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Category Archives: End-User Computing Overview

Triple Benefits from View in Horizon 6, Virtual SAN, and All-Flash Storage from SanDisk

By Patric Chang, Senior Director, SanDisk

Imagine being able to run View desktops with the speed of all-flash shared storage, without the cost and complexity of a dedicated all-flash array.

Today, all-flash Virtual SAN clusters from SanDisk make it a reality.

In collaboration with VMware, Avago, Dell, and Brocade, SanDisk has built a Virtual SAN solution that delivers the following benefits with a four-node starter configuration:

  • Fast, responsive virtual desktops for great user experience
  • Support for persistent desktops without the need for dedicated storage arrays
  • Common management paradigm for server virtualization and storage
  • Configuration with servers, flash storage, controllers, and network, all tested and validated together for ease of deployment and support
  • Support for over 800 desktops on each four-node cluster

This flexible four-node solution can scale up to 64 nodes. Now customers can achieve all-flash performance on persistent View desktops without the need for a dedicated all-flash array.

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A reference architecture and a solution brief describing this solution are now available. Blogs at VMware and other partners, such as Brocade, show that there is already a lot of excitement about this solution.

There will be two special sessions (EUC6510 and VAPP5737) at VMworld that will cover best practices to deploy all-flash Virtual SAN with View workloads. You can attend either session or visit SanDisk at Booth 1920 in San Francisco.

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For more information, or to conduct a proof of concept, feel free to contact me anytime at patric.chang@sandisk.com.

When it absolutely, positively has to be there – VMware AlwaysOn Desktop Solution

By Tisa Murdock, Director of Industry Solutions, VMware and Farid Agahi, Business Strategist Industry Solutions, VMware

The term ‘mission critical’ in IT has been synonymous with major business applications that perform core functions within an enterprise. However, we are starting to see that term also being applied to the underlying end-user computing platform – in the context of an always available service. The idea being that a mission-critical application requires an equally mission-critical platform capable of delivering that application to its end-users 7x24x365 – wherever they are.

This has been very evident over the past several years in the healthcare sector where the global movement toward a paperless electronic medical records (EMR) environment has hugely impacted the availability SLA’s for desktop services. It’s easy to make the connection between desktop availability and patient care delivery through the EMR application’s availability.

Similar reliance on desktop services is also being identified in other sectors such as financial services, manufacturing, retail and others. This is driven by the fact that cost of downtime is getting progressively higher due to loss in business productivity, customer impact, missed business service levels, impact on deadline commitments etc.

In fact, many organizations are going away from allowing for routine planned downtimes in their desktop SLA frameworks. This clearly challenges status-quo in areas such as patch management and application updates/upgrade where each update cycle is likely to require at least one reboot which constitutes a planned downtime event. Multiplied by number of end-points and duration of each reboot, the total planned outage puts a large dent in the total availability SLA – situation gets worse if we add unplanned outages to the equation. These factors are ushering in the beginning of the always-on desktop service model.

So, how do you get to an always-on service within a distributed physical desktop environment? Answer is you can’t! The architecture supporting the desktop service has to be fundamentally different. And that’s where VMware’s AlwaysOn Desktop offering provides this much-needed solution.

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By Chris Dong, Business Analyst & End User Experience Intern, VMware

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We’re excited to launch a new blog series entitled Fearlessly Innovating with Socialcast showcasing the successes of Socialcast as part of the broader VMware community. Socialcast by VMware, a leading enterprise social networking platform, is used by thousands of VMware employees each and every day. Each month, we will highlight how the Socialcast platform is transforming communication and collaboration across the company, leading to increased productivity, efficiency, and transparency. Socialcast is enabling VMware to succeed in an increasingly competitive IT landscape – and with even more robust features around the corner, this is just the beginning.

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Socialcast unveils Chat for secure instant messaging and collaboration

This past August 3rd, Socialcast released its latest feature, Socialcast Chat, providing users with a reliable and secure instant messaging tool. The new Socialcast Chat is updated to deliver a more lightweight and responsive chat tool that customers can use daily for business communication. Socialcast Chat is derived from the trusted previous Private Message feature, and now provides a seamless flow between web and mobile devices.

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Getting To Know the Mirage Tools

By Stephane Asselin, Senior End-User-Computing Architect, VMware

With significant contributions from Yaniv Weinberg, Research and Development Manager, Mirage Product Engineering, VMware

We know that the VMware Mirage product handles image management and application deployment to physical endpoints very well. But in the last few months, the Mirage team released some tools to make the Mirage administrator’s life a bit easier. This blog provides information about how to use these tools and how they can benefit your Mirage deployment. These tools are free and available to all Mirage users from the VMware download site (as shown in Figure 1).

