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This article will show you how to easily deploy and publish a pool of virtual desktops in a test environment. I will be using Virtual Iron's Single Server Edition software along with Provision Network's Virtual Access Suite to build a Virtual Desktop Infrastructure
Preparing the Virtual Infrastructure
We will need to create six virtual machines, which will include 1 Windows 2003 Server and 5 Windows XP virtual machines.
A few things to remember when preparing your virtual desktops include:
- Configure your XP virtual machines to accept remote desktop connections.
- Make sure exceptions have been placed in the desktop firewall to allow TCP 3389 and TCP 5203.
- It is recommended that these settings be placed in a Group Policy Object within Active Directory, because these settings may change when the desktop is joined to the domain.
Active Directory needs to be configured on Windows 2003 Server virtual machine. Once Active Directory is installed, create 3 new user accounts named User1, User2 and User3. Now create a new group call XP Users, and place your new users in this group. The last step is to create a user account that will be used as a service account for the Virtual Access Suite to control your virtual desktops. Name this account as VAS and place it into the Domain AdminsVAS account to have administrative access over your virtual desktops. Create 5 Windows XP virtual machines named XP1, XP2, XP3, XP4 and XP5. Join these virtual desktops to your new domain.
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Prerequisites for Virtual Access Suite
All components of Virtual Access Suite can be deployed on a single server or individually onto separate servers for scalability. Provision Networks does a good job at providing different deployment scenarios in their documentation. For this example I will install Virtual Access Suite on the Windows 2003 Server virtual machine. Even though this configuration is possible it would not be recommended in a production environment.
There are a few prerequisites for the installation of Virtual Access Suite. All of these can be downloaded from Provision Networks website. First, install Java Runtime Environment 5.0 (Update 7, 8, 9, 10 or 11). Next we need to install .NET Framework 2.0. .NET Framework 2.0 is not required if you plan on running your Provision database on an existing database server. In this example we will need .NET Framework 2.0 because we will be installing SQL Server 2005 Express Edition and using it for our Provision database. After .NET Framework 2.0 is installed download SQL Server 2005 Express Edition and extract it to a temporary folder using the following command:
To install SQL Server 2005 Express Edition with the appropriate settings use this command:
SETUP.EXE /qb ADDLOCAL=SQL_Engine,SQL_Data_Files INSTANCENAME="PROVISION" SECURITYMODE=SQL SAPWD="Prvi$in1" DISABLENETWORKPROTOCOLS=0
Change the password to whatever you want, but remember it because you will need it later.
Installing Virtual Access Suite
Download the latest version of Provision Network's Virtual Access Suite. Run the executable on your Windows 2003 Server virtual machine and choose the following options:
- Select Standard Desktops Only (Desktop Services Edition) from the list of options.
- Select Connection Broker Service from the list of available features.
- Deselect all other options.
- Click Next and complete the installation.
To be continued...