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Tag Archives: Mirage

Getting To Know the Mirage Tools

By Stephane Asselin, Senior End-User-Computing Architect, VMware

With significant contributions from Yaniv Weinberg, Research and Development Manager, Mirage Product Engineering, VMware

We know that the VMware Mirage product handles image management and application deployment to physical endpoints very well. But in the last few months, the Mirage team released some tools to make the Mirage administrator’s life a bit easier. This blog provides information about how to use these tools and how they can benefit your Mirage deployment. These tools are free and available to all Mirage users from the VMware download site (as shown in Figure 1).

VMware_Mirage_Tools_Download_Window
Figure 1: VMware Mirage Tools, Download Product Window

Mirage Centralization Phase Estimator

The first tool to discuss is the Mirage Centralization Phase Estimator tool. In any Mirage project that includes a centralization phase, it is critical to properly plan the different phases of the project to ensure successful deployment of the complete solution. Several scenarios require centralization: backing up endpoints, migrating operating systems, and migrating hardware. Here we discuss backing up the endpoints. Continue reading

VMware Mirage Public-Sector Implementation Case Study Published

By Yaniv Weinberg, R&D Manager, VMware Mirage Product Engineering

Explore with us how a large U.S. public-sector organization, with more than 10,000 endpoints spread across 400 low-bandwidth connectivity sites, used Mirage to meet the following challenges:

  • Migrate the more than 10,000 Windows XP endpoints to Windows 7 by April 2014, when Microsoft standard support expired. The cost of extended support for Windows XP was estimated to be around $200 per endpoint, or $2,000,000 per year.
  • Quickly provision 2000 endpoints in a hardware-refresh life cycle.
  • Reduce IT travel costs to support the 400 sites locally, and be able to provide similar services remotely.

The recent technical white paper VMware Mirage Implementation Case Study for a Large, Public-Sector Organization is intended to help customers, IT architects, consultants, and administrators involved in the early phases of planning, designing, and deploying Mirage-based solutions. It provides an example of a successful architecture and deployment method.

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Everything You Need to Get Up and Running with Mirage

By Alex West, Technical Writer, End-User Computing, VMware

Deployment and Design Considerations for VMware Mirage is hot off the presses. Written with a single goal in mind—to help you get up and running with Mirage—this brand-new white paper boils down a complex deployment process into two crucial phases: “Surveying Your Environment and Accumulating Data” and “Architecture Planning.”

Read on for a sneak peek at the new paper. Continue reading

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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VMware Horizon 6 Storage Considerations White Paper Now Available

By Gary Sloane, Consulting Writer and Editor, VMware

If you are reading this post, you probably know that storage has long been considered the foundation of any VDI implementation.

In VMware Horizon 6 Storage Considerations, Kris Boyd takes a close look at the most important questions and challenges that face anyone tasked with designing a new Horizon 6 deployment. In addition to Horizon 6 updates, Kris describes relevant considerations for App Volumes, Mirage, Workspace Portal, and Virtual SAN. He also offers valuable practical advice about storage, based on many years in the field.

For instance, this graphic suggests where to look for latency in the storage stack.

Horizon_6_Storage_ESXi

  • DAVG – Device average. How long I/O commands spend in the device, from the driver host bus adapter (HBA) to the back-end storage array.
  • GAVG – Guest average. Average guest latency.
  • KAVG – Kernel average. How long I/O spends in the ESXi kernel.
  • QAVG – Queue average. How long I/O is stuck in a kernel queue.

A comprehensive glossary of acronyms is also included.

Download VMware Horizon 6 Storage Considerations or bookmark it for the next time you design a Horizon implementation.

VMware Mirage and Microsoft SCCM Working Side by Side

By Karen Smith, Guest Writer, Former Technical Writer for End-User Computing Technical Marketing, VMware

With significant contributions from Maor Kuriel, Product Specialist, Mirage Engineering, End-User Computing, VMware

Many organizations use Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM) for managing large groups of endpoint devices. In an ideal scenario, everything is operating smoothly, but sometimes things go wrong, and end users need to quickly recover their systems so that they can resume work.

