RemoteFX Features for Windows 8 and Windows Server 2012

RemoteFX Features for Windows 8 and Windows Server 2012

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Hi, I’m Shanmugam Kulandaivel, a senior program manager on the Remote Desktop Virtualization team. As most of you know, both the Windows 8 and Windows Server 2012 operating systems are available in multiple editions. I’d like to use this blog post to provide details on the features of Microsoft RemoteFX® that are supported in each edition of Windows 8 and Windows Server 2012. 

Before I provide the details, I’d like to start with a summary:

  • Client computers (the endpoint PC that you are accessing the remote computer from) running any edition of Windows 8 or Windows Server 2012 support all RemoteFX features, including the ability to connect to RemoteApp, redirect USB devices by using RemoteFX USB Redirection, and support WAN networks.
  • Remote computers (the virtual machine or desktop you are accessing) running Windows 8 Enterprise provide the best user experience and support all management features. Therefore, Windows 8 Enterprise is the only supported edition for use with Windows Server 2012 virtual desktop collections (VDI).

With that summary in mind, let’s first look at the features that Windows 8 and Windows Server 2012 editions support when running on client computers, and then we’ll look at the features that Windows 8 and Windows Server 2012 support when running on remote computers.

RemoteFX features on client computers

Client computer refers to the computer that the user is physically logged on to. Users use Remote Desktop Connection (RDC) on the client computer to connect to remote computers. The following table lists the features that are supported on client computers running any one of the different editions of Windows 8 and Windows Server 2012.

 

Operating systems for client computers

Feature

Windows 8

Windows RT

Windows 8 Pro

Windows 8 Enterprise

Windows Server 2012

Windows 7 Enterprise with RDP 8.0 Update

Ability to connect to remote computers

a

a

a

a

a

a

Ability to use RemoteApp

a

a

a

a

a

a

RemoteFX Multi-Touch

a

a

a

a

a

-

Support for redirection features, such as RemoteFX USB Redirection, drive redirection, and smart card redirection

a

a

a

a

a

a

True multi-monitor

a

a

a

a

a

a

RemoteFX for WAN with RemoteFX Network Auto-Detect

a

a

a

a

a

a

RemoteFX virtual graphics processing unit (vGPU)*

a

a

a

a

a

a

RemoteFX Adaptive Graphics and RemoteFX Media Streaming

a

a

a

a

a

a

RemoteApp and Desktop Connections

a

a

a

a

a

a

Email discovery of remote applications and remote computers

a

a

a

a

a

-

Remote Desktop Windows Store app

a

a

a

a

a

-

Support for all other RemoteFX features

a

a

a

a

a

a

 

* Requires that the remote computer be configured with RemoteFX vGPU.

The key takeaway is that users can use any edition of Windows 8 or Windows Server 2012 on their client computers and experience all the new features of RemoteFX.

RemoteFX features on remote computers

Remote computers are the computers that users connect to. Remote computers can be a physical computer, a Remote Desktop Session Host server, or a virtual machine. The following table lists the features that are supported on remote computers running any one of the different editions of Windows 8 and Windows Server 2012.

 

Operating systems for remote computers

Feature

Windows 8 and

Windows RT

Windows 8 Pro

Windows 8 Enterprise

Windows Server 2012 Remote Administration Mode

Windows Server 2012  RD Session Host

Windows 7 Enterprise with RDP 8.0 Update

Ability to connect to remote computers

-

a

a

a

a

a

Ability to use RemoteApp

-

-

a

-

a

a

RemoteFX for WAN with RemoteFX Network Auto-Detect

-

a

a

a

a

a

RemoteFX Adaptive Graphics and RemoteFX Media Streaming

-

a

a

a

a

a

Support for basic redirection features, such as

Clipboard redirection, drive redirection, and smart card redirection

-

a

a

a

a

a

RemoteFX Multi-Touch

-

a

a

a

a

-

Support for advanced device redirection features, 

RemoteFX USB Redirection, and PnP device redirection

-

-

a

-

a

a

Printer redirection

-

a

a

a

a

a

Remote Desktop Easy Print

-

a

a

-

a

a

True multi-monitor

-

a

a

a

a

a

Audio playback redirection

-

a

a

a

a

a

Microphone redirection

-

a

a

-

a

a

Multimedia redirection (WMV redirection)

