When you create an automated desktop pool, you can configure certain options. Use this worksheet to prepare your configuration options before you create the pool.

Table 1. Worksheet: Configuration Options for Creating an Automated Pool That Contains Full Virtual Machines



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User assignment

Choose the type of user assignment:

  • In a dedicated-assignment pool, each user is assigned to a machine. Users receive the same machine each time they log in to the pool.

  • In a floating-assignment pool, users receive different machines each time they log in.

Enable automatic assignment

In a dedicated-assignment pool, a machine is assigned to a user when the user first logs in to the pool. You can also explicitly assign machines to users.

If you do not enable automatic assignment, you must explicitly assign a machine to each user.

You can assign machines manually even when automatic assignment is enabled.

vCenter Server

Select the vCenter Server that manages the virtual machines in the pool.

Desktop Pool ID

The unique name that identifies the pool in Horizon Administrator.

If multiple vCenter Servers are running in your environment, make sure that another vCenter Server is not using the same pool ID.

A Connection Server configuration can be a standalone Connection Server instance or a pod of replicated instances that share a common View LDAP configuration.

Display name

The pool name that users see when they log in from a client device. If you do not specify a display name, the pool ID is displayed to users.

Access group

Select an access group in which to place the pool or leave the pool in the default root access group.

If you use an access group, you can delegate managing the pool to an administrator who has a specific role.


Access groups are different from vCenter Server folders that store desktop virtual machines. You select a vCenter Server folder later in the wizard with other vCenter Server settings.

Delete machine after logoff

If you select floating user assignment, choose whether to delete machines after users log off.


You set this option on the Desktop Pool Settings page.

Desktop Pool Settings

Settings that determine the desktop state, power status when a virtual machine is not in use such as display protocol and so on.

Stop provisioning on error

You can direct Horizon 7 to stop provisioning or continue to provision virtual machines in a desktop pool after an error occurs during the provisioning of a virtual machine. If you leave this setting selected, you can prevent a provisioning error from recurring on multiple virtual machines.

Virtual Machine Naming

Choose whether to provision machines by manually specifying a list of machine names or by providing a naming pattern and the total number of machines.

Specify names manually

If you specify names manually, prepare a list of machine names and, optionally, the associated user names.

Naming Pattern

If you use this naming method, provide the pattern.

The pattern you specify is used as a prefix in all the machine names, followed by a unique number to identify each machine.

Maximum number of machines

If you use a naming pattern, specify the total number of machines in the pool.

You can also specify a minimum number of machines to provision when you first create the pool.

Number of spare (powered on) machines

If you specify names manually or use a naming pattern, specify a number of machines to keep available and powered on for new users.

When you specify names manually, this option is called # Unassigned machines kept powered on.

Minimum number of machines

If you use a naming pattern and provision machines on demand, specify a minimum number of machines in the pool.

The minimum number of machines is created when you create the pool.

If you provision machines on demand, additional machines are created as users connect to the pool for the first time or as you assign machines to users.

Use vSphere Virtual SAN

Specify whether to use Virtual SAN, if available. Virtual SAN is a software-defined storage tier that virtualizes the local physical storage disks available on a cluster of ESXi hosts.


Select the virtual machine template to use for creating the pool.

vCenter Server folder

Select the folder in vCenter Server in which the desktop pool resides.

Host or cluster

Select the ESXi host or cluster on which the virtual machines run.

In vSphere 5.1 or later, you can select a cluster with up to 32 ESXi hosts.

Resource pool

Select the vCenter Server resource pool in which the desktop pool resides.


Choose the type of datastore:

  • Individual datastore. Select individual datastores on which to store the desktop pool.

  • Storage DRS. Select the Storage Distributed Resource Scheduler (DRS) cluster that contains shared or local datastores. Storage DRS is a load balancing utility that assigns and moves storage workloads to available datastores.

    If your desktop pool was upgraded from Horizon 7 version 7.1 to Horizon 7 version 7.2, and you want to modify the pool to use the Storage DRS cluster, you must deselect the existing datastores and select Storage DRS.


If you use Virtual SAN, select only one datastore.

Use View Storage Accelerator

Determine whether ESXi hosts cache common virtual machine disk data. View Storage Accelerator can improve performance and reduce the need for extra storage I/O bandwidth to manage boot storms and anti-virus scanning I/O storms.

This feature is supported on vSphere 5.0 and later.

This feature is enabled by default.

Transparent Page Sharing Scope

Select the level at which to allow transparent page sharing (TPS). The choices are Virtual Machine (the default), Pool, Pod, or Global. If you turn on TPS for all the machines in the pool, pod, or globally, the ESXi host eliminates redundant copies of memory pages that result if the machines use the same guest operating system or applications.

Page sharing happens on the ESXi host. For example, if you enable TPS at the pool level but the pool is spread across multiple ESXi hosts, only virtual machines on the same host and within the same pool will share pages. At the global level, all machines managed by Horizon 7 on the same ESXi host can share memory pages, regardless of which pool the machines reside in.


The default setting is not to share memory pages among machines because TPS can pose a security risk. Research indicates that TPS could possibly be abused to gain unauthorized access to data in very limited configuration scenarios.

Guest customization

Select a customization specification (SYSPREP) from the list to configure licensing, domain attachment, DHCP settings, and other properties on the machines.

Alternatively, you can customize the machines manually after they are created.