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Windows Session Termination Logic

Very informative article.

One of the decisions we needed to make when we implemented our True Seamless Windows functionality was whether to trigger session termination based on processes or visual elements, e.g. windows. Like the Terminal Server team, we chose to rely on the visual elements. Our reason for this decision was the fact that some applications spawn helper processes that never terminate. In such cases, neither would the sessions. Basing session termination on the visual elements guarantees that a session remains active as long as it has something to show and ends when it doesn't. One problem we had to overcome with this approach is that it is perfectly legal for Windows applications to close or hide all their visual elements in the middle of their operation. An example of such behavior is the Windows Calculator - when you switch from the Standard view to the Scientific view or vice versa, the Calculator first destroys its window before creating a new one. If a session terminated the instant no visual elements were displayed a session hosting only Calculator would end whenever you switched views. Our solution to this problem was to delay session termination after the last visual element is hidden or destroyed, just in case a new one is created. If a new visual element was indeed created within this time period the session termination was canceled. Presumably this is also the main reason for the 20 second delay described in the article.


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