Tag Archives: Desktop Virtualization

Upgrade from VMware Horizon 7.13.1 to 8.6 (2206) fails with VMware Horizon View Blast Secure Gateway (VMBlastSG) could not be installed

22 Dec

Many customers are already in the process of upgrading from VMware Horizon 7.x to 8.x or will soon upgrade as the End Of Life dates are upcoming in April 2023. I want to share a rare experience wherein the Horizon upgrade from 7.13.1 to 8.6 version failed. In the rare occasion where in upgrade fails in the below mentioned manner, the workaround steps will come in handy.

We have only received the workaround from VMware support, and I intend to update the post once I get a complete RCA. At least the workaround can help someone not have to revert the entire environment instead, follow the workaround and avoid a lot of rework.

Issue

During the upgrade of the first connection server in the POD1, we encountered the following error five mins into the upgrade. Note before starting the upgrade, the entire health dashboard for the POD was green and included backup and snapshots.

Environment Overview

Let take a look at the environment details to provide an high-level overview:
Active Site (POD1)

  • 5 VMware Horizon Connection Servers 7.13.1
  • SQL Database on Microsoft SQL 2016 Always-on – EventsDB
  • The 5 Brokers are behind an NSX Load balancer

Active Site (POD2)

  • 5 VMware Horizon Connection Servers 7.13.1
  • SQL Database on Microsoft SQL 2016 Always-on – EventsDB
  • The 5 Brokers are behind an NSX Load balancer

Observations

The logs from the installer had the following message it’s complaining about insufficient privileges, which the installer is run with admin privileges already.

MSI (s) (A0:E0) [06:12:07:977]: Executing op: ActionStart(Name=InstallServices,Description=Installing new services,Template=Service: [2])
Action 6:12:07: InstallServices. Installing new services
MSI (s) (A0:E0) [06:12:07:977]: Executing op: ProgressTotal(Total=9,Type=1,ByteEquivalent=1300000)
MSI (s) (A0:E0) [06:12:07:977]: Executing op: ServiceInstall(Name=PCOIPSG,DisplayName=VMware Horizon View PCoIP Secure Gateway,ImagePath="C:\Program Files\VMware\VMware View\Server\bin\SecurityGateway.exe",ServiceType=16,StartType=3,ErrorControl=1,,Dependencies=[~],,,Password=**********,Description=Provides VMware Horizon View PCoIP gateway services.,,)
InstallServices: Service:
MSI (s) (A0:E0) [06:12:08:228]: Executing op: ServiceInstall(Name=VMBlastSG,DisplayName=VMware Horizon View Blast Secure Gateway,ImagePath="C:\Program Files\VMware\VMware View\Server\appblastgateway\nssm.exe",ServiceType=16,StartType=3,ErrorControl=0,,Dependencies=[~],,,Password=**********,Description=Provides VMware Horizon View Blast gateway services.,,)
InstallServices: Service:
Info 1923.Service VMware Horizon View Blast Secure Gateway (VMBlastSG) could not be installed. Verify that you have sufficient privileges to install system services.
Action ended 6:12:08: InstallFinalize. Return value 3.

Also noticed during the upgrade, it should uninstall the services from version 7.13.1, and new services would be created for version 8.6. In this case, they were listed as disabled.

Workaround

Later during the ongoing RCA investigation, a workaround provided was working well. The reason for socializing the workaround is that we spent a tremendous amount of time and effort in a revert operation, which was very time consuming and cumbersome. Only if we had known about this workaround during the failed upgrade would we have saved tremendous effort.

#ProTip – If you have two POD, make sure before you start the upgrade. Take a snapshot of all the PODS together at the same time. This could help you in scenarios where the POD1 upgrade fails, and you can revert the entire environment (POD1 & POD2) from snapshots.

Prerequisite / Rollback Plan 

  1. Power off all the Connection Servers part of Cloud POD Federation 
  2. Take a powered-off snapshot
  3. In case of an incident during the change activity which requires recovering Horizon Environment, Snapshots will be used as a fallback plan as the last option if break/fix, troubleshooting steps performed is not resolving the issue. 
  4. In troubleshooting scenarios of a failed upgrade 

Workaround Steps 

  1. The following steps need to be performed on each Connection Server at a time 
  2. Uninstall HTML and Horizon Connection Server 7.13.1 component keeping ADLDS and ADLDSG Instances intact. Check services.msc, and Horizon Services will appear in the Disabled state 
  3. Perform a reboot of the Connection Server, and Horizon Services will be cleared from services.msc
  4. Install Horizon 8.6 as Standard, which will pick the residing ADLDS and ADLDSG instance
  5. After successful install, it can be verified using ldp utility as instructed in KB https://kb.vmware.com/s/article/2064157 and look for the fields whenChanged , and whenCreated . This step can be performed prior upgrade for comparing the state of ADLDS

The VMware GSS case handled by Jezill Asharaf (A very helpful support engineer) and a few of the backend engineering team has been instrumental. I hope you will find this information useful if you encounter the issue and it should help you save time. If you manage to tweak or improvise further on this solution, please don’t forget to keep me posted.

