Setting up an ODBC connection for Horizon View Composer

Last week I set up VMware Horizon View 6 with View Composer etc and ran into an issue with setting up a proper ODBC connection for View Composer.

odbc connectionBefore actually setting up a new ODBC Data Source for VMware View Composer, you’ll need to create a user and password on your database server.

In my case, I used Microsoft SQL Server 2012 and used Microsoft SQL Server Management Studio to set up a new user for my Horizon View DB.

Let’s go through the steps to get everything set up:

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Corrupt Snapshot Causing View Composer Service Crash

Error during provisioning:Unexpected VC fault from View Composer

The above error might show up in Horizon View, if you try to use a corrupt snapshot for the deployment of new VMs.

How To Identify If  A Corrupt Snapshot Is The Cause?

  • Look at the Microsoft System Event Log on your View Composer
    • You should see something like this:

      The VMware View Composer service terminated unexpectedly. M It has done this 2 time(s).  The following corrective action will be taken in 60000 milliseconds: Restart the service.

       

  • Search for FATAL messages in the vmware-viewcomposer.log
    • The following message will indicate a corrupt snapshot

      2015-10-06 17:52:53,956 | WFE thread 9 | FATAL | ServiceCore.WorkflowEngine.WorkflowEngine – Unexpected exception occurred.Error reading single property ‘config.hardware.device’ from managed object: snapshot-15587

       

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Speed Up Your Horizon View Operations

How to speed up your Horizon View operations, you might ask? Well, you don’t have to buy an all-flash storage system or beef up your ESX hosts.

VMware Horizon View Administrator has some settings on max concurrent operations with vCenter and VMware View Composer. Increasing some of those settings can decrease the time of those operations, however when decreasing those settings, you can limit the amount of IOPs pushed to your underlying storage system, too.

Screen Shot 2015-06-26 at 5.22.46 PM

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Optimize your VMware VDI template

People who use Horizon View or plan to use it, are always looking for the perfect template configuration. We all ask ourselves, did I turn everything off, did I install all the software which my user need, did I miss some registry entry?

While going through the same thoughts, I came across the VMware OS Optimizing Tool. If you ask me, this is exactly what you need if you want to build a stella template for your Horizon View setup.

The VMware OS Optimizing Tool is for free and helps to optimize Windows 7/8/2008 and 2012. In order to run the software, you will need Windows 7/8/2008 or 2012 and .Net Framework 3.5 SP1 installed.

VMwareOptimizingTool

To get started with VMware OS Optimization Tool, download it from here and either start it on your Horizon View template or on a different machine, which can access the Horizon View template.

Once started, you can either run an Analysis of the local machine or of a remote machine:

Screen Shot 2015-03-17 at 3.04.55 PM

If you select Analyze, you have to choose the Optimization Template Name. Select the proper template, based on the OS of your template.
Next, hit the Analyze button and wait a few seconds until you receive the result of your work.

Screen Shot 2015-03-17 at 3.10.31 PM

As shown on the image above, I ran the VMware OS Optimization Tool on my Microsoft Windows 7 Enterprise template and it detected 20 un-optimized settings, as the graph in the top right corner shows.
Luckily this tool can automatically fix all u-optimized settings with a simple click on Optimize.

After you ran the optimization wizard, you can take a look under History, which shows you when an optimization task ran and you can rollback to the previous state.

Screen Shot 2015-03-17 at 3.20.39 PM

Overall, the VMware OS Optimization Tool seems like a great tool to keep in your tools repository and come in handy when building a Horizon View template. All optimization made by this tool, are based on the VMware OS Optimization Guide.