VMware Horizon View 7 with Instant Clone on Hitachi Unified Compute Platform HC
Reference Architecture Guide
Use this reference architecture guide to design a hyper-converged solution for VMware Horizon View 7 with Instant Clone on Hitachi Unified Compute Platform HC V240F (UCP HC V240F) for a VDI environment. This describes the performance of Microsoft® Windows® 10 virtual desktops and Microsoft RDSH remote sessions on a 4- node Unified Compute Platform HC V240F compute vSAN cluster with a mixture of power workers, knowledge workers, and task workers using Instant Cloning features. This environment uses integrated servers, storage systems, and network with storage software in a unified compute converged solution for VDI environment.
The dedicated Unified Compute Platform HC V240F nodes run VMware ESXi 6.0 U2 with VMware vSAN 6.0 clusters using VMware Horizon View 7.
This VDI environment solution uses Microsoft Windows 10 virtual desktops and Microsoft Windows Server® 2012 R2 RDSH remote sessions.
Performance validation for this this solution used the following Login VSI 4.1.15 as a benchmarking tool.
This document is for the following audiences:
- Corporate desktop administrators
- Storage administrators
- IT help desk
- IT professionals
- Chief information officer
To use this reference architecture guide, you need familiarity with the following:
- VMware Horizon View 7
- Hitachi Unified Compute Platform HC V240F
- Hyper-converged concept
- VMware vSAN
- All flash storage
- Login VSI 4.1.15
- Esxtop from VMware
- VMware ESXi 6.0 U2
- Microsoft Remote Desktop Session
Note — These practices were developed in a lab environment. Many things affect production environments beyond prediction or duplication in a lab environment. Follow recommended practice by conducting proof-of-concept testing for acceptable results before implementing this solution in your production environment. Test the implementation in a nonproduction, isolated test environment that otherwise matches your production environment.
This describes the solution overview for Horizon View 7 with AppVolumes and Instant Clone on Hitachi Unified Compute Platform HC V240F.
Legacy IT infrastructure is not well suited for VDI initiatives. Siloed data centers, composed of independent compute, storage, and networks with distinct administrative interfaces are inherently inefficient, cumbersome, and costly.
Each platform requires support, maintenance, licensing, power, and cooling—not to mention a set of dedicated resources capable of administrating and maintaining these elements. Rolling out a new application such as VDI is manually intensive, and time-consuming. It involves different technology platforms, management interfaces, and operations teams.
Expanding system capacity can take days or weeks, and require complex provisioning and administration. Troubleshooting problems and performing routine data backup, replication, and recovery tasks can be just as inefficient.
While grappling with this complexity, organizations also need to address challenges that are unique to VDI, including the following:
- Difficulty sizing VDI workloads upfront, due to the randomness and unpredictability of user behavior
- Periodic spikes in demand, such as login storms and boot storms, that may significantly degrade performance if not properly handled
- High cost of downtime in the event of an outage
Hitachi Unified Compute Platform HC addresses each of these challenges by providing a scalable, building block style approach to deploying infrastructure for VDI. It offers predictable cost, delivering a high-performing desktop experience
For this solution, VDI performance has been captured for task, knowledge, and power users.
The workloads used for this solution are based on LoginVSI and extended the functionality of the LoginVSI base of the task, knowledge and power workload tests. Table 1, “Workload Application Definition,” on page 3 lists the applications that LoginVSI exercised during workload testing.
TABLE 1. WORKLOAD APPLICATION DEFINITION
|Workload Type||Task, knowledge, and power|
TABLE 2. WORKLOAD PROFILE FOR MICROSOFT WINDOWS 10 VDI USERS
|Workload Profile||Virtual Machine Operating System||vCPU||Virtual Machine Memory|
|Task Worker||Microsoft Windows 10||1||2 GB|
|Knowledge Worker||Microsoft Windows 10||2||3 GB|
|Power Worker||Microsoft Windows 10||2||4 GB|
TABLE 3. WORKLOAD PROFILE FOR MICROSOFT WINDOWS SERVER® 2012 R2 RDSH USERS
|Workload Profile||Virtual Machine Operating System||vCPU||Virtual Machine Memory|
|Task Worker||Microsoft Windows Server 2012 R2||1||2 GB|
|Knowledge Worker||Microsoft Windows Server 2012 R2||2||3 GB|
|Power Worker||Microsoft Windows Server 2012 R2||2||4 GB|
Figure 1 shows the high-level infrastructure for this solution.
