MultiPoint Server (MPS) is a technology and solution based on Windows Server and Remote Desktop Services. MPS was originally built for use in the classrooms and educational institutions and It allows you to provide low-cost sharing between MPS and user stations. User stations can be consist of only monitor, keyboard, mouse (zero clients) and be connected to MPS through USB (usb hubs), video cables or through LAN (RDP-over-LAN, if clients are not zero. for example, laptops, thin clients and etc..). MPS uses some of the RDS services (by default): RD Session Host and RD Licensing Server.
First version of MPS was released in February, 2010 . In MPS 2010 you can connect stations and host only through USB hubs and video ports.
Ability to use LAN between user stations and MPS was added only to the next version – MPS 2011 released in March, 2011.
Some of the main features of MPS 2011:
- RemoteFX support
- Virtualization Support
- Single administration console to manage multiple MPS
- Projecting desktop from one stations to another
- Filtering and blocking internet browsing on stations
- Ability to open and close applications remotely, lock keyboard and mouse on stations
- Standard and Premium Editions
MPS 2012 (next generation of MPS based on Windows Server 2012) has been updated with the following new features:
- MultiPoint Dashboard, new management console to monitor and interact user desktops
- Disk protection (system volume protection from unwanted changes)
- Windows 8 desktop experience for users, including access to the Windows Store
- MultiPoint Server Connector to monitor and manage PCs and Tablets (you need to install manually one on each rich/thin clients)
Differences between Standard and Premium editions :
|Maximum simultaneously connected stations||up to 10||up to 20|
|Virtualization||No||Yes (1+1 licensing model)|
|Maximum x64 sockets||1||2|
|Maximum memory||32 Gb||Unlimited|
MultiPoint Server 2010-2012 requires license that can be purchased from OEM/VL channels.
Additionally, all MPS user stations require CALs.
MPS 2012 supports the following user stations (endpoints):
- Direct-video-connected stations (also supported by MPS2010/2011)
- RDP-over-LAN connected stations (rich clients/thin clients/tablets connected through RDP protocol)
MPS host with many video cards –> stations connected to MPS video cards (VGA, for example) –> keyboard and mouse and other devices connected through personal USB hubs
Example (stations and hosts are in close proximity):
- VGA port on MPS <> VGA port on station’s monitor
- USB port on MPS <> Station USB hub
- Peripheral devices on station <> Station USB hub
MPS host with one video card –> stations are connected through specialized USB hubs with video ports
Example (stations and hosts are in close proximity):
- VGA, USB ports on station <> station USB+VGA hub (all in one)
- station USB hub <> USB port on MSP
Works similarly as USB-zero-Client-connected stations but can be connected to LAN and send/receive all data through existing LAN. More flexible but it’s a little bit more expensive.
This type of stations appears as virtual devices in MultiPoint Server. Please refer manufacturer’s documentation before deployment.
To fully understand zero clients (with/-out LAN) please review :
Wyse Zero Clients for Microsoft MultiPoint Server Interactive Brochure
With the Windows Server 2016 Technical Preview release (at the end of 2014) , Microsoft announced that MultiPoint Server will be added as a new server role called MultiPoint Services.
So after WS 2016 RTM MultiPoint Server might be discontinued.
There is no any information about MPS licensing and limitations in Windows Server 2016 either. I’ll keep this post up-to-date.
Update: MultiPoint Premium Server 2016 is a new SKU and it requires Windows Server CALs and RDS CALs. This Windows Server edition is available only for academic licensing. More details are in the licensing datasheet
We’ll walk through the MPS deployment (rdp-over-lan) in Windows Server 2016 TP4 (domain joined)
- Open “Add roles and features” wizard and select MultiPoint Services. You may notice there are some additional features are required for MPS such as File And Storage Services, Print and Document Services and etc. Just click on “Add features” and click Next
- Read a great explanation from Microsoft “what is MPS?”.
