What’s the difference between a RDS CAL and a TS CAL?

Hi, I’m Alex from the Remote Desktop Services (RDS) team.  I want to talk about the Windows Server 2008 RDS CAL which replaces the older Terminal Services (TS) CAL.  I want to explain why the name changed, what this means for you and how we have added some great new value to the RDS CAL.  There are 4 key changes I want to clarify:

1.       Equivalence of the Windows Server 2008 TS CAL & Windows Server 2008 RDS CAL

2.       Difference in price between 2008 TS CAL and 2008 RDS CAL

3.       Transition Pricing & Availability of TS CAL and RDS CAL

4.       Inclusion of Microsoft Application Virtualization (App-V) for TS with the 2008 TS CALs and 2008 RDS CALs

The rest of this post explores these items in more detail.

Equivalence of Windows Server 2008 TS CAL & Windows Server 2008 RDS CAL

Last year, we changed the name of Terminal Services to Remote Desktop Services in Windows Server 2008 R2.  As such, we renamed the CAL. You may notice the CAL is called a Windows Server 2008 RDS CAL (rather than 2008 R2 CAL).  This is because R2 is a refresh release and while you need to buy new Windows Server licenses you do not need to buy new RDS CALs if you already own 2008 TS CALs.  This means you can use the Windows Server 2008 TS CALs with your Windows Server 2008 R2 Remote Desktop Services.  If you have Windows Server 2003 TS CALs you will need to buy new RDS 2008 CALs.

Difference in price between 2008 TS CAL and 2008 RDS CAL

With Windows Server 2008 R2 Remote Desktop Services , Microsoft has added some fantastic new capabilities that improve the traditional Session Host scenarios (formerly known as terminal server) and enable new emerging Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) scenarios. For example, RDS provides:

·         Simplified management with a unified and scalable connection broker for both Session Desktops and VDI Desktops providing:

o   Unified Remote Desktop Web Access (RD Web Access) and  ‘RemoteApp and Desktop Connection’ feature for access to VDI and Session Desktops

o   Ensures users can only see the apps they are supposed to with per-user RemoteApp permissions and  filtering

·         Provides the user a rich remote experience, bringing the experience closer to that enjoyed by users accessing local computing resources such as:

o   True multi-monitor support

o   Windows Media® Player redirection,

o   Bidirectional audio,

o   Enhanced bitmap acceleration for 3D applications and rich media content such as Silverlight and Flash.

·         Improved application compatibility and management of RD session host servers with the inclusion of Microsoft Application Virtualization for TS

To reflect the addition of these new features and capabilities in Windows Server 2008 R2 Remote Desktop Services the price of the Windows Server 2008 RDS CAL will be approximately 5% higher than the previous Windows Server 2008 TS CAL it replaces.

Transition Pricing & Availability of TS CAL and RDS CAL

We understand that for some of our customers this may be an unexpected change.  As such we will be offering Windows Server 2008 RDS CALs at a transition price equivalent to the old TS CAL from their introduction on September 1, 2009 until December 31, 2009.  Beginning January 1, 2010 any new RDS CAL sales will be at the normal RDS CAL price.

The Windows Server 2008 TS CAL will no longer be available after September 1, 2009 if you have any version of Terminal Services or Remote Desktop Services you should purchase Windows Server 2008 RDS CALs.

Inclusion of Microsoft Application Virtualization for TS with the 2008 TS CAL and 2008 RDS CALs

Application compatibility and management are  significant drivers of cost for many TS / RDS customers.  By including the right to use App-V for TS as part of the TS & RDS CALs we have simplified licensing and enabled as many of our RDS customers to enjoy the benefits that App-V for TS provides; which in addition to solving app-to-app conflicts and multiuser application conflicts also enables you to do the following for both you terminal servers and session host (session hosts are the new name for terminal servers!):

·         Consolidate Session Host / terminal servers and end server siloing

·         End application conflicts and regression testing

·         Accelerate application deployment for Session Hosts

·         Reduce Deployment Risk

·         Simplify Profile Management

For more information on the benefits of Microsoft Application Virtualization for Terminal Services see http://www.microsoft.com/systemcenter/appv/terminalsvcs.mspx

The App-V CAL for TS will not be available for purchase after November 1st 2009.

Note: This does not affect App-V for Desktop licensing on Windows .  App-V for Desktops continues to be included and licensed via the Microsoft Desktop Optimization Pack (MDOP) with no change.

For more detail please visit here.