Thanks,
Aresh Sarkari

Mindmap – Part 2 – Horizon Cloud on Microsoft Azure (HCoA) – Configuration of Images – Desktops – Farms – Assignments

13 Apr

This post is in continuation of my part 1 – Mindmap – Part 1 – Horizon Cloud on Microsoft Azure (HCoA) – Quick start guide where we look at pre-requisites and the initial deployment of the HCoA solution. In this post, I want to share my learnings about the configuration of Images, Virtual Desktops, Farms and Assignments. We shall take a look into the following topics:

  • Mind map for Horizon Cloud on Microsoft Azure – Part 2 – Configuration of Images – Desktops – Farms – Assignments
    • Creating a Virtual Desktop or RDSH Image
      • Import VM
      • Create Image (Converting VM to Image)
    • Farms (Published Applications)
      • Create Desktop Farm
    • Add Applications to the Farms
      • New Applications – Auto-Scan from Farm
    • Create an Application Assignment
    • Create an Assignment for Multi-session or Hosted Shared Desktop
    • Create a Virtual Desktop Assignment (Persistent – Full Clone)
    • Create a Virtual Desktop Assignment (Non-Persistent – Floating)
    • AppStacks

In the second part of this series, the mindmap acts as an visual representation of all the configurations to be performed post the initial deployment of the Horizon Cloud Pod. It also helps during customer discussions and allows everyone to be on the same page. You can figure out in advance the pre-requisites, deployment details, and requirements for performing the next steps in your HCoA journey.

HCoA – Part 2

Disclaimer – This guide is a deployment/configuration guide, and the production settings, configuration, and use-cases might be different. Please make sure you change the settings appropriate for production workloads. Here is the PDF version if you would like to download and zoom in (Don’t stress your eyes!) –

Screenshots from my deployment

Horizon Cloud POD Managers + Unified Access Gateways

Note everything is deployed keeping in mind High availability.

  • 2 x Horizon Cloud Pod Managers
  • 2 x External Unified Access Gateways (Public IP)
  • 2 x Internal Unified Access Gateways (Internal on-premise network)
Azure – Virtual Machines

Azure Load Balancers

  • 1 x Horizon Cloud Pod Managers
  • 1 x Public UAG Appliances
  • 1 x Internal UAG Appliance
Azure – Load Balancers

Azure Virtual Network

I have created the vNet as part of pre-requisites in Part 1 series

  • 1 x Subnet for DMZ (Unified Access Gateway)
  • 1 x Subnet for Mgmt (Pod Managers)
  • 1 x Subnet for Workload (Desktop/Farms)
Azure – vNet

Azure Resource Groups

Note these are auto-created during the Pod deployment.

Azure – Resource Groups

I hope you will find this helpful information on your HCoA journey. Please let me know if I have missed any steps in the mindmap, and I will be happy to update the post.

Thanks,
Aresh Sarkari

Mindmap – Part 1 – Horizon Cloud on Microsoft Azure (HCoA) – Quick start guide

7 Apr

This will be a two part blog series on VMware Horizon Cloud on Microsoft Azure (HCoA). My aim is to get you started off the ground on HCoA, and I have a fair understanding of Azure due to my past certifications on AZ-140 and AZ-104(prep). I high recommend acquiring the Azure skills to make your life easier.

In part one, we shall take a look into the following topics:

  • Mind map for Horizon Cloud on Microsoft Azure – Part 1 – Getting started
    • Getting Started
      • Azure pre-requisites
      • Horizon Cloud Account
    • Configure the Azure Pod
      • Subscription
      • Pod Setup
      • Gateway Settings
    • General Setup
      • Domain Bind
      • Domain Join
      • Administrative Group
      • Universal Broker

The idea here is that the mindmap acts as an excellent visual representation of what to do during the end-2-end cycle of the project. It also helps during customer discussions and allows everyone to be on the same page. You can figure out in advance the pre-requisites, deployment, and requirements for the initial setup.

