Advanced Deployment: Virtualization, RDP Options for Mac, Linux, & Android

While Presidio is a strictly PC based .Net 4.0 Application there are a number of options for utilizing our software from other Desktop & Mobile OS platforms such as Mac OSX, Linux, & Android.
Here are brief descriptions of a few tried and true methods for doing so.

 

  • Local Virtual Machine: If your Mac's are relatively new they are likely capable of hardware virtualization and able to host virtual machines running Windows. You'll need a desktop virtualization application such as Parallels Desktop or VMWare Fusion for Mac.
    http://www.parallels.com/products/workstation  
    http://www.vmware.com/products/fusion/overview
    You should take a look at the system requirements for each to make sure that your Mac's are compatible. Additionally, you'll need a license for the version of Windows you'll run in the virtual machine. Minimum recommended 
  • Remote Desktop Server: If your server is running Windows Server 2008 x64 or newer you have the option to publish the Presidio applications via Remote Desktop Services. 
    http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc770412.aspx
    In this scenario, your Mac's as well as any other computers and mobile devices on your LAN will be able to use Presidio and ShopNet locally on each machine just as if it was installed but in actuality you're interacting with an instance of it running on the server hardware.  Essentially you're running the program under a terminal server session which is far more efficient because the process is running on the server system resources instead of your desktop. Many of our customers are leveraging this option as it provides a number of performance benefits within the application and increases the ROI for your server hardware. On your workstations this is considered an installer-less deployment - you'll still access the programs via an Icon or shortcut but nothing is installed locally and none of your local system resources are consumed by the application. Microsoft makes a free version of their Remote Desktop Client application that would need to be installed on your Mac's but that's the only requirement. Android, Apple IOS, and Linux both have many free and paid RDP applications available through their various app repositories & stores. There is also a free RDP client for Mac called CORd which works very well. http://cord.sourceforge.net/
    On the server side, you'll need to scale your hardware to accommodate this usage scenario (fast hard drives, plenty of fast RAM, and one or more modern multi-core processors). You'll need to run one of the versions of Windows Server I mentioned & you'll need to purchase Server RDP Client Access Licenses (CALs) for each user or device which will be connecting to RDS sessions on the server http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc725933.aspx
    Also note that in order to produce Custom Documents suck as Quote Letters and PO's - Presidio must also be installed with a compatible version of 
    Microsoft Word and Excel, or the full Office Suite. 
    These can run on a Mac via RDP as well but do require special licensing from Microsoft - 
    http://www.microsoft.com/licensing/about-licensing/briefs/remote-desktop-services.aspx
    .
  • Terminal Server Session: Another option is to configure your current windows server as a terminal server which would allow each of your Mac, Linux, or Android users to access a personal windows desktop session, including the full Presidio & ShopNet Applications via Remote Desktop. Any version of Windows Server can be configured to provide these services. Each device connecting will need the appropriate licences.

  • PC Remote Desktop: If each Mac, Linux, or Andriod user will also have access to their own PC then they can simply Remote Desktop from the Mac to the PC in order to use Presidio & ShopNet. No RDP Client Access license is required but each PC is limited to one remote or local user session at a time.