4 min. Read

Remote Desktop Services (RDS) is a platform for cost-effective incentives for Windows desktops and applications. You can create an Azure Marketplace by quickly providing a full RDS farm for an Azure IaaS installation. The good news is that the Azure Stack team was busy bringing the same experience and offering Azure-pino as well.

What the Azure Marketplace really does is create a domain for you, so it’s a simple and easy mechanism for testing and certifying concept scenarios. Quick Start ARM models, on the other hand, allow you to use an existing domain to build a production environment. Once the configuration is complete, you can connect to published workstations and applications from multiple platforms and devices using Microsoft Remote Desktop Applications for Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android.

In this blog post, I’ll show you how to quickly deploy and publish a remote app Remote Desktop Services on Azure-pino.

For deploying Remote Desktop Services Azure-pino as described in this article, you must have the following:

  • Azure stack deployed in a combined scenario. The same is true for integrated Azure Stack systems and the Azure Stack Development Kit (ASDK).
  • Azure Stack tenant order (plan / offer).
  • Download the Remote Desktop Service template from Marketplace.
  • Download the Windows Server 2012 R2 image from Marketplace.
  • Download the Windows Server 2016 image from Marketplace.

This deployment creates a small footprint RDS deployment with the following components:

  • 1 domain controller virtual machine (Windows Server 2016).
  • 2 Remote Desktop Session Host (RDSH) virtual machines (Windows Server 2016).
  • 1 Remote Desktop Connection Broker (RDCB) virtual machine (Windows Server 2016).
  • 1 Remote Desktop Gateway (RDGW) virtual machine (Windows Server 2016).
  • Public IP address, virtual network, load balancer and other necessary network components.

Assume that all the conditions already exist. Complete the following steps:

As an Azure Stack operator, log in to the Azure Stack management portal and download Remote Desktop Services (RDS) – Basics – Development / Test From the Azure Marketplace.

As an Azure Stack tenant, log in to the Azure Stack portal and Create Remote Desktop Services by taking the following steps:

in Basics page, enter Administrator user name, Password, create or select an existing one resource groupand then select location. Click ALRIGHT continue.

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in Domain and network settings page, create a public IP address name, enter the DNS name for the RD Gateway to access, and then enter the desired domain name for the Active Directory VM. Click ALRIGHT continue.

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in RDSH and VM settings page, select which one Windows Server SKU image whether you want to use (assuming you have already uploaded Windows Server 2016 Datacenter or Windows Server 2012 R2 Datacenter images), specify how many instances of the RD session host Need (default is 2) and then select the size of each virtual machine. Click ALRIGHT continue.

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in Summary page, check your settings and wait for confirmation to complete, then click ALRIGHT continue.

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in Buy page, read Terms of use and click Create.

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After about an hour and a half, you will see 20 resources that have been deployed and successfully created in the next screenshot.

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When the deployment is complete, you can check the output of the deployment from the resource group Introduction. Please note RD WEB URL, you need this web link to access your remote applications (see the next section for more information).

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As part of the deployment, the domain controller is automatically configured and ready for use, and all virtual machines are joined to the domain and configured with the required RDS roles (RD Connection Broker, RD Licensing, RD Gateway, RD Web Access, and RD Session Host).

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The next step is to select the RemoteApp program that you want to publish so that users can use it.

log in GW-VM on Azure Stack. choose Server management > right-click All servers > Add servers.

Add the following servers: Appellant, Skybridge, RDSH-0and RDSH-1.

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Once added, scroll Remote Desktop Services In the Server Manager view RDS Deployment Overview screens.

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Browse Desktop collection below Holding and click Publish RemoteApp programs. In this example, I will publish WordPad and Calculator programs (of course, you can install the application you want on each RDS host and then publish it). Click Publish and then click Closed.

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Now your application is ready for users to use.

Open a browser and type RD WEB URL which you get from the result of the above deployment. In my example, it is https: //rds.local.cloudapp.azurestack.external/RdWeb

Enter your domain username and password and click log in. As a side note RD network connection page can be fully customized according to the needs of the organization.

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Select your application and click connect.

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As a side note: If you are verifying remote desktop services in Azure Stack using a self-signed certificate rather than third-party certificates, you must manually export the certificate from the RD Gateway machine and import it to the machine from which you want to use applications. If you don’t, you’ll get an error message that “This computer cannot verify the identity of the RD Gateway. It is not safe to connect to servers that cannot be identified”. For production, it is recommended that you update the RD Gateway certificate and use a third-party certificate.

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Finally, you can connect to the remote application and check that it is accessible. You can also test load balancing by shutting down one RD session from the host (RDSH-0 or RDSH-1) and to ensure that you can still access remote application sessions.

Azure Stack Remote Desktop Services is a great solution for organizations that need workloads to stay local while providing a workstation service solution (DaaS) to remote users.

As of this writing, you can only host a remote application and a remote desktop session based on an RD Session Host. A virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) based on an RD virtualization server is not yet available in Azure Stack.

At the Ignite 2018 conference in Orlando, Florida, Microsoft announced that it is working on GPU support for Azure Stack. Azure Stack graphics support brings Azure n-Series virtual machines to Azure Stack, which can then be used in a variety of situations. Microsoft did not mention the exact timeline, but it looks like we can expect this in the near future.

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If you have any questions or feedback, please leave a comment.

-Charbel Nemnom-

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