PC over IP

Light Meals

Client Software

One weak point in the Teradici remote workstation concept is the lack of the planned software PCoIP client, which is currently in the alpha stage and will be distributed free of charge to customers and partners in September 2013. A Windows and a Mac version are under development – with Linux users being left out on the client side for the time being; however, the reverse direction (i.e., access to a Win/Mac client on workstations with a host card running under Linux) is possible. For 2014, a software client for tablets (probably Android) is also planned. Teradici kindly provided a preliminary version of the client for Windows for this article.

Slow Watch

In a way similar to VMware View, you can access remote workstations with a Teradici host card using the client software (Figure 7). However, this direct connect functionality will probably be more interesting to users who do not work permanently, but only occasionally, with a remote workstation (e.g., a development partner who needs access to the workstation via a VPN connection). This approach is supported by the fact that the software client cannot keep up with the zero clients in terms of performance. Teradici speaks of a "significant performance overhead," so the client software is mainly for viewing purposes and less for interactive CAD work.

Figure 7: With the Teradici PCoIP software client, users can connect to the remote workstation without a zero client. The client, expected to be on the market by September 2013, communicates directly with the host card in an encrypted session.

Only the mouse and keyboard are supported as USB devices. Other USB devices, such as mass storage, cannot be used in conjunction with the software client. The connection between the client software and workstation host card is encrypted by default using SSL/TLS (AES 256-bit).


The use of remote workstations with zero clients – or in combination with connection brokers and software clients – in data center operations is of particular interest to companies that want to deploy graphically rich applications such as CAD/CAM, regardless of location or need. From the point of view of "Data Leakage Prevention" (e.g., industrial espionage), it is also advisable to discontinue direct hardware access for users. This setup is also easy on your nerves, because noise and heat are handled not at the workplace but in the data center.

The Author

Thomas Zeller is an IT consultant and has been involved with IT security and open source for 15 years. He is the author and co-author of OpenVPN Compact and Mind Mapping with Freemind . In real life, he is the managing director of a medium-sized IT system integrator, where he is also responsible for the IT security division.

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