Adobe Flash Player End-of-Life and VMware Horizon
Adobe Flash Player will stop working on January 1, 2021.
For those of you who have perhaps missed this, you can read about the Flash end-of-life on Adobe’s website here.
This is potentially very important if you are a VMware Horizon 7 customer running a version of Horizon prior to 7.10. It is unlikely that you will be able to get around Flash being discontinued, as there is code to prevent you from using it in any browser, and active steps are being taken to prevent it from being used past December 31, 2020.
VMware has published a handy KB to give you some guidance on which versions of our products you need to use in order to navigate through the sunset of Flash. You can find that KB here: https://kb.vmware.com/s/article/78589
Although the KB deals with multiple VMware products, I am going to restrict the recommendations in this article to Horizon. As you can see, we recommend a minimum of Horizon 7.10 to overcome the Flash EOL.
The previous Flash-based Horizon Administrator has been replaced by the HTML5-based Horizon Console. In Horizon 7.10, the new Horizon Console is a nearly feature-complete replacement for the Horizon Administrator. There are two features that were not ported and will not be ported to any future version of Horizon:
• ThinApp Management – This management feature in Horizon is a legacy feature that was very lightly used. You can still use ThinApp with Horizon by registering applications with Dynamic Environment Manager, for example. To be clear, ThinApp is still very much supported—it is the ThinApp Management feature from the Flash-based Horizon Administrator that has been deprecated.
• Security Server Management – If you are still running Horizon Security Servers, you should be actively moving to Unified Access Gateway. Security Servers are deprecated as of Horizon 8 2006 and we have been advising migration for a few years now. If you find yourself in a bind and need to manage Security Servers, Chris Halstead has created an unsupported script with a GUI to do just that. You can find it on code here. However, you really need to migrate to Unified Access Gateway.
Ideally, we recommend that you upgrade to Horizon 7.13, which is the final Horizon 7 release that became generally available on October 15, 2020. If you are a Horizon 7.10 ESB customer, you may not have that as an option, so you can remain on Horizon 7.10 ESB with the caveats outlined above.
VMware publishes an upgrade guide for Horizon 7 to help you plan your upgrade. I suggest you read it to understand the general process of upgrades. Within the upgrade guide is a compatibility matrix to aid you in making decisions regarding mixing versions of the Horizon components during the upgrade process.
If you are not using linked clones, persistent disks, or View Persona, you can also upgrade to Horizon 8. If you are using those features, you may need to do some planning to migrate to Horizon 8. To help with that, we have an excellent guide called Modernizing VDI for a New Horizon.
Adobe also has some additional information about Enterprise Enablement that can be found starting on page 28 of this document that might provide some additional information about how to manage the Flash end-of-life. To be clear, VMware recommends that upgrading your Horizon installation to a version that does not require Flash is the best strategy.
So, please make sure that you are prepared for the end-of-life of Adobe Flash on January 1st, 2021. Don’t delay acting on this if you have not already done so. It really should be straightforward to get to at least Horizon 7.10 if you are already a Horizon 7 customer.