Today VMware Labs released a new version of the Horizon Toolbox 2. This is a useful add-on which extends the management capabilities of any existing VMware View implementation. If you administer a VDI installation on a daily basis then I’m sure you’ll find a number of its features useful.
To install the Toolbox, download the MSI from https://labs.vmware.com/flings/horizon-toolbox and install it on your View Connection Servers. You’ll need to install .NET Framework 3.5 first, which on Windows Server 2012 R2 can be done using:
Install-WindowsFeature -Name Net-Framework-Core -Source D:\sources\sxs
Once installed, browse to the toolbox URL (substitute IP address in bold accordingly):
Port 18443 is the default port but can be changed.
Login using your View Administrator credentials.
The biggest feature for me by far is the ability to view a users console when assisting them with an issue. The saves me having to separately login to the vCenter, finding their desktop and connecting.
The toolbox allows you to configure power-on policies for individual desktop pools. For an environment like a call centre this can be a huge advantage.
In the following example the IT desktop pool is configured to power on each weekday starting at 7.00am:
One of the most powerful capabilities in the toolbox is the auditing feature. This allows you to view reports on session usage, accumulated user time and where clients access their desktops from:
The above are just a couple of the many features included in the toolbox.
Version 2.1 contains a number of fixes, however the most notable thing from the change log is support for Horizon View 7 – rumoured to be released any day now…
The toolbox is a handy add-on and best of all – it’s free! Make sure you check it out.