VMware VSAN, vSphere 5.5 Update 1, VMware Horizon View 5.3.1 and PowerCLI 5.5 R2 released

This week the following new VMware update are released:

  • VMware vSphere 5.5 Update 1. This update has support for Virtual SAN (VSAN) 5.5. VMware Virtual SAN is a software-defined storage technology that is available with vSphere 5.5 Update 1 (or later). A minimum of three nodes is needed. To check what hardware is supported, see the VSAN VMware Compatibility Guide for VSAN. Link. VSAN licensing is as follows:

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vSphere 5.5 Update 1 supports vCenter on Windows Server 2012 R2. The release notes can be found here. Link

  • VMware Horizon View Client for Windows 8,1 Store. The new version 2.3 has supports the PCoIP protocol. Link
  • Horizon View 5.3.1 support for Virtual SAN (VSAN). There are no other new features in Horizon View 5.3.1 update besides VSAN.  VSAN Desktop is licensing is per user ($50 per user). More information:
  1. Release Notes. Link 
  2. VDI Performance benchmarking on VMware VSAN 5.5. Link
  3. Horizon View 5.3.1 on VMware Virtual SAN – Quick Start Guide (2073795). Link
  • VMware vSphere PowerCLI 5.5 R2. This new release includes support for Site Recovery Manager (SRM) and expands current capabilities. More information link.

 

Display VMware Horizon View Pool information using PowerCLI

For a VMware View Horizon Healthcheck I needed to display all VMware View Pools created and export some settings for documentation. The easiest way to do this is using View PowerCLI on a VMware View Connection server.

Here are some examples to use:

Display all the pools and settings:

get-pool

Display the pools with selected fields in table form:

Get-pool | select DisplayName,Pool_ID,Enabled,MinimumCount,MaximumCount,HeadroomCount,Persistence,Pooltype,Protocol | FT -AutoSize

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Display the some fields in table form and export the pool information to a a text file:

get-pool | select DisplayName,Pool_ID,Enabled,MinimumCount,MaximumCount,HeadroomCount,Persistence,Pooltype,Protocol | FT -AutoSize | out-file c:\temp\pools.txt

The get-pool commands does not export all the settings that can be provided in a VMware View pool.

Perform ESXi host maintenance on a VMware Horizon View floating desktop pool

When you need to perform maintenance (planned downtime) on an ESXi host which is part of a floating pool the following steps can be be taken:

These steps are only required when using local storage for the linked clones!

  1. In the VMware Horizon View Administrator, edit the pool and uncheck the datastore for the host on which maintenance is required. By unchecking the datastore no new desktops are provisioned to this host
  2. In the pool settings modify the “Delete or refresh desktop on logoff” to “Delete Immediately”
  3. Optionally: In the pool settings modify the “Automatically or logoff after disconnect” to 240 minutes or less so that disconnected sessions are removed.
  4. Decrease the maximum number of desktops in the Provisioning settings so it matches the cluster
  5. When there are no more floating desktops on  the ESXi host place, it in maintenance mode
  6. Perform maintenance of the ESXi host.

 

 

A good practice is to perform steps 1 till 4 a day before the actually maintenance of the ESXi host, so all the VDI desktops are removed. After the maintenance is done perform steps 1 to 6  by using the originally settings.