These documentation topics here apply when you have just received the Welcome to the VMware Horizon Service email and are ready to onboard your first pod. This onboarding set of topics outlines the relationship between the Horizon universal license and your Horizon Cloud tenant account. The license entitles you to use the cloud-hosted services as well as use the subscription licensing with your pods. This topic and its subtopics also outline the process for your first-time onboarding a pod to Horizon Cloud. This first-time onboarding flow is the key that enables you to exploit your Horizon subscription licenses, onboard your existing Horizon pods on VMware SDDCs to cloud-hosted services, deploy new Horizon Cloud pods on Microsoft Azure, and leverage all of the cloud-hosted services that VMware Horizon® Cloud Service™ currently provides for cloud-connected pods.

You onboard an existing Horizon pod that is located in a VMware SDDC to the cloud for two primary use cases: to activate a subscription license for that pod and enable your use of those cloud-hosted services that Horizon Cloud provides for that type of pod. You onboard a Horizon Cloud pod on Microsoft Azure by using the Horizon Universal Console to deploy that type of pod into your Microsoft Azure cloud subscription.

Tip: If you already have at least one cloud-connected pod, instead of this onboarding set of topics, use the companion administration set of topics for information about how to onboard subsequent pods after doing your very first one.

Relationship Between Onboarding Your First Pod with the Horizon Universal License, the My VMware Account or VMware Cloud Services Org Associated with That License, Your Horizon Cloud Tenant, and the Welcome Email

Currently, a person's access to use this service can be set up in a variety of ways — a person's specific My VMware account might be registered to use the service, a person might belong to an org in VMware Cloud services within which access to the service is granted, or that person might belong to a Workspace ONE environment that is integrated with Horizon Cloud. VMware Cloud services uses the terms cloud service accounts and VMware IDs (see How Do I Sign Up for VMware Cloud Services).

Note: VMware Cloud services is also known by the name VMware Cloud Services Engagement Platform. You might see those two names used interchangeably in the Horizon Cloud documentation and in the Horizon Universal Console.

At a high-level, the connect-the-dots between these elements is:

  1. You make your subscription license purchase — either through VMware Sales or through your partner. Currently the Horizon universal license is the license to get. The license will be associated with the specific My VMware account or VMware Cloud services account that is used in the license request.
  2. VMware sets up the new Horizon Cloud tenant account, associates it with the same account or VMware Cloud services org or Workspace ONE environment with which the Horizon universal license is associated, and specifies one of the regional Horizon Cloud control plane instances for the tenant account. The information in the license request is used to determine which regional control plane instance is appropriate for the tenant account. These regional control plane instances are related to the data centers that host the cloud control plane, as described in the service description document available from the Horizon Cloud Service Description and Service Level Agreement page.
  3. VMware sends the Welcome to the VMware Horizon Service email to the email address associated with the purchase order or the trial request. For an example of this welcome email, see the following screenshot. Among other information, the email states the account and region that are associated with the tenant account. The stated region appears as one of the following strings: USA, Europe, Australia, USA-2, Europe-2, and Australia-2.
    Note: On June 9, 2020, the Welcome email was updated to standardized regional names. If you received your email before that date, your email might have contained one of these system-generated strings: USA, EU_CENTRAL_1, AP_SOUTHEAST_2, PROD1_NORTHCENTRALUS2_CP1, PROD1_NORTHEUROPE_CP1, and PROD1_AUSTRALIAEAST_CP1.

    Screenshot example of the top portion of the Welcome email.
  4. After the email is received, you read the information it contains and use the hypertext links in the Getting Started section to get to key destinations. Those URLs link you to the tenant environment portal (named the Horizon Universal Console or console for short), the Horizon Cloud Connector software download location, and online documentation.
Important: After the email is first received, it is prudent to log in to the tenant environment portal and add additional people you want to enable to onboard pods and manage onboarded pods. Adding those people even before onboarding your first pod prevents delays involving timely access to your tenant account. As an example, a delay might occur if the original person is no longer available in your company and you have no one on your team who knows the credentials to log in. Access to your tenant account is needed to onboard pods, as well as to perform related workflows, such as reconfiguring the Horizon Cloud Connector. If access to your tenant account is interrupted as a result of the main person leaving your organization, you would have to open a support request to VMware to update the tenant account's associated My VMware account, which could cause a delay in your logging in to the onboarding and management portals.

For the steps to add additional people to access the tenant environment, see Add Administrators to Log in to Your Horizon Cloud Tenant Environment.