HCoA – Part 1

Disclaimer – This guide is a get you started guide, and the production settings, configuration and usecases might be different. Please make sure you change the settings appropriate for production workloads. Here is the PDF version if you would like to download and zoom in (Don’t stress your eyes!) –

The useful links to get you quickly started on Horizon Cloud on Azure:

DescriptionLinks
Horizon Cloud on Microsoft Azure Architecture (Techzone)Horizon Cloud on Microsoft Azure Architecture | VMware
Evaluation Guide for VMware Horizon Cloud Service on Microsoft Azure (Techzone)https://techzone.vmware.com/quick-start-tutorial-vmware-horizon-cloud-service-microsoft-azure
Horizon Cloud on Azure Evaluation YouTube playlist – Awesome stuff by Caroline Arakelian(14) VMware Horizon Cloud on Microsoft Azure: Deploying a Cloud Manager–Based Pod – YouTube
Our local Oz hero – Shane Fowler – 0 to hero on HCoAFrom Zero to Hero: A Step by Step Guide How To Deploy Horizon Cloud Service on Azure – YouTube
Horizon Cloud on Azure Cost CalculatorPathfinder (vmware.com)

I hope you will find this helpful information on your HCoA journey. Please let me know if I have missed any steps in the mindmap or reference links, and I will be happy to update the post.

Thanks,
Aresh Sarkari

Mindmap – Part 2 – Managing Azure Virtual Desktop (AVD)

21 Jan

This blog post is in continuation of my part 1 – Mindmap – Part 1 – Azure Virtual Desktop (AVD) – Quick start guide to virtual desktop/applications | AskAresh where we look at deploying the AVD solution. In this post, I want to share my learnings with you all around the management and #Day2 aspects of AVD. We shall take a look into the following topics:

  • Mind map – Managing Azure Virtual Desktop
    • Scale Out – Add extra Host (VM) to the Host Pools
    • Lifecycle – Update your Master Image – Shared Image Gallery aka Azure compute galleries
    • Drain the old Session Host VM
    • Automatically Power ON the Session host Virtual Machines
    • Monitoring Azure Virtual Desktop

Mindmap for Managing Azure Virtual Desktop (AVD)

I have managed to document all the high-level steps involved in managing the AVD on an ongoing basis. The idea here is that the mindmap acts as an excellent visual representation of what to do during ongoing maintenance activities. You can figure out in advance the requirements/steps and pre-requisites.

Disclaimer – This guide is a get you started guide, and the production management may vary. Please make sure you always reference Microsoft documentation. Here is the PDF version if you would like to download and zoom in (Don’t stress your eyes!) –

I hope you will find this helpful information on your Managing Azure Virtual Desktop journey. Please let me know if I have missed any steps in the mindmap, and I will be happy to update the post.

Thanks,
Aresh Sarkari

Mindmap – Part 1 – Azure Virtual Desktop (AVD) – Quick start guide to virtual desktop/applications

1 Nov

I have been learning Azure Virtual Desktop (AVD) from the awesome book DaaS – The Complete Guide: A Step-by-Step Guide on deploying Desktop-as-a-Service solutions from Microsoft, Nutanix, Citrix, VMware, Accops. I want to share my learnings with you all, and in this post, we shall take a look into the following topics:

  • Mind map for Azure Virtual Desktop – Getting started
    • Getting started with Azure Virtual Desktop (AVD)
    • Deployment – Pre-requisites for AVD
    • Master Images – (Windows 10 Multi-Session, Windows 10 1909 Enterprise or Windows Server 2019 DC)
    • Template and Shared Image Gallery
    • Host Pools
    • Application Groups
    • Workspaces
    • Windows Desktop Client
  • Quick Start Links

Mindmap for Azure Virtual Desktop (AVD) – Getting started

Managed to put together a mindmap on the AVD getting started from zero to a working desktop or application. The idea here is the mindmap acts as an excellent visual representation of what to do during pre-requisites, deployment and you can figure out in advance the requirements/steps and pre-requisites.

Azure Virtual Desktop

Disclaimer – This guide is a get you started guide, and the production settings and configuration might be different. Please make sure you change the settings appropriate for production workloads. Here is the PDF version if you would like to download and zoom in (Don’t stress your eyes!) –

Change log

  • The Mindmap was last updated on 21st Jan 2022 with lots of changes!

The intention here is to get you quickly started on Azure Virtual Desktop Solution:

DescriptionLinks
Azure Virtual Desktop OverviewWhat is Azure Virtual Desktop? – Azure | Microsoft Docs
Azure Virtual Desktop technical (ARM-based model) deployment walkthrough. (Christiaan Brinkhoff)Azure Virtual Desktop technical (ARM-based model) deployment walkthrough. It covers all you need to know and beyond! | christiaanbrinkhoff.com – Sharing Cloud and Virtualization Knowledge
AVD Zero to Hero (YouTube – I am IT Geek)Series 5: Episode 1 – AVD Zero to Hero Introduction – YouTube (Playlist)
AVD PowerShellAzure Virtual Desktop PowerShell – Azure | Microsoft Docs
AVD PricingAzure Virtual Desktop | Microsoft Azure

I hope you will find this helpful information on your Azure Virtual Desktop journey. Please let me know if I have missed any steps in the mindmap, or reference links, and I will be happy to update the post.

