Deploying desktops on virtual machines that are managed by
vCenter Server provides all the storage efficiencies that were previously available only for virtualized servers. Using instant clones or View Composer linked clones as desktop machines increases the storage savings because all virtual machines in a pool share a virtual disk with a base image.
Managing Storage with vSphere vSphere lets you virtualize disk volumes and file systems so that you can manage and configure storage without having to consider where the data is physically stored.
Reducing Storage Requirements with Instant Clones The instant clones feature leverages vSphere vmFork technology (available with vSphere 6.0 U1 and later) to quiesce a running base image, or parent virtual machine, and rapidly create and customize a pool of virtual desktops.
Reducing Storage Requirements with View Composer Because View Composer creates desktop images that share virtual disks with a base image, you can reduce the required storage capacity by 50 to 90 percent.
Storing View Composer Linked Clones on Local Datastores Linked-clone virtual machines can be stored on local datastores, which are internal spare disks on ESXi hosts. Local storage offers advantages such as inexpensive hardware, fast virtual-machine provisioning, high performance power operations, and simple management. However, using local storage limits the vSphere infrastructure configuration options that are available to you. Using local storage is beneficial in certain Horizon 7 environments but not appropriate in others.
Storing Replicas and Clones on Separate Datastores for Instant Clones and View Composer Linked Clones You can place replicas and clones on separate datastores with different performance characteristics. This configuration can speed up disk-intensive operations such as provisioning or running antivirus scans, especially for View Composer linked clones.
Storage Sizing for Instant-Clone and View Composer Linked-Clone Desktop Pools View provides high-level guidelines that can help you determine how much storage an instant-clone or linked-clone desktop pool requires. A table in the Add Desktop Pool wizard shows a general estimate of the desktop pool's storage requirements.
Storage Overcommit for View Composer Linked-Clone Virtual Machines With the storage overcommit feature, you can reduce storage costs by placing more linked-clone virtual machines on a datastore than is possible with full virtual machines. The linked clones can use a logical storage space several times greater than the physical capacity of the datastore.
View Composer Linked-Clone Data Disks View Composer creates more than one data disk to store the components of a linked-clone virtual machine.
Configure View Storage Accelerator for View Composer Linked Clones You can configure View Composer linked-clone desktop pools to enable ESXi hosts to cache virtual machine disk data. This feature, called View Storage Accelerator, uses the Content Based Read Cache (CBRC) feature in ESXi hosts. View Storage Accelerator can reduce IOPS and improve performance during boot storms, when many machines start up or run anti-virus scans at once. The feature is also beneficial when administrators or users load applications or data frequently. To use this feature, you must make sure that View Storage Accelerator is enabled for individual desktop pools.
Reclaim Disk Space on View Composer Linked Clones In vSphere 5.1 and later, you can configure the disk space reclamation feature for View Composer linked-clone desktop pools and automated farms. Starting in vSphere 5.1, Horizon 7 creates linked-clone virtual machines in an efficient disk format that allows ESXi hosts to reclaim unused disk space on the linked clones, reducing the total storage space required for linked clones.
Using VAAI Storage for View Composer Linked Clones If your deployment includes NAS devices that support the vStorage APIs for Array Integration (VAAI), you can enable the View Composer Array Integration (VCAI) feature on View Composer linked-clone desktop pools. This feature uses native NFS snapshot technology to clone virtual machines.
Set Storage Accelerator and Space Reclamation Blackout Times for View Composer Linked Clones For View Composer linked clones, regenerating digest files for View Storage Accelerator and reclaiming virtual machine disk space can use ESXi resources. To ensure that ESXi resources are dedicated to foreground tasks when necessary, you can prevent the ESXi hosts from performing these operations during specified periods of time on specified days.