VMware Horizon Control Plane services offer customers a simple way to manage and deliver virtual desktops and applications hosted in the cloud of their choice, from on-premises to hybrid clouds.
In our Learn About the Horizon Control Plane series, we have covered image management, universal brokering and multi-cloud assignments and app management. Today, we’ll continue with the monitoring service.
Why Consider Monitoring from Horizon Control Plane
While the management functions of defining and delivering desktop and applications as a service to users is important, it’s paramount that administrators have the tools to monitor, report and support end users of these services. To that end, all Horizon Cloud customers are entitled to and have access to the built-in monitoring services for use with their Horizon pods, across clouds.
Before I go into the features and benefits, I want to highlight a few key points about this monitoring service:
- It’s included with your Horizon universal license subscriptions. Customers can leverage this as soon as they connect their Horizon pods (on-prem and any supported clouds) to the Horizon Control Plane.
- It’s a service hosted by VMware. This benefits you, our customers, in two ways: First, there’s no need to invest in big storage to capture and store Horizon data, and second, customers can leverage new features as soon as VMware rolls them out as a service.
- Data privacy is important to VMware and our customers. The monitoring service has a feature that allows customers and administrators to obfuscate or scramble certain user data before the data is sent to the cloud.
You can find the full documentation on the VMware Docs site; now let’s look at the highlights.
Health and Session Insights in Single View
For anyone new to this cloud-hosted monitoring service, it offers administrators insight into the following areas of your Horizon deployment:
- Pod location and type (e.g., Horizon on-prem, Horizon on VMware Cloud on AWS, Horizon Cloud on Microsoft Azure, etc.).
- Connectivity status of your Horizon pods, across private and public clouds.
- Health status of each pod managed under the administration console for Horizon Cloud Service. Any pod issues are indicated in the dashboard display.
- CPU, memory and disk utilization across different clouds.
- Total session count and breakdown of session state (active, idle, disconnected)
- Client connection statistics provides insight into protocols, client type and internal-external connections.
Unlike the traditional and time-consuming approach where administrators log into each pod for this information, this data set is now aggregated and presented in a single view.
Single plane of glass for you to monitor real-time status of your Horizon environments.
Real-Time Reports When You Need Them
Reports are a critical part of any Day-2 operations. Often leveraged by management, business unit and application owners, usage reports provide a time-window view into which desktop and applications are being used and who is using them. The reporting feature is an integral part of the Horizon Cloud Service, offering customers 10 out-of-the-box reports.
Key reports include:
- User Mapping: inventory of users, groups, domains and assignment types.
- Desktop Mapping: deployed desktops and configurations, along with users and pool assignments.
- Desktop Health: health status of desktops in an environment.
- Utilization: shows consumption trends of deployed capacity and concurrency metrics.
- Agent versions: reports on agent and versions of Horizon, Dynamic Environment Manager (DEM) and App Volumes deployed across your environment.
- VDI application usage: reports on names of applications launched from VDI, along with application duration.
- User usage: reports on key usage metrics, including total idle time, total session duration, maximum and average logon time, and total and average utilization for CPU and memory.
- Activity reports on admin and user activities, along with audit logs. Admins will be able to export that data. E.g., status of powering on and resetting of desktop and audit logs of admin login activities.
Today, these reports are exportable in CSV format.
Help Desk Tool Simplifies End-User Support
In addition, features as part of the Horizon monitoring service include the Help Desk Tool. If you are already familiar with the Help Desk Tool in Horizon 7, the Help Desk Tool in Horizon Cloud Service will be familiar to your support team. The Help Desk Tool provides level-1 and level-2 support, even if end users are connected to different pods and different clouds. Support team and admins can easily search for a user, identify their session(s) and conduct basic troubleshooting and session support.
Naturally, more is being developed to improve the monitoring capabilities in the Horizon Cloud Service. Personally, I’m very excited for a number of new features under development. Keep a look out in this space when we have additional announcements.
Test it out on VMware TestDrive
The Horizon Control Plane monitoring feature is available today, and you can evaluate it on VMware TestDrive! If you would like to learn more this and other Horizon cloud service features, contact your VMware representative.