Delivering a fast and fluid user experience on WAN: RemoteFX in Windows Server 2012 and Windows 8

Hi everyone!

My name is Nadim Abdo and I’m the development manager on the Remote Desktop Virtualization (RDV) team responsible for the remote experience features known collectively as RemoteFX (for which RDP is the underlying protocol).

Our team is incredibly proud of the dramatic improvements in RemoteFX in this release and we’re excited to share a lot more detail with you through a series of posts on the new RemoteFX technologies in Windows Server 2012 and Windows 8.

RemoteFX now works across a wide range of network configurations such as WAN and 3G. It also supports a much richer remote experience, which includes sending fast and fluid graphics remotely for any application running on Windows, including animations, 3D content, and media. In addition, it supports USB redirection of your devices and allows you to interact with the system through mouse, keyboard, audio-input, and now multi-touch.

We’ve also made dramatic performance improvements: our bandwidth usage is significantly reduced in many scenarios while we’ve improved the seamlessness of the experience (with high and consistent frame rates).  It’s important to note that we took a no-compromises approach and made these improvements while maintaining very high visual quality—in particular by using new approaches to keep content such as text as clear and readable as possible even while we might use more aggressive forms of compression on media content or animations on the screen.

All this is supported across your choice of Remote Desktop Services configurations. Whether you choose session-based or virtual machine-based desktop deployments, remote desktops or RemoteApp programs, or physical or software-based graphics processing units for your rendering devices, the same rich RemoteFX capabilities are available everywhere.

While the underlying technologies in RemoteFX are incredibly sophisticated, one of our key goals was for the system to be automatic and require minimal configuration. We designed RemoteFX to dynamically adapt to changing content, changing network conditions, and even differences in the applications you run. This means that it works great right out-of-the-box without specialized tuning. Of course, we also offer rich Group Policy settings such as “Configure image quality for RemoteFX Adaptive Graphics,” which allows you to set the image quality you prefer, or “Configure RemoteFX Adaptive Graphics,” which lets you optimize the system for server scalability or minimum bandwidth usage, or allows you to let RemoteFX automatically adapt and adjust this for you (the default).

There is a ton more that’s new and we’ll be going into more depth in several areas in upcoming posts from our team. We look forward to sharing more detail into new technologies in RemoteFX such as Adaptive Graphics, Intelligent Transports, Optimized Media Streaming, and many others.

We hope you enjoy using RemoteFX to get a great remote experience, and we look forward to hearing from you.