Thanks,
Aresh Sarkari

Script/API – Horizon Reach – Get consolidated Horizon Farms/Desktops pools – Name Health, Image and Snapshot information

27 Oct

Horizon Reach is a potent tool, and Andrew Morgan has put in a lot of blood, sweat and tears to develope it. What suprises me is why isnt this fling included into the Horizon product? We haven’t gathered here to talk about the product management and roadmap aspects 😉

Horizon Reach fling aggregates all the various Horizon POD information into its database. Typically, running Horizon API calls or Horizon Powershell modules might have to run them against individual pods to fetch information about that POD. The beauty with Horizon Reach is it aggregates all the information, we can write scripts/API calls to request information from there instead of writing Horizon POD specific scripts.

Let’s take a look at the following information from the Horizon Reach fling:

  • What API’s are available with Horizon Reach?
  • What all options are available to interact with Horizon Reach API?
  • Script – Get a consolidated list of Horizon Farm details (Display the Name, Base Image details, Snapshot Version, Health and If provisioning is enabled)
    • Note the above can also be fetched using the old Horizon Powershell modules but trust me it’s pretty tricky to run a foreach loop for every object on the SOAP method.
  • Script – Get a consolidated list of Horizon Desktop Pools details (Display the Name, Base Image details, Snapshot Version, Health and If provisioning is enabled)

What API’s are avilable with Horizon Reach?

After you have installed the Horizon Reach fling, go to the following URL to check out all the avilable API’s. Its the UI Swagger interface to simplify and understand each calls.

URL https://horzonreach.domain:9443/swagger/index.html

What all options are avilable to interact with Horizon Reach API?

You can interact with the API with your preffered method such as Powershell or Postman or something else.

Postman https://horzonreach.domain:9443/swagger/v1/swagger.json (You will be able to import all the Horizon Reach API as a collection within Postman)

Powershell – You can use the built-in modules of Invoke-RestMethod or Invoke-WebRequest method to interact with Horizon Reach API.

Scripts to get consolidated Horizon Farms/Desktops information

Pre-requsites:

  • You need the Horizon Reach Server URL
  • You need the password of the Horizon Reach Server
  • The script provides you with the details of all Horizon PODs in your setup.
  • The script was tested on PowerShell V5.x
#Horizon Reach Server Name or IP Address
$HZReachServer = "https://horizonreach.domain:9443"

#Ignore the self signed cert errors
add-type @"
    using System.Net;
    using System.Security.Cryptography.X509Certificates;
    public class TrustAllCertsPolicy : ICertificatePolicy {
        public bool CheckValidationResult(
            ServicePoint srvPoint, X509Certificate certificate,
            WebRequest request, int certificateProblem) {
            return true;
        }
    }
"@
[System.Net.ServicePointManager]::CertificatePolicy = New-Object TrustAllCertsPolicy
[System.Net.ServicePointManager]::SecurityProtocol = [System.Net.SecurityProtocolType]'Ssl3,Tls,Tls11,Tls12'


#API Call to make the intial connection to the Horizon Reach Server##
$HZReachLogonAPIcall = "$HZReachServer`/api/Logon"

#The body payload that comprises of the login API request
$body = @{
    username = "administrator"
    password = "enteryourpassword"
} | ConvertTo-Json

$HZReachlogin = Invoke-RestMethod -Method Post -uri $HZReachLogonAPIcall -Body $body -ContentType "application/json"

#Header along with the JWT token is now saved for future API calls
#You need to call this header in all subsequent calls as it has the token
$Headers = @{ Authorization = "Bearer $($HZReachlogin.jwt)" }

#API Call to fetch the consolidated (as many pods you have) Horizon Farm information##
$HZReachFarms = Invoke-RestMethod -Method Get -uri "$HZReachServer/api/Farms" -Headers $Headers -ContentType "application/json" -UseBasicParsing | Format-Table -Property displayname, baseimage, snapshot, enabled, health, isProvisioningEnabled

Write-Output $HZReachFarms

#API Call to fetch the consolidated (as many pods you have) Horizon desktop pool information##
$HZReachPools = Invoke-RestMethod -Method Get -uri "$HZReachServer/api/pools" -Headers $Headers -ContentType "application/json" -UseBasicParsing | Format-Table -Property displayname, baseimage, snapshot, enabled, healthDetail, isProvisioningEnabled

Write-Output $HZReachPools

GitHub scripts/HorizonReach-Farms-Pools-Info at master · askaresh/scripts (github.com)

Observations:

  • Farm Output:
  • Desktop Pool Output:
  • The following information (Display Name, Snapshot, Base Image, Health, Provisioning Mode) is pulled using the above scripts. I was much interested to see the snapshot versions of each Farms/Pools along with Health and provisioning status. Feel free to extract whatever details you are looking for there are plenty of other properties.

I hope you will find this script useful to fetch helpful information from Horizon Reach. A small request if you further enhance the script or make it more creative, I hope you can share it back with me?

