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Tag Archives: End User Computing

Estimating Value in End-User Computing

By Brian Gammage, Chief Market Technologist, End-User Computing, VMware

The last few years have seen a major shift in the way organizations plan, select and deploy technology capabilities to their workers. The range of choice has expanded at every level; in devices, applications, ways of working, potential suppliers and ownership. Expectations have rocketed too as users have become more knowledgeable and better equipped. The rapid uptake of mobile devices and applications has accelerated everything, turning ‘day zero support’ from a dream into a requirement. All of this means that business decisions around how, when and which EUC technologies to invest in have become far more complex than with any previous generation of technology.

An Industry Problem

In the face of these complexities, most organizations are finding it much harder to build business cases for their EUC projects. We at VMware are acutely aware of this: our own business case practice (we’ve built around 700 detailed business cases for larger customer projects so far) has seen a rapid surge in requests for assistance and in many cases the requests are much more ‘open ended’ than before.  We also know that it’s not only us; our partners, other EUC providers and analysts have all highlighted the growth in demand for such support. To better understand this growing need and the best ways to respond, we spent the first months of 2015 doing some additional research and our conclusion was stark: most customers are struggling to identify and estimate measures of value, but almost everyone knows how to measure cost.

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Horizon FLEX 1.5 now shipping!

By Andy Morris, Sr. Product Line Marketing Manager, Horizon FLEX, End-User Computing, VMware

Andy here again.  I'm delighted to announce that Horizon FLEX 1.5 is now shipping. This update is huge. We've got server side improvements, client side improvements, probably even improvements in the bit that connect the two!

Sorry, I'll try and be serious, this is after all a very big deal. It's been just 6 months since we shipped Horizon FLEX 1.0, and less than 3 months since we shipped 1.1. This release adds many of the features you requested.

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Faster performance, new platform support, and more in VMware Mirage 5.4 – now available!

By Sachin Sharma, Product Marketing, End-User Computing, VMware

I’m delighted to announce the general availability of VMware Mirage 5.4! This is the second release of Mirage this year and includes many enhancements that our customers have been asking for. Feel free to download the latest bits from my.vmware.com or trial the product for free here.

While Mirage 5.4 has many new enhancements and features, I’d like to leverage this blog to highlight a few unique updates. First, we have updated the Mirage backend to start utilizing a MongoDB database. Why? Well with a MongoDB, we’re able to optimize centralization times for desktop and POS devices, which results in faster upload times. Customers can save 3x on storage requirements based on IOPS with this new MongoDB setup. Small files and metadata are uploaded into CVDs and now stored on the Mirage installed MongoDB. SQL Server is still required for other Mirage database functions.

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vRealize Operations for Horizon just got a whole lot better!

By Brigitte Skakkebaek, Sr. Product Marketing Manager, End-User Computing, VMware

Tired of having one tool to manage and monitor XenApp and another to monitor your VMware Horizon environment?

Good news! As of today—you can take advantage of vRealize Operations for Horizon to monitor and report capabilities for both Horizon 6 AND Citrix XenApp 6.5 environments. Customers with active subscription on Horizon Enterprise, Horizon Application Management bundle and vRealize Operations for Horizon can immediately download this new feature from our download page.

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Driven by strong demand from Horizon and XenApp customers, vRealize Operations for Horizon now offers a single pane of glass to monitor and report on VMware Horizon and Citrix XenApp 6.5 deployments. Reports and dashboards in vRealize Operations for Horizon will focus on end-user experience and will provide organizations with important insights into vSphere performance and the health of the underlying infrastructure. Customers will now also be able to monitor XenApp 6.5 environments including the Citrix ICA protocol with analysis on historical trends and in-guest metrics.

vRealize Operations for Horizon streamlines management, making it easier and faster than ever for IT to resolve and improve user experience. Most notably, this new offering provides:

  • Comprehensive visibility into the performance and health of Horizon 6 and Citrix XenApp 6.5 deployments
  • Intelligent automation of analysis across the entire stack
  • Self-learning analytics that notify desktop administrators of impending issues
  • Out-of-the box reporting templates and remediation recommendations

For more information on vRealize Operations for Horizon:

Download the eval

Visit the web page

Read the latest datasheet

Horizon FLEX: Giving Users the Local Desktop They Need (Part 3 of 3)

By Andy Morris, Sr. Product Line Marketing Manager, Horizon FLEX, End-User Computing, VMware

It’s finally here, the day you’ve been waiting for, how to define a Horizon FLEX entitlement!

