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vCenter entitlements in Horizon View

The last couple of months we got several questions from customers asking how many licenses they are entitled when they buy a Horizon View 100 pack Bundle. The bundle includes everything a customer needs for a full end-to-end VDI deployment. Horizon View is sold in two packages—as a bundled solution that includes VMware vSphere Desktop and vCenter Server Desktop, or as an add-on to a separate or existing VMware vSphere infrastructure.

So now the question arises for how many vCenter Desktop and vSphere Desktop servers are you entitled to if you buy a Horizon View 10 or 100 Bundle pack? We have to dive into the universal EULA from VMware and the specific Product Guide to find an answer for that.

If you go through the universal EULA you will find the following:

12.9 Product Guide. In addition to the above sections, Your use of the Software is subject to the terms and conditions of the Product Guide, which is incorporated herein by reference.

Ok so lets move over to the Product Guide. VMware Horizon View has several components like vSphere Desktop, vCenter Standard Desktop and View Manager. I have highlighted the important parts.

From the Product Guide:

2.1 VMware vSphere 5.5 2.1.2 Product Edition/Suite Specific License Notes

VMware vSphere Desktop

In addition to the general license notes above, if You purchase a license to VMware vSphere as a part of VMware vSphere Desktop, the following terms apply: You may only use VMware vSphere Desktop to host (i) a virtual desktop infrastructure for up to the number of Desktop Virtual Machines for which You have paid the applicable license fees, and (ii) associated desktop management and monitoring tools. VMware vSphere Desktop is not subject to a processor limitation. “Desktop Virtual Machine” is a hosted Virtual Machine with one of the following Windows operating systems: XP, Vista, 7 and 8.

VMware View Enterprise, VMware Horizon View and VMware Horizon Suite “Powered On Desktop Virtual Machine” means a Desktop Virtual Machine receiving a remote connection from a device or running locally on a device. In addition to the general license notes above, if You purchase a license to VMware vSphere as a part of VMware View Enterprise, VMware Horizon View or the VMware Horizon Suite, the following terms apply:

You may only use VMware vSphere Desktop for up to the total number of Powered On Desktop Virtual Machines for which You have paid the applicable license fees. Your use of VMware vSphere Desktop is limited to hosting Desktop Virtual Machines and running VMware products which are included in VMware View Enterprise, VMware Horizon View or the VMware Horizon Suite, or third party connection brokers and desktop management and monitoring tools. Your use of individual features included in VMware View Enterprise, VMware Horizon View or VMware Horizon Suite is limited to that particular product. The use of individual features interchangeably between VMware View Enterprise, VMware Horizon View or the VMware Horizon Suite is strictly prohibited.

3.4 VMware vCenter Server 5.5 Your use of VMware vCenter Server Desktop included in VMware View Enterprise, VMware Horizon View, or the VMware Horizon Suite is limited to managing Servers that are solely hosting Desktop Virtual Machines and VMware products which are included in VMware View Enterprise, VMware Horizon View, VMware Horizon Suite or third party connection brokers and desktop management and monitoring tools. Your use of individual features included in VMware View Enterprise, VMware Horizon View, VMware Horizon Suite is limited to that particular product.

VMware vCenter Server Virtual Appliance In addition to the general license notes above, the following terms apply to the license to VMware vCenter Server Virtual Appliance provided with this EULA: You may only download the number of copies of VMware vCenter Server Virtual Appliance that are for You to exercise the license granted to you in Section 2.1.

Q&A

Q: When you buy a Horizon View 100 concurrent user bundle how many licenses are you entitled to use?

A: If you buy a (for instance) 100 concurrent user Horizon View bundle, you receive a special version of vSphere (vSphere Desktop) and a special version of vCenter Server (vCenter Server Desktop) that are restricted to supporting VDI workloads only (i.e. specifically forbidden in the EULA to support or manage standard server workloads). The 100 user license means that you are entitled to run (vSphere Desktop) and manage (vCenter Server Desktop) the virtual machines necessary to support up to 100 concurrent Horizon View connections. If the customer subsequently purchased another 100 concurrent Horizon View licenses and added them to their existing installation of 100 concurrent connections, then the existing installed instances of vSphere Desktop and vCenter Server for Horizon View can then support/manage up to 200 concurrent connections (because the customer has purchased 200 licenses in total). So as many vSphere Desktop and vCenter Server Desktop as needed.

Q: If you want to split the 100 concurrent connections over several deployments like Develop Test Accept is that possible?

A: Equally, if the customer wanted to support their 200 users (connections) via multiple installed instances of vSphere Desktop/vCenter Server for Horizon View, then provided the total number of virtual desktop users across all instances do not exceed 200, then that would also be compliant with the EULA (for instance, they could install five instances of vSphere Desktop and vCenter Server for Horizon View across multiple servers, each supporting 40 users). What matters is the total number of users vs the number of licenses purchased.

Q: How many licenses are delivered by default when I purchase a VMware Horizon View 100 pack bundle?

A: There is no written rule here but what we see is that you get licenses for 5 ESXi servers with 2 CPU per server completed with 1 vCenter Server Desktop.

Q: How do you get more license keys if needed for vSphere Desktop and/or vCenter Server Desktop?

A: We are still trying to get a clear answer here from VMware, there seems to be a order form you will need to fill out but we haven’t gotten our hands on the correct process and form yet!!

 

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Now if you want to activate a second vCenter Server Desktop you get the above error message.

Summary

  • Horizon Mirage, Horizon Workspace are named user.
  • Horizon View is licensed by concurrent connection.
    • Concurrent connection defined as a powered on desktop virtual machine receiving a remote connection from a device.
    • View Add-ons cannot be deployed on vSphere Desktop that came as part of a View Bundle.
  • vSphere Desktop and vCenter Desktop are restricted to desktop deployments and following exceptions:
    • ‘Desktop VM’ is defined as VM with the following OS: Windows 95/98, Windows 2000 Professional, Windows XP Professional, Windows Vista Ultimate, Business or Enterprise, Windows 7 and Windows 8.
    • Exceptions to ESX usage: View Manager, vCenter Server, Another Connection Broker, any Desktop VM management and performance monitoring tools used solely for, and/or any other Horizon Family products (including Workspace and Mirage).
    • For mixed server + desktop environments, you must buy a la carte!!
  • Horizon Suite is licensed by both named user and concurrent user.
    • Component products within that license metric take on the same license metric.

But most important: You are entitled to as many vSphere Desktop servers and vCenter Desktop instances as long you don’t exceed the total number of concurrent connections that are reasonably necessary for you to exercise the license granted to you.