Getting the license

You must get the license first, because that is the point at which VMware generates your Horizon Cloud tenant account and environment.

Your new Horizon Cloud tenant account in the cloud control plane

Your Horizon Cloud tenant account is important to you even when your only use case is to use a subscription license with your existing Horizon pods, and not imagining using cloud-hosted services with your pods. The reason why this tenant account is important to you is that same tenant account is use for both:

  • Logging in to the Horizon Cloud Connector onboarding and management portal. The Horizon Cloud Connector portal is used for onboarding a Horizon pod to the cloud to use the subscription license, as well as to enable cloud-hosted services. After you complete the initial onboarding of the Horizon pod, you can log in to the Horizon Cloud Connector portal at any time to manage features of the connector itself.
  • Logging in to the cloud-based Horizon Cloud tenant environment portal, named the Horizon Universal Console or console for short. This administrative console is used to add additional administrators so that they can also use the Horizon Cloud Connector onboarding and configuration portal besides the initial account with which the license and access is associated. This console is also used to access the cloud-hosted services, such as the Cloud Monitoring Service's monitoring dashboard and reports and the pod deployment wizard for deploying into Microsoft Azure.
How that tenant account relates to the My VMware account or VMware Cloud services cloud services account associated with the license

One of these accounts must be used to obtain the Horizon universal license in the first place. The initial account is registered with the newly created Horizon Cloud tenant account and environment, and is used for authentication to the Horizon Cloud tenant environment's portals. When the tenant account is created, the Welcome to the VMware Horizon Service email is sent to the specific email address that is configured the My VMware account or VMware Cloud services cloud services account. The following screenshot is an illustration of the welcome mail. You must ensure that you or someone in your organization is able to get the welcome email from that email account which is associated with the initial account which was used to purchase the subscription license, so that you'll can make use of the links in that email to go to downloads for the Horizon Cloud Connector, open the administrative console, and so on.

The following screenshot illustrates a sample of the welcome email and calls out where an My VMware account is referenced.


Screenshot of an example of the welcome email with arrows to where the My VMware account information is referenced.
Your new Horizon Cloud tenant environment and its portal

As soon as you get the welcome email from VMware, the account stated in that email can log in to that newly created Horizon Cloud tenant environment, even when you have zero cloud-connected pods. However, at this initial point, the administrative console provides access to a single initial screen and a small subset of cloud-hosted workflow actions within that screen.

The following screenshot shows the console at the point in time when your tenant account is first created. The list that follows describes the key actions you can take in that screen prior to onboarding your first pod.


Screenshot of the initial Getting Started page before any pods are connected to your Horizon Cloud environment.

Tip: Click on the General Setup bar in that screen to see two of the key actions that are listed below.

When your Horizon Cloud tenant record is configured with the option to onboard to VMware Cloud Services Engagement Platform and the tenant is not yet associated with an org in VMware Cloud services, a blue banner will appear at the top of the window that provides a way to activate that onboarding process. The following screenshot illustrates what you might see if your tenant record meets those conditions.


Blue banner about onboarding to VMware Cloud Services with an Onboard activation button.

For information about that process, see Onboard Your Horizon Cloud Tenant to VMware Cloud Services. If you are accessing this portal from your Workspace ONE environment by clicking the Horizon Cloud tile, that blue banner will not appear. When your tenant record is not configured with the option to onboard to VMware Cloud Services Engagement Platform, that blue banner will not appear.

  • In the VMware SDDC row, click Add to learn how to download the Horizon Cloud Connector to connect a Horizon pod on VMware SDDC to your cloud tenant. A Horizon pod on VMware SDDC is the pod type that is based on Horizon Connection Server software components. Such pods are those located in your VMware-supported SDDC, whether in an on-premises vSphere infrastructure or in a cloud-based VMware SDDC environment.
    Note: After clicking Add from this row, please ensure you follow the Download links that are displayed in the screen. Those steps are described in High-Level Workflow When You are Onboarding a Horizon Pod. Those steps will provide the smoothest experience at this time as they have links to information about prerequisites, DNS and ports requirements, and the precise sequence of steps to follow.

    Screenshot illustrating the VMware SDDC row in tenant portal's Getting Started screen
  • In the Microsoft Azure row, start the automated wizard that will deploy a pod into your subscription in Microsoft Azure. Such pods are based on the VMware Horizon Cloud pod-manager technology.
    Important: Do not use this row if you want to cloud connect a pod that is located in Azure VMware Solution (AVS). For that scenario, you must follow the steps in High-Level Workflow When You are Onboarding a Horizon Pod.

