VMware Horizon Connection Server 2006

Last Modified: Nov 7, 2020 @ 6:34 am

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This post applies to all VMware Horizon versions 2006 (aka 8.0) and newer.

ūüí° = Recently Updated

Change Log

Upgrade

If you are performing a new install, skip to Install Horizon Connection Server.

Notes regarding upgrades:

  • Horizon 7 license key does not work in Horizon 2006 (aka Horizon 8). You’ll need to upgrade your license key.
  • Upgrade all Connection Servers during the same maintenance window.
    • Horizon Agents cannot be upgraded until the Connection Servers are upgraded.
    • Horizon 2006 does not support Security Servers. The replacement is Unified Access Gateway.
    • Composer is deprecated in Horizon 2006. All editions of Horizon 2006 support Instant Clones. See Modernizing VDI for a New Horizon at VMware Tech Zone for migration instructions.
    • Downgrades are not permitted.
      • You can snapshot your Connection Servers before beginning the upgrade. To revert, shut down all Connection Servers, then revert to snapshots.
    • For Cloud Pod Architecture, you don’t have to upgrade every pod at once. But upgrade all of them as soon as possible.
    • All Connection Servers in the pod must be online before starting the upgrade.
    • It’s an in-place upgrade. Just run the Connection Server installer and click Next a couple times.
    • Once the first Connection Server is upgraded, Horizon 2006 lets you upgrade the remaining Connection Servers concurrently.
  • Upgrade the Horizon Group Policy template (.admx) files.
  • Upgrade the Horizon Agents.
    • Persona is no longer supported. Persistent Disks are deprecated. The replacement is VMware Dynamic Environment Manager. Or Microsoft FSLogix.¬†See Modernizing VDI for a New Horizon at VMware Tech Zone for migration instructions.
    • It’s an in-place upgrade.
    • There’s no hurry. Upgrade the Horizon Agents when time permits.
  • Upgrade the Horizon Clients.
    • Horizon Clients can be upgraded anytime before the rest of the infrastructure is upgraded.

Install Horizon Connection Server

The first Horizon Connection Server must be a Standard Server. Subsequent Horizon Connection Servers are Replicas. Once Horizon Connection Server is installed, there is no difference between Standard and Replica.

A production Horizon Connection Server should have 10 GB of RAM and 4 vCPU. Each Horizon Connection Server can handle 4,000 user connections.

Horizon 2006 is the latest release. In August 2020, VMware switched to a YYMM versioning format.

To install the first Horizon Connection Server:

  1. Ensure the Horizon Connection Server has 10 GB of RAM and 4 vCPU. Source = Hardware Requirements for Horizon Connection Server at VMware Docs.
  2. Horizon 2006 supports Windows Server 2012 R2, Windows Server 2016, and Windows Server 2019. See 78652 Supported Operating Systems and MSFT Active Directory Domain Functional Levels for VMware Horizon 8 2006.
  3. Horizon 2006 no longer needs Flash.
  4. Download Horizon 2006 Horizon Connection Server.
  5. If Horizon Toolbox is installed, uninstall it.
  6. Run the downloaded VMware-Horizon-Connection-Server-x86_64-8.0.0.exe.
  7. In the Welcome to the Installation Wizard for VMware Horizon Connection Server page, click Next.
  8. In the License Agreement page, select I accept the terms, and click Next.
  9. In the Destination Folder page, click Next.
  10. In the Installation Options page, select Horizon Standard Server, and click Next.

    • In Horizon 2006, it is no longer possible to disable HTML Access for specific pools.
  11. In the Data Recovery page, enter a password, and click Next.
  12. In the Firewall Configuration page, click Next.
  13. In the Initial Horizon Administrators page, enter an AD group containing your Horizon administrators, and click Next.
  14. In the User Experience Improvement Program page, uncheck the box, and click Next.
  15. In the Ready to Install the Program page, click Install.
  16. In the Installer Completed page, uncheck the box next to Show the readme file, and click Finish.

Install Horizon Connection Server Replica

Additional Horizon Connection Servers are installed as Replicas. After installation, there is no difference between a Replica server and a Standard server.

A production Horizon Connection Server should have 10 GB of RAM and 4 vCPU.

To install Horizon Connection Server Replica:

  1. Ensure the Horizon Connection Server has 10 GB of RAM and 4 vCPU. Source = Hardware Requirements for Horizon Connection Server at VMware Docs.
  2. Horizon 2006 supports Windows Server 2012 R2, Windows Server 2016, and Windows Server 2019. See 78652 Supported Operating Systems and MSFT Active Directory Domain Functional Levels for VMware Horizon 8 2006.
  3. Horizon 2006 no longer needs Flash.
  4. Download Horizon 2006 Horizon Connection Server.
  5. If Horizon Toolbox is installed, uninstall it.
  6. Run the downloaded VMware-Horizon-Connection-Server-x86_64-8.0.0.exe.
  7. In the Welcome to the Installation Wizard for VMware Horizon Connection Server page, click Next.
  8. In the License Agreement page, select I accept the terms, and click Next.
  9. In the Destination Folder page, click Next.
  10. In the Installation Options page, select Horizon Replica Server, and click Next.
  11. In the Source Server page, enter the name of another Horizon Connection Server in the pod. Then click Next.
  12. In the Firewall Configuration page, click Next.
  13. In the Ready to Install the Program page, click Install.
  14. In the Installer Completed page, click Finish.
  15. Load balance your multiple Horizon Connection Servers.
  16. Horizon Console > Settings > Servers > Connection Servers tab shows multiple servers in the pod.

