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Windows Server RDS - If I purchase 1 user TS CAL, does that mean 3 people can RDP in, or only 1? RRS feed

  • Question

  • My goal is to be able to have up to 3 concurrent users RDP to a single Windows Server box.

    With Windows Server (nearly any version) out of the box it allows for 2 people to simultaneously RDP to it.  

    If I installed Remote Desktop Services and purchased one single user TS CAL and add it to this server, does this mean I can now have 3 people connect to it?   Or does adding the CAL in a way reset the counter and now only 1 person connect and I really need to buy 2 more user CALs for a total of 3 to get to 3 simultaneous users?

    Unfortunately this is tricky to search the internet for as most results are about the 2 user RDP limitation by default when not using RDS with TS CALs.

    Thanks.


    • Edited by tehinternet Tuesday, October 22, 2019 7:48 PM
    Tuesday, October 22, 2019 7:29 PM

Answers

  • Hi,

     

    >>Or does adding the CAL in a way reset the counter and now only 1 person connect and I really need to buy 2 more user CALs for a total of 3 to get to 3 simultaneous users?

     

    If you want to enable three users to RDP simultaneously, you need to buy 3 Per User CAL. And it is explained in Product terms for the 2 remote connection without CALs, which is only for administrative purpose.

    16. Administrative and Support Rights

    Customer may allow access to server software running in any permitted OSE by two users without CALs solely for administrative purposes. Customer may also allow remote access to other Products solely for purposes of providing technical product support to Licensed Users or on Licensed Devices.

     

    If you still have any concerns or unsure things, you could reach VLSC to consult more details.

     

    VLSC contact:

    https://www.microsoft.com/Licensing/servicecenter/Help/Contact.aspx

     

    Thanks,

    Jenny


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    • Marked as answer by tehinternet Wednesday, October 23, 2019 12:03 PM
    Wednesday, October 23, 2019 1:49 AM

All replies

  • I don't think anyone fully understands licensing. I did find this: Link.

    • Proposed as answer by TheITDood Tuesday, October 22, 2019 8:12 PM
    Tuesday, October 22, 2019 8:12 PM
  • Hi,

     

    >>Or does adding the CAL in a way reset the counter and now only 1 person connect and I really need to buy 2 more user CALs for a total of 3 to get to 3 simultaneous users?

     

    If you want to enable three users to RDP simultaneously, you need to buy 3 Per User CAL. And it is explained in Product terms for the 2 remote connection without CALs, which is only for administrative purpose.

    16. Administrative and Support Rights

    Customer may allow access to server software running in any permitted OSE by two users without CALs solely for administrative purposes. Customer may also allow remote access to other Products solely for purposes of providing technical product support to Licensed Users or on Licensed Devices.

     

    If you still have any concerns or unsure things, you could reach VLSC to consult more details.

     

    VLSC contact:

    https://www.microsoft.com/Licensing/servicecenter/Help/Contact.aspx

     

    Thanks,

    Jenny


    Please remember to mark the replies as answers if they help.
    If you have feedback for TechNet Subscriber Support, contact tnmff@microsoft.com.

    • Marked as answer by tehinternet Wednesday, October 23, 2019 12:03 PM
    Wednesday, October 23, 2019 1:49 AM
  • Jenny,

    Thanks.  That makes sense.

    As a followup question.   Not that I am looking to not be properly licensed, but as a question is there anything preventing non-administrative users from logging in as the 2 built in RDP sessions?    I am interested if for example it is set up so that only local or domain admins can log in as those, but for non-privileged users that only log in as the TS CALs.

    Wednesday, October 23, 2019 12:02 PM
  • Hi,

     

    You can use the /admin switch with the Remote Desktop Client to avoid using up CALs when the RDS Session Host role is installed but only two connection.

     

    At any point in time, there can be two active remote administration sessions. To start a remote administration session, you must be a member of the Administrators group on the server to which you are connecting.

    Reference link: https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/947723/changes-to-remote-administration-in-windows-server-2008

     

    Also found a good explanation of Remote administration mode from Freek Berson

    https://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/windowsserver/en-US/a5309d53-a705-428d-90a0-33d452f736db/rdp-remote-administration-mode-vs-application-mode?forum=winserverTS

     

    Hope this would be helpful.

     

    Thanks,

    Jenny


    Please remember to mark the replies as answers if they help.
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    Thursday, October 24, 2019 2:09 AM