You can use sites to help the Universal Broker service determine how best to broker remote resources to your end users. A site is a collection of cloud-connected pods in the same physical location, typically in a single data center.

Configuring Sites and Home Sites

By default, a Horizon pod (based on Horizon Connection Server technology) is placed in monitored state. When you change a pod from monitored to managed state to support the creation of assignments, you are prompted to associate the pod with a new or existing site.

When you select Universal Broker as the brokering method for your Horizon Cloud pods in Microsoft Azure, it creates a default site called Default-Site. Participating Horizon Cloud pods are automatically added to the Default-Site. Later, you can configure new sites and move pods from the Default-Site to a configured site.

You can also associate a user or a group of users with a specific site, called a home site.

Sites can serve as a useful part of a disaster recovery solution. For example, you can add pods in different data centers to different sites and entitle users and groups to an assignment that spans those sites. If a data center in one site becomes unavailable, Universal Broker can identify desktops from an available site to fulfill user requests.

Use the Horizon Universal Console to configure sites and home sites. See Configuring Sites for Universal Broker and Configuring Home Sites for Universal Broker.

Using Sites to Define Desktop Search Behavior

When a user accesses an assignment, Universal Broker searches for an available desktop from the pools participating in that assignment. By default, Universal Broker gives preference to the user's home site, the site physically closest to the user, and other sites, in that order.

For assignments that contain dedicated desktop pools, Universal Broker uses the default search behavior only the first time a user requests a desktop. After Universal Broker routes the user's request to a dedicated desktop in this first session, it returns the user directly to the same desktop in subsequent sessions.

You can modify the default search and request routing behavior for individual assignments by configuring site policies and home site overrides. For example, Universal Broker can give preference to the site physically closest to the user instead of the user's home site. Universal Broker can also restrict the scope of the search to desktops from a specific site.

You can also designate a home site override for an assignment. In this case, Universal Broker begins searching for available desktops in the override site instead of the user's home site.

You can configure site policy and home site override settings when you create an assignment, as described in Horizon Pods - Create a Multi-Cloud Assignment of VDI Desktops or Horizon Cloud Pods in Microsoft Azure - Creating and Viewing VDI Multi-Cloud Assignments in Your First-Gen Environment. You can also modify existing site policy and home site override settings by editing an assignment, as described in Edit a Multi-Cloud Assignment in Your Horizon Cloud Tenant Environment.

Note: To resolve the physical locations of users, Universal Broker uses GeoLite2 data created by MaxMind, available from https://www.maxmind.com.

Configuring Sites for Universal Broker

You can use the Sites tab on the Capacity page to configure sites for Universal Broker. A pod must be associated with a site before it can participate in multi-cloud assignments brokered by Universal Broker.

When you change a Horizon pod (based on Horizon Connection Server technology) from monitored to managed state, you are prompted to associate the pod with a new or existing site.

Horizon Cloud pods in Microsoft Azure are automatically added to a default site called Default-Site. Later, you can configure new sites and move pods from the Default-Site to a configured site.

The Sites tab on the Settings > Capacity page shows the list of configured sites in your Universal Broker environment and reports the number of pods associated with each site.


List of sites on Capacity page

Site-Level Actions Available on the Sites Tab

You can perform the following actions from the Sites tab.

Action Description
New Click New to create a site in your Universal Broker environment. Enter values for Name and Description, and click Save.

For example, enter San Francisco as the name of the site that corresponds to your data center situated in San Francisco. The newly created site is added to the Sites list.

Edit Select a site in the list and click Edit to modify the name and description of the site.
Delete The Delete action lets you remove a site permanently from your Universal Broker environment. Before you delete a site, clear the site of any associations with specific pods, users, or assignments:
Note: If you have any multi-cloud assignments that use the deleted site as a home site or home site override, Universal Broker will have problems routing connection requests to resources from these assignments.

To delete a site permanently, select a site in the list and click Delete.

Configuring the Site Association for a Pod

You can configure the site association for a pod by doing one of the following:

Configuring Home Sites for Universal Broker

You can associate a user or a group of users with a specific site in a Universal Broker environment, called a home site. Home sites help you define how Universal Broker searches for resources from assignments to fulfill your end users' connection requests.

One use case for home sites involves managing the connection requests for roaming users and groups. For example, if a user has a home site in San Francisco but is visiting London, Universal Broker begins searching in the San Francisco site to fulfill the user's desktop request rather than routing the request to a desktop closer to the user.

Introducing the Users and Groups Page

The Users and Groups page lists the users and groups who are entitled to multi-cloud assignments in your Universal Broker environment. The page also lets you assign a home site to a user or group.

To open the Users and Groups page, select Settings > Users and Groups.


Screenshot of the Users and Groups screen

The Users and Groups page reports the following information.

Column Details
User Name Displays the name of the user or group.
Domain Displays the Active Directory domain in which the user or group resides.
Type Displays the type of user account.
Home Site Displays the name of the home site associated with the user or group.

Actions Available on the Users and Groups Page

You can perform the following actions from the Users and Groups page.

Action Description
New The New action lets you create a home site assignment that associates a home site with the selected user or group. See Configuring a Home Site Assignment.
Edit Click Edit to change the home site associated with the selected user or group.
Delete Click Delete to remove the existing home site assignment from the selected user or group.

Configuring a Home Site Assignment

To associate a home site with a user or group, perform the following steps.

  1. On the Users and Groups page, click New. The New Home Site Assignment wizard appears.

    New Home Site Assignment wizard
  2. On the Users page of the wizard, specify the user or group that will receive the home site assignment.
    1. For Domain, specify the Active Directory domain in which the user or group resides.
      Note: Only cloud-configured domains are available for selection.
    2. For Find Users, enter the first few characters of the user or group name, and select the user or group of users from the list that appears. Your selection is added to the Selected Users / User Groups list.
      Note: To remove a user or group from the list, select the check box to the left of the user or group, and click Remove.
  3. Specify the details of the home site assignment.
    1. Select the check box next to the user or group that will receive the home site assignment.
    2. Click Assign Home Site and select a site from the menu.
    3. Click Next.
  4. Review the settings on the Summary page, and then click Finish.

The configured user or group appears in the Users and Groups list, with the associated home site indicated under the Home Site column.