Microsoft have announce the availability of the Windows Multipoint Server 2011 Beta last October. Though the news is little bit old I thought of sharing my 2 cents knowledge about it.
Microsoft mainly aims this product for the schools and training institutes which is designed primarily for the education market to help schools increase computing access to more students for a lower total cost. According to Microsoft this product benefit has been reaped by many training institutes, schools around the world, but claims businesses who wish to train staff on technologies could benefit too.
Currently this product is available in major languages and can be extended by adding Windows Server R2 language pack to support up to 32 languages! Each user will get Windows 7 experience in their own unique desktop.
Some of the key benefits of this products are,
- Separate user accounts for each user – This helps students to manage their project work separately. If necessary administrator can join the server to the Active Directory as well. This will allow more control using Group Policies.
- Easily share files, videos, and more with and between groups of students – Teachers will have great flexibility of sharing contents once (Document Library) and it appears on each students session automatically.
- Create private folders for each user to manage their work
- Watch videos or listen to music and podcasts without disturbing everyone else – Each session can have audio and video mange separately. This is pretty cool.
- Easily monitor and manage sessions – Teachers have total control of the students sessions and can monitor the each sessions individually. If necessary device connections and disconnections can be managed remotely.
Technical point of view you can plug as many as 10 monitors, keyboards & mice to single computer. Depending on usage of the system this number can be less. Microsoft have highlighted this in their general guidelines:
You don’t need any specialize hardware to use this product. Microsoft has introduce this product keeping in mind to reduce cost for schools so generic hardware work perfectly with the product. Multipoint server can be obtain though Microsoft Volume Licensing program and under Academic pricing.