VMware

VMware Horizon FLEX 1.5 Release Notes

VMware Horizon FLEX 1.5 | 23 June 2015

Last updated: 21 July 2015

Check for additions and updates to these release notes.

These release notes include the following topics:

Key Features

VMware Horizon FLEX enables companies to provision and manage local, corporate virtual desktops to workers that were previously difficult or costly to support. Horizon FLEX provides key benefits, which include:

  • Flexible Deployment Options - Standardized virtual desktops for PC and Mac end users can be provisioned for customers, contractors, or remote employees through the corporate network or on a USB drive.
  • Centralized Control - Centralized policy-based management provides a central point of entitlement and control. Device control can allow or deny use of peripheral devices, expiration control enables IT to set a timeframe for virtual desktops to expire, and remote kill can disable virtual desktops remotely in case of theft, termination, or lack of corporate compliance.
  • Local Execution - End users receive access to a rich desktop experience through VMware industry-leading clients. Productivity is ensured, even when users are on the road or are disconnected from the network.
  • Unified Image Management - Virtual desktops can be managed as a set of logical layers owned by IT or the end user. Dynamic layers for desktop and application management, provided by VMware Mirage technology, enable IT-managed layers to be updated while maintaining end-user files and personalization.
  • IT Cost Reductions - Enable Bring Your Own PC (BYOPC) and support Macs in the enterprise without having to manage the entire Mac. This feature can reduce training needs by enabling employees to use their system of choice, expedite new employee onboarding, and eliminate the cost of deploying and managing a physical laptop.

Learn more about Horizon FLEX at: http://www.vmware.com/products/horizon-flex.

What's New

Horizon FLEX 1.5 adds the following new features:

  • Active Directory Integrated Password – Horizon FLEX administrators can enable end users to use their Active Directory password as the encryption password to access the Horizon FLEX virtual machine after the first startup.
  • Wiping of Virtual Machines – Horizon FLEX administrators can wipe a virtual machine from the virtual machine library file system.  The wipe operation removes the virtual machine from the end user’s system.
  • Policy for Restricting Multiple Copies of a Virtual Machine – Horizon FLEX administrators can restrict end users from downloading and running multiple copies of a virtual machine or copying an already registered virtual machine.
  • Policy for Restricting USB Device Use on a Virtual Machine – Horizon FLEX administrators could previously block or allow all USB devices on a virtual machine. Administrators can now restrict access to certain USB device classes or limit access to a list of specific devices.
  • Policy for Restricting Folder Sharing – Horizon FLEX administrators can allow or block folder sharing on virtual machines.
  • Policy for Restricting CPU and Memory Changes on a Virtual Machine – Horizon FLEX administrators can restrict end users from changing the number of processor cores or the memory size of a virtual machine.
  • Mass deployment with VMware Player Pro - Horizon FLEX administrators can run a command line install of VMware Player Pro and apply the serial number and Horizon FLEX server name.
  • Virtual Machine Shortcut for VMware Player Pro – When downloading a Horizon FLEX virtual machine using VMware Player Pro, an end user can create a shortcut from the desktop to the virtual machine.
  • Horizon FLEX Client and Server Compatibility – Beginning with this release, the Horizon FLEX server is not backward compatible with previous client versions.  Horizon FLEX 1.5 is compatible with Fusion Pro 7.1.2 and Player Pro 7.1.2.

Resolved Issues

The following issues were resolved in this version of Horizon FLEX.

  • Attempting to join a virtual machine to the domain failed when the user name contained a period
    When a virtual machine's username contained a period, Horizon FLEX failed to join it to the Active Directory domain.
    This issue is resolved. Horizon FLEX 1.5 removes the period from the machine name.

  • Users could not view the list of virtual machines they were entitled to use
    The Horizon FLEX server failed to retrieve user security group membership from Active Directory with error 1301. This sometimes prevented end users from viewing virtual machines they were entitled to download and use.
    This issue is resolved.

  • If a virtual machine was downloaded by different end users and all virtual machines power on, end users received a warning message and might not have had network connectivity because all of the virtual machines had the same MAC address. For example: MAC address ******** of adapter Ethernet0 is within the reserved address range or is in use by another virtual adapter on your system. Adapter Ethernet0 may not have network connectivity.
    This issue is resolved.

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Known Issues

The following issues might occur in this version of Horizon FLEX. The known issues are grouped as follows:

Using Horizon FLEX Virtual Machines

  • Users lose access to a Horizon FLEX virtual machine that is Active Directory password enabled when they change the password locally
    The Active Directory password setting is managed by the policy associated with the Horizon FLEX virtual machine. When the Active Directory password setting is enabled, changing the password locally makes the virtual machine inaccessible. After a user changes the password locally and relaunches the Horizon FLEX Client, the user's password is rejected when attempting to access the virtual machine. The Horizon FLEX server rejects both the new and old passwords.
    Workaround: Disconnect the Horizon FLEX Client from the network, change the password of the virtual machine back to match the Active Directory password, and reconnect the client to the network.

