VMware Identity Manager

Last Modified: Oct 1, 2018 @ 6:22 am


💡 = Recently Updated

Change Log


Identity Manager is a component of VMware Workspace ONE.

  • For Horizon, Identity Manager enables SAML authentication, web-based ThinApp, and integration of additional apps from Citrix and the web.
  • For full functionality, Identity Manager should be paired with AirWatch (not detailed in this post).

System and Network Configuration Requirements at VMware Docs.

VMware Tech Paper VMware Identity Manager in a Multiple-Data-Center Configuration: active/standby in two datacenters, three nodes in each datacenter, SQL AlwaysOn Availability Group Listener.

VMware Blog Post UX Updates Coming to the VMware Identity Manager 3.2 Admin Console:

  • Changes to Virtual Apps configuration
  • Changes to Network Range configuration

VMware Blog Post See What’s New in VMware Identity Manager 3.2:

  • Support for Open ID Connect
  • Role Based Access Control
  • Admin-defined Bookmarks
  • Admin control of Bookmarks and Catalog tabs

VMware Blog Post What’s New in the VMware Workspace ONE App:


From VMware 2151825 Upgrading from VMware Identity Manager 2.7.1 to VMware Identity Manager 3.0: When you upgrade directly from VMware Identity Manager to VMware Identity Manager 3.0, the upgrade will fail. To upgrade to 3.0, you must first upgrade to VMware Identity Manager 2.9.2.x.

Upgrading can be performed online, or offline. Both are performed from the command line. See Upgrading to VMware Identity Manager 3.3 (Linux) at VMware Docs for details. And see EUC CST Tech Notes – Upgrading VMware Identity Manager On-Premises Virtual Appliances – UPDATED! at VMware Communities.

You must upgrade to Identity Manager 3.2 before you can upgrade to 3.3. The update script will show you the newest version you can upgrade to.

Make sure the Horizon Service Account is a db_owner on the Identity Manager database. You can remove the permission after the upgrade.

After upgrading from 3.0 and older:

  1. In the admin console, go to CatalogVirtual Apps. This is a new feature in 3.1 and newer.
  2. On the top right, click Add Virtual Apps, and then click Horizon View On-Premises.
  3. If you see an introduction, then click Get Started.
  4. Select a connector, and then click Migrate Configurations.
  5. You can now manage the Horizon connections from Catalog > Virtual Apps.

See the Release Notes at VMware Docs for the list of new Workspace ONE features.


DNS Configuration

If you intend to build multiple appliances (3 or more) and load balance them, specify a unique DNS name for each appliance. The Load Balancing DNS name is different from the appliance DNS names. For example:

  • Appliance 1 = im01.corp.local
  • Appliance 2 = im02.corp.local
  • Appliance 3 = im03.corp.local
  • Load Balancing Name = identity.corp.com. This name is used both internally and externally.

You’ll need SSL certificates that match these names.

Each of these DNS names must have a corresponding reverse DNS pointer record.

  1. Create DNS records for the virtual appliances.
  2. Create reverse pointer records too. Reverse pointer records are required.

LDAP Accounts

  1. All accounts synced with Identity Manager must have First Name, Last Name, and E-mail Address configured. This includes the Bind account.
  2. Create a new Active Directory group for your Identity Manager users. The Domain Users group will not work.

SQL Database

If you want to build multiple Identity Manager appliances and load balance them, configure them with an external database (e.g. Microsoft SQL). Or you can follow Using embedded vPostgres in Production for VMware Workspace Portal VA 2.1 (2094258)

For a script that performs all required SQL configuration, see Configure a Microsoft SQL Database at VMware Docs.

  1. The SQL Server requires SQL Server and Windows Authentication mode.
  2. In SQL Management Studio, create a New Query.
  3. Copy the SQL commands from VMware Docs and paste them into the New Query window.
    1. For Windows Authentication, copy the commands from Configure the Microsoft SQL Database with Windows Authentication Mode.
    2. For SQL Authentication, copy the commands from Configure Microsoft SQL Database Using Local SQL Server Authentication Mode.
    3. Change the values in the brackets.
    4. According to Rob Beekmans at Deploying VMware Workspace One 3.x – database setup, mandatory or changeable parameters?, in Identity Manager 3.0 and newer, you can change any of the parameters, except that the database schema (but not database name) must be saas.
  4. Then click Execute.

OVF Deployment

  1. Download the Identity Manager SVA OVA file.  💡
  2. In the vSphere Web Client, right-click a cluster, and click Deploy OVF Template.

    • If your vCenter is 6.5 Update 2 or newer, then you can use the newer HTML5 vSphere Client. Otherwise, use the older Flash vSphere Web Client.
  3. In the Select source page, browse to the identity-manager- file, and click Next.

  4. In the Select name and location page, enter a name for the VM, and click Next. For clustering, you will eventually need three appliances.
  5. In the Select a resource page, select a cluster, and click Next.
  6. In the Review details page, click Next.
  7. In the Accept License Agreements page, click Accept, and then click Next.
  8. In the Select storage page, select Thin Provision, select a datastore, and click Next.
  9. In the Select networks page, select the network for the appliance. You can deploy it either internally, or in the DMZ. If in the DMZ, you can later install Identity Manager Connectors in the internal network in outbound only mode. Click Next.
  10. In the Customize template page:
    1. Make a choice regarding Customer Experience Improvement Program.
    2. Select a time zone.
    3. Expand Networking Properties if it’s not already expanded.
    4. The Networking Properties are displayed in a different order depending on which vSphere Web Client you’re using.
    5. Host Name – Enter a hostname for the first appliance.
      • If you intend to build multiple appliances and load balance them, then each appliance needs a unique name that does not match the load balanced name. If you only want to build one appliance, then the appliance Host Name should match whatever users will use to access Identity Manager.
    6. DNS and Gateway – In the Networking Properties section, enter the standard DNS and Gateway information.
    7. According to Install the VMware Identity Manager OVA File at VMware Docs, the Domain Name and Domain Search Path fields are not used.
    8. IP Address – Enter the IP address that is configured in DNS for the host name. DNS reverse lookup for this IP address must resolve to the appliance Host Name.

