VMware Horizon 7 Home Sites

When VMware released Horizon 6 last year they added the ability to configure Cloud Pod Architecture from with in the management console. The one thing that was missing from the management console was the ability to configure user’s homes sites. I am happy to say that with the release of Horizon 7 you can now configure and manage a user’s home site from with in the management console, making this task much easier.

The following is how you can configure a user’s home site.

  1. From within the console select Users and Groups and then select Home Sites

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  1. Click Add
  2. Search for a user and click Next

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  1. Choose the users Home Site and click Finish

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You can also easily change a user’s home site. Simply select the user and click Edit

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From there you can change the user’s home site.

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Cloud Pod Architecture New Features

With the release of VMware Horizon 7 there have been a few changes to Cloud Pod Architecture and all for the good.

The first change is a change to how Home Sites are handled, for more information on this please see my blog here.

The other change is around the sizing of Cloud Pod Architecture, below you will see the changes in numbers between VMware Horizon 6 and VMware Horizon 7

Horizon 6 Horizon 7
Total Number of Sessions 20,000 50,000
Total Number of Sites 2 5
Total Number of Pods 4 25

As you can see there is a significant increase in the number of supported sessions as well as the number of Sites and Pods supported. This will greatly help in growing the large Horizon deployments around the world.

Update to How CPA Home Sites Work with Horizon 7

Several months ago I wrote a blog on how Home Sites work with VMware Horizon 6 Cloud Pod Architecture (CPA), you can find the blog here.

With the release of VMware Horizon 7 the way CPA handles Home Sites has been updated so the users with a Home Site will always receive a Desktop or App even if their Home Site is down.

Lets first review what would happen if a users Home Site was down. As you can see in the diagram below the Connection Brokers would return an issue that their Home Site was not available and the user would not be connected to a desktop.

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Just as with Horizon 6 with Horizon 7 when the users Home Site is available then the user will always receive the desktop from the Home Site as the diagram below shows.

 

Here is where we see a change. Now with Horizon 7 if a users Home Site is off-line then the user will still receive a desktop this time from one of the other sites within the Global Pool. As shown below.

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Once the Home Site comes back on-line the next time the user logs back in they will automatically be given a desktop from the Home Site once again.

 

Upgrading VMware Horizon Cloud Pod Architecture

Some time ago I wrote a Blog describing how to upgrade VMware Horizon with Zero downtime, you can fine the blog here.

Recently I have been asked a number of times if this is still the case if customers are using Cloud Pod Architecture for multi-site deployments.

I can confirm that Yes you can upgrade Horizon View with Zero downtime even if the View Pod is part of a Cloud Pod Architecture. There are however a couple of caveats.

First you must upgrade all the View connection brokers on a single site, don’t upgrade half on one site and then start on the second site, make sure all the view connection servers are at the same install version on site 1 before starting on site 2.

Second be aware that any new features that are part of the upgrade will not be available until all connection servers are upgraded across both sites.

To recap the order to upgrade Horizon Cloud Pod Architecture

  1. Upgrade all Connection servers on Site one, this can be done with Zero Downtime following the Blog above
  2. Upgrade all connection servers on site two, again this can be done with Zero Downtime following the Blog above

For more information you can refer to the product documentation here.

VMware Horizon Cloud Pod Architecture Dedicated Desktops

Earlier this week I posted a blog about using Home Sites with in VMware Horizon Cloud Pod Architecture. You can find the blog here. In this blog I want to talk about the effects of using dedicated pools with in Cloud Pod Architecture and how that will affect desktop assignments as this is also something I get asked about on a regular basis.

Just as when creating desktop pools with in Horizon View when you create a Global Pool using Cloud Pod Architecture you have the option to create a Floating or dedicated pool assignment. It should be noted that if the Global Pool is dedicated then on local pools with dedicated assignments can join that Global Pool, this is just the same if the Global Pool has floating assignments then only local pools with floating assignments can be part of that pool.

Now let’s look at how dedicated pools will affect the user in the following scenario’s.

The first time a user logs in to a global pool the user is assigned a desktop. In the picture below on the left as the user first logs in from Site A they are assigned a desktop with in Site A. Even when the user logs in from Site B they still get the same desktop from Site A as you can see from the picture on the right.

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Now let’s see what happens if Site A goes off line. As Site A is off line the user no longer has a dedicated desktop and so the connection broker on Site B thinks this is the first time the user has logged in. At this time the user is assigned a new dedicated desktop as you can see from the picture below.

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Now what happens when Site A come back on Line. As you can see from the picture below the connection broker has an issue as the user now has 2 desktops assigned to the one user with in a single Global Pool.

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Instead of getting a desktop the user will see the following message

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In order to fix this issue, an administrator must log in to the Horizon Console and remove the user entitlement from one of the desktops with in the Global Pool.

I hope this helps explain how dedicated desktops will affect users and your designs when using Cloud Pod Architecture.

 

 

VMware Horizon Cloud Pod Architecture Home Sites

As VMware Horizon View deployments start to get much larger in numbers more and more people are starting to look at using Cloud Pod Architecture as a way to deploy their environments. Over the last few weeks this has lead to me getting a number of questions around how do Home Sites work.

The first thing you should know about Home Sites is they can not be assigned through the UI of the connection broker and currently must be done using the lmvutil command via a command prompt. For more information on assigning Home Sites you can see the commands here.

OK so what do Home Sites mean to our users. Lets first look at what happens when a user is NOT assigned a Home Site.

In the diagram below on the left the user connect from Site B so is directed to the connection server on Site B as there is capacity for the user in Site B the user is then assigned a desktop.

In the diagram on the right Site B is Off Line so the user is directed to the connection server on Site A and then assigned a desktop from the Global Pool on Site A

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Now let’s look at what will happen if the user has a Home Site assigned to them.

As you can see in the diagram below on the left the user has been assigned to a Home Site on Site B. When the user connect the user is directed to the connection server on Site B and then assigned a desktop from the Global Pool on Site B.

Now in the diagram on the right the user is connecting from Site A and although they connect through the connection server on Site A they are still assigned a desktop from Site B (their Home Site)

Picture3   Picture4

Now let’s look at what happens when the users Home Site is down or off line.

As you can see from the diagram below if the users Home Site is down or off line the user is NOT assigned a desktop.

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As you can see assigning a user a Home Site can have consequences if the Home Site goes down or off line, this is defiantly something you should keep in mind when using Cloud Pod Architecture.

 

User Environment Manager 8.7 Working with Horizon 6.2

With the release of VMware User Environment Manager 8.7 VMware added a number of new feature, all of which you will find in the VMware User Environment Manager Release Notes.

However, in this blog, I would like to call out two new features that help when deploying User Environment Manager alongside VMware Horizon 6.2. VMware’s EUC teams did a great job in my opinion getting these two great features added or enhanced to work with Horizon 6.2 in the latest releases.

You can read the rest of my post and find out what I will be doing on VMware.com. Click Here