Hello, it’s Andy again. Today’s short video once again features a shiny me, but it’s thankfully very short: just over 90 seconds after you skip all the fancy bumpers we put at the front and back of it.

To recap, in part one I showed you how to build a Horizon FLEX compatible image. In part two, I showed you how to define acceptable use policy for groups of people. In today’s lesson, we’re going to take everything we’ve learned so far, sprinkle it with AD groups and build entitlements.

Entitlements are just the fancy way of saying that the people in accounting get access to a different image than the one you give the sales people, and those differing images can operate under different acceptable use polices.

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Horizon FLEX: Powerful Policy Controls (Part 2 of 3)

By Andy Morris, Sr. Product Line Marketing Manager, Horizon FLEX, End-User Computing, VMware

Hello again, Andy here.

Last time I showed you how to build a Horizon FLEX image for mass sharing. This time, I’m going to show you the simple steps needed to ensure that image is securely used.

You’ll be happy to note that there’s significantly less of my shiny red face in this video.

The video concentrates on server controlled dynamic policies. At the time of writing there’s over half a dozen of them, but a customer was quick to correct me when I shared the video, saying  ‘we enforce over 50 policies with FLEX ‘. He is right of course, there are lots of policy decisions you burn into the image at creation time.

The full list of FLEX polices is huge and varies depending upon the client hypervisor (in other words, your mileage may vary). Using a combination of fixed image and dynamic server policy an administrator can specify over 70 distinct control points.

Processor

  • Specify VM memory allocation
  • Specify number of processors assigned to VM
  • Specify number of cores per processor assigned to VM
  • Specify the type of virtualization engine used
    • Automatic, binary, VT-x, AMD-V, VT-x/EPT, AMD-V/RVI
  • Enable / disable acceleration for binary translation
  • Virtualize CPU performance counters
  • Specify process priorities
  • Disable memory page trimming

Storage

  • Map virtual disk to local volume
  • Add virtual hard disk
    • IDE, SCSI, SATA (independent, persistent, non-persistent)
    • New, existing, physical
  • Add virtual CD/DVD
    • ISO, physical (SATA, SCSI, IDE, legacy emulation)
  • Add floppy drive
    • Image, physical
  • Connect CD/DVD at power-on
  • Share local folders with VM
  • Map local folders as network drive
  • Share local folders as read only

Network 

  • Connect network at power-on
  • Create bridge directly to physical network
    • Initially set by admin, user can edit
  • Share host IP address
  • Create private network to host
  • Create custom virtual network
  • Attach to specific LAN segment
  • Custom throttle incoming network traffic
  • Emulate incoming pipe size
    • Modem (28.8Kbps, 56Kbps)
    • ISDN (64Kbps, 128Kbps)
    • Leased line (192Kbps, 1.544Mbps, 45Mbps)
    • Cable (4Mbps, 10Mbps, 100Mbps)
  • Enable VNC access

Hardware

  • Turn USB support on or off
    • Except for keyboard and mouse
  • Specify USB supported level
    • 1.0, 2.0, 3.0
  • Automatically connect new USB devices
  • Add specific USB controller
  • Share Bluetooth devices with VM
  • Connect soundcard on power-on
  • Specify host sound card to use
  • Connect printer at power on
  • Auto-map host printers to VM
  • Add specific printer
  • Hardware accelerate 3D graphics
  • Use host settings for monitor
    • Initially set by admin, user can edit
  • Specify number of monitors to use
    • To a maximum of 10
  • Specify screen resolution
  • Use Retina Mode (mac only)
  • Specify graphics card memory allocated to VM
  • Use enhanced virtual keyboard
  • Share battery info with VM
  • Synchronize guest time with host
  • Specify hardware compatibility level
  • Add parallel port
    • Physical, file
  • Add serial port
    • Physical, file, pipe
  • Add generic SCSI device