  11. Click Next.
  12. In the Ready to complete page, click Finish.

Setup Wizard

  1. Power on the appliance.
  2. Wait for the appliance to power on and fully boot.
  3. Go to https://im01.corp.local to access the Identity Manager Setup Wizard. Note: you must connect to the DNS name. Connecting to the IP address will cause problems during the database setup process.
  4. The browser might prevent you from connecting.
  5. To fix this:
    1. Go to https://IPAddress/horizon_workspace_rootca.pem. You are only using the IP address temporarily.
    2. Copy the root certificate and save it to a file.

    3. Install the root certificate to the Trusted Root Certification Authorities store (either Current User or Local Computer will work).

    4. Close the browser and reopen it. Then connect the browser using the DNS name again. It should work without certificate errors this time.
  6. In the Get Started page, click Continue.
  7. In the Set Passwords page, enter passwords for the three accounts, and click Continue.

  8. In the Select Database page, change it to External Database. Note: this page will only function properly if your address bar has a DNS name instead of an IP address.
  9. For SQL authentication, enter a JDBC URL similar to the following, enter the credentials for the horizon SQL account, and click Test Connection.

    1. For Windows authentication, enter a JDBC URL similar to the following, enter credentials for the horizon Windows service account, and click Test Connection.

  10. The top of the screen should say Connection test successful.
  11. Then click Continue.

  12. In the Setup Review page, click the link to log in to the administration console.

SSH – Enable Root Access

This is optional. Enabling root access lets you use WinSCP to connect to the appliance using root credentials. Instructions can be found at https://blogs.vmware.com/horizontech/2013/03/how-to-enable-ssh-in-horizon-workspace-virtual-appliances.html.

  1. Putty to the Identity Manager appliance.
  2. Login as sshuser.
  3. Run su and enter the root password.
  4. Run vi /etc/ssh/sshd_config.
  5. Scroll down to line 40 (PermitRootLogin).
  6. Press <i> on the keyboard to change to insert mode.
  7. Go to the end of the line and change no to yes.
  8. Press <ESC> to exit insert mode.
  9. Type :x to save the file and exit.
  10. Run /etc/rc.d/sshd restart.


  1. Login to the webpage as the admin user in the System Domain.
  2. Note: if you mis-configure Access Policies and lock yourself out of the main Identity Manager logon page, then add /SAAS/login/0 to the end of the URL (e.g. https://identity.corp.com/SAAS/login/0) to login directly to the System Domain.
  3. You should be on the Identity & Access Management tab.
  4. On the top right, switch to the Setup view.
  5. On the left, switch to the User Attributes sub-tab.
  6. Scroll down. Check the boxes next to distinguishedName and userPrincipalName.
  7. In the Add other attributes to use section, click the plus icon.
  8. Enter objectGUID, and then click Save. This is needed for Office 365 integration.
  9. On the top right, switch to the Manage view.
  10. Click Add DirectoryAdd Active Directory over LDAP/IWA.
  11. Change it to Active Directory (integrated Windows Authentication).
  12. Enter the Active Directory domain DNS name.
  13. Scroll down.
  14. Enter credentials that can join the appliance to the domain.
  15. Enter the LDAP Bind credentials. Click Save & Next.
  16. Select the domains you want to sync, and click Next.
  17. In the Map User Attributes page, click Next.
  18. In the Select the Groups page, click the plus icon to add a DN.
  19. Enter a Base DN in LDAP format, and click Find Groups.
  20. Click Select.
  21. Search for your Identity Users group and select it. Don’t select Domain Users. It won’t work.
  22. Click Next.
  23. In the Select the Users page, click Next.
  24. In the Review page, click Edit.
  25. Select a more frequent sync schedule, and click Save.
  26. Click Sync Directory.

  27. You can click the link to view the Sync log.
  28. You can also click the directory name, and then click Sync log to view the log.

  29. Sync Settings can be changed by clicking the button on the right.

Logon Experience

  1. Go to Identity & Access Management > Setup > Preferences.
  2. On the bottom, Identity Manager 2.9.1 and newer lets you optionally hide the Domain Drop-Down menu. Then select the unique identifier that Identity Manager will use to find the user’s domain (typically UPN). Identity Manager 3.3 and newer can show a Domain Drop-Down if a unique domain cannot be identified.
  3. The user will be prompted to enter the unique identifier.


Identity Manager 3.2 and newer:

  1. Go to the Roles tab.
  2. You can add a Role. See VMware Blog Post Introducing Role-Based Access Control (RBAC) in VMware Identity Manager 3.2.
  3. Select an existing role (e.g. Super Admin), and click Assign.
  4. Search for the user that you want to assign the role to, and then click Save.

Identity Manager 3.1 and older:

  1. You can promote individual users (but not groups) to administrators. In the Admin console, on the top left, click the Users & Groups tab.
  2. Switch to the Users sub-tab.
  3. Click a username. Note: you might not see users until a group is assigned to a resource (e.g. Horizon Pool).
  4. Scroll down.
  5. In Identity Manager 3.1 and older, you can change the Role drop-down to Administrator. Click Save.


  1. On the Appliance Settings tab, on the left, click License.
  2. On the right, enter the license key, and click Save. A Horizon Advanced or Horizon Enterprise license key will work.


  1. Use OpenSSL or similar to create the certificate in PEM format. If you have a .pfx, you can use OpenSSL to convert from pkcs12 to PEM. Also use OpenSSL to convert the private key to RSA format.
  2. On the top, click the Appliance Settings tab,
  3. On the left, click the VA Configuration node.
  4. On the right, click Manage Configuration.
  5. Login as your admin account.
  6. On the left, click Install SSL Certificates.
  7. On the right, delete the certificate and key that are currently displayed.
  8. Paste in the new PEM certificate and RSA private key. Paste every certificate in the chain: server + intermediate + root. Click Save.
  9. Click OK to restart the appliance.
  10. After rebooting, if you close the browser and reopen it, the certificate should be valid and trusted.


