Things VMware Horizon Suite needs to improve on and you should be aware of

Posted by on May 31, 2013 in Horizon Suite, VMware | 1 comment

After working with VMware Horizon Suite for the past couple of months I have found a number of items that I was kind of surprised or bummed to find out. So I am putting together a list of things that people should be aware of and a few things that I hope get updated in the next release.

Also I would like to offer help on future releases with shaking out some of these issues. Myself and teammates have seen a bunch of installs in EUC space and can offer some great feedback. I have participated in many VMware Beta programs, but I think by the Beta stage they are only going to fix major issues. Some of these items make me thing that some of these teams don’t work with end users much.

Things to be aware of:

  1. App viability in workspace port. The workspace portal looks at the device your are using and will present apps that your device is capable of running. This makes sense, so it won’t show mobile apps to my Macbook and won’t show it ThinApps either. Now the confusing part is if I’m on a Windows desktop and look at the Workspace portal to view my applications, it will not show me the ThinApps assigned to me unless I have the workspace agent installed. So if I want to look from my laptop rather than my View desktop it looks like I have no apps assigned. While I can see that they are probably not showing them since I wont be able to launch them. But it does confuse users.
  2. When looking at the desktop pools you are entitled to in workspace the default behavior when clicking on a pool is to launch the desktop via the Blast protocol. To get the option to connect with PCoIP and a better user experience the user must right click the pool icon and choose connect with View client. This is not clear to users and they are just going to connect using Blast and this will cause support requests. The behavior should be reversed or prompt people to choose when clicking on the pool.
  3. Once you fully link Workspace and View with SAML you loose the ability to open the View client and connect directly to a desktop. You must authenticate with workspace and then open desktop from there. This one is more of a heads up, but I kind of expected to still be able to open the View client directly and that it would authenticate with workspace or view directly.

Things to improve on:

  1. There is almost no documentation on setting up workspace SSO with SaaS based applications. I know the product is pretty new and the community has not had time to generate the helpful content that many have grown to rely on. But it would be helpful if VMware would have generated guides on how to setup all or some of the SaaS apps that are in the supported list. (Update) You can find some of this information if you go back to the Horizon Application Manager 1.5 documentation for the previous product.
  2. The process to replace the default security certificates for the vApp is not documented. When replacing them so that we were not using the default certs, one of the team members had to rely on past experiences and had to dig through old 2011 forum posts to find the password to the keystore in the appliance to get the cert loaded. This is something that is increasingly important due to all the web based consoles on VMware products.

Overall I am very impressed with the Horizon suite of products from VMware. I think having them in a suite for licensing and integration is great and hope they continue to improve them quickly. I do have high expectations for VMware and get disappointed when things do not live up to them.



About Brian Suhr

Brian is a VCDX5-DCV and a Sr. Tech Marketing Engineer at Nutanix and owner of this website. He is active in the VMware community and helps lead the Chicago VMUG group. Specializing in VDI and Cloud project designs. Awarded VMware vExpert status 6 years for 2016 - 2011. VCP3, VCP5, VCP5-Iaas, VCP-Cloud, VCAP-DTD, VCAP5-DCD, VCAP5-DCA, VCA-DT, VCP5-DT, Cisco UCS Design

1 Comment

  1. I knew i wasn’t going crazy, i had tested this horizon workspace out my testlab and because i had the workspace agent installed it worked perfectly. But when i tried to present a live demo on a clean PC the apps could not be displayed. If i had long hair i could have pulled it out because i got so confused. But anyway thanks for making that first problem clear.

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