User Experience           

  • Go full screen on power on
    • Initially set by admin, user can edit
  • Close application after powering off VM
  • Enable drag & drop between host and VM
  • Enable shared clipboard (cut & paste)
  • Show borders in Unity mode
  • Show badges in Unity mode
  • Add custom colored borders in Unity mode
  • Enable direct access to applications
  • Auto-update embedded VMware Tools
    • Manual, auto, global

Recovery & Protection

  • Revert to snapshot on power-off
  • Auto-create snapshot on power-off
  • Auto-create snapshots
    • Daily, hourly, every 30 mins
  • Specify number of snapshot generations to keep
  • Force local encryption password reset
  • Specify VM expiration date
  • Display custom message for expired VM’s
  • Display custom message for soon expiring VM’s
  • Specify policy server contact frequency
  • Specify policy server contact grace period
  • Remote kill of local VM

Next time, I’ll show you how to easily combine AD, images and policy to give your users the desktop you want them to have.

Thanks and if you’d like to know more, or to download a free trial of Horizon FLEX, please click here.

Introducing Horizon FLEX (Part 1 of 3)

By Andy Morris, Sr. Product Line Marketing Manager, Horizon FLEX, End-User Computing, VMware

Hi, I’m Andy from VMware.

Today I’d like to show you something exciting from VMware that may not have made it on to your radar – remotely managed policies for Mac and Windows users!

Back in December we launched a new product called Horizon FLEX. The concept behind FLEX is simple. Player Pro and Fusion are fantastic for you on your PC or Mac, but can be a bit troublesome for the person responsible for rolling out 500 copies of them to everyone in sales, or worse, to your senior exec team.

Horizon FLEX matches AD credentials against your library of managed virtual images, makes them available to valid users, and then enforces best practice use policies. It’s incredibly simple for your users to use, and gives you peace of mind that your containerized desktops are secure, licensed, and only being used by the right people.

Here’s a two minute video of me sweating under the studio lights that should give you a flavor for what Horizon FLEX can do for you.

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Mobility Pioneers To Speak At VMware Business Mobility Event

By Chelsea Curtis, AirWatch

BizMo-300x130 (1)Tomorrow VMware is hosting the virtual Business Mobility Summit, where mobile thought leaders will speak to the shifting business landscape and how mobility is redefining the way we work. The event will boast an exciting panel of speakers, including VMware executives and customers, who will share their perspective on Business Mobility and how it has the power to reinvent companies through new business process innovation.

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App Volumes 2.9 Now Available!

By Sachin Sharma, Product Marketing, End-User Computing, VMware

Since our initial announcement of App Volumes 2.5 late last year, the excitement our customers have displayed for App Volumes has been tremendous.  We have released a couple more versions since then, and today I’m pleased to announce that the latest version, App Volumes 2.9, is now generally available as of today, June 15th 2015! This release consists of several enhancements and fixes based directly from customer feedback, so be sure to review the release notes for more information. I would like to take this opportunity to highlight some of the main features.

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HOT OFF THE PRESSES – VMware and F5 Hands-On-Lab Now Available!

Guest Blog by Justin Venezia, Sr. Solutions Architect - VMware Alliances, F5 Networks

VMware and F5 are proud to announce the availability of one of the first partner-centric labs utilizing VMware’s global Hands-On-Lab infrastructure. In close collaboration with the VMware End-User Computing Technical Enablement team, the VMware Alliance team at F5 created this lab for easy-to-use yet rich technical exercises.

This lab will show you the ease of configuration and benefits of using the F5 BIG-IP platform in support of your VMware EUC enterprise solutions. This includes Horizon 6, both for virtual desktop infrastructure and application publishing.  The lab provides a walkthrough from initial setup of F5 BIG-IP with Horizon 6 to configuring and providing additional security and fault tolerance to your VMware EUC solutions.

This first release of the lab includes:

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