  1. On the top, click the Appliance Settings tab
  2. On the left, click the SMTP node.
  3. On the right, enter your mail server information, and click Save.

Kerberos Authentication

  1. On the top, go to the Identity & Access Management tab.
  2. On the right, change to the Setup view.
  3. On the left, click the Connectors sub-tab.
  4. Click the blue hostname link for the Connector.
  5. Switch to the Auth Adapters tab. You may enable Kerberos or other authentication adapters from this page by clicking the Adapter Name.
  6. Kerberos lets users Single Sign-on to the Identity Manager web page. It only works for Windows clients. And the Identity Manager FQDN must be in Internet Explorer’s Local Intranet zone.
  7. Enter sAMAccountName as the Directory UID Attribute.
  8. Check the box next to Enable Windows Authentication, and click Save.
  9. After enabling the adapter, in Identity Manager 3.2 and newer, go to Identity & Access Management > Manage > Policies and click Network Ranges.

    1. In Identity Manager 3.1 and older, go to Identity & Access Management > Setup > Network Ranges.
  10. Add a Network Range for internal networks if you haven’t already.
  11. Go to Identity & Access Management > Manage > Policies.
  12. In Identity Manager 3.2 and newer, click Edit Default Policy.

    1. In Identity Manager 3.1 and older, click the link for default_access_policy_set.
  13. In Identity Manager 3.2 and newer, click Next to go to the Configuration page.
  14. Click Add Policy Rule. Or Click the plus icon to add a Policy Rule.

  15. Select the Network Range you just created.
  16. For user is trying to access content from, set it to Web Browser.
  17. Identity Manager 2.9.1 adds a Edit Groups button to policy rules. This allows different authentication methods for different groups. When enabled, Identity Manager asks the user for username only, and then looks up group membership to determine which authentication methods should be used. See Configuring Access Policy Settings at VMware Docs.
  18. Select Kerberos as the first authentication method.
  19. Select Password as the second authentication method. Click Save or OK.

  20. Drag the new Policy Rule to move it to the top. Then click Next and Save.

Customize Appearance

  1. If you go to Identity & Access Management > Setup > Custom Branding, on the Names & Logos tab you can change the browser’s title and favicon.
  2. If you then switch to the Sign-In Screen page, you can upload a logo, upload an image, and change colors.
  3. If you go to Identity & Access Management > Manage > Password Recovery Assistant, you can configure a link to a password recovery tool, or change the Forgot password message.
  4. If you scroll down you can optionally Show detailed message to End User when authentication fails.
  5. Click Catalog, and then click Settings.
  6. On the left, click User Portal Branding.
  7. Make changes to Logos, colors, etc.

Load Balancing

Identity Manager can be cloned, clustered, load balanced, and globally load balanced as shown below.

To clone multiple Identity Manager appliances and load balance them, see one of the following:

Note: TLS 1.0 is disabled in Identity Manager 2.6 and newer. If your load balancer does not support TLS 1.2, then see 2144805 Enabling TLS 1.0 protocol in VMware Identity Manager 2.6.

  • NetScaler MPX/SDX added TLS 1.2 on the back end in 10.5 build 58.
  • NetScaler VPX added TLS 1.2 on the back end in 11.0 build 65.


View Administrator – Enable SAML Authentication

  1. Login to View Administrator.
  2. On the left, under View Configuration, click Servers.
  3. On the right, switch to the Connection Servers tab.
  4. Select a Connection Server, and click Edit.
  5. On the Authentication tab, change Delegation of authentication to VMware Horizon to Allowed.
  6. Click Manage SAML Authenticators.
  7. Click Add.
  8. In the Label field, enter a descriptive label.
  9. In the Metadata URL field, enter the Identity Manager FQDN.
  10. In the Administration URL field, enter the Identity Manager FQDN, and click OK.
  11. If you see a certificate error, click View Certificate, and then click Accept.
  12. Or click OK if server’s identity was verified.
  13. Click OK to close the Manage SAML Authenticators window.
  14. Horizon 7.2 adds a Workspace ONE mode, which forces all Horizon Clients to connect through Identity Manager instead of directly to the Connection Servers. Delegation must be set to Required before Workspace ONE mode can be enabled.
  15. The Horizon Administrator dashboard shows you the status of the SAML Authenticator.

Identity Manager – Connect to Horizon View

If your Identity Manager is version 3.0 or older, skip ahead to the instructions for 3.0 and older.

Horizon Connection instructions for Identity Manager 3.1 and newer:

  1. In the Identity Manager Admin Portal, click the Catalog tab, and then click Virtual Apps.
  2. On the top right, click Virtual App Configuration.
  3. If you see Introducing Virtual Apps Collection page, click Get Started.
  4. On the top right, click Add Virtual Apps, and then click Horizon View On-Premises.
  5. In the Horizon View On-Premises page, configure the following:
    1. Give the Horizon Connection a name.
    2. Choose a Sync Connector appliance.
    3. Enter the FQDN of a Connection Server in the Pod.
    4. Enter Horizon View admin credentials in UPN format. The account needs at least Read Only Administrator access to Horizon.
    5. Scroll down.
    6. Notice the link to Add Horizon Pod. This is for Could Pod Architecture.
    7. Check the box next to Perform Directory Sync.
    8. Change the Sync Frequency as desired.
    9. Activation Policy can be Automatic or User-Activated. User-Activated means users have to go to the App Center to add the icons to the My Apps portal.
    10. Click Save when done.
  6. After the Horizon connection is added, on the right side of the screen, click Sync.
    • Note: whenever you make a change to the pools in View Administrator, you must either wait for the next automatic Sync time, or you can return to this screen and click Sync Now.
  7. In the Calculating Sync Actions page, click Save.
  8. Click the blue Refresh link until the sync is completed.
  9. If you go to Catalog > Virtual Apps, you will see your synced Application and Desktop pools.
  10. Skip ahead to the Horizon Pools Catalog section.