Remote Desktop Licensing needs to be activated or use trial period (120 days)
- Read and click next
- I leave default settings and click Next.
- Print Server is needed to manage multiple printers
- Distributed Scan Server – enables you to manage and share networks scanners that support Distributed Scan Management
- Internet Printing creates a web site where users can manage printer jobs on the server .
If you have installed Internet Printing client on stations you can connect and print to shared printers using Web Browser and Internet Printing Protocol
- LPD service – Line Printer Daemon Service enables UNIX-based computers using the Line Printer Remote service to print to shared printers on MPS
- Leave default settings.
- RD Gateway – to publish RDS (not suitable for MPS)
- RD Connection Broker – to distribute connections (not suitable for MPS)
- RD Virtualization Host – for VDI
- RD Web Access – web access to RD session/vdi/remoteapp collections (not suitable for MPS)
- After server restart press “B” to identify primary station and wait while remote desktop services complete configuration*
- To install MultiPoint Services you can use PowerShell (server restarts automatically by default):
TIP: MultiPoint Services add built-in account named as “WmsShell” to support multi-station mode and create group WMSOperators for allowing access to Dashboard functionality
- Press Start button and open MultiPoint Manager
- Add MultiPoint Servers or personal computers (optional)
- Go to Users tab and click “Add user account”, click Next and select user type
10. Connect to MultiPoint Server from the user connection using RDP.
When user firstly log on to MPS he receives privacy notification “To assist you with your usage of this computer, your activities may be monitored by your system administrator”
Click on “Accept and continue using this computer” and go back to MPS server.
- On MPS server run MultiPoint Dashboard. All screens from user stations are being added and updated to dashboard.
You can see what happens on user’s station, block this desktop, set message for blocked users, take control, write IM to user, block USB storage or limit web access on selected desktops.
- You can also project your desktop to all or selected user desktops.
It’s really needed when trainer or teacher does not have projector so he or she shares screen to all user’s station.
If you are familiar with Lync/Skype there is a similar feature called as “desktop sharing”
- If you want to block selected or all desktops use Block/Unblock options. It’s recommended to set message for blocked users as well.
- To limit web access you need to define list of sites that you are going to “hide” from users
- If you open MultiPoint Manager you can notice that list of stations has been updated with rlevchenko’s station
- To configure MPS server go back to Home tab and click on “Edit Server Settings”
You can disable privacy notification at first user logon or assign a unique IP to each station.
- To enable disk protection (recommended) click on “Enable Disk protection”.
18.If you have application requires its own instance of a client operating system for each user you can create Virtual Desktop based on Windows 7 or later.
How to uninstall MultiPoint Services in Windows Server 2016 TP?
Use Remove Roles and Features , restart server and run this script
Where is the powershell module for MultiPoint Services?
At the time of writing, there is no PS module for MultiPoint Services
42 thoughts on “MultiPoint Services Role in Windows Server 2016”
Is there any documentation on setting up for MPS over WAN – my client base are primarily SMB with anywhere from 3 to 25 users who historically were SBS Server customers – going forward I was looking at the possibility of setting up WS 2016 with MPS role for these clients and selling ‘seats’ on my server as a cost effective solution and for ease of administration / management for myself…
JMSill, thank you for your comment. There is the only one way to provide MPS functionality in your case – RDP-over-LAN . You need to publish your MPS and share it with end users or discuss full RDS implementation (session-based deployment)
Have you come across “max simultaneous stations” for 2016? RDP and Ethernet Zero Clients.
At this time, we don’t have any published official guides from MS.
I guess there will be no any changes for RDS at all..but we should wait RTM release and get licensing model for WS 2016 + scalability options.
MPS is not the right choice for large deployments. It was designed for small computer labs or smb and limited up to 20 concurrent connections per server. So, I think these limits will be just transfered to WS 2016.
If you want to have more than 20 stations, you should implement classical RDS (session-based or vdi) or deploy many MPS Servers and manage them from one console.