Thanks,
Aresh Sarkari

VMware EUC stack upgrade – Legacy? or Modernizing? or Middleground?

14 Sep

It was that time of the year to perform a VMware End-User Computing (EUC) stack upgrade on the environment, and I thought of sharing the overall thought process and decisions made along the way. It will be interesting to share with others who might be in a similar situation or process of developing their upgrade/migration strategies. In this post, we shall take a look into these topics:

  • Current versions of the VMware EUC Stack
  • What version numbers did we upgrade/migrated to?
  • Why did we migrate to these versions?
  • Wishlist (Someone Listening?)
  • Valuable links to reference during upgrade/migration

Current versions of the VMware EUC Stack

  • VMware Horizon 7.11 (Connection Server/Agents)
  • VMware Horizon Client 5.5
  • VMware App Volumes 2.18.1.x Manager/VMware App Volumes 2.18.5 Agent version
  • VMware Workspace ONE Access 20.01/Connector 1903 (Not in scope for the upgrade)
  • VMware Dynamic Environment Manager 9.10
  • VMware Unified Access Gateway 3.10

What versions numbers did we upgrade/migrated to?

  • VMware Horizon 7.13.1 (Connection Server/Agents)
  • VMware Horizon Client 5.5.2
  • VMware App Volumes 2.18.10.10 (Manager/Agents)
  • VMware Dynamic Environment Manager 2103
  • VMware Unified Access Gateway 2103.1

Why did we migrate to these versions?

The obvious question everyone might ask is the latest versions are Horizon 8.x and App Volumes 4.x why are you picking older versions for the upgrade? The short answer is the limitations and trade-off, and the following matrix tries to uncover in more detail.

Note – Not all customers might fall under the limitation category, or the limiting feature/functionality could be different in your case. By no means this should be your defacto reasons. Make sure to evaluate your situation and create a matrix to make a data-driven decision. If the project is greenfield/no-limitations applied, it’s a no-brainer to opt for the latest product releases.

ProductUpgrade DecisionVerison of Choice
VMware Horizon++ We had all the boxes ticked from a feature/functionality standpoint to be able to upgrade/migrate to Horizon 8.x version. (Instant Clones, Printing, UAG etc.). Infact everything worked well in the development environment
++ The latest vROPS Horizon Adapter 1.2/Horizon 8.x version doesn’t include the built-in Horizon reports. We use the reporting feature for all sorts of custom reporting on Horizon PODs. The older version of vROPS Horizon Adapter 6.7.1/Horizon 7.x has all the existing metrics and reporting available but doesn’t include support for Horizon 8.x on the support matrix
++ The no reporting on the Horizon Adapter 1.2 + limited metrics on RDSH limited our ability to move to the latest version of Horizon 8.x. Once the built-in reports\metrics and guidance is made available, we shall jump onto the latest version (n-1)
Horizon 7.13.1
VMware App Volumes++ Lack of Writable Volumes (UIA+Profile and UIA) migrations from 2.18.x to 4.x. Need official guidance or tool/script/guidance to upgrade all the wrtiable of the 2.18.x environment to 4.x. I am sure alot of enterprise customers will have plenty of Writable Volumes to migrate and don’t have the flexibility to start from scratch on a new version
++ VMware AppStack Migration fling is the perfect migration utility to migrate AppStacks 2.18.x to 4.x need something similar for Writable Volumes
App Volumes 2.18.10.10
VMware Dynamic Environment Manager++ This was the only piece of software that didn’t have interoperability or upgrade complexity. The obvious choice was to upgrade to the latest (n-1)DEM 2103
VMware Unified Access Gateway++ The appliance has no interoperability issues with Horizon 7.13.1 or upgrade complexity. The obvious choice was to upgrade to the latest (n-1)UAG 2103.1
Upgrade Decision Matrix

The above stack provides us with the required General Availability support until Q2 FY2022 and beyond.

Wishlist

I am looking forward to vROPS Horizon Adapter XX to include the built-in Horizon Reports/Additional Metrics for RDSH in the new version or provide detailed guidance on creating meaningful reports in future releases. Additionally, the App Volumes team releases tools and advice on migrating 4000’s+ Writable Volumes from 2.18.x to 4.x. Once the above is released, I plan to upgrade to the branch of Horizon 8.x and App Volumes 4.x releases version numbers.

