Following on from the article on
Networked Computers in our summer issue, this section explains the concept of a
network based on 'thin client' using Windows Terminal Server.
The performance of conventional
networks, whether based on server/client or peer to peer, depends on the
combined processing power of the server plus the work-station, since the task of
operating the software (eg TIM) and processing the data is shared between them.
This means that programs which rely
on large amounts of processing, such as databases, will show a decrease in
performance (ie slow down) as the data content increases.
The speed at which this happens not
only depends on the specification of the hardware, but also on the network
In contrast, in a thin client
environment, performance is dependent on the processing power of the server
only, since all the processing work is carried out by the server.
The only information transferred
from the server to the workstation is a screen image.
This is why the specification of the
workstations do not become an issue: even old computers will perform like the
latest Pentium driven devices, since the only task they perform is to display a
screen image generated by the server.
WAN ( Wide Area Networks) - this is where the thin client platform really comes
into its own!
Because the information passing between server and workstation is minimal, it
can be transmitted down a telephone line.
This means that remote offices can
easily be connected to the main server.
It's ideal in the tourism environment, where a number of TICs can be connected
to a central server, and all sites can therefore use one database - the perfect
For example, CTV client West Dorset
District Council uses this type of platform to connect five TICs to the main
tourism office and to support three PAT (public access kiosks) as well as the
WDDC Internet connection.
With new installations, the cabling
and location of hardware is the same as for a conventional network, with the
overall cost working out about the same.
However if your current system is
beginning to show its age, then a thin client upgrade with a Windows Terminal
Server could be the ideal solution.
This will normally mean replacing
only your server, as all your old computers or workstations can be fully
utilised with the new system - performance at a fraction of the costs!
1. Performance - far faster that conventional networks.
2. Longevity - it will outlast conventional networks.
3. Ergonomics - workstations need consist of a screen only, with no computers
taking up space.
4. Flexibility - remote sites can easily be connected without loss of
Who knows - with the money you save
you may be able to invest in nice new flat screen displays!
As ever, if you would like further information, or to discuss any of the
issues mentioned, please call CTV or email us at email@example.com