Using the Protection Manager Role with Horizon Mirage Web Manager

Mar 19, 2014
Jessica Flohr


Jessica Chapin (Flohr) is a contract technical writer and editor in End-User Computing at VMware in Palo Alto, California. She graduated from the University of Colorado Denver with a bachelor of arts degree in English Writing and has a certificate in editing from Poynter News University. Currently, she is working on the Professional Sequence in Editing through the UC Berkeley Extension program. In addition to editing technical papers and formatting blog posts for the End-User Computing blog, Jessica writes for her local community newspaper.

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By Luke Yue, Sr. Solution Engineer, End-User Computing, VMware

VMware Horizon Mirage is software used to centralize desktops in the datacenter for management and protection purposes. When Horizon Mirage is first introduced to an organization, each device must be backed up, creating a copy of it on the Mirage Server in the form of a Centralized Virtual Desktop, or CVD. You can then centrally manage the device.

The Mirage Management Console is the administrative interface used to manage endpoints. Administrative tasks in Horizon Mirage include

  • Updating
  • Patching by means of layer updates
  • Backing up (centralizing)
  • Troubleshooting
  • Restoring desktops
  • Auditing

The MirageWeb Manager is a web-based tool that provides some of the same capabilities available in the Mirage Management Console, but in a web environment.

The Protection Manager is one of the administrative roles in Horizon Mirage. This role performs Horizon Mirage management tasks that deal with the adding, updating, and deleting of

  • Policies
  • CVDs
  • Collections – A collection is a set of CVDs that share a logical grouping, for example, Marketing CVDs
  • Storage volumes

In addition, the Protection Manager can generate reports.

Within the Mirage Web Manager, the Protection Manager role is a recent addition. This blog is for Mirage administrators who want to learn how to carry out the activities of the Protection Manager in the Web Manager. The blog uses stories to better illustrate two of the functions available in the Protection Manager role.

Centralizing Devices

John, a new employee, joined the company operations team. He has a new laptop that is preinstalled with a Windows 7 32-bit operating system. After John finished the initial setup of Windows 7, he installed the Horizon Mirage client so that his laptop could be backed up by Mirage. After the Mirage Client is installed, the administrator can centralize the endpoint. Next the IT department needs to add John’s laptop under the Horizon Mirage umbrella.

Sam is an IT administrator. In the Protection Manager role, he manages all the devices and CVDs in the Horizon Mirage system. This morning he logs into the Mirage Web Manager, and his default Protection Manager dashboard opens. He searches for all pending devices. As shown in Figure 1, Sam selects Pending from the drop-down menu.

Figure1Figure 1: Search for Pending Devices

Figure 2 shows the window after selecting Pending. These are the devices that are pending centralization. John’s machine is circled in red in the following screenshot.

Figure2Figure 2: Pending Devices Search Result

Next, Sam clicks John’s machine to select it for centralization in the Horizon Mirage system. The information for John’s device then appears at the bottom of the window. See Figure 3.

Figure3Figure 3: Device Information Page

After reviewing the device information, Sam clicks Centralize endpoint (circled in Figure 3) to start the centralization process.

Sam also selects the Upload Policy, as shown in Figure 4.

4Figure 4: Select Upload Policy

The upload policy manages many properties of file synchronization between the endpoint and the CVD in the datacenter. For more information about upload policies, see the VMware Horizon Mirage Web Manager documentation.

Sam also selects the target storage volume where the CVD be placed. See Figure 5.

5Figure 5: Select Target Volume

Horizon Mirage provides multiple-storage-support to help manage congestion. Each storage volume can contain base layers, app layers, and CVDs.

After Sam selects the target volume, a summary window displays the centralization specifications, as shown in Figure 6.

6Figure 6: Centralization Summary

Next, Sam wants to check the progress on the new CVD. He enters part of the name of the newly created CVD in the search field and chooses search type All from the drop-down menu to the right of the search field. See Figure 7.

Figure7Figure 7: Search for Newly Created CVD

Sam selects the matching CVD from the list presented in the drop-down menu, and the display in Figure 8 appears. Sam then confirms the action history for that CVD in Figure 8.

Figure8Figure 8: Action History and Device Information

The check mark in the Status column indicates that the centralization process completed successfully.

Now John has the benefits of the Horizon Mirage system, and Sam can back up and restore John’s machine through the Web Manager interface. Sam can perform tasks such as reverting John’s device to a previous snapshot, if needed. Also, the help-desk personnel can support John’s machine.

Updating and Assigning Upload Policies to Collections

Sam, the IT administrator, thought that it was inefficient for every machine to synchronize with the Horizon Mirage server every 60 minutes. For further efficiency, Sam wants to adjust the update policies for all the Windows 7 32-bit machines to synchronize with the Horizon Mirage server every 120 minutes.

Sam creates a collection of CVDs that includes all the Windows 7 32-bit endpoints. Now he will need to change any upload policy only once for the entire collection of endpoints instead of for each CVD.

Sam logs into the Web Manager. On the Collections page, he clicks Add, as seen in Figure 9, to add a new collection.

Figure9Figure 9: Add a New Collection

In the next window, he adds the detailed information about the collection and sets the collection’s filter rule to choose only the CVDs that are based on Windows 7 32-bit. (In this case, he deselects the Is static collection option.) See Figure 10.

10Figure 10: Input Data for a Collection

He then clicks Save, and the collection is created.

Sam next creates the upload policy for the collection. He clicks Policies in the left pane of the window. In the Policies window, he clicks Add to create a new policy.

Figure11Figure 11: Create a New Upload Policy

He then enters the necessary information for the policy and changes Upload change intervals from 60 minutes to 120 minutes, assigns a new name to the policy, and saves it. See Figure 12.

12Figure 12: Configure the New Policy

Now Sam has the new collection and the new policy. He then assigns this new policy to the collection.

He clicks Collections from the left pane. In the Collections window, he selects the newly created collection and clicks Manage CVD, then selects Assign Upload Policy, as shown in Figure 13.

13Figure 13: Assign Upload Policy to Collection

He chooses the newly created policy and clicks OK to save the result (Figure 14).

14Figure 14: Choose Upload Policy for Collection

Now the synchronization interval for all of the Windows 7 32-bit endpoints is every 120 minutes instead of the default 60 minutes.

These are but two helpful functions in the Horizon Mirage Web Manager. Additional functionality, such as report functions and volume management, is available to the Protection Manager who is using the Web Manager.

Check the VMware Horizon Mirage Web Manager Guide for more detailed information about accessing the Web Manager as a Protection Manager.

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