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Server 2016 RDS Personal-Session Desktops

Windows Server 2016 RDS will offer a new deployment model. Windows 2012 R2 had two options for RDS deployment; the first was Session-Based Desktop Deployments which is a Terminal Server based approach to RDS, the second Virtual Machine-Based Deployment where each user runs a dedicated virtual machine based on a client operating system (Windows 10 for example).

Personal Session Desktops has been introduced in Windows Server 2016. Essentially a hybrid of the two native deployment options in 2012 R2, it will enable VM’s running Windows Server 2016 to be assigned to specific users, similar to a VM-Based Deployment, however running a server-based operating system rather than client OS.

Why is this important?

Azure…. Personal Session Desktops allows cloud based desktops hosted in Azure to become a reality. By using Server 2016 Desktops with Desktop Experience feature (essentially turning the look and feel into Windows 10), you can now deliver a cloud based desktop over the Azure platform. As Azure cannot control Hypervisors and you cannot license clients in a VDI scenario, this was not previously possible.

SPLA licensing….. Microsoft does not allow SPLA licensing to be used for Windows client operating systems in a hosted delivery mode. However, with Server 2016 RDS deployed in Personal Session Desktops mode, SPLA licensing can be applied to the clients (as it is essentially a server OS).

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