Category Archives: VMware

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Altaro VM Backup Review

logoWell you may be asking yourself what an EUC focused guy is doing reviewing a backup product, I’ll be honest, I wasn’t sure either but then something happened and I suddenly grew a strong appreciation for this product… but more on that later.

As one who still remembers (and has the scars) from those dreaded tape restore days to off site locations. I remember spending 72 hours + trying to restore machines to different hardware, struggle with different tape drive manufacturers and trying to find the right tape!  I jumped ship from sys admin long ago and moved to EUC, avoiding the backup market like the plague in later years so I really was a fresh set of eyes to this age old conundrum.

Recently I stumbled across Altaro VM backup as part of my usual day to day readings and my interest was piqued. Withstanding that as a home lab owner and a hypervisor snob I really only run vSphere and Hyper-V was normally not something I enjoyed working with… I got talking to a nice gentleman from Altaro and I was invited to join the closed beta for vSphere.

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Creating an automated VMware Horizon RDS Pool with Horizon 6.2

 

horizonSo VMware Horizon 6.2 was announced at VMworld just a week ago and the one feature I sorely wanted to see was automated provisioning (golden image management) of a Microsoft Remote Desktop Services farm.

The provisioning process is fairly straight forward, so in this blog post I’ll walk you through the steps to avoid any issues.

Prerequisites:

  • Download the Agent, Connection Server and Composer software.
  • Upgrade your Connection Servers to 6.2.
  • Upgrade your Security Servers to 6.2 (remember you’ll need to repair with the connection servers).
  • Upgrade your Composer.
  • A Microsoft RDS server.

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ThinIO facts and figures, Part 2: The Bootstorm chestnut.

logoWelcome back! This blog post is part of a number of posts in advance of our upcoming release, for reference you can find part one below:

Getting right to it:

In this industry when somebody says ‘boot storms!’ – most of us will respond with:

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Boot storms are a well documented, boring problem and have many solutions available from vendors and hypervisors alike. Most solutions today rely on a ‘shared memory’ storage area to cache ‘on boot’, in theory caching only one startup or one pattern in order to then serve it back to the proceeding desktops to boot.

But why are boot storms an issue? While working on ThinIO we had the unique ability to really dive into the Windows boot process and analyse why boot storms cause the damage they do and in this post we thought we’d share our findings to better document the issue.

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HDXWatcher and PCOIPWatcher – Realtime, easy virtual desktop traffic reporting.

logoWhen checking the bandwidth requirement of multimedia sites, checking how much additional bandwidth video conferencing is going to require or even troubleshooting WAN capacity issues, it’s extremely useful to have a visible interpretation of realtime bandwidth consumption from your virtual desktop.

I wrote a tool quite some time ago called watcher2 while troubleshooting a similar issue. I finally took the time to refactor that tool for use with XenApp 6.5 , XenDesktop and VMware View and they are finally available to download! Both watcher utilities also include a latency counter which was a request that came in over and over.

HDX and PCOIP watcher by default dock to the top of the screen and can be moved left or right as below:

hdx watcher docked

pcoip watcher docked

They can now also be completely un docked:

hdx watcher

pcoip watcher undocked Continue reading

Announcing the ThinKiosk v4 Release

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Thinkiosk Version 4.0 is the culmination of 9 months hard work, rebuilding ThinKiosk in a new development style to include the enterprise features many of you requested, adding a management server, secure key redirection technologies, local group policy control and a number of other features. After weeks of rigorous testing we’re delighted to announce the availability of ThinKiosk version 4… Today!

With the release of Version 4.0 we’re lifting the cloak on the company we’ve setup in order to support and further develop ThinKiosk, ThinScale Technology. We’ve set up ThinScale as a little software company to publish applications to the virtualisation community, tackling the smaller issues and annoyances we face day to day as consultants and administrators. More clever little products are in the pipeline, but for now enough about the company! Continue reading