Identity Manager 3.0 and older

Horizon Connection Instructions for Identity Manager 3.0 and older:

  1. In the Identity Manager Admin Portal, click the Catalog tab, and then click Application Catalog.
  2. Click Manage Desktop Applications, and then click Horizon View On-Premises.
  3. Click one of the connectors.
  4. Check the box next to Enable Horizon View Applications and Desktops.
  5. Enter the address of a Horizon Connection Server (or load balanced FQDN). Note: reverse IP lookup must be functional for this DNS name.
  6. Enter View Administrator credentials in userPrincipalName format. The account needs at least Read Only Administrator access to Horizon.
  7. Notice the link to Add Horizon Pod. This is for Could Pod Architecture.
  8. Deployment Type can be Automatic or User-Activated. User-Activated means users have to go to the App Center to add the icons to the My Apps portal.
  9. Specify the Viewpool sync frequency, and click Save. New pools created in Horizon Administrator don’t show up in Identity Manager until a sync is performed.
  10. Near the top of the screen you might see red text. Click Invalid SSL Cert.
  11. In the Certificate Information page, click Accept.
  12. Near the bottom of the page click Sync Now. Note: whenever you make a change to the pools in View Administrator, you must either wait for the next automatic Sync time, or you can return to this screen and click Sync Now.
  13. If sync fails, see VMware 2091744 Synchronizing VMware Horizon View Pool in Workspace Portal fails with the error: Failed to complete View sync due to a problem with the View Connection Server.
  14. Then click Save and Continue. Note: whatever groups are entitled to Horizon Pools and Applications must also be synced (Active Directory) with Identity Manager.

Horizon Pools Catalog

  1. In the Identity Manager Admin console, on the Catalog tab, you can see the Horizon View icons. Only the pools in the root Access Group are synced.
  2. Click an icon and make sure entitlements are listed. Only AD groups synced to Identity Manager will be displayed. Domain Users won’t sync to Identity Manager, so entitle the pools to some other AD group. If you make changes in Horizon Administrator, then manually resync the connector.
  3. If you check the box next to one of the icons, you can place the icon in a Category by clicking the Categories button near the top right and entering a category name.
  4. Identity Management 3.1 adds a Recommended category.

  5. If an existing category doesn’t match your needs, enter a new category name, and click Add.
  6. Then check the box next to the new category.
  7. The category is then displayed next to the catalog item.
  8. In Identity Manager 3.2 and newer, go to Catalog > Settings.
  9. On the left, click User Portal Configuration.
  10. From this screen, you can control tab visibility, and put recommended apps in the Bookmarks tab. Click Save when done.

Separate Horizon View Connection Server groups (e.g. multi-datacenter) can be configured in failover order. See Configure Failover Order of Horizon View and Citrix-based Resources at VMware Docs.

Identity Manager – Horizon URLs

The URL used to launch a Horizon icon from Identity Manager can be different for each Network Range. For internal users, the URL should point to the load balanced VIP for the Connection Servers. For external users, the URL should point to load balanced Unified Access Gateways.

  1. In the Identity Manager administrator interface, go to Identity & Access Management > Policies sub-tab > Network Ranges.

    • Before 3.2, this was located under Identity & Access Management > Setup view > Network Ranges.
  2. You can edit the default ALL RANGES, or add a new Network Range.

  3. In Identity Manager 3.1 and older, you can specify the Horizon URL for the IP range from here. You can have different Horizon Client Access URLs for different IP ranges (e.g. internal vs external). For external users, the URL points to Access Points or Horizon Security Servers.

  4. In Identity Manager 3.2 and newer, after creating the Network Ranges, go to Catalog > Virtual Apps.
  5. On the top right, click Virtual App Settings.
  6. Click a Network Range.
  7. In the Client Access URL Host field, enter the FQDN that resolves to the internal Connection Server load balancer, or the external Unified Access Gateway load balancer. Then click Finish.

Identity Manager User Portal

  1. When a user logs in to the Identity Manager web page the pool icons will be displayed.
  2. You can use either Horizon client or Browser for opening a pool. On the top right, click your name, and click Settings.
  3. On the left, click Preferences.
  4. Make your choice and click Save.
  5. To mark an icon as a Bookmark, click the bookmark icon next to each app.
  6. Or click an app icon to open the app’s Description page, and then click Bookmark.
  7. Then you can click Bookmarks tab to display only icons that are marked as Bookmarks.
  8. If you enabled categories, they are listed in the left side of the page. Only the icons in that category are displayed.

97 thoughts on “VMware Identity Manager”

  1. Hi, I have TrueSSO implemented, but when testing it is working as required when testing internally. From external, it is not prompting, but the VDI session is asking for credentials. What am I missing to check. I have enabled the TrueSSO option in vIDM.

  2. Hello Carl, I am upgrade IDM from 3.2 to 3.3. found the License is missing. I try to re-add the License, but it show “License could not be saved”.
    The license show valid
    “Product ID: VMware Workspace
    Expiry Date: Permanent
    Quantity: 100”
    But Cannot saved.

    Try New Install, same problems. Please help!!!!

  3. Hello! Thank you!

    Could you please help me?

    I had this error..

    “You are no entitled to use the system”

    But, directly access on the Horizon Client or the Web Client is works. Through Identity Manager ocours this error.

    Thank you buddy!

    1. I am having this problem as well. I noticed that if I entitle the user directly in the connection server it works. But if I use a group it doesn’t.

