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Can any version of NT/2K/XP/Vista/7 support 2 simultaneous users?


Guest wsxedcrfv
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Guest wsxedcrfv

Given a PC with enough memory, quad-core, two video cards, two monitors, two mice, two keyboards - is it possible for two people to be able to run the apps installed on the machine, access the files on the machine, etc, simultaneously?

Does any NT-based OS have this capability "out-of-the-box"?

Or can only Linux-based OS's do this?

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Guest wsxedcrfv
Windows Multipoint Server 2010

Which is not yet available.

So no previous version of Windows has this capability? Am I the only one who thinks this is a glaring lack of capability or functionality within the NT-based family? (I'm a win-98 user, so I naturally assumed that some version of the supposedly better NT-based OS's could do this). I guess Microsoft is loath to offer this capability because of their preference to enforce a 1-license-per-seat philosophy.

Even this Multipoint server is obviously niche-marketed to schools (grade school? Kindergarten?) and not more business-oriented situations (call centers, data entry, etc) where it makes just as much (if not more) sense.

http://www.microsoft.com/windows/multipoint/learn-more.aspx

Are the monitors shown on that page 4:3 and not widescreen? If so, that's obviously an older stock-photo.

Edited by wsxedcrfv
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No desktop-licensed OS does, but every server OS since NT4 Terminal Server edition has had at least a "remote administration" mode that allows 2 remote admin users at a time. It requires a full Terminal Services configuration and licenses to get more than that, though.

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Guest wsxedcrfv

I've been playing around with Multipoint server 2010. It's based on (or runs on top of) Server 2008 R2. I don't know if anyone can answer these questions, but I'll ask anyways:

1) Multipoint does not seem to work with, recognize or use the system's native PS/2 keyboard and mouse - only USB keyboards and mice. Is there a way to change that?

2) The motherboard's native sound system also appears to be unusable. Multipoint instead relies on (or forces the use of) usb-attached sound devices (just as it does for keyboards and mice). Again, is there any way to have Multipoint make use of the system's native sound capability for at least one of the attached console users?

3) Given a dual-head (ie dual output) video card, multipoint does what is expected - which is to use each output to drive a separate monitor for a specific user or console. Given two dual-output video cards (PCIe and PCI), is it possible to give dual-screen capability to each of two console users simultaneously?

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1) Multipoint does not seem to work with, recognize or use the system's native PS/2 keyboard and mouse - only USB keyboards and mice. Is there a way to change that?
Probably not, given that the PS/2 bus is an interrupt bus and the USB bus is not, sharing devices like Multipoint does probably requires the drivers to be in usermode (like USB drivers are).
2) The motherboard's native sound system also appears to be unusable. Multipoint instead relies on (or forces the use of) usb-attached sound devices (just as it does for keyboards and mice). Again, is there any way to have Multipoint make use of the system's native sound capability for at least one of the attached console users?
Depending on the audio driver, if it's interrupt-driven (rather than a driver that can run in the user mode driver framework), it probably won't work given the design of Multipoint.
3) Given a dual-head (ie dual output) video card, multipoint does what is expected - which is to use each output to drive a separate monitor for a specific user or console. Given two dual-output video cards (PCIe and PCI), is it possible to give dual-screen capability to each of two console users simultaneously?
I don't know what the desired design is long term, but currently this doesn't seem to work. Given that Multipoint isn't really meant to be a server (or even a functional desktop) but rather an educational tool (with it's own SDK, no less), I'm wondering if this will even be something they'll spend time on.
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  • 2 weeks later...

As I know, there is 3rd party add-on software products for XP/2000 can do so. But both are come from Taiwan/China.

The 1st one is "BeTwin", which can turn a computer for 2 users using (2 Keyboards, 2 Monitor, 1 Desktop)

And 2nd one is "Buddy B-680", which can turn a computer for Max. 5 users to use at the same times!