Please review hardware and performance recommendations: https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/jj916403.aspx
Thanks for your post. Did you see any updates compared to Mutlipoint 2011 / 2012 or is are the services just a copy of the 2012 functionality?
I suppose MPS was not profitable so MS decided to make MPS as a new RDS server role instead of separate product. At this time, there are no differences in functionality. But let’s wait for the RTM version.
Thanks for your answer!
Hi, and thanks for your great post.
Do clients need to purchase RDS cals licenses ?
For MPS 2012 (just for instance) we need to cover all user stations by MPS CALs (it’s quite different than RDS CALs) and add them to MPS as client access licenses (see https://technet.microsoft.com/ru-ru/library/dn690074.aspx). So, RDS CALs are not required. MPS uses it’s own CALs + Windows Server CALs (VL channel)
To get a little more information please review “licensing” tab at https://www.microsoft.com/windows/multipoint/buy.aspx
For WS 2016 I don’t have any information related with licensing MPS scenarios. I’m not sure that existing licensing model will make sense in WS 2016 environments.
Let’s wait official guides.
An other point that worth noting and can broaden the interest in the product is that there is no more limit to the number of users in each MPS (other than hardware specs). Quoted from https://blogs.msdn.microsoft.com/rds/2014/10/27/announcing-the-multipoint-services-role-in-window-server-vnext-technical-preview/:
“We decided to integrate this functionality as a role within Windows Server to make it more broadly available and to do away with the 20 users per MultiPoint Server limit against which we had heard strong feedback.”
There is workaround for MPS user limit : use many MPS and manage them from one console.
MPS movement to Windows Server 2016 is a way to achieve more scalability and yes..for better efficiency (more powerful Windows Server = happier users and customers:) ) .
Don’t forget that Microsoft can change some features until RTM release. So, it’s better to compare MPS 2012 and MPS inside of Windows Server 2016 only after Windows Server 2016 will reach general availability
Hi. MPS needs RDS CAL on WS2016 Licensing. MPS CAL is no longer exist. and, MPS is Academic Volume License SKU only. Thanks.
Yeap..you are right. It’s described in licensing datasheet available here: http://download.microsoft.com/download/7/2/9/7290EA05-DC56-4BED-9400-138C5701F174/WS2016LicensingDatasheet.pdf
I saw that MS has a Multipoint Server 2016 as a seperate licensing / .iso available as well as the Server 2016 role. In the Multipoint documentation it said that the Multipoint OS is available for EDU and corporate/enterprise can use the role. What is the difference and why? I am using Multipoint in EDU and a Standard 2016 license is a decent amount cheaper than the Multipoint Server license so I am confused.
Standard is cheaper? Can you share total costs for your MPS environment? Thanks.
Yea, with EDU pricing the server 2016 standard without user cals is $20 for 2 core. Windows Multipoint 2016 is $88. It’s not so much about the money as it is why would any one pay 4 times the amount if multipoint is a server role in 2016 standard??
John, are you using Std price for 8 packets/2 cores to compare with Multipoint price? we need to license at least 8 cores/proc and 16 cores/server for WS Standard (for example, pack of 2 cores is 20$ , cost of required 8 packs is 160$). Multipoint licensing model is a bit different – it requires license for each processor (not cores) + CALs (Windows Server/RDS).
According to your reply, if have one server with 2 preocessor and 10 core per processor, How must be the cost?
Hi, Multipoint Server 2016 Premium which is only available to Academics requires both Windows Server CAL and RDS CALs + you will also need to license each processor socket. In your case, two Windows Server core licenses + CALs (RDP and Windows Server) to cover every user connected to Multipoint Server
With multipoint on 2016 server, do I have to join the PS server to the domain?
It’s not required
After deploying Multipoint role, i’m not able to open Multipoint Dasboard and multipoint Manager consoles.
After disable UAC and reboot, Multipoint manager console try to open but stop immediately.
When i open Manager console, nothing appear.
What could be the cause?
