Horizon View 5.3 Part 5 – Horizon View Components

Before I start discussing the installation of the various Horizon View components, I wanted to go over what those components were and what purpose they served in a Horizon View environment.  These components are divided between server components and desktop components.

There are five server components in a Horizon View environment.  These components, and their roles in the environment are:

  • View Connection Server – the View Connection Server is main component of the Horizon View environment and the only one guaranteed to be in every environment.  The Connection Server handles four roles: managing connections between clients and virtual desktops, authenticating users, managing desktop resources with vCenter and Composer, and hosting the View Administrator web-based management console.  There are two types of Connection Servers – Standard and Replica.  Functionally, there is no difference between Standard and Replica Connection Servers except that a Standard server is the first/only Connection server in the environment.
  • View Security Gateway – The View Security Gateway is a server that is designed to sit in a DMZ to external connections to the View Connection Server.  Each Security Gateway must be paired with a Connection Server.
  • View Transfer Server – The View Transfer Server is used with clients that support Local Mode.  Local Mode allows a user to check out a desktop and use it without Internet access.  The transfer server provides the mechanism for transferring and updating the copy of the virtual desktop to the client.
  • View Composer – Composer is the component works with vCenter to create and manage linked-clone desktops.
  • VMware Blast – VMware Blast is a component that is installed on the Connection Servers to provide HTML5 access to virtual desktops.  In order to use HTML5 access, Feature Pack 1 needs to be installed on the virtual desktops.

There are three desktop components in the View environment.  Two of these components are installed on desktops that are managed by Horizon View, and the last component is the View Client that is used for accessing the desktops.  These components are:

  • View Client – The View Client is used to access Horizon View desktops using the Microsoft RDP protocol or the PCoIP protocol.  Clients exist for Windows, Linux, OSX, iOS, and Android.
  • View Agent – The View Agent is installed on the virtual desktop and provides a number of services, features, and drivers for the virtual desktop such as ThinPrint for client printer support and Persona Management for managing user profiles.  A desktop source, which can be a virtual machine running Windows or a Microsoft Terminal Server, must have the View Agent installed in order to be used with Horizon View.
  • Feature Pack 1 – Feature Pack 1 is an add-on to Horizon View 5.3.  It contains support for Real-Time Audio/Video, Flash URL redirection, and HTML Access.

Now that I’ve briefly described the components that are in a Horizon View environment, it’s time to start installing them.  The first components that will be installed are View Composer and a Standard View Connection server.  These two components are needed to get a basic Horizon View environment up and running with Linked-Clone desktops.