Archive for the ‘VMware’ tag
VMware has changed the compatibility notes for VMware Horizon View 5.2 recently. The product is now supported with Oracle 18.104.22.168 databases in addition to the compatible databases listed in the installation documentation.
You can find this information on the VMware website. Please follow this link.
Today I received a new SSD drive for my home lab. It was time to get some new IOPS in my vSphere environment for testing VMware Horizon View 5.2. I haven’t installed View for a while so I was really surprised about the changes I’ve seen in the product. After the general View installation I’ve deployed a Windows 7 desktop pool first as I wanted to test the new HTML access today. Of course I’ve seen it before and I’ve already played with it but didn’t install it by myself yet. The HTML access option comes as a separate installer for both, the server and the agent side. The remote experience agent which is installed on the virtual desktop also brings the necessary software pieces for the Unity Touch feature. From the VMware website you can download the HTML access for the connection server as well as the user experience agent. Just login to your MyVMware account and check the downloads section. The modules are available under the Horizon View downloads. Starting the installation is easy as usual, just click on the installer.
I was surprised when I did the installation as their was nothing to configure. Only click Next, Next and Finish and all its set.
After installing the HTML access option (Feature Pack 1for View 5.2) the website at https://viewserver/ changes. Before the installation the website offered only the option to download the View Client for accessing the virtual desktops. After installing the Feature Pack you can see the “VMware Horizon View HTML Access” icon.
But before using the new feature you’ve to install the client components on the virtual desktop. Again take the installer, this time copy it to the virtual desktop or desktop template and start the installation.
The only difference to the server installation part is that you have one additional wizard dialog. It gives you the chance to decide if you want to install HTML access only or also install the Unity Touch features. But of course you want it so just click on Install and start the installation.
After the installation and proper configuration of a desktop pool you can go back to the View Connection Server web interface. Click on the HTML access and enjoy!
Ha! There is another trap which you should be aware of! HTML access requires HTML5 support but this is not offered by Internet Explorer 9 i.e. which I’ve used to access my virtual desktop. Lessons learned! I’ve installed IE9 afterwards.
Using a supported web browser gives you this! A fully functional Windows 7 desktop running in a web browser. Great! I love it.
I hope this gives you a quick overview of the HTML Access which comes with the VMware View 5.2 Feature Pack 1. Of course the HTML access doesn’t give you the full functionality of a VMware View Client which is connected via PCoIP but it is great to use on a mobile device for a few use cases.
Eric Sloof published an article on his blog today which like to a video taken by Gunnar Berger from Gartner. In this video Gunnar compares HTML Access via PCoIP. It’s definitely worth to watch it!
Did you ever want to know more about the USB Device Redirection in VMware View? This is your chance! Peter Brown, Senior R&D manager at VMware’s London development facilities gives you a deep insight on the VMware blogs. This is really great information.
The article gives you information about these topics:
- What is USB Device Redirection?
- USB Redirection Changes in View 5.1
- Horizon View Clients to support new USB Redirection Features
- USB Device Support in virtual environments
- USB Device Filtering
- USB Device Splitting
- Does the protocol matter?
- USB1/2/3 Compatibility
- USB Redirection performance in a LAN compared to WAN
- USB Storage device performance
- Data Encryption
- Is it possible to disable redirection
- What’s new with USB redirection in Horizon View 5.2
VMware has released a new version of VMware Workstation. The new version 9.0.2 is a maintenance release which fixes the following issues from the release notes.
- On a Windows 7 host, when you plug and unplug a headset several times, the audio card of the guest would not work. This has been fixed in Workstation 9.0.2.
- When installing VMware Tools in Linux virtual machines, the The default screen resolution options have been standardized to 640×480, 800×600, 1024×768, or 1280×800 for the initial login. After login, resolution can be set to any value the user desires or Autofit can be used.
- You can now create full clones from a snapshot of a Windows XP Mode virtual machine.
- Image copy/paste now correctly function with Solaris 10 and 11 guests.
- In VMware Player, the list of available NICs in the Automatic Bridging Settings dialog window is now refreshed without restarting Player.
- A virtual machine created using Use a physical disk (For advanced users) from the new virtual machine wizard may display the following error when powering on: A fault has occurred causing a virtual CPU to enter the shutdown state... The cause of this issue has been fixed.
