have to
    >> run the same O/S as what is booted by (served to) the Thin Clients?

    >
    > As described above, it depends on what you mean with "served". If you
    > mean the remote desktop itself, then yes, the OS must run on the server.
    > If you mean the files served to the thin client as the client's local OS,
    > then no, they're just files sent over FTP, they don't run on the server.
    >
    >
    > With all that said, I'm not sure if you actually want a thin client setup,
    > or an array of machines that boot from the network. If you want a central
    > machine that provides a remote desktop to clients, and you want those
    > clients to do their everyday job just as if they were sitting in front of
    > the central server machine, then you're talking about thin clients. There
    > are various ways to achieve what you want. One such way would be to
    > install Windows on a thin client, set it up the way you want and make it
    > connect through RDP to the central server (Windows can run there inside a
    > virtual machine on top of Linux if you want) automatically, and then copy
    > that Windows installation to the server and serve it in a way the thin
    > clients can access.
    >
    > I'm not familiar with Windows-based thin clients so I can't offer exact
    > details, just the overall approach. But I assume Microsoft must provide
    > some kinds of tools to make all of the above easier.


    So what is the difference then between the Thin Clients of 2008 and the
    Xservers of 1992? Xterminals like the HP 700RX used tftp to download fonts
    and files from the server then ran all their apps on the server itself
    (other than little desktop tasks like clocks).

    I guess I could force the users into the OpenOffice suite since it is much
    more mature now than 5 years ago, so this type of thin client / Xterminal
    might work after all.

    --
    Jim Carter
    Rogers, Arkansas



  9. Re: Windows Thin Clients served up from SuSE 10.3 server

    houghi wrote:

    > Günther Schwarz wrote:
    >> houghi wrote:
    >>
    >>> Günther Schwarz wrote:
    >>>> I have a
    >>>> Wyse on my desk. Works great as a web terminal with Firefox,
    >>>> consumes next to no energy, and is absolutely silent. BTW, does
    >>>> anybody how to get a shell on this thing?
    >>>
    >>> Does it run Windows or Linux. If Linux, what distro?

    >>
    >> Linux, their own variant based on something, see
    >> .

    >
    > That does not help very nmuch. So if you then look at
    > http://support.wyse.com/ and search for `Linux shell`, I get to
    > http://tinyurl.com/3c76vw "Solution 10827: 5440 modem setup" where at
    > the configuration it says on line 19 an 20:
    > 19. Click on the menu Winterm à User Applications à New Shell
    > 20. Type `su -l root` and press `Enter` to login as root


    There is no such thing as 'New Shell'. But the support pages you refer
    give a description how to install additional software as add-ons. Which
    might be the way to go. Anyway, this does get by and large OT. So it
    might be better to finish this discussion.

    Günther

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