When you manage enterprise desktops with Horizon View, the benefits include increased reliability, security, hardware independence, and convenience.

Virtual desktops can be centralized by integrating with VMware vSphere and virtualizing server, storage, and networking resources. Placing desktop operating systems and applications on a server in the datacenter provides the following advantages:

Access to data can easily be restricted. Sensitive data can be prevented from being copied onto a remote employee's home computer.

RADIUS support provides flexibility when choosing among two-factor authentication vendors. Supported vendors include RSA SecureID, VASCO DIGIPASS, SMS Passcode, and SafeNet, among others.

Integration with Horizon Workspace means that end users have on-demand access to View desktops through the same Web-based application catalog they use to access SaaS, Web, and Windows applications. Inside a View desktop, users can also use Horizon Workspace Catalog to access applications.

The ability to provision View desktops with pre-created Active Directory accounts addresses the requirements of locked-down Active Directory environments that have read-only access policies.

Data backups can be scheduled without considering when end users' systems might be turned off.

Virtual desktops that are hosted in a datacenter experience little or no downtime. Virtual machines can reside on high-availability clusters of VMware servers.

Virtual desktops can also connect to back-end physical systems and Windows Terminal Services servers.

The unified management console is built for scalability on Adobe Flex, so that even the largest Horizon View deployments can be efficiently managed from a single View Manager interface. Wizards and dashboards enhance the workflow and facilitate drilling down to see details or change settings. Administrative Console for View Manager Showing the Dashboard View provides an example of the browser-based user interface for View Administrator.

Administrative Console for View Manager Showing the Dashboard View
The dashboard view in the administrative console shows the status of all servers and desktops.

Another feature that increases convenience is the VMware remote display protocol PCoIP. PCoIP (PC-over-IP) display protocol delivers an end-user experience equal to the current experience of using a physical PC:

On LANs, the display is faster and smoother than traditional remote displays.

On WANs, the display protocol can compensate for an increase in latency or a reduction in bandwidth, ensuring that end users can remain productive regardless of network conditions.

Provisioning desktops for end users is a quick process. No one is required to install applications one by one on each end user's physical PC. End users connect to a virtual desktop complete with applications. End users can access their same virtual desktop from various devices at various locations.

Using VMware vSphere to host virtual desktops provides the following benefits:

Administration tasks and management chores are reduced. Administrators can patch and upgrade applications and operating systems without touching a user's physical PC.

Integration with Horizon Workspace means that IT managers can use the Horizon Workspace Administrator Web interface to monitor user and group entitlements to View desktops.

With View Persona Management, physical and virtual desktops can be centrally managed, including user profiles, application entitlement, policies, performance, and other settings. Deploy View Persona Management to physical desktop users prior to converting to virtual desktops.

Storage management is simplified. Using VMware vSphere, you can virtualize volumes and file systems to avoid managing separate storage devices.

With the View storage accelerator, the IOPS storage load is dramatically reduced, supporting end-user logins at larger scales without requiring any special storage array technology.

If View desktops use the space-efficient disk format available with vSphere 5.1 and later, stale or deleted data within a guest operating system is automatically reclaimed with a wipe and shrink process.

Virtual machines are hardware-independent. Because a View desktop runs on a server in the datacenter and is only accessed from a client device, a View desktop can use operating systems that might not be compatible with the hardware of the client device.

For example, although Windows 7 and 8 can run only on Windows 7- and 8-enabled devices, you can install Windows 7 or 8 in a virtual machine and use that virtual machine on a PC that is not Windows 7- or 8-enabled.

Virtual desktops run on PCs, Macs, thin clients, PCs that have been repurposed as thin clients, tablets, and phones.

If you use the HTML Access feature, end users can open a View desktop inside a browser, without having to install any client application on the client system or device.