ginadaly
VMware Employee
VMware Employee

Asset Published: Manually Creating Optimized Windows Images for VMware Horizon VMs

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Manually Creating Optimized Windows Images for VMware Horizon VMs | VMware sWORDsarakelian

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12 Replies
vJoeG
VMware Employee
VMware Employee

Gina,

My feedback is that this asset has gotten many, many hits from my customers as well as colleagues and team in our efforts to build Master images for projects and labs.

I'd be interested to see how many hits this gets, 'Daily'

Top marks for sure!

------------------
Joe Graziano
Senior Solution Engineer - EUC Federal
VCP7-DTM, VCP6-DM, VCP6-DCV
vExpert, vExpertPro
jgraziano@vmware.com
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sjesse
Leadership
Leadership

Maybe add something about why certain choices are made, I know when I refer people to it and they ask questions there are some choices I don't know how to explain every time. Its probably general image management best practices but I keep getting asked why are we generalizing when it works fine when you don't.

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sWORDs
VMware Employee
VMware Employee

9-12.6K hits per month in the last 12 months and we had somewhere around 20 remarks/questions on the guide. A large portion of those are praises, and we had 9 people that couldn’t get it working.

7 of those deviated from the guide (and had no issues when following it to the letter) 2 didn’t respond to follow up questions. The others where textual changes which we adjusted.

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sWORDs
VMware Employee
VMware Employee

Which choices would you like to see explained?

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ap_idb
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

The VM Tools section is either new, or I totally overlooked it.

Does installing tools without those custom options have any known performance impact?

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sWORDs
VMware Employee
VMware Employee

It was in there before, but from the UI. The video driver is done to ease updates (no sequence dependency between Horizon Agent and VMware Tools), the other removed features came from earlier recommendation, but I haven’t measured it.

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ap_idb
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

That makes a lot of sense, my other question was about updated VMtools as I saw later in this documentation where they just update with no regard for sequence! Back to the base image for those changes.

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sjesse
Leadership
Leadership

Why are is it suggested to export the VM, I'm assuming its to recover the space savings. Why not instead run the vmktools command to recover the space like in the below kb. I'm assuming its because its easier, but I'm seeing people here and there have issues with the export and import of ovf files through the webclient like in Re: Invalid response code: 500 so I'm wondering if the vmkfstools command is better.

https://kb.vmware.com/s/article/

  1. Ensure that the disk has no Snapshots.
  2. In a Windows virtual machine, run the SDelete command (or a tool with similar functionality) to zero out all unused space. The syntax for the SDelete command is SDelete -z driveletter. If you use SDelete, ensure that you use version 1.6 or later.

    Note: Zeroing all unused blocks inflates the disk to its full size as if it was an eagerzeroed disk. Ensure that there is sufficient space on the datastore to allow the disk to grow to its full size. For more information, see Determining if a VMDK is zeroedthick or eagerzeroedthick (1011170).
  3. Shut down the virtual machine or temporarily remove the virtual disk from the virtual machine to ensure that it is not in use.
  4. Erase all unused blocks by running the command:

    vmkfstools -K /path/to/disk-name.vmdk
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ggordon
VMware Employee
VMware Employee

Both methods will work to reclaim unused space. Using Export to OVF also helps if you need to copy and use the VM in a different vCenter environment.

sWORDs
VMware Employee
VMware Employee

vmkfstools only works on VMFS storage, plus not everyone has SSH access.

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Dizzion_Stewie
Contributor
Contributor

There is a step missing after 

9.6. Select the Driver

It is necessary to cancel the tools installer so that the windows ISO becomes available otherwise you won't be able to select next to install to the newly discovered unallocated space.

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Mickeybyte
Hot Shot
Hot Shot

@Dizzion_Stewie 

This should not be necessary if you used 2 CD/DVD-Drives (Step 8). The first one is connected to your Windows ISO. Once you click "Install VMware tools" it will be attached to the second CD/DVD drive and the Windows ISO will still be available. 

If you didn't add a second CD/DVD drive, then the Windows ISO would be disconnected and replaced by the VMware tools ISO indeed.

 

Regards,
Mickeybyte

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