- More detailed PCI information has been added and a potential problem that resulted in risk of rebooting the host when selecting Collect Support Data has been fixed.
- Previously, when you manually disabled networking in the Network Manager and then attempted to suspend the virtual machine, the operation would fail and Workstation would show thean error The request to suspend this virtual machine failed because the corresponding VMware Tools Script did not run successfully.... This has been fixed.
- A memory leak that impacted Windows hosts and guests has been fixed.
- When running in a Linux distribution using the GNOME 3 desktop environment, Desktop folders now open as expected.
- The OVFTool has been updated to version 3.0.2.
- Disk cleanup for encrypted virtual machines has been disabled until VMware can further investigate reports of encrypted disks being damaged by this operation.
- Autostart virtual machines now power on automatically after upgrading Windows hosts to Windows 8 or Windows Server 2012.
- VMware Tools no longer crashes on Windows 2008 Server Core x64 SP2 operating system, with the following error:
VMware Tools unrecoverable error: (vthread-3)
Exception 0xc0000005 (access violation) has occurred.
However, Windows 2008 Server Core x64 SP2 is not a supported operating system for VMware Workstation.
- Scrolling with a Lenovo ThinkPad UltraNav scroll button no longer requires excessive force.
- From the Linux version of Workstation, the Description field for a remote virtual machine now captures all characters entered.
- When editing Workstation preferences on Windows hosts, occasionally a permissions error would be displayed. This issue has been resolved.
- It is now possible to create a linked clone from a read-only template virtual machine.
There is a great new guide online from VMware. If you want to setup a test environment for VMware Mirage, this is the resource to use. Please check the link below.
It is recommended and Best Practice to create a MirageAdmin Group before you start the installation of the components.
Domain Based Active Directory Group Procedure:
- Prior to Mirage installation, please perform the following actions:
- Create the Mirage Administrators Group – a new domain group e.g. MirageAdmin
- Add this new or existing domain group to the local administrators group on the Mirage Management server i.e. Add “domain.name\MirageAdmins” to the local administrators group on the Mirage server via the local users and groups configuration window – administrators group
- It is recommended to create a new Domain User to run the Mirage services (“Mirage Services Account”). Add the Mirage Services Account.to the Mirage Administrators Group.
- Creating a new account will allow better, secured access to the Mirage Storage.
- Add the Installing Account (that will be used for installing Mirage services) to the Mirage Administrator Group.
- The Installing Account should also have the access privileges mentioned above.
- During Installation of Mirage Management Server
- Login as the Installing Account.
- Enter the Mirage Services Account when prompted during the installation. The syntax used for fully qualified name is DOMAIN\username
- Enter the Mirage Administrator Group in the same installation wizard screen. The syntax used for fully qualified name is DOMAIN\group
Installation Errors with wrong security privileges
The Mirage installation could fail with “Failed setting default server policies: BI rules.” if you are using Built-In AD groups. Built-In groups are cannot be used as a Mirage Administrator group.
VMware View 5.2 is now available for download! Here are the release notes:
What’s New in Horizon View 5.2
VMware Horizon View 5.2 delivers valuable enhancements to end user experience and ease of management, while further driving down the total cost of ownership for VDI.
What’s New with End User Experience
- Support for Windows 8 based desktops1
- Hardware Accelerated 3D Graphics1
- Improved video and VOIP communications with Microsoft Lync 2013 support4
- Streamlined access to View Desktops from Horizon2
- Easily connect to desktops from any device with HTML Access3
- Enhanced productivity from mobile devices with new ‘Unity Touch’ functionality3 and 4
What’s New with Ease of Management
- Large pool creation with elimination of 8 host limits, and multiple vLAN support
- View Administrator performance improvements with large numbers of desktops
- Accelerated provisioning and recompose operations.
- Tech Preview of a new Integrated Service Console in the vSphere Web Client1
- Support for vCenter Server Virtual Appliance based deployments
What’s New with Total Cost of Ownership
- Substantial storage capacity savings for persistent desktops with space-efficient (SE sparse) disk technology1
1 Requires use of vSphere 5.1 and subsequent patches
2 Requires use of VMware Horizon Suite
3 Requires use of additional VMware Horizon View 5.2 Feature Pack
4 Requires use of latest VMware Horizon View Clients
Great article on storage optimization technologies for VMware from VMware Product Management. Learn more about VMware View Replica Tiering, View Storage Acceleration, View Composer API for Array Integration (VCAI) and space efficient virtual disks.