  • On VMware Player, after the Active Directory status of a user becomes unavailable, the user might not be able to access virtual machines
    When the power on passphrase of the Horizon FLEX virtual machine is set to match the user's Active Directory passphrase on the FLEX server and the Active Directory account of the user is disabled, expired, or locked out, the next time the user powers on the virtual machine, a message might appear about the invalid account. The user clicks OK and the virtual machine is suspended and VMware Player closes. The next time the user powers on the virtual machine, the following message appears and the virtual machine is otherwise unresponsive:

    This virtual machine appears to be in use.
    If this virtual machine is not in use, press the "Take Ownership" button to obtain ownership of it. Otherwise press the "Cancel" button to avoid damaging it.

    Workaround: To use the virtual machine again, the user can navigate to the folder where the virtual machine files are stored and delete the vmx.lck file.

  • Attempting to delete a Horizon FLEX virtual machine that is Active Directory password enabled, might fail in certain situations
    The FLEX Client might fail to delete Active Directory password enabled virtual machines in the following situations.
    • The virtual machine instance in the FLEX server is expired, archived, deleted, wiped, or revoked.
    • The evaluation license is expired.
    Note: The issue might not occur if only a single Horizon FLEX virtual machine exists in the virtual machine library.
    Workaround:
    You can perform either of the following workarounds to delete the virtual machine.
    • Delete the virtual machine after disconnecting the FLEX Client from the network.
    • Delete the virtual machine from the file system manually and then remove it from the virtual machine library of the FLEX Client.

  • In VMware Player, declining the disclaimer when downloading a virtual machine causes a problem during the next download attempt
    When downloading a virtual machine, if you abort the process by declining the disclaimer, during the next download attempt, when you accept the disclaimer, VMware Player puts the virtual machine in the following folder, %appdata%\..\Local\Microsoft\Windows. During the first download attempt, you are prompted for the download location. During the second download attempt you are not. VMware Player selects the download location for you.
    Workaround: To specify the download location for the virtual machine, you must delete the virtual machine, download it again, and accept the disclaimer.

  • On VMware Player, users might not be able to reconnect a multiple interface USB device to a virtual machine
    When you create a policy for a virtual machine in the Horizon FLEX server that enables the Audio, Image, or Video class, users cannot reconnect disconnected multiple interface USB devices, such as webcam and microphone devices, to the virtual machine.
    Workaround: The user must close and relaunch VMware Player to reconnect the device to the virtual machine.

  • When users delete a virtual machine from a Horizon FLEX 1.5 Client, earlier Horizon FLEX server versions display the virtual machine's state as Unknown
    On a Horizon FLEX 1.5 Client, such as Fusion Pro 7.1.2 and Player Pro 7.1.2, when users delete a virtual machine from the disk, the Horizon FLEX 1.0 and 1.1 servers list the state of the virtual machine as Unknown. The Horizon FLEX 1.5 server displays the state correctly as "Deleted by user."
    Workaround: None.

  • The wipe operation might fail on an archived or locked out virtual machine that is Active Directory password enabled
    When you attempt to perform the wipe operation on an archived or locked out Horizon FLEX virtual machine with the Active Directory password setting enabled, the virtual machine instance state might change from pending wipe to wiped. However, on the Horizon FLEX Client, the archived or locked out virtual machine is not deleted from the disk. Attempting to power on the machine fails with an error.

    The Horizon FLEX Client user might receive a message saying the virtual machine will be revoked and deleted permanently. However, clicking OK in the message does not delete the virtual machine from the disk or the virtual machine library. To remove the message and continue, the user must close the Player UI process from the task manager. The virtual machine cannot be powered on again.

    Workaround: No workaround exists that enables the administrator to perform the wipe operation. However, from the Horizon FLEX Client, users can delete the virtual machine from the disk manually and remove the virtual machine entry from the virtual machine library.

  • A policy to block the creation of multiple virtual machines is not enforced immediately on existing entitled virtual machine instances
    When you change a policy setting of a source virtual machine from allowing multiple virtual machines to preventing multiple virtual machines, existing entitled virtual machine instances still have instance settings that allow users to create multiple copies of the virtual machines. Users can copy or create one additional virtual machine before Horizon FLEX blocks such actions.
    Workaround
    : Update the setting under the restrictions of all the existing instances of the user that were created from the original entitlement.

  • When a virtual machine is provided on a USB device, end users might see the same virtual machine available for download when they connect to the Horizon FLEX server from the Horizon FLEX Client.
    Workaround: Ignore the virtual machine on the Horizon FLEX server. It does not need to be downloaded.

  • When end users connect to a Horizon FLEX server, they might see that they are entitled to the same virtual machine multiple times. Users cannot differentiate the virtual machines because the user interface does not identify the entitlement with which a virtual machine is associated.
    Workaround: None.

  • If a Horizon FLEX virtual machine is archived or deleted on the Horizon FLEX server while it is being downloaded by an end user, the download continues and the virtual machine is extracted on the end user's computer, but the virtual machine fails to power on. This problem occurs because the Horizon FLEX Client does not know about the changes on the Horizon FLEX server until the end user tries to power on the virtual machine.
    Workaround: None.

