On 04/22/2009 10:35 PM, Ed Heron wrote: > I'm experimenting with using WinXP Xen guests as an alternative to > upgrading workstations. The administrative advantages seem overwhelming. > > Please share thoughts about using VNC vs RDP for remote desktop > connections. > I had to create 6 windows XP instances for a project a couple of months ago. Here are our conclusions, now that the project is over and the VMs have been decommissioned: - XP was MUCH faster in Xen, compared to real hardware (!) - RDP beats VNC in terms of speed any time, any place. I cannot evaluate precisely the factor, but empirically I'd say that in our conditions (WAN link, 6 Mbps upstream link on one site shared with other projects, 100 Mbps on the other site) it was at least 2-3 times faster. - rdesktop ( the linux app) is really cool, as it allows you to share/transfer local resources to the remote XP session (for instance you can map a local directory as a remote networked disk, without the hassle of passing via Network Neigh.). VNC forces you to either explicitly map such resources (hence you would also need something like samba on the linux side) or use scp. - the only problem with RDP is that by default Windows limits the number of simultaneous connections. but patches do exist (which violate the licensing/usage terms, so beware). As of implementations issues .. I had two (or should I say three?) problems: - one is detailed in an older thread on this list ( look for "Using the parallel port from domU", 02/02/2009). - second is due to Xen creating a large file with the same size as the disk given to the VM. I would have believed that sparse files would have been used, but df showed the opposite. I have seen 20 GB of space allocated, despite XP only using less than 5. - last issue did not occur with stock Xen but with v3.3: Java inside the VM went nuts and starting consuming 99% of the processor.. while doing nothing. Once we reverted to stock Xen from C5.2, it went back to normal.