Properly designing and sizing storage is key to successfully deploying virtual desktops. Transitioning from pilot to production is completely dependent on getting both the storage design and sizing right. If you get this wrong- you will negatively affect user experience, application responsiveness and your cost per desktop.
So how do you get it right?
Well ultimately you will need to ensure that your VDI environment is designed to support adequate capacity and performance. Translating a physical laptop/desktop environment to a desktop VM typically requires about 40GB of storage capacity and 15 to 200 IOPS . In addition, the IO pattern is made up of steady state events during which it is dominated by small block random writes and highly correlated peak events which can be dominated by either reads or writes. These shifts complicate storage sizing and design for VDI.
A few days ago VMware announced the new vFast Track Reference Architecture. With several storage appliance vendors they’ve designed a cost-effective and scalable solution for VDI deployments. Yesterday VMware and Cisco announced a new joint bundling of there solution called Cisco UCS SmartPlay with VMware Horizon View.
New Discounted Bundles
The Cisco UCS and Horizon View SmartPlay bundle is a convenient single-SKU that combines Cisco UCS and VMware Horizon in an attractively discounted bundle. This SmartPlay Starter Configuration includes:
- (2) UCS 6248UP Fabric Interconnects
- (1) UCS Chassis w/ two 2208 FEX
- (1) UCS B200 M3 Management Blade
- (3) UCS B200 M3 Desktop Workload Blades
- (300) View licenses
Expansion Bundles for additional users, and upgrade options for server-based storage are also available.
To read the full article, please visit the VMware blog.
Before deploying Horizon Workspace ensure that you have a minimum of 6GB RAM and 32GB Storage available. You may need additional storage for the data appliance.
Create DNS Records
An IP address with reverse lookup (PTR) and a DNS entry must be available for each virtual appliance. I am using Microsoft DNS on my Windows 2008R2 Active Directory Controller in my lab. Create a new A records in your forward lookup zone for each virtual appliance.
Note: Mark the “Create associated pointer (PTR) record” to create a linked PTR record in your Reverse Lookup Zone.
Check you newly created DNS configuration using nslookup.
Note: DNS must be working properly, otherwise the configuration will fail !
Create Resource and IP Pool
Create a new Resource Pool using vSphere Client. If not already available, you need to create a new IP Pool. Ensure that your DNS configuration matches with the IP Pools properties.
Deploy Horizon Workspace
Horizon Workspace is OVA packaged as a multi-virtual machine vApp. It can be directly deployed to VMware vCenter. The vApp includes five virtual appliances.
1. configurator-va (Horizon Workspace Configurator virtual appliance)
- The initial configurations tasks are performed by the configurator-va. All configurations are distributed to the other virtual appliances in the vApp.
2. service-va (Horizon Workspace Manager virtual appliance)
- Provides the Web Interface to administer user, groups and resources.
3. connector-va (Horizon Workspace Connector virtual appliance)
- This va is responsible for user authentication, directory synchronization, ThinApp catalog loading and View pool synchronization
4. data-va (Horizon Workspace Data virtual appliance)
- This virtual appliance manages the 100% on premise solution for controlling user based files. Similar like Dropbox.
5. gateway-va (Horizon Workspace Gateway virtual appliance)
- Is the single endpoint for all end user communication.
In vSphere Client go to File > Deploy OVF Template and respond to the wizard prompts. Select Power On After Deployment at the end of the wizard.
Open the console of the configurator-va and follow the installation instructions. The configurator-va is verifying your network configuration. If your DNS and reverse lookup configuration is incorrect the installation will fail and you have to fix your DNS issues first. If anything went well you’ll get the following screen.
The wizard continues and you need to enter the following informations:
- Global Root password for all virtual appliances
- SMTP Server Name and Port (If you do not have SMTP in you lab you can specify any external SMTP Server for testing purposes)
- External Gateway Name and Port
- vCenter IP Address, Port, Admin User and Password
After the wizard has completed you will get the Success page with the URL of the Horizon Workspace Root CA. I suggest to download the PEM file with your favorite browser.
Congratulation ! You’ve finished the Part 1 of the Installation.