Preparing Horizon FLEX Virtual Machines

  • VMware Player becomes unresponsive when you double click a virtual machine from the virtual machine library without entering the encryption password
    Workaround:
    Users can take the following actions.
    • To avoid this issue, enter the encryption password before trying to open a Horizon FLEX virtual machine.
    • To use VMware Player again after this issue occurs, close and relaunch VMware Player.

  • In some cases, a reactivated virtual machine's status shows the status of the virtual machine before it was archived. For example, a reactivated virtual machine's status changes to Expired if it was expired before it was archived. The Expired status remains, even if a Horizon FLEX administrator changes the virtual machine's expiration date to a future date during reactivation.
    Workaround: The virtual machine's status changes to Active after it is powered on by an end user and the virtual machine synchronizes with the Horizon FLEX Policy Server.

  • When preparing a virtual machine for use with Horizon FLEX, if the name of the virtual machine or file name of the virtual machine contains non-ASCII characters, the Horizon FLEX Client might not be able to download, extract, or open the virtual machine.
    Workaround: Copy the virtual machine to end user computers, or make sure the virtual machine's name or file name does not contain non-ASCII characters.

  • When preparing a virtual machine for use with Horizon FLEX, if the location of one of the virtual machine disks is on a different drive than the .vmx file (for example, a virtual machine disk is on the D: drive and the .vmx file is in the default location), the Horizon FLEX Client cannot start the virtual machine after it is downloaded. An error similar to the following message appears when an end user attempts to start the downloaded virtual machine: File not found: D:\Virtual Machines\Win7EntX64\Windows 7 x64.vmdk. The file is required to power on this virtual machine. If this file was moved, specify the new location.
    Workaround: Create all the virtual disks on the same drive as the .vmx file. All the disks should be in the same folder as the .vmx file.
  • A Windows 8 virtual machine might take up to two minutes longer than usual to restart after it joins an Active Directory domain for the first time.
    Workaround: None.

  • The Horizon FLEX server might fail to join a virtual machine to an Active Directory domain if the domain already contains a virtual machine that has the same name, but is in a different OU or subdomain. End users receive an error message that states the domain join operation failed when first starting a Horizon FLEX virtual machine. Horizon FLEX administrators see the status of the virtual machine is "Domain join failed" in the Horizon FLEX Admin Console.
    Workaround: A Horizon FLEX administrator should use the entitlement wizard in the Horizon FLEX Admin Console to change the machine naming pattern for the virtual machine.

  • Workstation might display two log in dialog boxes when a user opens a Horizon FLEX virtual machine
    If the Use machine name configuration option is configured for a Horizon FLEX virtual machine, the Connect to Server dialog box opens twice, once when the end user opens the Horizon FLEX virtual machine in VMware Workstation and again when the user powers on the Horizon FLEX virtual machine. VMware Workstation is not a supported Horizon FLEX Client. However, VMware Workstation can open a Horizon FLEX virtual machine that is distributed on a USB device. According to the policies of your organization, you might prefer that users not use VMware Workstation to join Horizon FLEX virtual machines to the domain.
    Workaround: If users decide to join a Horizon FLEX virtual machine to the domain, they provide their credentials in both Connect to Server dialog boxes. However, if they decide not to join the Horizon FLEX virtual machine to the domain, in the second Connect to Server dialog box, they do not provide their credentials and they choose not to connect to the Horizon FLEX server.

  • If a virtual machine is provided on a USB device, and the virtual machine is configured to join an Active Directory domain, end users must provide their login credentials twice. The first time they provide their credentials to open the virtual machine and register it with the Horizon FLEX Policy Server. The second time they provide their credentials to join the domain offline. If they cancel the second domain login dialog box, their virtual machine does not join the domain.
    Workaround: End users should type login credentials each time they are prompted to do so.

Certificate Authentication Errors

  • Updated In VMware Player Pro, certain certificates cause an Invalid Security Certificate warning to appear
    This issue occurs with both self-signed certificates and certificates missing the X509v3 Key Usage extension. The X509v3 Key Usage extension is considered a required extension. However, since many sites accept certificates that are missing the X509v3 Key Usage extension, the fact the Horizon FLEX does not accept such certificates might cause concern.

    If the Horizon FLEX server uses a self-signed certificate or a certificate that is missing the X509v3 Key Usage extension, the Horizon FLEX Client asks users to confirm whether the certificate presented by the host should be trusted when they connect to the Horizon FLEX server.

    Workaround: End users should verify that the certificate is a valid certificate for the host, for example, by confirming with the Horizon FLEX administrator. Use extreme caution when trusting self-signed certificates. If you understand the security risks, you can allow a one-time exception and connect to the Horizon FLEX server, or you can select Always trust this host with this certificate and click Connect Anyway to permanently store the exception. If you do not permanently store the exception for such certificates, the Horizon FLEX Client does not report instance status correctly to the Horizon FLEX server.

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