Horizon Connection Server Certificate

  1. Run certlm.msc. Or run mmc, add the Certificates snap-in, and point it to Computer > Local Machine.
  2. Request a new certificate with a common name that matches the FQDN of the Connection Server, or import a wildcard certificate.
  3. Note: the private key must be exportable. If using the Computer template, click Details, and then click Properties.
  4. On the Private Key tab, click Key options to expand it, and check the box next to Mark private key as exportable.
  5. In the list of certificates, look for the one that is self-signed. The Issuer will be the local computer name instead of a Certificate Authority. Right-click it, and click Properties.
  6. On the General tab, clear the Friendly name field, and click OK.
  7. Right-click your Certificate Authority-signed certificate, and try to export it.
  8. On the Export Private Key page, make sure Yes, export the private key is selectable. If the option to export the private key is grayed out, then this certificate will not work. Click Cancel.
  9. Right-click your Certificate Authority-signed certificate, and click Properties.
  10. On the General tab, in the Friendly name field, enter the text vdm, and click OK. Note: only one certificate can have vdm as the Friendly name.
  11. Then restart the VMware Horizon View Connection Server service. It will take several minutes before you can connect to Horizon Administrator Console.
  12. Horizon Console > Monitor > Dashboard > System Health > View > Components > Connection Servers should show the TLS Certificate as Valid.

Horizon Portal ‚Äď Client Installation Link

If you point your browser to the Horizon Connection Server (without /admin in the path), the Install VMware Horizon Client link redirects to the VMware.com site for downloading of Horizon Clients. You can change it so that the Horizon Clients can be downloaded directly from the Horizon Connection Server.

  1. On the Horizon Connection Server, go to C:\Program Files\VMware\VMware View\Server\broker\webapps.
  2. Create a new folder called downloads.
  3. Copy the downloaded Horizon Client 2006 for Windows to the new C:\Program Files\VMware\VMware View\Server\broker\webapps\downloads folder.
  4. Run Notepad as administrator.
  5. Open the file C:\ProgramData\VMware\VDM\portal\portal-links-html-access.properties file with a text editor (as Administrator).
  6. Go back to the downloads folder and copy the Horizon Client filename.
  7. In Notepad, modify link.win32 and link.win64 by specifying the relative path to the Horizon Client executable under /downloads. Note: In Horizon Client 4.3 and newer, there’s only one Horizon client for both 32-bit and 64-bit. The following example shows a link for the Horizon win64 client.
    link.win64=/downloads/VMware-Horizon-Client-2006-8.0.0-16531419.exe
  8. Then Save the file.
  9. Restart the VMware Horizon View Web Component service, or restart the entire Connection Server.
  10. It will take a few seconds for the ws_TomcatService process to start so be patient. If you get a 503 error, then the service is not done starting.
  11. Now when you click the link to download the client, it will grab the file directly from the Horizon Connection Server.
  12. Repeat these steps on each Connection Server.

Portal Branding

Chris Tucker at Horizon View 7.X РBranding the Logon page details how to brand the Horizon portal page.

LDAP Edits

Mobile Client – Save Password

If desired, you can configure Horizon Connection Server to allow mobile clients (iOS, Android) to save user passwords.

  1. On the Horizon Connection Server, run ADSI Edit (adsiedit.msc).
  2. Right-click ADSI Edit, and click Connect to.
  3. Change the first selection to Select or type a Distinguished Name, and enter dc=vdi,dc=vmware,dc=int.
  4. Change the second selection to Select or type a domain or server, and enter localhost. Click OK.
  5. Navigate to Properties > Global. On the right, double-click CN=Common.
  6. Scroll down, click to highlight pae-ClientCredentialCacheTimeout, and click Edit.
  7. Enter a value in minutes. 0 = no saving of credentials. -1 = no timeout. Click OK.

Biometric Authentication – iOS Touch ID, iOS Face ID, Fingerprints, Windows Hello

Biometric authentication, including Touch ID, Face ID, Fingerprints, and Windows Hello, is disabled by default. To enable: (source = Configure Biometric Authentication at VMware Docs)

  1. On the Horizon Connection Server, run ADSI Edit (adsiedit.msc).
  2. Right-click ADSI Edit and click Connect to…
  3. Change the first selection to Select or type a Distinguished Name and enter dc=vdi,dc=vmware,dc=int.
  4. Change the second selection to Select or type a domain or server and enter localhost. Click OK.
  5. Navigate to Properties > Global. On the right, double-click CN=Common.
  6. Find the attribute pae-ClientConfig and double-click it.
  7. Enter the line BioMetricsTimeout=-1, and click Add. Click OK. The change takes effect immediately.

