I volunteered to review this book as I was intrigued by the potential of one based on View and the security options of a VDI infrastructure. I have been working with View and the Horizon Suite from VMware for the last eight months or so and am familiar with the various security options. What I hoped to find interesting was the real world implementation of View security beyond the basic Best Practices that are readily available.
Who would benefit from this book?
Anyone considering View for their VDI project or anyone in charge of designing the environment may benefit from reading this start to finish. If you have no experience, it’s a pretty good manual for setup and network connections between the View objects. Obviously, the basic security setups are covered also. I have built four environments (three labs and one production) using View 5.2 and 5.3 and I got some good tips, but it’s not a cover-cover read for anyone with some experience. It’s not a bad reference tool though.
What’s in the book?
This is a good round-up of most of the documentation you would end up finding and reading in bits if you were just starting out. It covers basic design, setup and security. There are screenshots to complement the instructions, which are helpful if you’re new to the product. If you’re looking for something more comprehensive, like total environment design and security, this isn’t it. The book doesn’t lie though; it’s explicit on what it’s going to tell you, and gives you some web links on reading about what it isn’t.
There is a basic design based on a mid-size office included, but it’s limited to Connection and Security server connections and a couple desktop pool options.
This will help if you’re considering a DMZ or multiple DMZ’s for your Security servers. The book does explain why the DMZ is important and how to harden the connection between the LAN and DMZ. More aggressive security concepts are explored, like a DMZ between the LAN and your View network. These parts of the book were standout. There is also a good section on the load balancing variations that can be built using vCNS, vShield and third party hardware.
The security continues to get better near the end when he covers ADM templates. However, like the rest of the book, the options are covered in great detail, but no reasons on why or why not to implement some of them. I was looking for more of an experience based security design book and “from the trenches” anecdotes on what security options work better in certain situations.
Backup options are also covered, but this is basic stuff. VMware has never claimed to be backup software, and third party tools are absolutely imperative in backing up View and vSphere. Still, what needs to be backed up and why is covered and that’s always a good reminder.
This is a good complement to your VMware book collection as a reference for View environments if you’re an experienced architect or administrator. It’s worth more attention if you need to prepare for your first View build. Keep in mind that this book is based on View 5.2 even though it isn’t mentioned in the title.