On RDS hosts with Windows Server 2008 R2 or a later operating system, you can upgrade the View Agent or Horizon Agent software and edit pool settings so that the RDS host can provide remote desktops and remote Windows-based applications.

With VMware Horizon 6.0 and later releases, you can use Microsoft RDS hosts to provide remote applications, in addition to remote desktops. With this added functionality, the previously hidden server farm name is displayed in Horizon Administrator.


  • Verify that at least one Horizon Connection Server instance in the replicated group has been upgraded. Connection Server must be upgraded first so that the secure JMS pairing mechanism can work with Horizon Agent.
  • Verify that the RDS host currently hosting remote desktops is running Windows Server 2008 R2, Windows Server 2012, or Windows Server 2012 R2. Windows Server 2008 (Terminal Services) was supported for earlier versions of View but is not a supported operating system for this release. If you do not have a supported Windows Server operating system, you must do a fresh installation rather than an upgrade. For a list of supported operating systems, see Supported Operating Systems for Horizon Agent.
  • Verify that the RDS Host role is installed in the operating system. See the procedure called "Install Remote Desktop Services on Windows Server 2008 R2" in the Setting Up Published Desktops and Applications in Horizon 7 document.
  • Familiarize yourself with the procedure for running the Horizon Agent installer. See the procedure called "Install Horizon Agent on a Remote Desktop Services Host," in Setting Up Published Desktops and Applications in Horizon 7, available by clicking the Help button in Horizon Administrator.
  • Verify that you have logged off from all remote desktops and remote applications.
  • Verify that you have a domain user account with administrative privileges on the hosts that you will use to run the installer and perform the upgrade.


  1. In Horizon Administrator, edit the desktop pool settings for the pool to disable the pool.
    Go to Catalog > Desktop Pools, select the pool, and click Edit.
  2. On the RDS host, download and run the installer for the new version of Horizon Agent.
    You can download the installer from the VMware Web site.
  3. In Horizon Administrator, edit the farm settings and set the default display protocol to PCoIP or VMware Blast.
    Go to Resources > Farms, select the farm, and click Edit.

    You can also use a setting that allows the end user to choose the protocol. To use remote applications, the protocol must be PCoIP or VMware Blast. Remote applications are not supported with RDP.

  4. In Horizon Administrator, edit the desktop pool settings for the pool to enable the pool.


This host can now provide remote applications in addition to remote desktops. In Horizon Administrator, if you go to Catalog > Desktop Pools, you see that the type of pool is RDS Desktop Pool. If you go to Resources > Farms, you see a farm ID in the list that corresponds to the pool ID.

What to do next

Upgrade the clients. See Upgrade the Client Application.