You might be searching for a disaster recovery solution for your SCCM environment, which would enable IT to assist users with issues such as hard drive failure, virus infection, and corrupted files or applications. You also might be searching for a faster way to refresh PCs to new hardware, and migrate large groups of computers from Windows XP to Windows 7, or from Windows 7 to Windows 8.1. VMware Mirage can do all these things.

The Mirage and SCCM systems can coexist independently in the data center without interfering with each other.

VMware_Mirage_SCCM_Servers
Figure 1: Mirage and SCCM Servers Side by Side with Mirage and SCCM Clients on Endpoints
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Using ThinApp Virtual Applications in VMware Mirage App Layers

By Stephane Asselin, Senior End-User-Computing Architect, Technical Enablement, End-User Computing, VMware

As you all know, VMware ThinApp has been the leading application virtualization solution since 2008. ThinApp is great for application virtualization, for application isolation (enabling multiple versions of the same application on one desktop), and for supporting older applications (legacy apps). Packaging an application with ThinApp is straightforward, and VMware has published many articles on this topic. You can find information through the VMware knowledge base article Best practices for capturing an application for VMware ThinApp 4.x/5.x (KB 1030290), and you can also find many good how-to articles on the ThinApp community forum. This article does not focus on the packaging of applications, but instead focuses on application deployment of ThinApp packages through VMware Mirage application layers (app layers). We expect that you are already familiar with creating and deploying Mirage application layers. Continue reading

Resizing the Partitions of a Physical PC for a Mirage Migration

By Stephane Asselin, Senior End-User-Computing Architect, Technical Enablement, VMware  

When you manage physical PCs that have been in the field for some time, you will likely run into some problems that impact your approach to PC management. For example, in the early days, users would often partition their hard drives for various reasons: performance, ease of maintenance, personal data, or multiple OS support. Whatever the reason, this kind of partitioning can limit your approach to a fully automated Mirage-managed migration from Windows XP to Windows 7, or from Windows 7 to Windows 8.1. The reason: a lack of disk space. Continue reading

Image Management with VMware Mirage: The Wednesday Morning Cure for Patch Tuesday

By Stephane Asselin, End-User Computing Architect, VMware

You have all had that knot in the pit of your stomach. If you, like me, have ever managed an IT environment, you know what I mean. It happens every Wednesday morning after the 2nd Tuesday of the month. What patches did Microsoft release this time? How will it impact your environment? Will you be spending the next few days and nights testing and deploying patches, keeping your fingers crossed that the patches do not break anything?

What IT administrator would not want to manage only one or two Windows images? Everybody would like that, and let me tell you, it is possible!

Utilizing VMware Mirage, you can reduce the number of Windows images you need to manage, with an end goal of managing one image, or two at most (x32 and x64). Before you use Mirage, however, you have some work to do! You need clear processes, a well-defined management and update cycle, and people who can properly assess the level of urgency and relevance of those updates or patches. If you have those in place, then you are ready to implement a technology solution that will support a simplified image management solution. Continue reading

Introducing VMware Horizon FLEX

By Gina Daly, Technical Writer for Technical Marketing, End-User Computing, VMware

Do your employees want to use Macs in the workplace? Do you want to say ‘Yes’ to a BYO program? Perhaps you are hiring more temporary and contract staff? However, you struggle with balancing corporate access and corporate compliance…

VMware Horizon FLEX is an exciting new product that addresses these use cases and more! Horizon FLEX was announced at VMworld Europe 2014 and will be generally available soon. The VMware Horizon FLEX Solution Brief discusses the enterprise use cases solved by Horizon FLEX, as well as how it works and a sample of some of the functionality. Continue reading