Key Solution Components
The key solution components are in Table 4, “Hardware Components,” on page 5, Table 5, “Software Components,” on page 5, and Table 6, “VMware Horizon View 7 Components,” on page 6.
TABLE 4. HARDWARE COMPONENTS
|Hitachi Unified Compute|
Platform HC V240F allflash
|Brocade VDX6740 switch||nos 7.0.0.a||2|
TABLE 5. SOFTWARE COMPONENTS
|VMware vCenter server||6.0. U2 , Build 3634788||Management console|
|VMware ESXi||6.0. U2 , Build 3620759||Operating system|
|VMware vSphere Client||6.0. U2 , Build 3634788||Management console|
|Microsoft Windows Server 2012||Datacenter, R2||Operating system|
TABLE 5. SOFTWARE COMPONENTS (CONTINUED)
|Microsoft SQL Server||2012 SP1||Database server|
|Microsoft Windows 10||Enterprise Edition, SP1||Operating system|
|VMware Horizon View||VMware Horizon View 7.0.0,|
|VMware Horizon Client||3.5.2, Build 3634043||Management console|
TABLE 6. VMWARE HORIZON VIEW 7 COMPONENTS
|Server Name||vCPU||Memory||Disk Size||Disk Type||Operating System|
|View Connection Server||4||16 GB||40 GB||Eager|
|View Composer||4||12 GB||40 GB||Eager|
|Domain Controller||5||8 GB||40 GB||Eager|
|Database Server||4||16 GB||40 GB|
60 GB (data)
Server 2014 SP1
Configure all virtual machines with LSI Logic SAS Controller. Deploy the domain controller to support user authentication and domain services for the VMware Horizon infrastructure.
Configure the compute nodes as follows:
- Configure all four VMware ESXi 6.0 U2 nodes on a Hitachi Unified Compute Platform HC V240F cluster for task, knowledge, and power user desktops.
- Place VMware Horizon management and administration components on a separate infrastructure cluster.
Hitachi Unified Compute Platform HC
Combining compute, storage, and virtualization into a hyperconverged infrastructure, Hitachi Unified Compute Platform HC (UCP HC) answers challenges of growing demands of faster delivery of business services while facing rising costs managing disparate technology resources. Using VMware Virtual SAN with software from Hitachi Data Systems, this software-defined storage extends the agility and simplicity of the Hitachi Unified Compute Platform family.
Unified Compute Platform HC provides a comprehensive dashboard to view a virtual machine. There are health monitors for CPU, memory, storage, and virtual machine usage for the all clusters, including individual appliances and individual nodes.
You need minimal IT experience to deploy, configure, and manage the Unified Compute Platform HC appliance. Leveraging VMware’s core products, your administrators can apply existing VMware knowledge, best practices, and processes.
VMware Horizon transforms static desktops into secure, virtual workspaces that can be delivered on demand. Provision virtual or remote desktops and applications through a single VDI platform to streamline management and easily entitle end users.
Dynamically allocate resources with virtual storage, virtual compute and virtual networking to simplify management and drive down costs. With Horizon, reduce day-to-day operations costs with a single platform that allows you to extend virtualization from the data center to your devices.
Seamlessly extending virtualization to storage with an integrated hyper-converged solution that works with your overall VMware environment, VMware vSAN reduces the risk in digital transformation by using existing tools, skillsets, and solutions.
Built by VMware, enjoy the best integration with VMware vSphere features with vSAN. Discover the flexibility to expand with other VMware SDDC and multi-cloud offerings as your needs grow. Protect current storage infrastructure investments with the only hyperconverged infrastructure solution built on policy-based management that extends per-virtual machine policies and automated provisioning to modern SAN and NAS storage systems.
Brocade and Hitachi Data Systems partner to deliver storage networking and data center solutions. These solutions reduce complexity and cost, as well as enable virtualization and cloud computing to increase business agility.
The solution using the following Brocade products:
- Brocade VDX6740 switch
Place the infrastructure servers for VMware Horizon 7 and Hitachi Unified Compute Platform HC V240F used for this solution on separate infrastructure clusters with dedicated resources.
