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Tag Archives: unified communications

The ABCs of Deploying VMware Horizon View 5.2 with Microsoft Lync 2013

Tony Huynh, Product Management End-User Computing

It gives me great pleasure to announce that the VMware Horizon View 5.2 Microsoft Lync 2013 VDI Client Installation/Configuration Guide is now publicly available.

The document provides a step-by-step guide on how to deploy a Microsoft Lync 2013 client on a VMware Horizon View desktop along with a Lync VDI plugin on a Windows client.  By doing so, customers can leverage the power of the Lync VDI plugin to make rich voice-over-Internet-Protocol (VoIP) and videoconferencing calls without negatively affecting the datacenter server or network.

The document will help partners and customers understand and avoid some common mistakes when deploying the Microsoft Lync 2013 client and Lync VDI plugin with Horizon View desktops.

Some common pitfalls when deploying the Lync 2013 client and Lync VDI plugin include:

  • Knowing what is and is not supported
  • Downloading/installing the correct software
  • Misconfiguration of Lync 2013 server and client and Lync VDI plugin
  • Windows client misconfiguration

Follow up questions

If you have additional questions regarding the deployment of the Lync 2013 client and Lync VDI plugin with Horizon View 5.2 desktops, please post your questions to our community page.

Useful Links

Lync client qualified devices

Deploying Lync VDI Plugin

Lync VDI Troubleshooting

Lync VDI plugin (32-bit) download

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The Convergence of IT and Communications

by Geoffrey Murase, Solutions Marketing, End-User Computing

This past week I had the opportunity to attend the International Avaya User Group (IAUG) conference in Orlando, Florida.  The name of the conference was aptly titled “Converge2013” and brought together almost 3,000 users and partners of Avaya unified communications and networking gear.  VMware was one of the sponsors of the event and we met many Avaya customers who came by our exhibitor booth.

It was interesting to see that a few “old school” telephony administrators didn’t know who VMware was.  VMwho?  Historically, the IT department handled all of the servers, networking, and applications while the telephony administrator managed the phone system.  However, as adoption of Voice over IP has become more prevalent, there has been a convergence of these roles.  On the virtualization front, communications applications can be seen as just another app and deployed as a virtual machine in the datacenter.  In addition, on the end-user front, as softphones increasingly are used both at the office desk and on mobile devices, desktop virtualization can simplify management and security of communications.

VMware has worked closely with Avaya to enable scalable deployments of softphones without taxing the datacenter.  Using a custom developed plug-in, client devices can communicate point to point after an initial communications session is established.  Coding and decoding of real-time media is handled by the endpoint instead of at the datacenter which helps reduce latency and enable highly scalable deployments.  A webinar recording is available on YouTube that gives all of the details for this joint Avaya VMware solution.

While desktop virtualization in the unified communications space is a relatively new concept, many Avaya customers I spoke to are interested in using it for specific use cases.  Probably the most popular use case is for contact centers.  Contact center agents only require access to a limited application set and don’t install custom applications on their endpoints.  Furthermore, the contact center function is often outsourced or is located offshore.  This use case is ideal for desktop virtualization which provides the security, ease of scalability, and ease of management outsourcing and offshoring require.  A new VMware white paper is available that highlights how businesses can leverage desktop virtualization for their offshoring and outsourcing initiatives.

No doubt some telephony administrators are resistant to change as having ownership of the communications system ensures job security for them.  However, these people will be left behind as the convergence of IT and communications continues unabated.

Were you at IAUG as well?  Let us know on Facebook and Twitter!

 

VMware at Enterprise Connect

by Geoffrey Murase, Sr. Solutions Marketing Manager, End-User Computing

Enterprise Connect is happening this week and is probably the biggest conference focused specifically on the Unified Communications industry.  Leading UC vendors such as Avaya, Cisco, Microsoft, and Mitel converge in Orlando, Florida each year to showcase their latest technological developments and share best practices.

VMware has been working closely with UC vendors to bring the benefits of virtualization to the unified communications industry not only on the server side, but on the desktop side as well.  One of the concerns with deploying desktop virtualization for real-time communications is the load that is placed on the datacenter for coding and decoding media.  However, VMware Horizon View has a special API that enables UC vendors to develop plug-ins that redirect media paths directly to endpoints, reducing latency and offloading the processing from the datacenter to the endpoints.  This enables businesses to scale their UC deployments in a virtualized desktop environment.

If you’re attending the show or are in the area, I invite you to attend the “Virtualizing Communications Servers and Clients” breakout session on Tuesday, March 18th at 8:00AM.  A little early in the day but it’ll be worth it!  Participants include:

  • Panelist – Geoff Murase, Sr. Solutions Marketing Manager, VMware
  • Panelist – Stephen Brown, Cloud Technologist, Mitel
  • Panelist – Jamie Stark, Senior Product Manager, Microsoft Corporation
  • Panelist – Tac Berry, Avaya Senior Product Marketing Manager, Collaboration Platforms, Avaya
  • Moderator – Irwin Lazar, Analyst, Nemertes Research

Enterprise Connect runs from Monday, March 18th through Thursday, March 21st.  Hope to see you there!