  4. Carl
    First off- Thanks for all of your great articles!! I’ve found them very helpful in my journeys

    I’ve manged to get Identity manger configured and working. However, I have a strange issue. When I try to login from outside of the network (DMZ) the Work space one login page looks funny (Missing background, mostly plain test with the company logo) However, after I login one time this is no longer the issue and the web page loads correctly. It will stay this way until the browser cache, cookies, etc. are cleared. Then back to the strange login page until first login.
    We are using a UAG connected to a Horizon Connection server and the reverse proky has been set to Identity manger.
    Have you seen this behavior before? It happens in all web browsers.

      1. Thanks for the reply Richard. I’ve got the “Proxy Pattern” set to (/|/SAAS(.*)|/hc(.*)|/web(.*)|/catalog-portal(.*)) in the reverse proxy setting for vIDM.
        The proxy patter for the Horizon connection settings is (/view-client(.*)|/portal(.*)|/appblast(.*))
        the “/” was removed from the Connection server proxy to the user is always directed to vIDM.

      2. I forgot to mention. I fixed the issues with logging in. Only issue is the web page loading incorrectly until first log in. after first login it loads fine every time after. Unless the browser cache is cleared.

  5. Hi Carl,

    We have IDM set up in our DMZ along with UAGs. Externally the URL supplied by IDM sends connections to our load balanced UAGs. When our users authenticate to IDM and click the icon to start the Horizon desktop we find that the user is prompted a second time for user credentials by the Horizon client itself.

    So although I have authenticated into IDM this authentication does not seem to pass through to the connection that is initiated through the Blast gateway after clicking the IDM icon.

    We have no problems connecting directly internally, only when trying to connect via UAGs. What have I missed here? Does Workspace ONE mode have to be enabled to get this functionality (it is switched off at present) or is there something else I have missed that needs to be configured e.g. TrueSSO, Kerberos?

    1. What is the IdP for IDM? Is it a separate SAML IdP, like ADFS? If so, then you need True SSO.

      I assume SAML is configured between IDM and the Connection Servers.

  6. Can someone clarify how Identity Manager in combination with AirWatch supports multi tenacy?

    I have linked our AirWatch environment with Identity Manager. I let users synchronize with AirWatch in Identity Manager. In the Identity manager I have not configured an AD connection; what is not necessary. (Right?)

    ((I can also log in with Active Directory users and authentication to Active Directory through AirWatch.)) So this works well in the test setup.

    Our organization consists of several internal divisions. What are separate ‘Customer’ groups with us in AirWatch. Each division also has its own AD, and another domain.
    We make full use of the multi tenacy possibilities of AirWatch. (multiple AD connectors, APNS, etc.)

    Question is. In what way is Identity Manager multi tenacy? For example, I can only configure settings for identity authentication methods at ‘global’ level in Identity Manager. For example the ‘Password (AirWatch Connector)’. Because I have several ‘Customer’ groups, I would also have to be able to set different configurations here. What are the possibilities for setting this up?

    I find out that I think that many parameters can only be setup at ‘global’. Do I need to install Identity Manager multiple times? And is this possible on the same server?

    Thanks in advance!

  7. Hello Carl, I am running into an issue with my RDSH applications. Some of our applications are wrapped via a CMD. In Horizon the app icon shows as CMD instead of the app itself. Using powershell we are able to re-associate the app icon with the app instead of the CMD icon and I am told this should pass through to vIDM but this is not occuring. Any thoughts on this?

  8. Hi Carl,

    I have VIDM and Horizon deployed and in working condition. Published app is only Desktop pool. I want to publish RDSH apps in vIDM without horiozn. Is it possible to do so? if yes then please do let me know how.

  9. I want access to VIDM from the external network via UAG and reverse proxy configuration.

    In UAG I have the following configuration:

    Instance ID: VIDM
    Proxy destination URL: https://vidm-01.domain.com (local Identity manager address)
    Thumbprint: SSL certificate thumbprint
    Proxy Pattern: (/|/SAAS(.*)|/SAAS/auth/wsfed/active/logon|/hc(.*)|/web(.*)|/catalog-portal(.*))

    The external address that points to UAG is https://idm.domain.com

    When I go to https://idm.domain.com, a Workspace portal opens.

    I have the problem, when user login, UAG redirect me to internal Identity manager url: https://vidm-01.domain.com. The login for System domain works corretly, problem is only for users with Windows domain.

    What needs to be set up to make the user login from external network?

    1. your VIDM workspace url needs to match what the user is connecting to. as your external url is “idm.domain.com” then you need to configure vidm to respond with the same url by going to https://vidm-01.domain.com:8443/cfg/workspaceUrl and setting it to “https://idm.domain.com” and then update the UAG to point to “https://idm.domain.com”.

  10. Hi Carl,
    I am new to Horizon IDM and I have a question; How would I disable external (internet) network admin login access? (local directory)
    I have tried a few variations with creating Access Policies, that eventually locked me out and I had to re-deploy the OVA and reconfigure. Forgive my ignorance, as I stated, new to this device. Thank you for any assistance.

  11. HI Carl,

    Thanks for the helpful details on IDM, Could you please give a guidance on true SSO configuration on IDM 3.0. Which im stuck at the momment.


  12. Hello,

    Your material is very good, but I have a question, I am implementing a solution that has, 3 Identity manager that is balanced by NSX, I have a Connection Server and I have 2 UAG that are balanced by NSX. My question is, to publish this solution you must have a single public IP or two IP, I’m having a problem when opening applications from the internet, I have an error trying to communicate with horizon and I’m only using a single public IP.

    Thank you

  13. Hi Carl,

    i have a case where I need to make sure that the a user is allowed to access the VDI environment from only a company assigned desktop or a laptop irrespective of the group policies configured from him. is there any component in Horizon which can control this, i have been told that unified access gateway appliance can be integrated with radius or a CA authority and regulate this, can you please guide me further on this

  14. I would like External and Internal users access VDI and RDSH Published apps – All users MUST login via TFA -VMID via VMware Verify.

    UAG replaces the security server with new features and functions.

    VMID – is the portal access with TFA – VMware Verify.

    Is this possible?

    What would the network topology look like?

