You can use uniform resource identifiers (URIs) to create web page or email links that end users can click to start Horizon Client, connect to a server, or open a remote desktop or published application.

You create these links by constructing URIs that provide some or all the following information, so that your end users do not need to supply it.

  • Server address
  • Port number for the server
  • Active Directory user name
  • RADIUS or RSA SecurID user name, if different from the Active Directory user name
  • Domain name
  • Remote desktop or published application display name
  • Actions including reset, log out, and start session

To construct a URI, you use the vmware-view URI scheme with Horizon Client specific path and query parts.

To use URIs to start Horizon Client, Horizon Client must already be installed on client computers.

Syntax for Creating vmware-view URIs

URI syntax includes the vmware-view URI scheme, a path part to specify the remote desktop or published application, and, optionally, a query to specify remote desktop or published application actions or configuration options.

URI Specification

Use the following syntax to create URIs to start Horizon Client.

vmware-view://[authority-part][/path-part][?query-part]

The only required element is the URI scheme, vmware-view. Because the scheme name is case-sensitive for some versions of some client operating systems, type vmware-view.

Important: In all parts, non-ASCII characters must first be encoded according to UTF-8 [STD63], and then each octet of the corresponding UTF-8 sequence must be percent-encoded to be represented as URI characters.

For information about encoding for ASCII characters, see the URL encoding reference at http://www.utf8-chartable.de/.

authority-part
The server address and, optionally, a user name, a non-default port number, or both. Underscores (_) are not supported in server names. Server names must conform to DNS syntax.

To specify a user name, use the following syntax.

user1@server-address

You cannot specify a UPN address, which includes the domain. To specify the domain, you can use the domainName query part in the URI.

To specify a port number, use the following syntax.

server-address:port-number
path-part
The display name of the remote desktop or published application. The display name is specified in Horizon Console when the desktop pool or application pool is created. If the display name contains a space, use the %20 encoding mechanism to represent the space.
Alternatively, you can specify a desktop or application ID, which is a path string that includes the desktop or application pool ID. To find a desktop or application ID, open ADSI Edit on the Connection Server host, navigate to DC=vdi,dc=vmware,dc=int, and select the OU=Applications node. All the desktop and application pools are listed. The distinguishedName attribute specifies the ID value. You must encode the ID value before you specify it in a URI, for example, cn%3Dwin7-32%2Cou%3Dapplications%2Cdc%3Dvdi%2Cdc%3Dvmware%2Cdc%3Dint.
Note: More than one remote desktop or published application can have the same display name, but the desktop and application ID is unique. To specify a particular remote desktop or published application, use the desktop or application ID rather than the display name.
query-part
The configuration options to use, or the remote desktop or published application actions to perform. Queries are not case-sensitive. To use multiple queries, use an ampersand (&) between the queries. If the queries conflict, Horizon Client uses the last query in the list. Use the following syntax.
query1=value1[&query2=value2...]

Supported Queries

The following queries are supported for this type of Horizon Client. If you are creating URIs for multiple types of clients, such as desktop clients and mobile clients, see the installation and setup guide for each type of client system for the list of supported queries.

action
Table 1. Values That Can Be Used with the action Query
Value Description
browse Displays a list of available remote desktops and published applications hosted on the specified server. You are not required to specify a remote desktop or published application when using this action.

If you use the browse action and specify a remote desktop or published application, the remote desktop or published application is highlighted in the list of available items.

start-session Opens the specified remote desktop or published application. If no action query is provided and the remote desktop or published application name is provided, start-session is the default action.
reset

Shuts down and restarts the specified remote desktop or published application. Unsaved data is lost. Resetting a remote desktop is the same as pressing the Reset button on a physical PC.

restart Shuts down and restarts the specified remote desktop. Restarting a remote desktop is the same as the Windows operating system restart command. The operating system usually prompts the user to save any unsaved data before it restarts.
logoff Logs the user out of the guest operating system in the remote desktop. If you specify a published application, the action is ignored or the end user sees the warning message "Invalid URI action."
args
Specifies command-line arguments to add when the published application starts. Use the syntax args= value, where value is a string. Use percent encoding for the following characters:
  • For a colon (:), use %3A
  • For a back slash (\), use %5C
  • For a space ( ), use %20
  • For a double quotation mark ("), use %22

For example, to specify the filename "My new file.txt" for the Notepad++ application, use %22My%20new%20file.txt%22.

appProtocol
For published applications, valid values are PCOIP and BLAST. For example, to specify PCoIP, use the syntax appProtocol=PCOIP.
defaultLaunchView
Sets the default view for when Horizon Client starts. Valid values are recent and servers.
desktopProtocol
For remote desktops, valid values are PCOIP and BLAST. For example, to specify PCoIP, use the syntax desktopProtocol=PCOIP.
domainName
Specifies the NETBIOS domain name associated with the user who is connecting to the remote desktop or published application. For example, you might use mycompany rather than mycompany.com.
tokenUserName
Specifies the RSA or RADIUS user name. Use this query only if the RSA or RADIUS user name is different from the Active Directory user name. If you do not specify this query and RSA or RADIUS authentication is required, Horizon Client uses the Windows user name. The syntax is tokenUserName=name.