Disallow Non-empty Pool Deletion

Configure Horizon to Disallow the Deletion of a Desktop Pool That Contains Desktop Machines at VMware Docs.

  1. On the Horizon Connection Server, run ADSI Edit.
  2. Right-click ADSI Edit and click Connect to…
  3. Change the first selection to Select or type a Distinguished Name and enter dc=vdi,dc=vmware,dc=int.
  4. Change the second selection to Select or type a domain or server and enter localhost. Click OK.
  5. Navigate to Properties > Global. On the right, double-click CN=Common.
  6. Find the attribute pae-NameValuePair, and double-click it.
  7. Enter the line cs-disableNonEmptyPoolDelete=1, and click Add. Click OK. The change takes effect immediately.

Load Balancing

See Carl Stalhood’s Horizon Load Balancing using Citrix ADC 12.1.

Remote Desktop Licensing

If you plan to build RDS Hosts, then install Remote Desktop Licensing somewhere. You can install it on your Horizon Connection Servers by following the procedure at https://www.carlstalhood.com/delivery-controller-1912-ltsr-and-licensing/#rdlicensing.

Antivirus

VMware Tech Zone Antivirus Considerations in a VMware Horizon Environment: exclusions for Horizon View, App Volumes, User Environment Manager, ThinApp

Help Desk Tool Timing Profiler

Run the following command to enable the timing profiler on each Connection Server instance to view logon segments in Help Desk tool.

vdmadmin -I -timingProfiler -enable

Related Pages

17 thoughts on “VMware Horizon Connection Server 2006”

  1. Hi Carl,
    I’m trying to upgrade the connection servers from 7.13 to 8 and I’m getting the following error :

    Product: VMware Horizon Connection Server — This installer can not upgrade over the existing Horizon connection server version. Please uninstall the existing version before attempting to install this version.

    Do you have any ideas ?

    Thanks,
    Emanuel

  2. Hi Carl,

    Sorry for asking something which may not related tl this page. For Citrix portal it is possible to launch the Citrix client/workspace(not HTML5) from the web portal, I would like to check if i could do the same on Horizon(without IDM)? Thanks.

    Rgd,
    Willis

  3. hi, in our environment the horizon server has an alternative “friendly name ” A-DNS Entry… everytime i want to access the adminpage from our friendly name – the login fails. only login via FQDN works. is there someting i¬īve missed?

  4. Love the work that you do. Keep it up and thank you!

    I’m currently running 7.12. Is it possible to build a new set of server running 2006 connected to the same vCenter?

    I don’t have a Dev environment so I wondered if this is possible if I don’t want to upgrade a “Working environment”

    So can I have 7.12 and 2006 connected to the same vCenter?

    Thanks

  5. Thank you for your reply. If older agent 7.8 can not connect to Horizon 8 connection server then whats your advice to upgrade Production environment where we have Windows 10 1809 7+ Images with 10+ Pools, 2 x connection servers (7.8), 2 x app vol 2.17, 1 x UEM 9.8 and 2 x UAG 3.5 to Horizon 8, Windows 1909 or 2004, App Vol 4.x, UAG 3.10 and DEM 10.0?

    Is fling app vol migration utility support migrating appstack from 2.17 to 4.x?

    Thank you.

    1. I think the Fling requires you to be on 2.18.

      You might have to upgrade to newer Horizon 7 before you can upgrade to Horizon 8.

      1. You mean from 7.8 –> 7.12 –> 8 ? Windows 10 1809 doesn’t support with Horizon 8 and Windows 10 1909 doesn’t support with Horizon 7.8. So thinking how to do the upgrade without disturbing users as its in production environment.

        Any ideas to upgrade the whole setup to latest releases?

        Thanks.

        1. Yes, upgrade Connection Servers to 7.12. Then rebuild your pools with Win10 1909 and Horizon Agent 7.12. Then you can upgrade everything to Horizon 8.

          1. Or If I go with New environment of VMware Horizon 8, App Vol 4.x, New Master Image of Windows 10 1909 or 2004 with all the latest agents and recreate all pools? Which one you think will be better way in terms of time, maintenance windows and any other issues?

            Also do you think I have to recreate 50+ appstacks fresh on App vol 4.x or fling can migrate without any issue.

            Thank you.

          2. Building a new environment is certainly cleaner. However, it’s probably a new DNS name, especially during testing. Cutovers are risky.

  6. Thank you Carls. I am using Horizon 7.8 with Windows 10 1809. I read Horizon 8 doesn’t suppport Windows 1809 and 7.8 doesn’t support 1909 in that case how to upgrade the prodcution environment.
    Also I use App vol 2.17 with 50+ Appstacks and 300+ writable and want to migrate to Appvol 4.X. What you recommend to upgrade from 2.17 –> 2.18–> 4.x and migrate the appstacks and writables. How to migrate appstacks to 4.x environment and is there any compatibility issue?

    Thank you.

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