This is the error :
Nom de l’application défaillante WmsManager.exe, version : 10.0.14393.0, horodatage : 0x57899412
Nom du module défaillant : KERNELBASE.dll, version : 10.0.14393.479, horodatage : 0x582588e6
Code d’exception : 0xe0434352
Décalage d’erreur : 0x0000000000017788
ID du processus défaillant : 0xeb0
Heure de début de l’application défaillante : 0x01d391318e4e0599
Chemin d’accès de l’application défaillante : C:\Program Files\Windows MultiPoint Server\WmsManager.exe
Chemin d’accès du module défaillant: C:\Windows\System32\KERNELBASE.dll
ID de rapport : 77f4456e-bcd5-4efb-b6b4-470702b7d720
Nom complet du package défaillant :
ID de l’application relative au package défaillant :
It’s quite hard to investigate your issue without any access to your infrastructure. Try to re-install MPS and apply the latest updates.
i thought that it was a domain joined cause because server is workgroup.
I’m reinstalling and making updates.
i solved my problem by changing the name of the computer(the name was more than 15 characters), and reinstall again.
We bought Ncomputing MX100S to work with Multipoint on Windows server 2016.
Ncomputing MX100S need to connect to Vspace Pro to communicate, so i install vspace pro to multipoint server.
Now i want to configure multipoint to work with vspace server.
Do you have this king of configuration before? if yes, how to do?
thanks for a great post.
I am wondering about MPS because I has bought it really cheaply on ebay (MPS 2011 Premium) and MS confirmed that license is valid and retail. After I found out about ms server and cals I am not that happy :). I want to learn about deploying it so example would be home enviroment – 1 server and 3 to 4 users. My machine is 1 cpu i7 so 4 cores.
Do you think I do need to buy MPS 2011 Premium cals (I think for home usage I do not need to worry about licensing and cals but to be as legal as possible I want to.) and can you help where would you go to check prices and help. I was thinking that MS Partner network would be the way but 2011 edition is pretty old so I am not sure if I will be able to buy it from them.
Hi! Well..I’d recommend to discuss such questions with MS partners. I assume you will need to buy new licenses , and then downgrade to your version (2011) if needed.
I am sorry but I have’t found the option to edit comment.
You have mentioned that license required can be purchased from OEM/VL but MS advisor checked my product key and told me that it is Retail. So I am not sure do you think I can buy cals from MS or other supplier or whole purchase is fake because I need to buy product from OEM or Volume Licensing?
MS doesn’t sell any licenses. You need to contact local MS partner and discuss your situation. Retail means you bought a “box” version of MPS software. According to the licensing sheets, old MPS servers are purchased over OEM/VL channels. However, it does not mean that your deal is fake and etc.. Please work with partner and MS directly. I’m not a superhero 🙂
Your answers are more than enough. 🙂
I am testing multipoint server 2016.
By joining the machine to the existing domain here at school, I can not open the multipoint console.
Error: The trusted relationship between the parent domain and the trusted domain has failed.
If you remove the machine from the domain the multipoint console opens normally.
It seems like you have some issues related to relationships between your server and domain. You need to check your AD health, domain joining logs and etc. Did you try to add other machines to domain? No issues?
Valuable post, thank you very much. I inherited a bit of a train wreck, and I am trying to bring up a windows server 2016 with multipoint to evaluate. Frankly I do not clearly understand the licensing yet but that is of little concern right now. I think, I have a larger issue looming. I have over 100 mps 11 stations tied to hp t200 clients based on the hp ms6200 pc. I was told that these will work with mps16. The pc is still robust but the mps OS is lacking. The lack of documentation is brutal. I am beginning to get the feeling that the t200 clients will not work with mps2016. It was not clear what you used in your example to rds to the mps16 server. Can you or someone reading this tell me if the hp t200 thin clients will work with the WS2016 mps or not. I need to move on if that is the case. Cut my losses and bail out on multipoint completely and just focus on workstations. Thank you
What OS are they running?
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