    1. v1sper, We literally have been struggling with this for about 3 weeks now with IDM Version 3.1, and I finally just re-deployed the IDM from scratch. We deleted the appliance, database, external connector, and was finally able to get it to cluster with the latest version, 3.2 of Identity Manager. We had a case open with VMware Support, and have sent logs, spent hours online with support, tried numerous things, but a re-deploy ended up fixing the issue for us.

  15. Hi Carl

    I plan to deploy vIDM , Horizon and Airwatch in the on premise environment.

    Airwatch need to connect AD by using ACC (new name :VMware Enterprise Systems Connector) ,

    For vIDM, do we need to connect AD directly or need to use VMware Enterprise Systems Connector?

    do you have Airwatch&vIDM integration guide ?

    Appreciate for your help

  16. Hi Carl,
    This is a great to understand the Identity Manager here.
    And I have some question want to ask since there are no much information I can find from VMware doc.
    I deployed vIDM on premises in DMZ and integrated it with airwatch by ACC.

    For configure android sso the document said need inbound TCP 5262 to vIDM ,
    so I do a port forward on my router to vIDM.
    buy I cannot find port 5262 is listening on vIDM , so I cannot perform the android SSO (but i am success on iOS)
    will you have any idea?

  17. Hi Carl, great article!
    We are trying to implement the following:
    We have iGel Thin Clients with Windows installed and Internet Explorer/Chrome.
    Users need to authenticate with their AD account on the Thin Client, in the Thin Client the user goes to the vIDM Portal and needs to sign in again there.
    What we like to have is that the user logs onto the Thin Client and after that, using SSO to log into the Portal. We hear from VMware that that is not possible….
    Reading through your document I think it is possible or am I reading it wrong? We have setup Kerberos Authentication…


    1. What’s not working?

      Since iDM doesn’t receive the user’s password, I suspect you’ll need to implement Horizon True SSO.

      1. When a users log’s into the thin client / vdi (for test) / fat client, the user wants to (in the internal network), SSO to the IDM Portal, logging into the thin client / vdi / fat client requires to authenticate with AD username/password, and for the portal again, so the user needs to login twice. What we want is that the user logs into the thin client, and when going to the IDM portal, already being logged in.

      2. Hi Carl, I have setup my lab environment, there it is running fine…. I think it has to do with the certificate or something…

        1. Hi Carl, how are you?
          We have it almost working, but we are facing a specific “thing”, we have multiple domains in 1 connector, what we want is SSO, but that does not work, it keeps asking for the User Principal Name, after that it logs on with the password. What we want it logs entirely with sso to the portal.
          My idea is to create a connector per domain. Or is there maybe an other way, like registry setting or something (to remeber/push the setting, remember my setting on the login page) setting that option (remember my setting) then it keeps working as we want…

  18. Hi Carl !!
    Thanks for your dedication when doing this tutorials !!
    Do you know if I can use Azure AD integrated with Identity Manager ?

  19. Hi Carl, and thanks for this excellent post! I have some questions about the Directory setup:

    I’m trying to set up my Directory with Active Directory with Integrated Windows Authentication (IWA), but I get an error where on the appliance webpage it says “Request timed out”, whilst the connector.log logfile outputs something similar to “Cannot promote user to Administrator” followed by “User not found”. I think it’s the Bind User that’s the problem, but I can’t find any good documentation on which permissions this user needs in AD. Note that Active Directory over LDAP works just fine, it’s just IWA I can’t get working.

    Any tips? Thanks!

  20. Figured I’d give this a shot before opening a case. In the process of standing up an On-Prem AirWatch 9.1.3, IdM 2.9.1 environment. So far got everything deployed and got the integration between IdM and View (7.0.3 I believe). It appears most of my entitlements synced up, however I’m seeing something weird. Hopefully, you (or someone) has seen it and can save me the headache of support…

    All the pools sync, there is one particular pool (possibly more, but this one affects me so I noticed it), that in the View Admin console has 8 users entitled to it. When it syncs with IdM, it now has 5 users entitled to it. in the IdM Catalog One of the users is a generic user and is missing a required attribute, and they won’t be accessing IdM anyway, so that one I don’t care about. However the other two missing users are my domain account and my co-worker’s domain account. These are just typical domain accounts, that have been successfully synced to the IdM user directory (via AirWatch). The one thing that I notice is that the two of us have accounts in our parent domain (also synced, the user accounts appear in IdM with their respecive domain attribute) with the same “username”.

    So for example, I’ve got domainA\userY and domainB\userY

    My View pool has domainB\userY entitled to it. IdM contains users for userY in domainA_FQDN and domainB_FQDN.in it’s User repository. Am I missing something to “help” IdM associate the correct “userY” with my View Pool?

    Be happy to explain more if needed. I’m stumped.

    Thanks for any help you, or anyone else, can provide.


  21. Hi Carl,

    Maybe you or some other reader also encountered the following;

    We have a case in which have a new separated Horizon Pod for Win10, and an ‘old’ pod for Win7.

    The pod for Win10 is just upgraded to 7.2, and this pod works as expected, desktops are running through client and browser (blast). but when using this desktops through Identity Manager (2.9.2) the desktop is only to be opened through the client, when opening it from IM in the browser it shows a ‘page can’t be found.

    the pod for win7 with horizon 6.2 though is able to be used from the connection servers, client and browser and through the same identity manager without a problem.

    might there be an issue with IDM2.9.2 Horizon7.2? Or is there a setting i missed?
    we had a working situation with IDM 2.9.1 Horizon 7.1.

    SAML authentication is set to allowed and is enabled.

    Thanks in advance for thinking with me, regards

      1. yes, also the horizon7.2 pod is using UAG(2.9.0). with the external url to this gateway, using without IM it is working perfectly, with client and through browser.

        the IM is not connected through UAG, but don’t expect this should give issues like this?

