Release: VMware Horizon Mirage 4.3

Today VMware released the new version 4.3 of Horizon Mirage.

This release includes major improvements of the interoperability between Horizon Mirage and View and therefore officially supports image management of full clone virtual desktops.

The new release includes:

  • Support for image management of VMware Horizon View full clone desktops
  • Ability to do image management only (without the need to centralizing an endpoint first)
  • Ability to deploy app layers during a Windows 7 migration process
  • A bunch of tools for synchronizing (export and import) layers, CVDs and the driver library between different Mirage server clusters
  • Enhancements to the Mirage volume for better exclusion support in regards to Anti-virus solutions
  • A new web-based console with support for the Protection Manager role, which allows you to do all the tasks needed for protecting and synchronizing your endpoints.

Also there are many bug fixes included in this release.

Because covering each new features would blow up this article so much I decided to cover each feature in a separate article over the next few weeks.

Release Notes | Documentation | Download

Release: VMware Horizon Mirage 4.2.3

Just now VMware released a new version of Horizon Mirage. The new version 4.2.3 features a lot of bug fixes and some new features.

  • Better storage disconnects handling – Horizon Mirage servers now identify high load conditions on storage that can cause disconnects and can throttle down to allow storage utilization to return to normal.
  • SSL configuration option in Horizon Mirage server installation – The IT manager can now configure SSL communication during server installation. There is no need to perform this operation with the Management console after installing.
  • Branch reflector enhancements – The IT manager can better design and monitor branch reflector deployment by simulating the branch reflector selection on endpoints. The IT manager can now click any device from the Management console and see if it has a branch reflector in its vicinity.

Also the Mirage documentation got a major overhaul. There are now an administrator guide and installation guide as well as a web manager guide all available as PDF and HTML versions.

If you want to learn more about this release have a look at the release notes.

Update: Due to some installation issues version 4.2.3 isn’t available to download anymore. I will update this post as soon as problem is fixed and the download is back again. VMware re-released version 4.2.3 with additional bug fixes. Everyone who has already update to the first release please consider upgrading your environment to the latest release.

Release Notes | Documentation | Download

Release: VMware Horizon Mirage 4.2

On last Wednesday (06.06.2013) VMware released version 4.2 of Horizon Mirage. This new version features support for Windows Vista (migrations from Vista to Windows 7 are also supported), client and file portal localization (French, German, Japanese and Simplified Chinese),  optimizations of the endpoint centralization process, a brand new Web console for help desk users and much more.

Here is a snippet from the what’s new section of the release notes:

  • Endpoint centralization – Performance improvement when a large number of endpoint centralizations are performed, by reducing the number of IO operations required from the storage.
  • Vista OS support – Horizon Mirage supports the disaster recovery use case for Vista, and Vista to Windows 7 migration.
  • New help desk Web console – Help desk users can troubleshoot and fix endpoints using a Horizon Mirage Web interface.
  • Client and file portal localization – The Horizon Mirage client and file portal now supports: French, German, Japanese and Simplified Chinese.
  • Windows 7 in-place migration encrypts endpoints with Sophos 5.5 software – There is no need to decrypt endpoints during an in-place Windows 7 migration.
  • Aligned Mirage license scheme to the Horizon user-based license scheme – Horizon Mirage no longer enforces license based on device count.

If you want to know more about this release I recommend the official VMware blog post to this release: Announcing Horizon Mirage 4.2!

Release Notes | Documentation | Download

Release: VMware Workstation and Fusion Technology Preview 2013

In case you missed it: VMware released the Technology Preview 2013 versions of VMware Workstation and VMware Fusion. Both releases are packed with new features:

VMware Workstation Technology Preview 2013

  • Creating and running Virtual Machines using the latest operating systems – Window 8.1, Ubuntu 13.04, Fedora 18 etc.
  • Running Restricted virtual machines with an expiration date
  • Converting physical machines to virtual machines
  • Graphics performance and multi-monitor support
  • Performance of Virtual Machines running up to 16 vCPUs
  • General stability, application compatibility and usability

Link: VMware Workstation Technology Preview 2013

Welcome to the VMware Fusion Technology Preview 2013

  • Creating large VMs on appropriately equipped Macs (16 vCPUs, 64GB RAM)
  • Dictation Support
  • Network handling when running VMware ESX as a guest
  • Restricted virtual machines with an expiration date
  • PC Migration Assistant
  • Virtual Machine Compatibility pane under Settings
  • Improved handling of the Command/Windows key under Windows 8
  • General stability and correctness

Link: VMware Fusion Technology Preview 2013

Most interesting for me are the enhancements to the restricted virtual machines feature. This feature allows you to restrict virtual machines in a way that users can’t change anything at the VM hardware level and even set an expiration date for a virtual machine. In combination with Mirage this is really nice solution for BYOD use cases.

I personally running the Fusion Technology Preview for a few now on my production system and hadn’t had any issues performance and stability wise.