Microsoft Remote Desktop Services vs. Parallels Remote Application Server (RAS)

As of May 2019, Microsoft Remote Desktop Services is ranked 4th in Virtual Desktop with 1 review vs Parallels Remote Application Server (RAS) which is ranked 1st in Virtual Desktop with 14 reviews. The top reviewer of Microsoft Remote Desktop Services writes "Stable solution for remote desktop services". The top reviewer of Parallels Remote Application Server (RAS) writes "Allowed us to centralize our software, making scalability and updates easier". Microsoft Remote Desktop Services is most compared with TeamViewer, VMware Horizon View and Parallels Remote Application Server (RAS). Parallels Remote Application Server (RAS) is most compared with Microsoft Remote Desktop Services, XenApp (Citrix Virtual Apps) and XenDesktop.
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Most Helpful Review
Use Microsoft Remote Desktop Services? Share your opinion.
Find out what your peers are saying about Parallels Remote Application Server (RAS) vs. XenDesktop and other solutions. Updated: May 2019.
340,752 professionals have used our research since 2012.
Quotes From Members

We asked business professionals to review the solutions they use. Here are some excerpts of what they said:

Pros
It is a stable product.

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We use Cloudpaging to package and deploy the vast majority of our applications to our standard Windows 10 desktops. With the use of Parallels integration into Software2 AppsAnywhere hub, this means we can use the same packages to deliver Windows applications to almost any device - Windows, mac OS, iOS, Android, Linux, Xbox One, PS4 - just by ticking a box.Thin client management (Windows 10 client) provides an easy way to lock down client connection to the remote infrastructure. Policies are very helpful for preconfiguring client behavior. Finally, client management is easy.It has allowed us to centralize the software location so we don't have to update the software client on 70 computers.The most valuable feature is the ease with which you can publish applications to different groups of users, by integrating with Windows Active Directory.It provides flexible access to Windows applications from many types of devices.We can publish apps and desktops on Terminal Servers and seamlessly share printers. We also combine Parallels with Deepnet Security to get two-factor authentication.We use RAS to publish cloud desktops to our clients. The ability to easily publish resources to a subset of users is what we find most valuable.The management capability from the RAS portal provides greater control than using pure MS inbuilt into RDS capabilities.

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Cons
We find the services are not as transparent as we would like for our integration with Citrix.

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It needs Windows scaling on Android/iOS devices. At present, the concept of delivering apps to Android and iOS devices is appealing, but the reality is the screen size on these devices is so small that, unless there is some scaling option, it is not really usable.HALB is not stable in our environment. When running two HALBs we have stability problems, so we use an active one and a passive for backup. Also, it would be nice to implement an upgrade of the environment without having to stop the servers. As it is, this must be done during off-hours.The main issue we have with all of our users is printing. Randomly, a printer will disconnect or someone won't connect to it and I will have to reset the print service and then nobody can print. That's the big headache we've had over the course of the five years.A web-based management interface for administration and reporting would be nice, instead of needing to log into a remote server.We use several gateways because access to our secret zone requires two-factor user authentication. It is a lot of hassle differentiating among users with or without two-factor. Of course, we could use two farms, but that would mean more management too.It would be great if there were more sophisticated GPO templates/options.We have had significant, ongoing issues with printing. It would be great to have a best practice for dealing with printing that we can offer to our customers.Since I've been here less than a year, I have had to upgrade the system three times. The first time was the major upgrade but they have upgraded twice since, and I think that's too many times in that time span.

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Pricing and Cost Advice
The pricing is moderate.

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I recommend testing Parallels and comparing it to your needs. Compare the prices against what you are able to do with the product and its alternatives. Parallels is not a cheap product.We currently use Parallels side-by-side with an Azure cloud-hosted solution. This may be from a lack of product knowledge on my part, but we still need to work out the most effective way to shut down servers outside of hours, thereby reduce hosting costs. I am not entirely convinced Parallels does this well yet.Parallels is a cost effective alternative to Citrix.It justifies the price. In terms of licensing, initially when we got the product it was an unlimited licensing strategy. We knew would grow in the coming years. So initially, we took a plan which had no limit. After a year or so the strategy changed and we were being limited to 105 licenses, that was the minimum... If there was flexibility for increasing the number of licenses that would be great because you never know how much you are going to grow in the next year.Pricing is a little steep.Just compare it to Citrix and you will see the value in it.Comparable performance to Citrix for our use case at a significantly lower cost. Pricing is clear and there are relatively few options or other pricing considerations when compared to similar products. Just be sure not to forget the Microsoft licensing that goes along with a Parallels deployment.Work with the vendor, as this is a fairly new product and they want use cases. Deals can be made.

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Ranking
4th
out of 29 in Virtual Desktop
Views
18,555
Comparisons
10,820
Reviews
1
Average Words per Review
133
Avg. Rating
8.0
1st
out of 29 in Virtual Desktop
Views
6,282
Comparisons
2,287
Reviews
13
Average Words per Review
433
Avg. Rating
8.6
Top Comparisons
Also Known As
Remote Desktop ServicesParallels RAS
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Microsoft
Parallels
Overview
Remote Desktop Services is a server role in Windows Server that provides technologies that enable users to access session-based desktops, virtual machine-based desktops, or applications in the data center from both within a corporate network and from the Internet. Remote Desktop Services enables a rich-fidelity desktop or application experience, and helps to securely connect remote users from managed or unmanaged devices. ApplicationServer delivers applications, data and virtual desktops from a central location, providing continuous availability, resource-based load-balancing and complete network transparency.
Offer
Learn more about Microsoft Remote Desktop Services
Learn more about Parallels Remote Application Server (RAS)
Sample Customers
Bank Alfalah Ltd.Arsari Group _ PT Netmarks Indonesia, Izhevsk Elektromekhanicheskiy Zavod (IEMZ) _ Kupol, Abilene Diagnostic Clinic, Fylde Borough Council, YARSTROYREZE LLC, VSK Insurance House, Melenkovsky District of Vladimirskaya Oblast, Sofrigam SA, Antenna International, KingsGate Community Church, Norwegian American Hospital, Island Hotels Group, Medway Council, Medway Council, Voices of September 11th, MacDonald Training Center, Kansas Childrenês Service League, Scope,Next Generation Clubs, WTC Communications, Opera Australia, HSE Integrated, Danier, Bridgwater College, Kern County Mental Health, Tony Tiendas, Spears Manufacturing, Managed Insurance Services Inc., Intuitive Medical Software, M.J. Soffe, Mazda Motors, Israel Military Industries (IMI), Telfair, Upic Solutions, Teleflora, Fisher & Company
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