Close this window
Note: Microsoft no longer offers Windows MultiPoint Server. However, Windows Server now has a MultiPoint Services role that does not have the 20-user limit of MultiPoint Server.
You can build a computer center with fewer computers. Compared to typical arrangements, Windows MultiPoint Server (WMS) costs surprisingly less to adopt and maintain, saves electricity, and gives administrators group controls. For nonprofit groups with many different missions, it’s helping people access technology ... for much less.
MultiPoint Server software allows several people — each with only a monitor, keyboard, and mouse — to have their own virtual desktops, using one host computer. Individual users can work independently, save and share files, customize individual settings, and log in at any station. Unlike more complicated virtualization systems, this software is intended to be turnkey, so you’ll be up and running fast. Workstations connect directly, via USB, or as thin clients over a network.
Microsoft introduced WMS in classrooms, but this software works in any setting that doesn’t require advanced processing power. Some real-world users include:
Microsoft commissioned a study (of users in emerging market countries) that indicated 66 percent savings over the one-computer-per-user model:
Beyond savings, the WMS application is intended to make administrators’ lives easier ... and make them mind readers too. Administrators can view what users are doing, send out messages to all users, restrict websites, or share tasks on screen.
Windows MultiPoint Server premium edition hosts up to 20 stations. If more stations and hosts are needed, the administrator is able to manage multiple host computers from a single station.
If you’re thinking of using WMS for a library or a training center, an after-school program or a crisis shelter, you can find out more about whether this application fits your needs here. Or log in to your TechSoup account and take our Eligibility Quiz to see if you qualify for Microsoft Donations.
Refurbishers can get WMS for a low cost through the Microsoft Registered Refurbisher Program.
Top image: Diagram of a Windows MultiPoint Server sample setup (Microsoft)
Second image: Children in a classroom sit in front of monitors and keyboards (Microsoft)
Bottom image: Demo showing a view of the screens of multiple users (Microsoft)
Carolyn Cotney | TechSoup Copywriter
This works with laptops?
This is an excellent question! According to our product experts, this software can work with a laptop if it meets certain requirements. Here's what I was told:
"It's quite possible to use laptops for both the server and workstations. The server needs to be pretty hefty -- at least a duo core processor with lots of RAM."
Also feel free to check out these requirements in more detail at this post: "How to Reuse Old Laptops with Windows MultiPoint Server" at forums.techsoup.org/.../how-to-reuse-old-laptops-with-windows-multipoint-server.aspx
Thanks! Have a great day!
This work is published under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 4.0 International License.