Microsoft released Remote Desktop Connection 6.0 for Windows XP. Remote Desktop Connection 6.0 (RDC) is already part of Windows Vista. The new RDP client has a couple of new features; some of them seem to work only with Terminal Services in Longhorn Server:
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Network Level Authentication
If you enable this feature, RDC 6.0 will ask for your credentials before you connect to a Terminal Server. This requires fewer resources on the remote computer. It also improves security since it prevents you from connecting unintentionally to a remote machine that was setup for malicious purpose.
Plug and Play devices which support redirection can now be redirected to the Terminal Server session. This didn't work with my USB stick. I guess, it doesn't support redirection. Of course, you can access your local memory stick thru a drive letter on the remote computer. This was possible before. But now, you can select each drive separately before you connect.
Terminal Services Gateway (TS Gateway)
This feature enables RDC to tunnel RDP over HTTPS. As far as I know, this only works with Terminal Services in Longhorn Server. Since HTPS uses port 443, you can close the RDP port (3389) on your firewall. TS Gateway might make VPN superfluous in cases where only an RDP connection is needed. Also check out David Wang's post about TS Gateway and Vista Server.
TS Remote Programs
If you know Citrix Metaframe (Did Citrix change the name again? They do so every month or so.) then you know this feature for a while already. It allows you to start a so-called published application on the remote computer. Users can only access this program. It seems for them, as if the program was started on the local computer. I suppose, it is also a Longhorn Server feature.
If you are so lucky to have multiple displays, then you can use this feature to span your terminal window across them. Since I don't belong to those lucky guys, I wasn't able to test this feature.
If you have a LCD display, you probably know that you can smooth edges and fonts (display properties, appearance, effects). This feature is disabled in a Terminal Server session which makes your desktop look quite ugly if you are used to smoothing. RDC 6.0 now supports smoothing, but it doesn't seems to work with Windows Server 2003. I could enable Clear Type on a Longhorn Server beta 2, but I didn't see any effect, though.
32 bit color
The old RDP client only supports 24 bit colors, RDC supports 32 bit. It didn't work in my test with Windows Server 2003 and Longhorn Server beta 2. Maybe that only works with the next version of Longhorn Server.