Valuable links to reference during upgrades

Here is the cheat sheet for all the useful links to review and formulate an upgrade plan:

DescriptionLinks
VMware Product Interoperability MatrixProduct Interoperability Matrix (vmware.com)
Product DocumentationVMware Horizon Documentation
VMware App Volumes Documentation
VMware Dynamic Environment Manager (Formerly Known as VMware User Environment Manager) Documentation
Techzone Migrating Legacy Horizon Components to Modern Alternatives

View Composer –> Instant Clones
Security Server –> UAG
Persona –> DEM
Persistent Disk – FSLogix
Modernizing VDI for a New Horizon | VMware
App Volumes Upgrade considerationsVMware App Volumes 4 Installation and Upgrade Considerations | VMware
Fling Migrate App Volumes AppStack from 2.18.x to 4.xApp Volumes Migration Utility | VMware Flings
Supported Windows 10 versions based on Horizon AgentSupported versions of Windows 10 on Horizon Agent Including All VDI Clones (Full Clones, Instant Clones, and Linked Clones on Horizon 7) (2149393) (vmware.com)
VMware EUC Stack Agent OrderAgent installation order for Horizon View, Dynamic Environment Manager, and App Volumes (2118048) (vmware.com)
Supported Windows 10 versions based on App Volumes AgentVMware App Volumes and Microsoft Windows 10 Support
VMware Product Lifecycle – End of LifeProduct Lifecycle Matrix (vmware.com)
Reference Material

I hope you will find the above information useful in your enterprise upgrade/migrate strategy for VMware EUC Stack. I would love to hear your strategy and similar situations limiting your ability to migrate to the latest and greatest versions.

Thanks,
Aresh Sarkari

Script to install CrowdStrike Sensor and VMware App Volumes snapvol.cfg exclusions for CrowdStrike Sensor

20 Aug

If you are planning to deploy CrowdStrike Sensor (CS Sensor) within your virtual desktop (Windows 10) or server operating(Remote Desktop – Windows Server 2016), then continue reading. In this post, we will take a look into the following topics:

  • Scripted silent install of CrowdStrike Sensor
  • Process exclusions for VMware App Volumes – Writable Volumes (snapvol.cfg)

Script to install CrowdStrike Sensor

Pre-requisites:

  • Based on your requirements, a complete range of silent switches can be found here – How to Install CrowdStrike Falcon Sensor | Dell US
  • Create a folder called C:\Temp\Sensor and place all the CS Sensor EXE within this folder.
  • Make sure to read the installer log files after the install is completed.
  • We use the proxy details as the virtual machines don’t have direct internet access.
  • Look for the exit code = 0 = success
#############################################################################################
# Install Crowd Strike Sensor to the Golden Image on Windows 10 and Windows Server 2016/2019
# Look for Exit Code 0 = Success
# Comment or Un-comment the Agent that does not apply to your environment
# Author - Aresh Sarkari - https://twitter.com/askaresh
#############################################################################################

###################################################################
#                    Declare Variables                            #
###################################################################

#Sensor Names
$CSSensorName = "WindowsSen*"

#The sensor installer Location
$TempInstallPath = "C:\Temp\Sensor"

#Log Files location
$CSSensorlogFile = "C:\Temp\Sensor\CSSensor.log"

###################################################################
#                    EXE Arguments Arrary for CS Sensor           #
###################################################################
# Modify any Installer switches related to the sensor here.
# Dell Article covering all silent switches 
# https://www.dell.com/support/kbdoc/en-us/000126124/how-to-install-crowdstrike-falcon-sensor
# Proxy switches if your endpoints dont have direct Internet Access
# Log Files w.r.t to installation is generated in C:\Temp\*

# Crowd Strike Sensor Arguments
$CSArguments = @(
    "/install"
    "/quiet"
    "/norestart"
    "CID=YOUDIDGUIDWILLGOHERE-EG"
    "ProvToken=YOURTOKENNUMBER"
    "GROUPING_TAGS=TAG1,TAG_VDI"
    "ProvWaitTime=3600000"
    "APP_PROXYNAME=proxy.whateverproxy.com"
    "APP_PROXYPORT=80"
    "VDI=1"
	"/log"
    $CSSensorlogFile
)

###################################################################
#                    Main                                        #
###################################################################

# Install Crowd Strike Sensor
Write-Host "Installing the Crowd Strike Sensor" -ForegroundColor Green
$CSSensorPath = (Get-ChildItem -Path $TempInstallPath | Where-Object {$_.name -like $CSSensorName}).Fullname
$CSSensorInstall = (Start-Process -Filepath $CSSensorPath -Wait -ArgumentList "$CSArguments" -PassThru)
$CSSensorInstall.ExitCode

Start-Sleep 20

Git Hub scripts/CSSensor-Install at master · askaresh/scripts (github.com)

Process exclusions for VMware App Volumes

It is advisable you add the CrowdStrike process exclusions within the VMware App Volumes – Writable Volumes templates on snapvol.cfg. Here is the detailed guidance on how to modify the snapvold.cfg – Using the VMware App Volumes snapvol.cfg File to Customize Writable Volumes | VMware End-User Computing Blog. These two processes are visible within the Task Manager.

