VMware View with PowerFuse & Wisdom

As you probably know, both RES PowerFuse and RES Wisdom work really well with Citrix XenDesktop and VMware VDM. Both RES products help you manage “the last mile”. Wisdom allows you to change settings in running vdisk or cloned images without having to reset the user session forcibly. PowerFuse configures the user session. If you want to have as few images as possible, you need to put all the applications in your image. To make sure users get the right applications and with the right settings (e.g. Outlook with mail profile and signature) you need PowerFuse to keep it manageable.

Extra info (6 feb)
I just found out that the client ip number does not get resolved in a session. It just gives you the local host address (127.0.0.1). This seams to be a VMware View problem since a direct RDP connection to the same machine does resolve the right address. This means you cannot use a PowerZone based on the client ip address to determine where a session comes from. You can however still use a PowerZone based on the client name to, for instance, set the default printer for a user based on his location.

When VMware announced VMware View 3.0 (their new version of VDM), I built a test environment to determine if the (major) changes would affect the RES products. To cut a long story short: it doesn’t ;-). Everything works as I expected. Here’s what I did: After installing all the VMware View parts, I built a new Windows XP SP3 machine in ESXi called VMviewGold. Within that VM, I installed RES PowerFuse 2008 SR4 and RES Wisdom 2009. The only things you need to be aware of are the Identification Method and the machine counter. This is the only change compared to VDM and XenDesktop.

The identification setting (for Agents??) needs to be: “Computer domain name & NetBIOS name” instead of “MAC address of the first enabled network interface card”. If you understand the way View Composer works, it’s not that strange: every time you change the gold image and use the “Desktop and Pools” wizard, new machines are recreated from scratch. This also includes the MAC address of the PC. So, the setting that uses the MAC address would result in a new agent registration for a machine with the same name, taking unnecessary licenses. Be sure to change this setting before taking a snapshot of your gold image and running the wizard.

The same thing applies to the VM counter: every time a new machine is created, the number behind the new name will be one higher than the one before. A new computer name means a new license. Be sure to either remove old agent registrations, or to create new cloned VMs starting at number 1.

Of course I also tested the RES Workspace Extender. For those of you who don’t know what it does: it integrates your local desktop applications in your remote desktop. This means your users can run local and remote apps from 1 VDI or Terminal Server session, with or without Citrix. It even allows you to click a URL in a session and open it with you local browser, using the local resources. I’ve tested VMware View and the Workspace Extender running a Full HD movie both in a View session and with an extended session. As you might have guessed, I prefer the extended version ;-)

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