VMware Horizon

VMware Horizon View Clients Update

By Kristina De Nike, Senior Product Manager, End-User Computing, VMware

I once lost a checker piece. I found a red button that looked so much like the original piece that while I was playing I almost never thought about the replacement. We expect our new, RDS-hosted applications feature to be like that for end users. With Horizon 6, the remote Windows apps feel so native that end users will regularly forget that the applications are not running locally. For more information, see the VMware Horizon Clients documentation.

In this significant update to the VMware Horizon Clients, users connecting to a Horizon 6 View Connection Server can access applications running on a Windows Remote Desktop Session host (RDS host) from the Horizon Client over PCoIP. The applications look and behave like applications running natively on the local computer. For instance, on the Mac, the application icon appears in the Mac dock, and application windows layer over each other, as you would expect (see Figure 1). This seamless application access is available in the Windows and Mac clients.


Figure 1:  RDS-Hosted Applications Running As If Native on the Local Computer

Hosted applications are also supported on Android and iOS systems. From the initial list of recent desktops and applications that users see as soon as they authenticate, users can quickly jump into the data they need.


Figure 2:  List of Recent Desktops and Applications

Version Numbering

In the January 2014 release, all the Horizon Clients were version 2.3. In this new release, clients that support hosted apps are now at version 3.0; clients that do not yet support hosted apps will continue to have a 2.x version number. In other words, the Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android clients are all version 3.0. The Windows Store and HTML Access web client are version 2.4. There is no update for the Linux client with this release.

The following list identifies the various versions of Horizon Client:

  • Horizon Client 2.3 – All clients that were at 2.3 in January 2014 and have not changed
  • Horizon Client 2.X – The client is newer than 2.3 but does not support hosted apps
  • Horizon Client 3.0 – Clients that now support hosted apps

If a client does not support hosted apps, the user sees only the virtual desktops that can be accessed from the client. Hosted applications are not visible in the client UI. Note that hosted apps available on the Mac are supported only in OS X 10.8 and above.

iOS Smart Card

Organizations that want their iOS users to securely access View desktops can now use smart cards to authenticate. This new capability works on iPads and iPhones and requires a smart-card reader from Biometrics Associates. Supported smart-card types include popular ones such as CAC, PIV, and Gemalto.


Figure 3: Smart Card Authentication Screen

New Look and Feel

The Horizon Clients all now sport an updated, uniform design. As users move from device to device, they will find the clients familiar and easy to use.

Users can select favorite desktops or applications and toggle to see only the favorites. Users can also drag their favorites and reorder them. When users move to another system and log in, they can immediately identify their favorites.

In the Windows and Mac clients, users with many entitlements can find items quickly by typing the name of the desktop or app. The client highlights the item with the matching name. See Figure 4.


Figure 4: Uniform Client Design Across Platforms

The Horizon Clients for Windows and Mac are available from the VMware Horizon Client download site. Updates to the iOS, Android, and Windows Store clients are available from the application stores; use your in-device update mechanism to get the new versions.

For more information, see the VMware Horizon Clients documentation.