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Q: Windows 2000 professional max concurrent connections. ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   5 Comments )
Subject: Windows 2000 professional max concurrent connections.
Category: Computers > Operating Systems
Asked by: apcs_uk-ga
List Price: $7.00
Posted: 22 Apr 2003 01:14 PDT
Expires: 22 May 2003 01:14 PDT
Question ID: 193693
Hi. We have a 50 PC network running mostly NT 4 wks and 2 NT4.0

We are having a problem with our ADSL at the moment and so are using
our backup provider - Aramiska (satellite 1Mb) to provide an internet
connection to the network. Problem being the only PC configured to use
the sat service is a Windows 2000 Pro machine. I thought there was a
limit to the number of concurrent connections of 10.

Anyway, I loaded some proxy software on the 2k machine and the 50
users have been working fine. I am pretty sure more than 10 have been
using it at once.

Questions (and this is curiosity more than anything)

1. Is the limit ACTUALY a limit - or is it just a EULA thing?
2. Is the "limit" just for files/printers rather than a 3rd party
sharing software?
3. Does W98 have a limit - if so, is it an actual limit and if so,
what’s the limit?

Confused! Thanks in advance
Subject: Re: Windows 2000 professional max concurrent connections.
Answered By: sldreamer-ga on 07 May 2003 01:29 PDT
Rated:5 out of 5 stars
Hi apcs_uk,

First let me address a couple of the comments below.  One of the
comments mentions the following Microsoft knowledge base article:

Limiting a User's Concurrent Connections in Windows 2000 and Windows
NT 4.0

That article deals with the number of concurrent connections made by a
particular user.  It does not have anything to do with the number of
connections that a Windows 2000 Professional system can accept at a

Another comment mentions Client Access Licenses (CALs).  These only
apply to server products such as Windows 2000 Server.  They do not
apply to Windows 2000 Professional.  Additionally, even if you were to
run the proxy software on a server operating system such as Windows
2000 Server, you would not need any CALs (assuming the proxy software
does not require server authentication), as is stated on the following

Internet Connector Licensing FAQ

"Q.  What about anonymous Intranet applications?
A.  Anonymous Intranet applications do not require a Client Access
License (CAL) as long as server services (file, print, remote access)
are not used, and as long as Intranet users access the server
anonymously, that is, they do not use server authentication."

Additional information on CALs can be found on the following pages:

Windows 2000 Client Access Licensing Overview

General Licensing FAQ for Windows 2000

Now I will answer your questions.

Windows 2000 Professional does have a limit of 10 concurrent inbound
connections, as is stated in the following Microsoft knowledge base

Inbound Connections Limit in Windows

"The maximum number of other computers that are permitted to
simultaneously connect over the network to Windows NT Workstation 3.5,
3.51, 4.0, and Windows 2000 Professional is ten."

The article also states that the limit is a real one enforced by the
operating system:

"When a user at a computer that is running Windows NT or Windows 2000
Professional attempts to connect to a Windows NT Workstation system
that already has ten users connected to it, the following error
message appears:

No more connections can be made to this remote computer at this time
because there are already as many connections as the computer can

In addition, the article states that the limit applies to file, print,
and other services:

"This limit includes all transports and resource sharing protocols
combined. This limit is the number of simultaneous sessions from other
computers the system is permitted to host. This limit does not apply
to the use of administrative tools that attach to the system from a
remote computer."

"Any file, print, named pipe, or mail slot session that does not have
any activity on it will be automatically disconnected after the
AutoDisconnect time has expired; the default for this is 15 minutes.
Once the session is disconnected, one of the 10 connections will be
available so that another user can connect to the Windows NT
Workstation system."

"All logical drive, logical printer, and transport level connections
combined from a single computer are considered to be one session;
therefore, these connections only count as one connection in the 10-
connection limit."

However, the article does not explicitly state that the limit applies
to connections to third-party applications.  The following articles
state that Microsoft's IIS web server allows only 10 concurrent
connections at a time, while other web servers (such as Apache) allow
unlimited connections:

Installing SquirrelMail for Windows using Apache

"While Apache and PHP will run on Windows 95/98/ME, we recommend using
a more stable NT-based version of Windows. You do not necessarily need
Windows NT or 2000 Server, since Apache will run fine on a
Workstation, allowing unlimited connections (although IIS on
Workstation is limited to 10 connections). If you're not sure what to
go with, use Windows 2000 Pro."

Share360: Support: Share360 Version 1: FAQ: Question

"IIS on Windows 2000/XP professional has a restriction on the TCP
connection. It only allows 10 connections at the same time. (...)
Change IIS on 2000/XP Pro to a different web server like Apache.
Apache does not limit the number of connections. Cybozu Web Server
also does not have a limitation, but it is less scalable than Apache."

So it appears that the 10 connection limit does not apply to
third-party applications.

Windows 98 also has a limit to the number of concurrent connections. 
The following Microsoft knowledge base article states that a registry
value named MaxConnections controls the limit (the default value is

Windows TCP/IP Registry Entries

In addition, the following support article on Macromedia's web site
indicates that the concurrent connection limit for Windows 98 is for
inbound connections and it does affect third-party applications:

Macromedia Director TechNotes article

I hope this clears up your confusion.


Search strategy:

"windows 2000" limit ("10 connections" OR "10 connection")

apache "10 connections" windows 2000 pro

("windows 98" OR win98) (limit OR maximum) (concurrent OR
simultaneous) (connections OR connection)

("windows 98" OR win98) registry maxconnections

"windows 2000 server" "client access licenses"
apcs_uk-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars
possibly the best Google Answer yet. Thanks for your time.

Subject: Re: Windows 2000 professional max concurrent connections.
From: daniel_h-ga on 26 Apr 2003 16:13 PDT
As far as I know, the limit is either a physical limit (Although I
dont think so) or a setting.
Subject: Re: Windows 2000 professional max concurrent connections.
From: daniel_h-ga on 26 Apr 2003 16:15 PDT
in fact, I dont think there is a limit at all.. did you try it without the proxy?

Secondly, I wouldn't advise using Win98 for networks, it was not designed for it.
Subject: Re: Windows 2000 professional max concurrent connections.
From: jbailey01-ga on 02 May 2003 09:11 PDT
There is no limit to concurrent connections to a Windows 2000 Pro
machine, hence why Microsoft released a tool specifically TO limit the
amount of connections:
Subject: Re: Windows 2000 professional max concurrent connections.
From: junedar-ga on 02 May 2003 17:41 PDT
The limit that you are probably curious about is about the License
access service for a server product.Or more known as CAL/S (cleint
access license?service) manage by a License Manager. there are two
modes for it(per server and per seat). I dont know how I can explain
it in such a way that a person will understand it coz its very
technical. Even me a MCSE would find it difficult to explain .anyway

An administrator can ensure an organization's legal compliance with
Microsoft BackOffice software license agreements by monitoring license
purchases, deletions, and usage. This licensing information is
collected on a server by the License Logging service in Windows 2000

I know your more confused know. Anyway the bottom line is that the
main purpose for this is not for access limit but for some other.As
long as you are not implementing a scenario, no probs for limit of
concurrent connections. If you have problems about connectivity or
whatsover, its a diffrent story.
You may write me should you have any questions, I would be glad to
answer. The more technical or more weird it is , the more ready I am .
Its my pleasure to extend what I know. Thanks.
Subject: Re: Windows 2000 professional max concurrent connections.
From: sldreamer-ga on 07 May 2003 23:42 PDT

Thank you for the kind words and 5-star rating!


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