#Crowdstrike Exclusions
exclude_process_name=CSFalconService.exe
exclude_process_name=CSFalconContainer.exe

A big thanks to Jishan for the numerous testing cycles! I hope you will find this script and exclusions useful to install the CrowsStrike Sensor. A small request if you further enhance the script or exclusions, I hope you can share it back with me?

Thanks,
Aresh Sarkari

Script to install VMware EUC Agents – App Volumes Agent, DEM Agent and Horizon Agent

30 Jun

If you are planning for the VMware EUC Stack migration or upgrade and want to install the VMware EUC agent, then continue reading. The guidance on uninstalling the existing agents can be found on this blog post – Script uninstall VMware EUC Agents – App Volumes Agent, Horizon Client, DEM Agent, Horizon Agent and VMware Tools | AskAresh

In this script, we shall perform the agents install and reboot the golden image towards the end. There is no need to install the individual agents one by one, instead, sit back, relax and have a coffee!

VMware EUC Agents:

  • VMware Horizon Agent (Works on 7.x and 8.x/YYMM)
    • Note few MSI switches are deprecated if you still use them, you will have an error code 1603
  • VMware Dynamic Environment Manager Agent (Works on 9.x and YYMM)
  • VMware App Volumes Agent (Works on 2.x and 4.x/YYMM)

Note – All the above testing is carried out on Windows 10 1909 with PowerShell 5.1. Reboot is required to complete the installation operations.

VMware EUC Agents Install

Pre-requisites:

#################################################################################################
# Install EUC Agents in the proper order - Horizon Agent , DEM Agent and App Volumes Agent
# Reboot the OS towards the end after install all Agents. Look for Exit Code 0 or 3010
# If you notice exit code 1603 there is a installation issue. Refer to my MSI switches blogpost
# Comment or Un-comment the Agent that does not apply to your environment
# Author - Aresh Sarkari (Twitter - @askaresh)
################################################################################################

###################################################################
#                    Declare Variables                            #
###################################################################

#Agent Names
$HorizonAgentName = "VMware-Horizon-Agent-x86_64*"
$DEMAgentName = "VMware Dynamic Environment Manager*"
$AppVolumesAgentName = "App Volumes Agent*"
$AppVolMGR = "avm001.domain.com" # Manager LB VIP

# All the installer Location
#Create a folder C:\Temp\Agents and place all the MSI\EXE in there
$TempInstallPath = "C:\Temp\Agents" 

#Log Files location
# Go through all the logs post installation
$HZlogFile = "C:\Temp\Agents\HZAgent.log"
$DEMlogFile = "C:\Temp\Agents\DEMAgent.log"
$ApplogFile = "C:\Temp\Agents\AppVolAgent.log"

###################################################################
#                    MSI Arguments Arrary for EUC Agents          #
###################################################################
# Modify any MSI switched related to the agent here.
# Follow this blog post for swithces - https://askaresh.com/2021/06/28/comparision-vmware-horizon-agent-7-x-8-x-silent-install-switches-and-properties/

# VMware Horizon Agent MSI Switches
$HZMSIArguments = @(
	"/qn"
	"VDM_VC_MANAGED_AGENT=1"
    "SUPPRESS_RUNONCE_CHECK=1"
	"VDM_IP_Protocol_Usage=IPv4"
	"ADDLOCAL=Core,ClientDriveRedirection,NGVC,USB,RTAV,PerfTracker,PrintRedir,HelpDesk,TSMMR,VmwVaudio,V4V"
	"REBOOT=REallySuppress"
	"/L*v"
	$HZlogFile
)

# VMware Dynamic Enivornment Agent MSI Switches
$DEMMSIArguments = @(
    "/qn"
    "ADDLOCAL=FlexEngine"
    "REBOOT=REallysuppress"
    "/L*v"
    $DEMlogFile
)

# VMware App Volumes Agent MSI Switches
$AppVolMSIArguments = @(
    "/qn"
    "MANAGER_ADDR=$AppVolMGR"
    "MANAGER_PORT=443"
    "REBOOT=REallysuppress"
    "EnforceSSLCertificateValidation=0"
    "/L*v"
    $ApplogFile
)

###################################################################
#                    Main                                        #
###################################################################

# Install VMware Horizon Agent
Write-Host "Installing the VMware Horizon Agent" -ForegroundColor Green
$HZAgentPath = (Get-ChildItem -Path $TempInstallPath | Where-Object {$_.name -like $HorizonAgentName}).Fullname

# The switches "/s /v " is the Install Shield switches and rest of the aruguments are passed with MSI
$HZAgentInstall = (Start-Process -Filepath $HZAgentPath -Wait -ArgumentList "/s /v ""$HZMSIArguments" -PassThru)
$HZAgentInstall.ExitCode