New VMware Horizon View Clients and HTML Access Now Available!

We just released new VMware Horizon View clients that are optimized for VMware Horizon View 5.2!

Optimized for Best Performance with Horizon View 5.2

The latest VMware Horizon View clients take full advantage of the optimizations in Horizon View 5.2.

Horizon View 5.2 offers new PCoIP client side caching improvements. With Horizon View 5.2, only 90 MB of client side cache is needed to get the equivalent performance of using 250 MB with View 5.1 and earlier. This change further optimizes View performance on mobile devices.

The new VMware Horizon View 5.3 client for Windows now supports Microsoft Lync unified communications when used with Horizon View 5.2.

Also, the latest VMware Horizon View clients are now localized for traditional Chinese in addition to the previously supported English, French, German, Japanese, Korean, and simplified Chinese languages.

Zero Install HTML Access to Your Horizon View Desktop

We have had many requests to provide zero install access to Horizon View virtual desktops. Today, we are proud to release HTML Access, which gives you easy access to your Horizon View desktop from almost any HTML5 compatible browser. HTML Access allows you to connect to your Horizon View desktop through the updated Horizon View portal or through the Horizon Workspace.

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Momentum for Real-time Unified Communications Support within Virtualized Desktops Continues in 2013 with Cisco

by Geoffrey Murase, Sr. Solutions Marketing Manager, End User Computing

Cisco has announced today that Cisco Jabber, an all in in one unified communications (UC) application, will be supported in VMware View desktop environments.  You can check out Cisco’s Phil Sherburne discussing this announcement in his blog – http://goo.gl/E17bp.  In addition to UC functions such as IM and presence, Cisco Jabber can be used for real-time voice, high-definition video, voice messaging and conferencing.  As you may know already, the key challenges for supporting real-time communication in a virtual desktop environment have been the required processing within the datacenter and the hairpinning of voice and/or video media streams.  With Cisco’s Virtualization Experience Media Engine (VXME) software combined with VMware View clients, voice and video traffic from Cisco Jabber is processed locally on endpoints while media streams are routed point-to-point, bypassing the data center.

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Top 5 Predictions for 2013 UC with VDI

by:  Geoffrey Murase, Sr. Solutions Marketing Manager End User Computing

In 2012, many prognosticators predicted that the end of the world would occur in December 2012 based on the end of the Mayan calendar.  Well, that date has come and gone and we’re still here so let’s venture to forecast what 2013 has in store for us with respect to unified communications (UC) in a virtualized desktop infrastructure (VDI) environment.

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Extending the Business Process Desktop with Real-Time Communications

VMware has created several solutions to meet the needs of today’s changing businesses. The VMware Business Process Desktop (BPD) is a solution designed specifically to address the trend toward business process outsourcing. As businesses look for ways to reduce costs, business process outsourcing has become more and more popular. For example, it has been well documented that many companies have outsourced their development and testing to locations such as India and China, where labor rates are lower. However, there can be problems with this strategy as data is often stored locally and is at risk for security breaches. In addition, developers and testers often aren’t located on-premise, leading to even more potential security threats.

The BPD solution combines VMware View with other components to help solve these security issues, providing a highly scalable, secure, centrally managed VDI environment. However, in the past, customers were unable to deploy VDI with real-time Unified Communications (UC) due to technical problems affecting scalability, performance and bandwidth.

VMware is pleased to announce that a partnership with Avaya discussed earlier this year at VMworld in August has now come to fruition. Back in August, we talked about the growing market for UC and VDI and the challenges of addressing the need for real-time unified communications in a VDI environment. We also talked about how Avaya and VMware were working together to solve this problem.

Now, with Avaya VDI Communicator, VMware and Avaya have extended the BPD solution to give businesses the ability to use real-time communications in a VDI environment. This opens the door to a whole new world of increased productivity for businesses that take advantage of the benefits of a BPD solution. These benefits include:

  • Reducing operating costs by centralizing and streamlining desktop management and support
  • Providing uninterrupted uptime across remote locations to drive higher SLAs
  • Rapidly scaling to accommodate changing needs or new client contracts
  • Enhancing data security and compliance by centralizing data in the datacenter

As the leading provider of contact center infrastructure, it only made sense that Avaya team with VMware to enable this capability. However, the benefits of real-time voice in a VDI environment aren’t limited to just contact centers. VDI with real-time voice support is also ideal for environments where:

  • There is a structured task (e.g., bank tellers or help desks)
  • Only a limited application set is required (e.g., kiosks or travel agents)
  • The use of temporary workers or contractors is needed (e.g., project oriented workers)
  • Real-time communications in a highly secure environment is needed (e.g., government or financial verticals)

As part of VMware’s BPD solution, businesses of all sizes can take advantage of a proven, pre-tested, pre-configured, reliable architecture to meet their unique needs. In addition to Avaya, VMware also supports VDI with real-time voice with Cisco and Mitel unified communications solutions as well.

To learn more about VMware’s Business Process Desktop solution, click here.
To see Avaya’s blog post, click here.