Since both has no english web/infos (Chinese Only). What I can tell is getting some Pics of them from its adv. here:

BeTwin:

152676.jpg

Buddy B-680:

15531g.jpg

15531e.jpg

15531n.jpg

BTW, both of them are not free, there is a free solution which can let your computer for 2 or more users at the same time by adding more display card,monitors & USB keyboard/mouse.

Which is useing a free VPC software which called "VirtualBox" (http://www.virtualbox.org/).

Since it can setup each virtual machine to use different USB keyboard/mouse as input, and can use "Full screen" for each monitor.

So with it , you not only get 2 users to use same OSs, but can make each use running different OS at the same time!

But the down side is.... you need to install OSs for each user...

Hope the info could help, and sorry for my bad english.

Best Regards,

Ken-mkII

Edited by Ken-mkII
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We are all aware that the usage of programs like these for desktop OSes, like XP, Vista, Win7, etc, violates the EULA for usage of said product, right? Which is the reason why Microsoft released a specific OS version to do this, rather than something like an add-on or powertoy for existing desktop OSes.

Let's try to keep the discussion within the forum rules - posting products that do this (note they're from either China or Russia, where IP and EULA laws are non-existant?) would be a violation of the EULA, which would run us afould of our forum rules a bit, and I can't endorse that.

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(Being snarky, so just take it FWIW and don't get huffy...)

Heh-heh, Linux (based on Unix, a Mainframe OpSys, like good-ole IBM).

These had MultiTask/MultiUser waaaayyy before MS-DOS 1.0! Why do you think MainFramers (like me) simply refused to go to PC's? On an IBM, e.g., the OS busts storage into the OpSys, the Partitions (separate address spaces) for mutitasking, CICS (or something similar) running in one Partition, and within CICS MultiUsers (max. was pretty high) using strictly Re-Entrant code.

It's the OpSys (e.g. MSWin) that allows for it (as the example above). The Hardware can do it. BTW, the Original (IBM/Unix) Standards were way better than MS/Intel. Remember, IBM contracted (ultimately) Intel and MS and provided the specs (which never happened back then). Intel/MS used their own "way" (in collaberation) of MicroCode and Storage Structures (Little-Endian anyone)? If they'd have used the same method IBM used (they had access), future Porting MF->PC would have been a skate! I'm currently in the process of learning PC-Assembler (as opposed to MainFrame) and trust me, Mainframe is easier and makes more sense!

One would assume it's Big $ to MS to talk folks into it. Ever hear of z-OS (IBM today)???

edit - and don't think MS couldn't have done it... it's just a matter of coding it into the paging mechanism (or even the Sign-On... one "Console/Admin", one "CICS"...). Well, heck, that's why the make Servers. (BTW, I could sign onto multiple sessions/different user-id using TN3270 from a PC->MF; Just "flip" the Screen Presentation.)

(sorry, had to post this... ignore as appropriate.)

Edited by submix8c
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We are all aware that the usage of programs like these for desktop OSes, like XP, Vista, Win7, etc, violates the EULA for usage of said product, right?

No change of files of operational system occurs - anywhere in EULA there is no interdiction to use additional monitors, keyboards and mice for the organisation of additional workplaces. As to other programs yes, for Microsoft Office in such configuration it is necessary to buy additional licences about what it is told in its licence.

Which is the reason why Microsoft released a specific OS version to do this, rather than something like an add-on or powertoy for existing desktop OSes.

Microsoft much that does as it it is pleasant, instead of how it is convenient to you :)

Let's try to keep the discussion within the forum rules - posting products that do this (note they're from either China or Russia, where IP and EULA laws are non-existant?) would be a violation of the EULA, which would run us afould of our forum rules a bit, and I can't endorse that.

It at all advertising, the person has asked and has received the answer.

Forgive for my English, I use a translation program, I will not tell what, and that again will tell that I am engaged in advertising ;)

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Errr... no advertising Commercial Products for Monetary Gain (paraphrasing the MSFN rules). It's one thing to link to and recommend something as a bystander and another to support a product you are involved in. "The Rules" (see top of page) say so. I hope your "translator" inadvertently used the word "advertise" instead of something else...

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