In this post I will discuss the reasons why to choose for Dedicated Full Clone Pool and the option/choices you have when creating 1 via View Manager. To get a good picture, take a look at the video first.
So, why choose for a Dedicated Full Clone Pool? My personal opinion; the 2 reasons would be;
1. Local Admin rights/Software Installation rights; In other words; if your users need and are allowed to install software on their desktops, do give them a Dedicated Full Clone desktop. I do see customers giving users with local Admin rights Dedicated Linked Clone desktops but you have to be careful; a recompose/rebalance will delete all changes to the Linked Clone and users need to re-install their software again. Another advantage is that you know what size the VM is (let’s see 30GB or 50GB). Multiply that by the amount of users and you know the storage capacity need for that pool. No need to monitor the growth of Linked Clones.
2. Local Mode; to be able to use Local Mode, you need a Dedicated pool, either Full Clone or Linked Clone. See #1 why I don’t see Dedicated Linked Clone pool happen. Also, Local Mode isn’t Composer aware. That means when you have a Dedicated Linked Clone pool and a user takes its VM offline, that VM won’t be a subject of a recompose when an admin patches the parent and wants to recompose the pool. Only after a Check In, the VM can be recomposed again, manually.
So, which options do you get when creating a Dedicated Full Clone Pool? Again, check out the video. I won’t discuss all options, only that ones I get most questions about. If you have read my previous blog about Floating Linked Clone pools, you will find that many options are the same between Floating Linked Clone and Dedicated Full Clone pools.
“Remote Desktop Power Policy”; basically has 3 options; leave your VM’s turned on, suspended or turned off. This is the policy you set on VM’s which aren’t in use by users and which don’t belong to the “spare (powered on) desktops”. The amount of “spare” VM’s can be configured later on under “Provisioning settings-Pool Sizing”. Most of the times, I set the power policy to power off. Why burn CPU cycles when no one is using the VM? If you have enough (and that’s the magic word I guess) VM’s set as spare, no one needs to wait before a VM completely boots. It has to be said, when you leave all the VM’s on, no one needs to wait. Not even in the case suddenly everyone logs on.
“Automatically logoff after disconnect”; what do you want to happen when someone disconnects its sessions? Automatically logoff? Straight away or after a period of time? Straight away means freeing up the VM so others can use it. On the other hand, what about roaming through a building? Disconnect, go to a different level connect and directly go on with your work because your session is there. I have seen the setting “after a period of 4 hours” so users could go home and continue there. Do keep in mind, when a session logs off after a disconnect, all open applications (yes, that also means an open Word document which cost hours of work) will close as well.
Just a quick comment on “Remote Display Protocol” settings; when you pick PCoIP as the default protocol and don’t allow users to choose protocol, you will be able to enable Windows 7 3D Rendering and set an amount of Video Ram per VM.
“Pool Sizing”; max amount of desktops and number of spare desktops. Do look back at the “Remote Desktop Power Policy”. All policies together set the behavior of the pool.
Example; max amount is 100. Spare is set to 20, Remote Power Policy is set to turned off and provisioning is “up-front”. In this example all 100 VM’s get created and configured. When they all are created, 20 VM’s will remain turned on and 80 turned off. When someone logs on to a VM, only 19 VM’s are spare because 1 has been taken. Automatically 1 VM will be turned on to meet the policy again. This continues till all VM’s are turned on.
To sum it up, think about Dedicated Full Clone desktops when you want to provide a desktop to users with admin rights/software installation rights. Also use this kind of pool mechanism when users need to take their desktops offline and use VMware View Local Mode. In other cases a Floating Linked Clone desktop should be the mechanism to go for.