  22. Hi Carl,
    Could you help me with configuration vIDM?
    I try to configure SSO for Mobile Devices and Laptops and integrate this with AirWatch.
    Main idea it’s Kerberos authentification through Workspace Portal on laptops when it in intranet also through managed Workspace ONE app with AirWatch Profile at other Native and Web apps on iOS, Android and Windows Phone platforms from Internet.
    I done step-by-step yours instalation guide, thank you for your great job, but I have some problem. When I change Identity manager FQDN to load-balancer name Kerberos stopted worked, but I can authentificate with my domain credential trougth login form. If I change IdP Hostname in Identity and Access Managment -> Identity Providers -> WorkspaceIDP_​_​1 from public (load-balanced) name to local domain name, Kerberos start working again but I can’t authentithicate from internet.

  23. hi carl,
    i want to download vmware identity manager 2.4.1 . pls help me..i could not download from vmware. and i dont find any other download link from any resource.

  24. Hi Carl, great article. to start with. I am trying vidm in lab followed this doc.
    connection server url – https://consrv-01.domain.local, vidm fqdn – https://sso.domain.local

    what i am seeing is user acess https://sso.domain.local and login. When try to launch any view application (html access) it redirects me to connection server url to launch the application.

    Is this the way its supposed to work or i am missing something. if user connects from internet how should the connection server be exposed in internet.

    1. Identity Manager is nothing more than a portal that authenticates users and displays your icons.

      When connecting remotely, the PCoIP or Blast connection needs to be proxied through another machine. Identity Manager does not perform this proxy function. Instead, you need Security Server or Access Point to handle those connections.

      1. Hi carl,
        Thanks for the replay, Say I have a access point configured for my connection server at url access.domain.local.
        while configuring VIDM where should I mention the accesspoint URL so that applications are launched through access point URL instead of connection server.

        1. Network Range. After you integrate View with Identity Manager, go to Identity & Access Management > Setup > Network Ranges, add/edit, and there’s a Client Access URL Host.

  25. Hi Carl,
    Excellent article. vIDM 2.8 in my installation is not stable – CPU spikes up to 100% and crashes after few minutes. Have you seen CPU spiking issue in your installation? Any idea how to fix it

    1. Everyone experiencing this issue using SQL? I’m still utilizing the internal Postgres DB replicated across 3 nodes and haven’t seen this issue.

      1. Chad, using the internal Postgres DB here and having the issue. It seems to not occur until after setting the load balancer FQDN, but that’s pure speculation.

  26. Hi Carl,
    to install the second vIDM node, did you just clone the first one ? Is there anything else needed from SQL side, or the second vIDM appliance will point to the same SQL database and get same configuration ?

    I´m planning to install a couple of vIDM appliances and I have that doubt, if just a simple external SQL database is enough or has to be Always on technology or something like that.

    Thank you.

    1. You generally want HA for SQL too. But yes, simply clone and it connects to same SQL. Note, VMware wants you to have three appliances for HA. And IDM 2.8 is available now.

  27. Hi Carl,

    I have an issue with the Authentication with vIDM and Kerberos, I have RDSH App and i tried to connect from the vIDM but the SSO not worked , it is only worked from the user machine till the vIDM but when i try to access the RDSH App it is asking for authentication:

    My environment is:

    2 vIDM (HA)
    2 Access Point (HA)
    2 Connection Server (HA)
    2 RDS Servers
    load balance for Access Point

        1. Kerberos uses tickets for authentication, not passwords. When vIDM talks to Horizon, it needs to send the user’s password to Connection Server so Connection Server can do SSON to the Horizon Agent. Since there’s no password, it’s not possible to do SSON.

          Alternatively, if there’s no password, Connection Server can create a user certificate (TrueSSO), and use that for authentication to the Horizon Agent. TrueSSO is another server.

      1. Hi Carl, could you please how can i use CS LB in the vIDM and how can the user not distributive when one of the CS go down.

  28. Love your blog, it has proved a most helpful tool, hoping you might be able to help with an issue:-) I’m using vIDM 2.7.1 and Access Point 2.7.2 as a reverse proxy for vIDM. When I try and access the URL from the outside and login I get a spinning circle and if you hit refresh it logs in but is pretty much unusable. It seems like the documented proxypatterns and unsecuredpatterns are missing needed information or are missing needed data. Have you come across this issue? Thanks

  29. Great Article!

    With the Access Point, is there anything special needed to get it to work correctly? I deployed it and can get to the login page but then it redirects me back to the internal name of my Identity Manager. I’m guessing it’s because the FQDN isn’t correct but when i try to change it, I get an error that it won’t change it on the manager and idp. Thoughts?

    1. Are you using the special 2.6 version that doesn’t work with Horizon? There are separate instructions for Identity Manager on Access Point.

      1. Hi Carl, I´m using 2.6 version on-premise with Horizon 7 (connection server + Access Point) + AppVolumes 2.9. On View all works fine but with IDM user domain login not is possible.

        Thank you.

  30. Carl Please note that we should not pre-popluate the data base information. We also should not have to give the appliance DB_OWNER role as this has caused issue as well on the database side with the appliance. We should always use the provided script as it builds everything required out the gate and sets the correct permissions. (very common issue is not using this and or wanting to change the database name and or user)

    We do know of the using as you note of the IP address will not allow the configuration to proceed

    Unable to complete the configuration of VMware Identity Manager appliance
    Configuration of Identity Manager fails with error:
    Invalid organization name. Chosen name (null) includes invalid characters.
    This issue occurs when the appliance is accessed with an IP address in the URL instead of FQDN

    We also note that any change to the Certificate and or FQDN will require a re-enable of the WORKSPACE ONE interface. Otherwise we will not be able to login.