Examples of vmware-view URIs

You can use the vmware-view URI scheme to create hypertext links or buttons and include these links in email or on a Web page. For example, an end user can click a URI link to start a remote desktop with the startup options that you specify.

Each URI example is followed by a description of what the end user sees after clicking the URI link.

  1. vmware-view://view.mycompany.com/Primary%20Desktop?action=start-session

    Horizon Client starts and connects to the view.mycompany.com server. The login dialog box prompts the user for a user name, domain name, and password. After a successful login, the client connects to the remote desktop that has the display name Primary Desktop, and the user is logged in to the guest operating system.

    Note: In this example, the default display protocol and window size are used. The default display protocol is PCoIP and the default window size is full screen.
  2. vmware-view://view.mycompany.com/cn%3Dwin7-32%2Cou%3Dapplications%2Cdc%3Dvdi%2Cdc%3Dvmware%2Cdc%3Dint

    Horizon Client starts and connects to the view.mycompany.com server. The login dialog box prompts the user for a user name, domain name, and password. After a successful login, the client connects to the remote desktop that has the desktop ID CN=win7-32,OU=Applications,DC=vdi,DC=vmware,DC=int (encoded value cn%3Dwin7-32%2Cou%3Dapplications%2Cdc%3Dvdi%2Cdc%3Dvmware%2Cdc%3Dint).

  3. vmware-view://view.mycompany.com:7555/Primary%20Desktop

    This URI has the same effect as the previous example, except that it uses the nondefault port of 7555 for the Connection Server instance. (The default port is 443.) Because a remote desktop identifier is provided, the remote desktop opens, even though the start-session action is not included in the URI.

  4. vmware-view://fred@view.mycompany.com/Finance%20Desktop?desktopProtocol=PCOIP

    Horizon Client starts and connects to the view.mycompany.com server. In the login dialog box, the User name text box is populated with fred. The user must supply the domain name and password. After a successful login, the client connects to the remote desktop that has the display name Finance Desktop, and the user is logged in to the guest operating system. The connection uses the PCoIP display protocol.

  5. vmware-view://view.mycompany.com/Calculator?action=start-session&appProtocol=BLAST

    Horizon Client starts and connects to the view.mycompany.com server. In the login dialog box, the user must supply the user name, domain name, and password. After a successful login, the client connects to the published application that has the display name Calculator. The connection uses the VMware Blast display protocol.

  6. vmware-view://fred@view.mycompany.com/Finance%20Desktop?domainName=mycompany

    Horizon Client starts and connects to the view.mycompany.com server. In the login dialog box, the User name text box is populated with fred, and the Domain text box is populated with mycompany. The user must supply only a password. After a successful login, the client connects to the remote desktop that has the display name Finance Desktop, and the user is logged in to the guest operating system.

  7. vmware-view://view.mycompany.com/

    Horizon Client starts and the user is taken to the login prompt for connecting to the view.mycompany.com server.

  8. vmware-view://view.mycompany.com/Primary%20Desktop?action=reset

    Horizon Client starts and connects to the view.mycompany.com server. The login dialog box prompts the user for a user name, domain name, and password. After a successful login, Horizon Client resets the specified desktop.

    Note: This action is available only if a Horizon administrator has enabled the reset feature for the remote desktop.
  9. vmware-view://view.mycompany.com/Primary%20Desktop?action=restart

    Horizon Client starts and connects to the view.mycompany.com server. The login dialog box prompts the user for a user name, domain name, and password. After a successful login, Horizon Client restarts the specified desktop.

    Note: This action is available only if a Horizon administrator has enabled the restart feature for the remote desktop.
  10. vmware-view://

    If Horizon Client is already running, it comes to the foreground. If Horizon Client is not running, it starts.

  11. vmware-view://?defaultlaunchview=recent

    Horizon Client starts and the user sees the Recent window.

  12. vmware-view://10.10.10.10/My%20Notepad++?args=%22My%20new%20file.txt%22

    Starts My Notepad++ on server 10.10.10.10 and passes the argument My new file.txt in the published application start command. The filename is enclosed in double quotes because it contains spaces.

  13. vmware-view://10.10.10.10/Notepad++%2012?args=a.txt%20b.txt

    Starts Notepad++ 12 on server 10.10.10.10 and passes the argument a.text b.txt in the published application start command. Because the argument is not enclosed in quotes, a space separates the filenames and the two files are opened separately in Notepad++.

    Note: Published applications can differ in the way that they use command-line arguments. For example, if you pass the argument a.txt b.txt to WordPad, WordPad opens only one file, a.txt.

HTML Code Examples

You can use URIs to make hypertext links and buttons to include in emails or on Web pages. The following examples show how to use the URI from the first URI example to code the hypertext link labeled Test Link and a button labeled TestButton.

<html>
<body>

<a href="vmware-view://view.mycompany.com/Primary%20Desktop?action=start-session">Test Link</a><br>

<form><input type="button" value="TestButton" onClick="window.location.href=
'vmware-view://view.mycompany.com/Primary%20Desktop?action=start-session'"></form> <br>

</body>
</html>