Friday, February 25, 2011

VMware View 4.6 Released

With very little fanfare, VMware slid View 4.6 onto the market yesterday.

One of the noticeable improvements in View 4.6 is the support for PCoIP connections through the Secure Gateway. There are also some USB compatibility addressed for iPhones, iPads, and scanners; keyboard mapping improvements, and updated timeout settings for SSO users. Plus a minor 160 bug fixes.

You can download View 4.6 from VMware with a free 60 day trial if you want.

For your convenience, here's the "What's New" section of the Release Notes:

What's New in View 4.6

VMware View 4.6 includes the following new features:
  • Security servers can now accommodate PCoIP connections - Security servers now include a PCoIP Secure Gateway component. The PCoIP Secure Gateway connection offers the following advantages:
    • The only remote desktop traffic that can enter the corporate data center is traffic on behalf of a strongly authenticated user.
    • Users can access only the desktop resources that they are authorized to access.
    • No VPN is required, as long as PCoIP is not blocked by any networking component.
    • Security servers with PCoIP support run on Windows Server 2008 R2 and take full advantage of the 64-bit architecture.
  • Enhanced USB device compatibility - View 4.6 supports USB redirection for syncing and managing iPhones and iPads with View desktops. This release also includes improvements for using USB scanners, and adds to the list of USB printers that you can use with thin clients. For more information, see the list of View Client resolved issues.
  • Keyboard mapping improvements - Many keyboard-related issues have been fixed. For more information, see the list of View Client resolved issues.
  • New timeout setting for SSO users - With the single-sign-on (SSO) feature, after users authenticate to View Connection Server, they are automatically logged in to their View desktop operating systems. This new timeout setting allows administrators to limit the number of minutes that the SSO feature is valid for.

    For example, if an administrator sets the time limit to 10 minutes, then 10 minutes after the user authenticates to View Connection Server, the automatic login ability expires. If the user then walks away from the desktop and it becomes inactive, when the user returns, the user is prompted for login credentials. For more information, see the VMware View Administration documentation.
  • VMware View 4.6 includes more than 160 bug fixes - For descriptions of selected resolved issues, see Resolved Issues.
  • Experimental support for Microsoft Windows 7 SP1 RC operating systems

Dustin Shaw

Thursday, February 10, 2011

VMware View Client Fails to Connect

If you just recently installed Microsoft Windows Updates on your Windows 7 machine, you'll soon discover that two of them broke the VMware View Client 4.5.

VMware recommends in their KB Article that you update to the latest patch of the View Client (the latest patch available on their website is Build 353760), or uninstall the two offending MS Updates (KB2482017 & KB2467023).

Essentially the two patches are to fix holes in Internet Explorer and to address issues that occur when the system binaries are unloaded and loaded. Installing either of these updates will break the VMware View Client so that it will not connect to the View Connection Server. The behavior I experienced was that it appeared as if the VMware View Client locked up after I clicked on Connect.

To fix it, simply download the patch, install, and your back in the game.

Here's the text of the VMware KB Article for your convinience:

Unable to connect from the View Client on Windows 7 to the View Connection Server after installing the patch in Microsoft Knowledge Base article 2482017 or 2467023


  • Unable to connect from the View Client on Windows 7  to the View Connection Server
  • Connecting the View Client on Windows 7 to the View Connection Server fails
  • You have installed one or both these Microsoft patches 2482017 or 2467023


This issue occurs when you have installed one of these Microsoft patches, 2482017 or 2467023.
If you have already installed these patches, you can install VMware View Client (build 353760) or uninstall the Microsoft patches.
If you have not installed these patches, delay the installation of the Microsoft patches until you have installed VMware View Client (build 353760).
VMware View Client build 353760 has been tested on: 
  • Windows 7 Enterprise 32 bit +  Internet Explorer 8
  • Windows 7 Enterprise 64 bit +  Internet Explorer 8
  • Windows 7 Home 32 bit +  Internet Explorer 8 
The View Client patch can be downloaded from here. Enter your credentials, accept the EULA and download the appropriate file:
  • If you are using Windows 7 32-bit, use VMware-viewclient-4.5.0-353760.exe.
  • If you are using Windows 7 64-bit, use VMware-viewclient-x86_64-4.5.0-353760.exe.
Note: If you are using View Client 4.0.x and are experiencing this issue, you can install the appropriate View Client 4.5 for your environment.
Disclaimer: Using Windows 7 with a View Client 4.0.x is not supported, so this information is provided as is, and without testing.
To apply this patch 
  1. Click Start > Settings > Control Panel > Add or Remove Programs.
  2. Choose the previously installed VMware View Client and click Remove.
  3. Navigate to where you downloaded VMware-viewclient-xxx-4.5.0-353760.exe and run the executable file.
  4. Follow the installation installation wizard to complete installation.
  5. Reboot the computer.
Note: VMware View Clients with build number 353760 or later are not affected by this issue.

Dustin Shaw

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Migrate from Exchange 2003 to Exchange 2010

I ran across a great article by Jaap Wesselius that gives you a step-by-step on upgrading Exchange 2003 to Exchange 2010.

You can find it here.
If you follow it through straight from beginning to end, you can't go wrong.

Dustin Shaw

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

vRanger 5.0 is released!

As of January 31, 2011, Quest vRanger 5.0 is now publicly available and out of beta.

There are now two versions of vRanger available: vRanger Standard Edition 5.0 and vRanger Pro 5.0. Pro buys you these additional features that people have been looking forward to: Replication, LAN Free, Catalog, and Linux FLR. Here's a look at them:

vReplicator is integrated into vRanger Pro
You no longer have to buy two separate products to do backups and replication if you choose to go the Quest route. You can use one single product for both.

Support for NFS and FTP Repositories
We already had support for CIFS and SFTP targets. The addition of NFS and FTP gives more flexibility on what you can use as a backup target. They didn't integrate credentials into the NFS support, however, so you will need to make sure that you lock down your NFS shares in other ways.

Linux File Level Restores
I know a number of people who are excited about this one. You've always been able to do FLR on Windows VMs, and now you can do the same with LinuxVMs.

You now have the option to catalog your file and directory structure during the backup process, rather than having to wait for it to propagate during your restore process. Awesome thing if you are always doing the type of restore where someone is sitting over your shoulder because they needed the file (that they deleted, coincidentally) yesterday; now they can't scream at you for it taking too long. My concern is that it might increase the backup window (one of the big selling points for vRanger for me is the speed) - I'm going to have to test it out and see.

LAN Free Restores over Fibre
Allows you do restores on your fibre network without touching the bandwidth on your lan.

What's Missing

Unfortunately, I notice several key features missing that were promised, that we will probably have to wait for vRanger 6.0 (current due date 2012) until they are released:

Direct-to-Target backups from ESXi (it has to backup using the vRanger box as a proxy) via a Virtual Appliance. You can currently do Direct-to-Target from ESX, but due to the lack of service console on ESXi, it will need a VA.

FlashRestore, which allows you to start running a VM before it finishes restoring. Very cool for those who are under a time crunch (wait, I believe that's the whole IT industry).

If you want to read more, or download a trial, you can from the Quest vRanger Website.

Dustin Shaw