In the last 4 posts I have painted a pretty rosy picture of Windows Multipoint Server, and I think it is great. But I have run into a few issues.
The first issue I have run into is having a hard disk fill up. If you read the previous posts, you are probably thinking “but I thought it gets wiped back to an image every night”. That is correct, but more than likely someone will forget to turn on disk protection after a maintenance window and you will start filling up the disk with updates and user profiles. It happens. Of course you could also have started with a disk that doesn’t have enough room for growth as more updates and software are added.
Generally, you would just go and expand the VHD to add more storage. However, Disk Protection complicates matters. There is an extra partition and some configuration/registry keys associated with Disk Protection. In order to expand a VHD, you will want to disable disk protection and then uninstall disk protection. This will remove the extra partition so you can expand the primary partition, but you will have an issue when you go to reinstall disk protection. There is a registry key that can cause problems at: HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Windows MultiPoint Server. You can remove the key for DpReserveDriveLetter. This will return you to where you were before you enabled Disk Protection. You can find more info about this at: https://blogs.technet.microsoft.com/multipointserver/2013/01/03/windows-multipoint-server-2012-disk-protection/.
The second common issue is a zero client that won’t connect. These are fairly straight forward to troubleshoot however. I recommend going back through part 4 of this series and walking through each step of the connection process. More often than not it comes down to a network issue.
The last issue is really more of an installation issue, but I think it is worth mentioning. All the schools I work in have an Acceptable Use Policy that displays before login. This is configured through group policy as an interactive logon message. Multipoint Server goes through an extra logon step during boot. It logs in automatically to a WMSShell local user, then lands at another log in prompt at the console (and at the zero-clients). What this means is you can get stuck at the logon message before the WMSShell user logs in. If you are using disk protection with scheduled reboots, this would mean every night the VM would get stuck waiting for you to press ok on the console before any clients can log in. The solution is to adjust group policy so that the interactive logon policy does not display for the Multipoint environment.
These have been just a few issues and their solutions, but overall I can say I have been very pleased with Windows Multipoint Server. It has reduced IT burden for lab management significantly and provided a streamlined user experience. Come back for the last installment in this series where I will be talking about the future of Windows Multipoint Server!
Michael Richardson – I’m an IT Systems Analyst / Project Manager for Midwest Data Center, a former IT Salesman, and a Youth Pastor at my local church. I live in Maryville, MO and I enjoy learning and implementing new technologies for businesses, solving problems and puzzles, and teaching about my faith.