5 free tools for VMware View VDI admins to try

VMware provides its own features and capabilities, but creative developers keep filling the gaps with cool and useful utilities of their own

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This tool can help you with your calculations concerning the sizing of your VMware view environment, and it provides nearly 60 different inputs to help come up with the result set. It's a pretty comprehensive tool, prompting for details such as the number of VMs; VM type and sizing information; number of pools, parent VMs, and snapshots; host information such as sockets per host, cores per socket, and VMs per core; display protocol information; IOPS information; storage array capabilities, and more. For a deeper explanation and more details for each of the various input fields, be sure to visit the online manual page.

This version of Leibovici's online calculator is targeted at VMware View designs; however, it can also be used for other VDI types running on top of a vSphere infrastructure.

One last thing to keep in mind while using this online calculator tool: There are no guarantees being made as to the results of the calculations. The results are based on best practices and the author's field experience deploying dozens of VDI solutions. If nothing else, the result set should keep you from flying blind.

Login VSI

Part of any good VDI management is being able to figure out how to decide the optimal hardware configuration (right sizing) needed to support the desired number of users and applications in your environment. It sure would be nice to be able to test and predict the impact that a change in software or hardware would make so that you aren't surprised by unexpected performance issues. To do that, you'll need a good performance benchmarking tool in your utility belt, and international IT service provider Login Consultants has created just that.

Login VSI is a benchmarking tool that provides insight into the performance and scalability of VDI environments by simulating typical user workloads found in the office. It visualizes the differences between results in a single chart, helps to recognize trends, and provides insight into the performance at the virtual machine and hypervisor level. It also provides information about the reliability of both the current and future environment.

This benchmarking tool provides information about the performance of the infrastructure by generating typical user workloads much like a regular employee would by using Microsoft Word, Excel, Outlook, and Internet Explorer. It does so by spawning a new unique user session every few seconds. But instead of using a simple static load, the system gets saturated with workloads that simulate real-world usage to help you find the point where the system becomes unstable. This is essentially the point where the maximum capacity of users in your infrastructure is identified.

The company has also recently announced a new beta module that adds client side performance testing as well. Some of the additional tests that it can perform include:

  • Character response: How long does it take to press a key on the keyboard and return it onscreen via protocol?
  • Large text response: How long does it take to show a large block of text onscreen via protocol?
  • Mouse click feedback: How long does it take to register and handle a mouse click within the remoting session?
  • Image quality and loading times: How long does it take to show a complex image onscreen via protocol? This image has been specifically designed to measure quality and speed of different protocols in an independent way.

If you need to go even deeper with the simulations, there is a Pro version that you can pay for that will simulate light, medium, heavy, multimedia, and even customizable workloads to better match the behavior of your users. The Pro version also lets you test beyond 50 user sessions.

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