Start-Sleep 20

# Install DEM Agent
Write-Host "Installing the VMware DEM Agent" -ForegroundColor Green
$DEMPath = (Get-ChildItem -Path $TempInstallPath | Where-Object {$_.name -like $DEMAgentName}).Fullname
$DEMAgentInstall = (Start-Process -Filepath $DEMPath -ArgumentList $DEMMSIArguments -Wait -PassThru)
$DEMAgentInstall.ExitCode

Start-Sleep 20

# Install App Volumes Agent
Write-Host "Installing the VMware App Volumes Agent" -ForegroundColor Green
$AppVolPath = (Get-ChildItem -Path $TempInstallPath | Where-Object {$_.name -like $AppVolumesAgentName}).Fullname
$AppVolAgentInstall = (Start-Process -Filepath $AppVolPath -ArgumentList $AppVolMSIArguments -Wait -PassThru)
$AppVolAgentInstall.ExitCode

Start-Sleep 20

# Restart the computer
Write-Host "Restarting the computer post the VMware EUC Agents install" -ForegroundColor Green
Restart-Computer -Force

Git Hubscripts/vmwareeucagent-install at master · askaresh/scripts (github.com)

A big thanks to Chris H for providing the original blueprint of the script and Wouter for showing me the magical “space” on the switch /v within the Horizon Agent installer. Final thanks to Jishan for the numerous testing cycles and additions to a different version of this script which tackles VMware Tools reboot and continues installing post a reboot.

I hope you will find this script useful to install the VMware EUC agents and never look back to install them individually. A small request if you further enhance the script or make it more creative, I hope you can share it back with me?

Thanks,
Aresh Sarkari

Reference Article – VMware Agent Install order – Agent installation order for Horizon View, Dynamic Environment Manager, and App Volumes (vmware.com)

Script uninstall VMware EUC Agents – App Volumes Agent, Horizon Client, DEM Agent, Horizon Agent and VMware Tools

29 Jun

If you are planning for the VMware EUC Stack migration or upgrade and are in the middle of uninstalling the existing agents, look no further and here is the script that will allow you to uninstall all the agents and reboot the golden image towards the end. There is no need to remove individual agents one by one from the “Program and Features”; instead, sit back, relax and have a coffee!

VMware EUC Agents:

  • VMware App Volumes Agent (Works on 2.x and 4.x/YYMM)
  • VMware Horizon Client (Optional)
  • VMware Dynamic Environment Manager Agent (Works on 9.x and YYMM)
  • VMware Horizon Agent (Works on 7.x and 8.x/YYMM)
  • VMware Tools (Works on 11.x)

Note – All the above testing is carried out on Windows 10 1909/Windows Server 2016 with PowerShell 5.1. The PowerShell module Uninstall-Package suppresses individual reboot and we perform the final reboot towards the end using the Restart-Computer module. (Reboot is required to complete the uninstallation operations.)

VMware EUC Agents
#################################################################################
# Un-Install EUC Agents in the proper order for Golden Image
# App Volumes Agent, Horizon Client(Optional), DEM, Horizon and VMware Tools
# Suppressed auto Reboot the OS towards the end after un-installing all Agents.
# Comment or Un-comment the Agent that does not apply to your environment
# Author - Aresh Sarkari (Twitter - @askaresh)
#################################################################################

#Un-installing VMware App Volumes Agent
Write-Host "Un-installing the App Volumes Agent" -ForegroundColor Green
Get-Package -Name 'App Volumes **' | Uninstall-Package

sleep -Seconds 60

#Un-installing VMware Horizon Client
#Write-Host "Un-installing the VMware Horizon Client" -ForegroundColor Green
#Get-Package -Name 'VMware Horizon Cli**' | Uninstall-Package

#sleep -Seconds 60

#Un-installing VMware Dynamic Environment Agent
Write-Host "Un-installing the Dynamic Environment Agent" -ForegroundColor Green
Get-Package -Name 'VMware Dynamic **' | Uninstall-Package

sleep -Seconds 60

#Un-installing VMware Horizon Agent
Write-Host "Un-installing the VMware Horizon Agent" -ForegroundColor Green
Get-Package -Name 'VMware Horizon Ag**' | Uninstall-Package

sleep -Seconds 60

#Un-installing VMware Tools Agent
Write-Host "Un-installing the VMware Tools Agent" -ForegroundColor Green
Get-Package -Name 'VMware Tools' | Uninstall-Package

sleep -Seconds 60

# Restart the computer
Write-Host "Restarting the computer post the VMware EUC Agents Un-install" -ForegroundColor Green
Restart-Computer -Force

GitHub scripts/vmwareeucagent-uninstall at master · askaresh/scripts (github.com)

Thanks to Hilko and Joel for reviewing the script and providing valuable feedback.

I hope you will find this script useful to uninstall the VMware EUC agents and never look back to remove individual programs under “Programs and Features”. A small request if you further enhance the script or make it more creative, I hope you can share it back with me?

Thanks,
Aresh Sarkari