-

a

a

-

a

a

User profile disk

-

-

a

-

a

a

RemoteFX virtual graphics processing unit (vGPU)

-

-

a

-

-

a

 

While this might seem like lot of specifics to remember, in reality, the feature differentiation is very simple. You just need to remember the following summary when deciding which edition to use for your virtual machine-based desktop deployment:

  • Client computers running any edition of Windows 8 or Windows Server 2012 support all RemoteFX features, including the ability to connect to RemoteApp, redirect USB devices by using RemoteFX USB Redirection, and support WAN networks.
  • Remote computers running Windows 8 Enterprise provide the best user experience and support all management features. Therefore, Windows 8 Enterprise is the only supported edition for use with Windows Server 2012 virtual desktop collections (VDI).

I hope this information is useful and answers the questions that you have on this topic. If you have more questions, please feel free to post a new thread in the RDS & TS forum.


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  • Please add 8 and 3 and type the answer here:
  • Post
  • how do you install remotefx on windows 8 enterprise hyper-v host?

    This does not work.

    Dism /online /enable-feature /featurename:Microsoft-Windows-RemoteFX-Host-Package

  • Hi skyman,

    You do not need to install RemoteFX on Windows 8 Enterprise, it is part of RDP 8.0 which is built-in.  If you need to use vGPU then you need to Add the RemoteFX 3D Video Adapter in the settings for the VM in Hyper-V Manager.

    -TP

  • Yes I would like the vGPU but the only optional hardware I see is SCSI Controller, Network Adapter, Legacy Network Adapter, and Fibre Channel Adapter.

  • @Skyman : you need a graphic card with a DirectX 11 GPU on your host with the latest drivers for Windows Server 2012/8.

    Then in Hyper-V Setting, you have to check that this GPU is recognized as a RemoteFX GPU.

    Then you should be able to add a vGPU to a Windows 8 Enterprise VM using Powershell (There is a bug in Hyper-V Manager GUI) with the following commands :

    Import-Module RemoteDesktopServices

    Add-VMRemoteFx3dVideoAdapter -VMName MyWin8VMName

    Hope this help !! (it works perfectly on my Platform)

  • You can only add a vGPU to a VM if the VM is hosted on Windows Server 2012.  RemoteFX vGPU is not available if you're using Client Hyper-V in Windows 8.  

  • How can I redirect USB wia RemoteFX to a Windows 7 RDP server?

    Windows 7 is Enterprise edition with SP1 and RDP 8.0 update installed (KB2574819 and KB2592687).

    RDP client is another windows 7 machine with usb device selected in remotefx section of the client. it can successfully redirect usb device to windows 8, but can't on windows 7 SP1 Ent.

    All are physical machines. What can I be missing?

  • ... or it was meant that windows 7 (with rdp 8.0) as hyper-v guest can now be used as rdp server opposed to previous necessity of using vGPU for this scenario?

  • Hello,

    We plan to implement a virtualized Session-based RDS.  A physical host running Windows Server 2012, and inside a Virtual machine with RD Session Host role service installed.   What OS should the virtual machine have?    According to your article Windows 8 Enterprise has all the features.  Is it recommended to use this OS as the RD Session Host?  Or should we just use Windows Server 2012 on the virtual machine?

    Thanks.

  • Anyone :) ?

  • Is there any chance you can cover off OpenGL support in RemoteFX, as a lot of CAD solutions rely on this industry standard for GPU acceleration, and there doesn't seem to be anything on TechNet about this

  • There are some conflicting answers here.

    Can you use RemoteFX on a Windows 8 Hyper-v host? Does it have to be Enterprise edition?

  • Remote FX is only available if the Hyper-V host is Windows Server 2012

  • That's the main trouble that RemoteFx vGPU doesn't supported in Windows Server 2012 R2 guest VM... RDSH could use GPU only when installed on bare metal - why!!???!!??

    We need RDSH to be installed as VMs, as we need RDSH farm with live migration, failover and so on.. But we run WPF apps in RDSH, as you know - WPF is rendered via GPU.. So no GPU for guest RDSH OS, no hardware acceleration of our WPF apps - pity, pity, pity..

  • RemoteFX is compatible with which versions of openGL?

  • is there still a bug in Hyper-V Manager GUI? no errors during attachment.

    WDDM is shown at Windows 8.1 Enterprise but unable to start for some reason... So should i add this with the power shell? is that it?

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