The SAN architecture for this reference architecture is not a requirement. Hitachi Unified Compute Platform HC V240F is used with VMware vSAN, which has local drive clustering.
Deploy VMware Horizon Virtual Machines
VMware Horizon is the virtual desktop host platform for VMware vSphere. This offers advantages for end users and IT staff.
- End users are not locked into a particular machine.
- End users can access their system and files from anywhere at any time.
- Horizon View simplifies and automates desktop and application management.
To install and configure the following core Horizon View components, do the following.
- Install View Connection Server
The most important VMware View component is the View Connection server. This server is a connection broker, responsible for authenticating clients and connecting them to the appropriate virtual desktop.
- Install View Administrator
View Administrator, or management console, is a web component for deploying and managing virtual desktops.
- Install View Client
View Client establishes a connection from physical devices to a View Connection server.
Install View client on the user’s devices, such as thin clients, zero clients, mobile devices, laptops, desktops, or any other supported devices.
- Install View agent
View agent is the application installed on virtual desktops that allows VMware View to manage access from clients.
- Install View Composer (Optional)
View composer is an optional application. However, it is necessary to manage all of the operations associated with linked clones, such as pool creation, refresh, recompose, and rebalance.
Deploy Master Image for the Microsoft Windows 10 Virtual Desktop
To create a master image for a Microsoft Windows 10 desktop, do the following.
- Prepare the virtual machine desktop.
(1) Create a virtual machine.
(2) Install the Microsoft Windows 10 operating system on the virtual machine.
(3) Configure the Microsoft Windows operating system on the virtual machine.
(4) Run VMware optimizer for Microsoft Windows 10.
(5) Install VMware Tools.
(6) Install View Agent.
- Shut down the virtual machine.
- Take a snapshot of the virtual machine.
Deploy the Automated Desktop Pool for Microsoft Windows 10 Instant Clones
To provision the Microsoft Windows 10 instant clones for power, knowledge and task users, do the following.
- From View Administrator, click Select and add View Connection Server, and then click Add vCenter to View Administrator.
- Create a new desktop pool using the Automated Desktop pool option for Instant clone.
- you’re your desktop pool following the naming pattern. For example, use Power-Pool.
- To create three different pools, select the Microsoft Windows 10 snapshot for power, knowledge and task users.
- Select storage option as Unified Compute Platform HC V240F vSAN Datastaore to deploy instant clones.
Prepare the Host for Microsoft Windows Server 2012 R2 RDS
To prepare the host for Microsoft Windows Server 2012 R2 RDS, do the following.
- Create a virtual machine.
- Prepare the operating system on the virtual machine.
(1) Install the Microsoft Windows 2012 R2 operating system.
(2) Configure the operating system.
(3) Enable the High Performance Power option.
(4) Run VMware OS Optimization Tool for Windows Server 2012 R2.
- Prepare Microsoft .NET Framework 4 on the virtual machine.
(1) Install Microsoft .NET 4 software.
(2) Disable the event tracker shutdown.
i. From the Start menu, type the following in the Search text box: gpedit.msc
The Group Policy Editor (gpedit) is in the application search results.
ii. To open the Group Policy Editor window, double-click gpedit.
iii. In the left pane, under Local Computer Policy, expand Administrative Templates and then click System.
iv. In the right pane, double-click Display Shutdown Event Tracker. The Display Shutdown Event Tracker
dialog box opens.
v. Click the Disabled option and close the window.
Keep the Group Policy Editor open.
(3) Disable the server manager.
i. In the Group Policy Editor, with System clicked, double-click Server manager. The Do not display Server
Manager automatically at logon dialog box opens.
ii. Click the Enabled option and close the window.
iii. Close the Group Policy Editor
- Install VMware tool.
- Install Microsoft Office 2013 Key Management Service (KMS) host.
- Install VMware View Agent for VMware View Horizon Automated Farm.
- Shut down the virtual machine for the server.
- Take a snapshot the virtual machine for the server.
Deploy RDS Farm — Automated Linked Clones
This solution uses VMware View Composer. SysPrep requires a customization specification in VMware vCenter because QuickPrep is not supported with RDS farms.
Use the Customization Specification Manager to prepare Microsoft Windows SysPrep.