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Horizon Workspace Environment Prerequisites

With VMware Horizon Workspace, there are a couple of environmental prerequisites to be aware of which, without knowing about can cause some minor frustration during implementing of Horizon Workspace 1.0.

Both the Horizon Workspace Installation Guide and the Horizon Workspace Reviewers Guide provide great checklists for walking through the prerequisites. Here are the items needed for installation and configuration of Horizon Workspace 1.0:

  • Active Directory – Horizon Workspace currently requires at least Windows 2003 Active Directory infrastructure or higher.
  • Static IP Addresses – Each of the 5 virtual appliances within the Horizon Workspace 1.0 vApp require an IPV4 static IP address.
  • DNS – Per the Horizon Workspace Installation Guide, all of the virtual appliances refer to each other by their hostnames. As a result, each IP address must map to a hostname which you can search for from each system. This means both A Records and PTR Records are required.
  • SMTP Server – In order to properly install the Horizon Workspace 1.0 vApp, there must be a valid SMTP service available for reference during installation. This is required for Horizon Workspace to be able to send messages and alerts. It should be noted, the Horizon Workspace Installation Guide provides reference to using a Microsoft Exchange server as well as a VMware Zimbra server.
  • vCenter IP Pools – vCenter IP Pool configurations are a must. These are quite simple to setup and provide virtual appliances and vApps with the necessary information to communicate properly on the network in question.

    VCenter IP Pool 1

  • vCenter 5.x – vCenter must be running at least at version 5.0 or higher. It is important to note here, if you’re planning on running Horizon View 5.2, you’ll want vCenter 5.1.0a or higher.
  • vSphere 4.1/5.x – The vSphere host(s) where the vApp lives must be at least 4.1 or higher. Again, it is important to note here, if you’re planning on running Horizon View 5.2, you’ll want vSphere 5.1.0a or higher.

Now this may differ slightly for a Proof of Concept vs. a Production environment. For a Proof of Concept, really the things needed are far less than for production.

  • Proof of Concept:
    • Users – Use of the Demo User Store built into Horizon Workspace is totally fine here, so Active Directory is really not needed at all.
    • Internal Database – Use of the internal Postgres database is acceptable. Just keep in mind there is no fault tolerance or disaster recovery by default as this is something you would do for an external database. You could, of course, use built vCenter tools to provide some level of protection – but this is a POC we’re talking about here.
    • Storage – Built in storage is fine for a Proof of Concept but it is recommended to take the time to setup some limitations so people don’t fill the storage on the POC environment. See the Horizon Workspace Installation Guide and the Horizon Workspace Reviewers Guide for more details on this.
  • Production:
  • For production we should really stress the review of the the Horizon Workspace Installation Guide and the benefits this will bring you as these are the more official documentations with enterprise level recommendations.

One final recommendation; If you’re planning on rolling this into production, take the time to setup an external Postgres database as it is HIGHLY recommended to configure Horizon Workspace (for HA and Fault Tolerance) to utilize an external Postrgres database. We recommend VMware vFabric Postrgres!

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Dean Flaming

About Dean Flaming

Dean is currently an EUC Architect and member of the VMware End User Computing Enablement and Lighthouse Support teams, working to develop communications and IP around VMware End User Computing products and solutions as well as support many various Lighthouse accounts with their own EUC practices. Prior to this, from 2008 through 2012 Dean was one of VMware's End User Computing Specialists. Throughout his time at VMware, Dean has also written and published various articles, videos, and podcasts regarding VMware's EUC Solutions.