    After enabling the Workspace ONE GUI interface, and then changing the FQDN and or Certificate of the appliance, and then attempting to log back in to VMware Identity Manager error message “Request Failed” “Please Contact your IT Administrator” message
    Log into the VMware Identity Manager htps://FQDN , choose the local users option and login as the “admin” account and password. Once logged in then navigate to the Catalog, Settings, New End User Portal UI tab.
    Select the “Enable New Portal UI” option

    Please also note that if you already have a Load balancer and or reverse proxy in place you do not gain anything by using them with your load balancer other than pain suffering and nightmares. With the load balancer already doing SSL termination already there is not direct access back to vIDM. Access Point was thought of for vIDM as an alternative if you did not have a LB or Reverse proxy already in place.

    1. Hi Robert,

      Thanks for your observations. I made some changes to the SQL and Load Balancing FQDN sections. Let me know if you notice anything else that needs to be corrected.

  31. Hi Carl, great writeup, i’m hitting problems with FQDN and a local domain name of.local. We have a wildcard for our external services say example.com and an internal name of example.local. if I deploy the appliance with FQDN of .workspace.example.co.uk I can then assign the wildcard cert but cannot get Kerberos to work even with SPNs added. If I deploy it with workspace.example.com and put an internal CA cert on it then Kerberos works fine but workspace.example.co.uk does not work as it redirects the url back to workspace.example.local which obviously cant be reached externally. we are not using any load balancers just a single appliance.

  32. Hi Carl,May I ask you a question?
    I run into trouble about reuse same FQDN to re-deploy vIDM after replace it self-sign certificate, I got the error about the certificate as below:

    com.vmware.horizon.svadmin.exception.AdminPortalException: org.springframework.web.client.ResourceAccessException: I/O error on GET request for “https://HZ-IDMV-02.CLOUD.CCDE.CNPC/SAAS/API/1.0/REST/system/bootstrap/initialize”:Host name ‘HZ-IDMV-02.CLOUD.CCDE.CNPC’ does not match the certificate subject provided by the peer (EMAILADDRESS=unknown@vmware.com, CN=HZ-IDMV-02.CLOUD.CCDE.CNPC, OU=Horizon-Workspace, O=VMware, L=Palo Alto, ST=california, C=US); nested exception is javax.net.ssl.SSLPeerUnverifiedException: Host name ‘HZ-IDMV-02.CLOUD.CCDE.CNPC’ does not match the certificate subject provided by the peer (EMAILADDRESS=unknown@vmware.com, CN=HZ-IDMV-02.CLOUD.CCDE.CNPC, OU=Horizon-Workspace, O=VMware, L=Palo Alto, ST=california, C=US) at com.vmware.horizon.svadmin.service.ApplicationSetupService.isFirstOrgAndAdminUserSetup(ApplicationSetupService.java:196) at com.vmware.horizon.svadmin.controller.AdminPortalShortcutsController.doGet(AdminPortalShortcutsController.java:44) at sun.reflect.NativeMethodAccessorImpl.invoke0(Native Method) at sun.reflect.NativeMethodAccessorImpl.invoke(NativeMethodAccessorImpl.java:62) at sun.reflect.DelegatingMethodAccessorImpl.invoke(DelegatingMethodAccessorImpl.java:43) at java.lang.reflect.Method.invoke(Method.java:497)

    Could you help me fix the problem?

  33. Hi Carl.. an awesome article.. its my first time exploring vIDM, can you help me the steps on cert PEM creation …
    “1.Use OpenSSL or similar to create the certificate in PEM format. If you have a .pfx, you can use OpenSSL to convert from pkcs12 to PEM. Also use OpenSSL to convert the private key to RSA format.”

  34. Carl

    Thanks for the article, I would like to know your feedback on the product and how it compares to industry leading IDaaS products such as OKTA?



    1. I’m more interested in the Horizon View integration. And AirWatch. For web-app SSON, there are many products that can do that. It’s not my expertise so I can’t say if one is better than another.

  35. So when i’m deploying the OVA file for the first Identity Manager appliance (I will load balance behind a pair of nertscalers) I should make the appliance hostanme FQDN “IM01.domain.local” on the OVA setup, not “identity.corp.com” in the setup?
    (you show “identity.corp.com” not “im01.corp.local” in your screenshot above with the OVA setup)

    – the connector on my im01 (I used identity.domain.com in the ova setup) shows “identity.domain.com” not im01.domain.local)

    – In the netscaler LB write up, you show naming the cloned appliance im02.corp.local

    I guess i’d like to know what is different about setting up the first IM appliance when you will be load balancing, should the fqdn in the first ova setup be an individual name or “identity”?

    1. If you’re not load balancing then the single appliance should be named the same as what users will use to access it. If load balancing then each appliance needs a unique name. I should probably clarify that and update the screenshots accordingly.

    2. Aaron, I updated the screenshots to reflect the load balancing scenario. I also figured out a database issue I was having and updated the instructions accordingly. This also fixed some cloning issues. Let me know if you notice anything else that needs to be fixed. Thanks.

        1. Configuration does not work properly unless you are connected to the appliance using an FQDN instead of IP. However, most browsers won’t allow the connection because of the untrusted cert. It would have been easier if VMware included a self-signed cert instead of a CA-signed cert.

  36. Great article, thank you very much! This was a HUGE help, especially with the netscaler article to go with it!
    One question on the SSL certs, each appliance (IM01.corp.pri and IM02.corp.pri) will have a cert for the “corp.pri” [corp.pri being a msft enterprise ca cert) AND a cert for identity.corp.COM [COM being a public cert]?
    Can i just use a public wild card for the IM01/IM02 and Identity, making them all .com (My internal domain is .pri), so it’s one cert (Not a SAN cert)? – name the fqdn’s “IM01.corp.com” and “IM02.corp.com” and “Identity.corp.com” using the same wildcard cert? (With DNS entries to match)

    How does the Identity manager play with the new Access Point for Horizon?

    1. I think public certs on each appliance should be fine. Each appliance needs a unique hostname so it can join the domain correctly.

      I believe a future release of Access Point will provide remote connectivity to Identity Manager. VMware mentioned they borrowed the auth components from Identity Manager to place on Access Point. Smart Card is a good example of this.

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