VMware AppVolumes –  version 2.5.2

Just recently VMware release version 2.5.2 of AppVolumes, the rebrand of the acquisition of CloudVolumes. I’ve done some blogging about AppVolumes for I think it’s a great concept and it offers many opportunities for companies that they lack today.

Product support

The version released is 2.5.2, there are some features and requirements that are important to realize. If we look at product support we see that also Citrix is supported but not the latest version. The following products are supported;
  • VMware Horizon view 6.0.1
  • Citrix XenDesktop 5.5 and 5.6
  • Citrix XenApp 6.5
There is no mention of Horizon 6.0.2 but I’m sure that just a typo on their side. Also Citrix version 7 is not listed so all Citrix customers that would be interested in this cool product (ans who wouldn’t be) have to wait, there is no roadmap available s far as I know. Hopefully it will be released soon, I’m implementing both products.

ESX support

VMware AppVolumes supports all 5.x versions of ESX but has the requirement that the vCenter and ESX versions are aligned. The following versions are supported;
  • 5.0.x
  • 5.1.x
  • 5.5.x

Manager requirements

The VMware Appvolumes manager has a requirement that takes us back in time, it has to be installed on a Microsoft Windows 2008R2 server. It’s a pity VMware hasn’t been working on this a bit more and made sure this was 2012R2 already. I got many customers that want 2012R2 for a new server environment and I can’t blame them.
Also when we look towards the database only SQL server 2008 (+Express) is supported, again a missed chance I would say.
So to recap this part, the following requirements are set for the manager:
  • Microsoft Windows 2008R2
  • Microsoft SQL Server 2008 / Express 2008

Agent requirements

The agent is supported on some basic platforms and not on Microsoft Windows 8.x. The lack of support for this Windows version that is on the market for a while now is stunning. I expected the support to be there with this release but it seems we have to wait.
The following operating systems are supported with VMware Appvolumes 2.5.2:
  • Microsoft Windows 7 32 bits
  • Microsoft Windows 7 64 bits
  • Microsoft Windows 2008R2

Things to remember

There are a number of things you might want to read before you jump in with both feet. 
Microsoft Windows home editions are not supported, I’m sure no one out there uses that for a production environment but it’s good to know.
If you have applications like Skype or iTunes that are user assigned, reconfiguration might occur when you start these applications.
Adding Internet Explorer to an AppStack is not supported. Microsoft as we all know has integrated this “application” so tight with the operating system that you can’t deliver it through AppVolumes. If you virtualize it, Appvolumes can handle delivery of the package.
Novell products are a no go for AppVolumes and frankly who cares… Novell you say?? sorry we moved on 🙂
Last but not least, Apple iTunes (yeah a real business application, NOT) has to be assigned prior to user login to get it working with AppVolumes.
Read the full release notes at VMware
Hopefully this gives a quick look for if you plan to start with Appvolumes.

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