Understand Your MultiPoint Server Network Environment

How you deploy your MultiPoint Server system will be determined, at least in part, by your network scenario. For example, will you install MultiPoint Server on only one computer, or will you install it on several computers? Will the MultiPoint Server systems be stand-alone systems, or will they be connected to a local area network together with other computers and network devices, such as an Internet router? Will the computers that are running MultiPoint Server be connected to an Active Directory® domain?

MultiPoint Server in a stand-alone environment

A stand-alone environment is one in which one or more computers that are running MultiPoint Server are deployed in the same location, but are not connected to each other or to the Internet. In this environment, each MultiPoint Server computer must be managed separately, local user accounts must be created on each computer, and any data transferred from one computer to another must first be copied to a removable storage device. The storage device must be taken to the target computer where the data must be downloaded.

MultiPoint Server on a local area network

The computers that are running MultiPoint Server can be connected to a local area network (LAN), which is connected to the Internet using a router provided by an Internet service provider (ISP). An example of a simple network environment of this kind involves a single computer that is running MultiPoint Server, and a single router that is connected to an ISP. Typically, Internet routers automatically provide IP and DNS server addresses to all the computers that are connected to them via the local network interface. In this case, you can just use the default networking settings and connect the computer to the router. The computer would then automatically obtain the IP and DNS server addresses, and then connect to the Internet with minimal effort and configuration.

You can also expand this environment by adding additional computers and network devices that are configured to automatically obtain IP and DNS server addresses automatically. Most network routers provided by ISPs can only manage a limited number of IP addresses. The capability of the routers will determine the number of networked devices that can be added to the network.

MultiPoint Server in a domain network environment

If more than a few computers and other networked devices are needed, We recommend setting up a Windows Server domain to manage the requirements of larger networks, such as:

  • Providing many IP addresses

  • Managing domain user accounts

  • Configuring network shares for central storage of files

  • Configuring access to network printers

In a domain environment, the location of domain controllers and global catalog servers will affect the speed and reliability with which users will be able to authenticate with the domain and locate resources. Additionally, if resources are shared between servers, or if user applications are accessing database servers or internal Web servers, those should be considered in the network analysis. For more information about network environments and Active Directory, see the Active Directory Users and Computers (http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=191568) content on TechNet. For more information about joining a domain, see the TechNet article Join the Computer to the Domain (http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkID=190200).