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Figure 1: VMware Mirage Tools, Download Product Window

Mirage Centralization Phase Estimator

The first tool to discuss is the Mirage Centralization Phase Estimator tool. In any Mirage project that includes a centralization phase, it is critical to properly plan the different phases of the project to ensure successful deployment of the complete solution. Several scenarios require centralization: backing up endpoints, migrating operating systems, and migrating hardware. Here we discuss backing up the endpoints. Continue reading

Windows 10 Receives Positive Outlook From IT Professionals

By Mark Margevicius, director of enterprise solutions, End-User Computing, VMware

Previews for blockbuster movies are always exciting but they all come to an end as the lead-up culminates with the eventual opening weekend that draws hundreds of thousands of excited fans. Similarly, months of anticipation have culminated this week with the launch of Windows 10, the much-anticipated release of the latest Windows operating system that will introduce a new endpoint management paradigm to the industry.

As part of this industry moment, we commissioned a survey with TechValidate to examine the opinions and sentiments of IT professionals towards the Windows update.  The survey findings represent feedback from roughly 250 VMware customers and were completed earlier this month.

Through this survey, we discovered some real nuggets of insight from customers , which I’d like to share with you in this post. So without further adieu, below are 5 key takeaways from our recent survey.

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VMware End-User-Computing Hands-On Labs and the Heroes Behind Them

By Alex West, Former Technical Editor and Writer, End-User-Computing Technical Marketing, VMware

Based on interviews with Dean Flaming, End-User-Computing Architect and End-User-Computing Hands-On Labs Content Lead, VMware

VMware Hands-On Labs (HOLs) are an excellent, sometimes overlooked resource for test-driving VMware solutions on an array of terrains. Planned and executed by a talented team of VMware staff volunteers, End-User-Computing (EUC) HOLs are a completely free, fully interactive look at day-in-the-life scenarios for a huge number of EUC solutions. The only requirements are an HTLM5 Web browser and access to the Internet.

So whether you want to try out a new EUC solution, become an expert in a particular EUC deployment, or conduct a proof-of-concept (PoC) for a prospective customer, HOLs have everything you need and more.

 

HOL Usage Is Amazing!

Since December 2012, VMware has deployed more than 300,000 HOLs to more than 95,000 users.

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How to Troubleshoot an App Volumes Environment, Part 2

By Gina Daly, Technical Writer for Technical Marketing, End-User Computing, VMware

With significant contributions from:

Stephane Asselin, Senior End-User-Computing Architect, Technical Enablement, End-User Computing, VMware

Jason Marshall, Manager, Product Engineering, End-User Computing, VMware

Andrew Johnson, Senior Manager and Staff Architect, EUC Technical Marketing and Enablement, VMware

Welcome to part 2 of How to Troubleshoot an App Volumes Environment. We are discussing steps to take when diagnosing an issue in your environment. Let us run through a quick recap. In part 1 of How to Troubleshoot an App Volumes Environment, we covered checking deployment requirements, how to find clues on the App Volumes Manager console, using log analysis tools, and knowing what to search for in the logs.

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App Volumes Troubleshooting Steps

This blog covers using the Ruby on Rails console and the SQL database to verify configuration details and environment settings, and lists the relevant Knowledge Base articles to use. Continue reading

How to Troubleshoot an App Volumes Environment, Part 1

By Gina Daly, Technical Writer for Technical Marketing, End-User Computing, VMware

With significant contributions from:

Stephane Asselin, Senior End-User-Computing Architect, Technical Enablement, End-User Computing, VMware

Jason Marshall, Manager, Product Engineering, End-User Computing, VMware

Andrew Johnson, Senior Manager and Staff Architect, End-User-Computing Technical Marketing and Enablement, VMware

My father was a naval officer and taught me many things about the sea. Did you know, in comparison to the size of a ship, only a very small helm or wheel is needed to steer this ship? In an App Volumes environment with various components, it can sometimes be difficult to know where to start troubleshooting. We have recently published a number of Knowledge Base (KB) articles to steer you in the right direction, just like that helm. Our aim is to simplify App Volumes troubleshooting and help pinpoint the issue, should you encounter stormy waters!

General App Volumes Troubleshooting Overview

The following diagram provides a list of general troubleshooting steps. In this blog, we discuss the first four steps. Within each step description, links to the corresponding KB articles are included. Using the Ruby on Rails console and SQL database will be covered in the next blog post, How to Troubleshoot an App Volumes Environment, Part 2.

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App Volumes Troubleshooting Steps Continue reading

Using VMware Horizon Toolbox With Horizon 6

By Nancy Beckus, Writer and Editor, End-User Computing Technical Marketing, VMware

VMware Horizon Toolbox is a free-of-charge Web portal that acts as an extension to View Administrator for View virtual desktops in VMware Horizon 6. Use the Horizon Toolbox to determine the correct system size and load for View Connection Server, locate each user’s login and logout times, and discover how many endpoints are using which clients.

You can already audit sessions and usage with VMware vRealize Operations for Horizon, which is included in the Horizon Enterprise Edition. But if you have the Horizon View Standard Edition or the Horizon Advanced Edition, which do not contain vRealize Operations for Horizon, you can use Horizon Toolbox to audit sessions and usage, as well as manage your linked-clone desktops with the Snapshot option and oversee your Horizon Clients with the Client Audit Report. Continue reading