General support for VMware Horizon 7 ends April 30, 2023, impacting all versions up to and including VMware Horizon 7.13. Read this blog to understand why and how to upgrade to Horizon 8 now: “Top 8 Reasons to Upgrade to VMware Horizon 8.”
This blog post introduces new support for monitoring VMware App Volumes, View in VMware Horizon 7, and VMware Access Point. The first blog in this series introduced what is new in VMware vRealize Operations for Horizon and Published Applications 6.4. Part 3 discusses new application-crash alerts for desktop applications, and a new dashboard for root-cause analysis. Part 4 addresses new reporting on application CPU and memory usage. In Part 4, we also discuss support added for the latest versions of Citrix and Horizon 7 VDI solutions, and enhancements to the stability of the vRealize Operations for Horizon and Published Applications environments.
Support for Monitoring VMware App Volumes
VMware vRealize Operations for Horizon and Published Applications 6.4 introduces the ability to monitor existing App Volumes Managers. This can be set up when you configure the vRealize Operations for Horizon or vRealize Operations for Published Apps broker agent on a Horizon Connection Server or a Citrix Desktop Delivery Controller, as shown in Figures 1 and 2.
Figure 1: Configuring App Volumes Monitoring While Deploying the Broker Agent on a Horizon Connection Server
Figure 2: Configuring App Volumes Monitoring While Deploying the Broker Agent on a Citrix Desktop Delivery Controller
You can now monitor App Volumes Manager assignments and capture metrics about the time taken for attachments. With this release, vRealize Operations for Horizon and vRealize Operations for Published Applications have the ability to monitor App Volumes 2.11, 2.12, or later. Refer to the VMware Product Interoperability Matrices for the latest compatible versions.
Figure 3 shows the sessions connected with attached AppStacks when a user is assigned an AppStack.
Figure 3: Horizon User Session Details Dashboard Showing User Sessions and the New Column for Attached AppStacks
Figure 3 shows the user vrops51-2\v4htestuser2 connected to a VDI desktop session and the AppStack V4X_ADOBE attached to the session.
You can also view AppStack statistics as part of the Session Logon Breakdown section, as shown in Figure 4, which also indicates the AppStack attach time (in this case, at 7.11 seconds).
Figure 4: Horizon Help Desk Tab with the Session Logon Breakdown Section
You can see an advanced view of vRealize Operations for Horizon capturing AppStack information when you enter a session from the Horizon User Session Details dashboard, shown in Figure 5. You can see a relation map of the objects connected and the AppStack attach time in seconds.
Figure 5: vRealize Operations for Horizon Troubleshooting Tab
Support for Monitoring View in Horizon 7.0.2 and 7.0.3
This new release of vRealize Operations for Horizon ensures that you are able to capture data from current versions of Horizon 7, up to the latest version, 7.0.3. You can now display events on dashboards and generate custom reports that are captured and sent back from the vRealize Operations for Horizon or Published Applications agents.
Support for Monitoring the View Access Point Appliance
Access Point functions as a secure gateway for users who want to access application and desktop resources from outside the corporate firewall. You can now monitor the Access Point deployments and sessions served during operation to include metrics about session count, current status per protocol, and more.
Figure 6 shows how to add an Access Point appliance during the configuration of the vRealize Operations for Horizon broker agent. You can add multiple Access Point appliances, and you will need to provide additional information such as Name, IP Address, Port, Username, and Password. Click the Test button to validate the connectivity and then click the + (plus) button to add to the list of monitored Access Point appliances.
Figure 6: Adding an Access Point Appliance During Configuration of the Horizon Broker Agent
Because Access Point is a component of Horizon 7.x, the option to add an Access Point appliance is not available when installing vRealize Operations for Published Applications and when configuring the Published Applications broker agent in the Citrix XenDesktop or XenApp environment.
From the Horizon Overview dashboard shown in Figure 7, you can view Top Horizon Alerts, including Access Point alerts. Figure 7 also shows a view of the Access Point appliances that are configured to report data collection status, session count, and percentage of total sessions for the Access Point appliance from the same Horizon Overview dashboard.
Figure 7: Horizon Overview Dashboard with Access Point Appliances Displayed
The set of alerts in Figure 8 is an example of the types of alerts that can be displayed on the vRealize Operations alerts pane.
Figure 8: vRealize Operations for Horizon Capturing Alerts from Access Point Appliances
The screenshot in Figure 8 is filtered to show any alert sent from Access Point appliances into vRealize Operations for Horizon. Among the listed alerts, you find an alert showing that the session count of connections coming into Access Point has crossed its threshold. Other alerts from Access Point show errors connecting, and time-outs on incoming user sessions trying to connect by way of the Blast Extreme protocol. Further investigation might reveal an incorrectly configured connection to and from the Access Point and Horizon Connection Servers. Further examination of the alert might provide “recommendations” about what “caused” the Access Point appliance to return an alert to vRealize Operations for Horizon.
The first alert was generated when the number of connecting user sessions in the Access Point appliance crossed a threshold, which can be specified by editing the “symptom definition” for the Access Point object shown in Figure 9. Similar thresholds can be set for other metrics being captured.
Figure 9: Setting Thresholds for Access Point in Edit Symptom Definition
Support for Monitoring the View Cloud Pod Architecture
VMware vRealize Operations for Horizon now offers the ability for you to view statistics about sessions that are served by Horizon Connection Servers in a Cloud Pod Architecture, and the cross-pod communication status.
Figure 10 shows a simple environment set up with two pods that have one Horizon Connection Server each, and the object relation map of the pod federation within the VDI environment.
Figure 10: A Simple View Cloud Pod Architecture Setup
Any change to the environment is reflected under the Troubleshooting tab or in the form of an alert that takes you to the Troubleshooting tab. In the Troubleshooting tab, you can view a component in question and connections to other objects, giving you the ability to identify components that are working (indicated by green badges) and ones that are not working. From this relation map, you can navigate to additional metrics that help to identify the next course of troubleshooting action.
In the example in Figure 11, an alert is being generated as a result of the failure of a Horizon Connection Server. When you open (click) the alert, you get more information about the failure. The alert status of Active remains until the connectivity of this instance is resolved.
Figure 11: An Active Alert Status
In Figure 12, you can see the details of the specific alert. This helps you gain more information about how to help identify the source of the issue and begin troubleshooting. Information such as the reason for the failure is displayed, depending on the issue.
Figure 12: vRealize Operations Manager for Horizon, Summary Tab, with Reason for Alert
Part 3 in this blog-post series addresses the new application-crash alerts for desktop applications, and the new dashboard for root-cause analysis. Part 4 of the series provides information about memory usage, support, and enhancements. See you there!