Lenzker’s #VMware #Horizon Guide: Overview

Before being selected as an EUC champion I was already planning a bigger guide on how to design and implement a feature rich and enterprise ready VMware Horizon environment (Check out my opinion about the evolvement of VDI solutions over the years).

In 2017 VMware is putting more and more effort into transforming the enterprises into digital workspaces with their Workspace One solution / initiative. Within Workspace One VMware combines Horizon with Airwatch technology (for device management and application delivery).

Since my homelab has been a little bit underutilized over the last months I decided to built up an Horizon environment , including most of the Software pieces of Horizon Enterprise. Lucky me: VMware has just announced Horizon 7.2 which finally includes a new help desk tool to deliver faster 1/2nd level support to our (beloved) users.

My goal of this series is not just to have a simple implementation guide. I want to give a guideline about important things from an architectural point of view as well.

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VMware User Environment Manager #UEM: Predefined settings – Dynamic Placeholder

I created several blog posts about the Predefined settings so far that hopefully gave you some understanding about the basic and advanced concepts.

In the following I want to show you a little bit about a feature not all of us know:

The opportunity to create dynamic predefined settings with the help of Environment variables and placeholders.

Placeholders within UEM’s predefined settings.

Within the predefined settings you are able to define variables that will be dynamically set during the runtime.

How can we do that you ask? Just use the the following placeholder within your default/predefined settings (Case sensitive):

[Flex#%environment variables%]

The following example should show you how we can use this functionality to deliver a flexibel dynamic and context-based environment for the user (that almost sounds like marketing once again).

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VMware User Environment Manager #UEM: Predefined settings – Deep how-to (Internet Explorer)

In on of my last posts I have explained what the basic concept of VMware’s User Environment Manager (UEM) is and how we can use it to pre-configure or enforce specific settings of applications in our Desktop environment.

In the following I am going to dig a little bit deeper and show you how those concepts get configured and can be used in the world of UEM.

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Create Default Settings with the Application Profiler

Once we have installed the Application Profiler we are able to create config files for UEM that explain which portion of the filesystem/registry is a part of the application’s user data.

The process is quiet simple. Start the Application Profiler, start the application from within and configure the relevant settings you want to enforce or have as a default configuration.

application

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.@lenzker’s year of VDI: What has changed in 2016 with #VMware #Horizon

Everyone working within the EUC and virtualization field knows this joke. Every year some analysts and vendors are promising us that this year is going to be the year of VDI (Virtual Desktop Infrastructure).

Within the last 5 years of my professional career I gained a lot of practical experience and feedback about VDI projects within Germany. I am trying to summarize what has happened within the VDI field over the last years and which technologies and solutions within the Horizon stack changed the way how we deliver virtual desktop in 2016 compared to 2012 (2013/2014/2015 ). If you want to see how specific Vendors within the VDI world evolved I would recommend you to also read this nice article about the state of EUC market by Rob Beekmans.

In theory a EUC strategy based on VDI offers many advantages.

  • Operational benefits (control over the desktop, easier rollouts & updates of OS and Applications)
  • Multiple access options (multiple endpoints from every location)
  • Security benefits (Data is always within a controlled domain)
  • Management benefits

To have a great VDI infrastructure as an outcome of project the following conditions should all be met within the implementation. I would simply call them success factors:

  • The Total costs of ownership (capital and operational expenditures) did not exceed the old solution
  • The user experience was identical or better than the old solution
  • The VDI design allows all of the operational benefits
  • The organization around the desktop has been adopted to manage virtual desktops

The_good_the_bad_and_the_VDI

How did the technologies and therefore our design constraints have been changed over the years? Let me try to summarize it.

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