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Terminal Services User Properties Best practices

Updated: January 21, 2005

Applies To: Windows Server 2003, Windows Server 2003 R2, Windows Server 2003 with SP1, Windows Server 2003 with SP2

Best practices

  • Use Terminal Services-specific groups

    Create User Groups that are specifically for Terminal Services users. Windows Server 2003 family operating systems contain a default User group called Remote Desktop Users, which has been specifically created to manage Terminal Server users. Maintaining users through groups is much easier and less time consuming than managing users individually.

  • Use Terminal Services-specific profiles

    Assign a separate profile for logging onto Terminal Services. Many common options, such as screen savers and animated menu affects, which are stored in profiles, are not wanted when you use Terminal Services. Assigning a specific profile allows users to get the most out of the system they are working with without expending additional server resources. For information about assigning a Terminal Services specific profile, see Change a user's Terminal Services profile path.

  • Use mandatory profiles

    Use a mandatory Terminal Services profile that is created to suit the needs of all of the different types of clients and that provides the best server performance. Be aware that 16-bit computers and Windows-based Terminals might not support some screen resolutions.

  • Set time limits

    Setting limits on the duration of client connections can improve server performance. You can set the limits on how long a session lasts, how long a disconnected session is allowed to remain active on the server, and the time allowed for a session to remain connected, yet idle. For information about setting session limits, see Sessions.

  • Use Starting program

    If you have users who need access to only one application on the terminal server, use the Starting program option. This can be done for all users by using Terminal Services Configuration or on a per-user basis by using either the Terminal Services Extension to Local Users and Groups or Active Directory Users and Computers. For information about using Starting program, see Specify a program to start on session connection.

  • Create preconfigured connection files for users or groups of users

    To make connecting to Terminal Services easier, you can supply users with preconfigured connection files. Collections of connection files can also be made either for different departments within your organization or for different job titles. preconfigured connection files are created using Remote Desktop Connection. For more information, see Managing Terminal Services connection files.

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