    Screenshot illustrating the Microsoft Azure row in tenant portal's Getting Started screen.
  • In the General Setup section, add the first set of administrators to whom you want to give the ability to log in to the Horizon Cloud Connector onboarding and configuration portal and the Horizon Universal Console (the portal to your tenant environment). The My VMware account that was used for setting up the tenant is prefilled there by default. As a result, you will see that row marked with a green check mark. However, that is only because there is always the one initial My VMware account associated with the tenant account when the tenant environment is created.
    Tip: To prevent being locked out of both your tenant environment and the Horizon Cloud Connector onboarding and configuration portal due to the initial My VMware account going inactive for some reason — such as that person leaving your company or organization — it is prudent to add your first set of administrators as soon as you receive the Welcome to Horizon Service email, even before you onboard a pod for the first time.

    My VMware Accounts row in tenant portal's Getting Started screen.
  • In the General Setup section, verify the Cloud Monitoring Service (CMS) settings you want. The CMS is enabled by default, so you will see that row marked with a green check mark. At this point, you can choose to deactivate that feature even prior to onboarding any pods.
    Cloud Monitoring Service row in tenant portal's Getting Started screen
Tip: Before you can access other actions and workflows in that portal beyond the above four, you must have an onboarded pod, that pod must be up and online and communicating with the cloud management plane, and have an Active Directory domain registered with your tenant environment. The console blocks access to other management actions until the Active Directory domain registration workflow is completed. For information about this workflow, see Performing Your First Active Directory Domain Registration in the Horizon Cloud Environment.

Onboarding Requirements Checklists

If your first pod onboarding is to exploit your Horizon subscription license with a Horizon pod deployed in a VMware SDDC, before starting the steps described in this onboarding documentation set, first read VMware Horizon Pods with Horizon Cloud - Requirements Checklist - Updated as Appropriate for Connecting Pods Starting from the March 2021 Service Release. That topic describes various prerequisite elements needed to successfully connect a Horizon pod to Horizon Cloud. After that pod is cloud-connected, the Horizon subscription license is pushed from the cloud to the pod and you can start enabling the cloud-hosted services for that pod within the administrative console itself.

If your first pod onboarding is for a Horizon Cloud pod on Microsoft Azure — the pod-manager-based pod type — before starting the steps described in this onboarding documentation set, first read VMware Horizon Cloud Service on Microsoft Azure Requirements Checklist For New Pod Deployments - Updated As Appropriate for Pods That Deploy Starting From the March 2021 Service Release. That topic describes various prerequisite elements needed to have a successful automated pod deployment of that pod type.

Revision History for these Onboarding Topics

This documentation set of topics is updated with each release of the product or when necessary. For the set of significant revisions made to date, see Revision History - Changelog.

Intended Audience

The information in this document is intended for experienced data center administrators with knowledge in the following areas.

  • VMware Horizon and VMware Horizon Connection Server
  • VMware Horizon Cloud Connector
  • VMware Unified Access Gateway™
  • VMware Workspace ONE® Access™
  • Virtualization technology
  • Networking
  • VMware Cloud™ on AWS (VMware Cloud)
  • VMware Horizon on VMware Cloud™ on AWS
  • Azure VMware Solution (AVS)
  • Microsoft Azure

Horizon Cloud Community

Use the following communities to ask questions, explore answers given for questions asked by other users, and access links to useful information.

Contacting VMware Support

Contact VMware Support when you need help with your Horizon Cloud environment.

  • You can submit a support request to VMware Support online using your My VMware® account or by phone.
  • KB 2144012 Customer Support Guidelines provides details for getting support depending on the issue encountered.
  • In the console, clicking Horizon Cloud on Microsoft Azure: This image shows the circle help icon that you can use in the console. > Support, displays the link to that KB 2144012 also.

Selected Pod-Related Terminology Used in these Deployment Guide Documentation Topics

Throughout the Horizon Cloud documentation topics, you will see the following phrases. These phrases have the indicated meanings as follows.

Horizon pod on VMware SDDC
A pod that is constructed based on VMware Horizon product software, and which includes Horizon Connection Server software components. The Horizon Connection Server components are running in a supported form of an VMware SDDC (software-defined data center) that VMware supports for use with such pods. Some examples of such VMware SDDCs are an on-premises vSphere environment, VMware Cloud on AWS, or Azure VMware Solution, to name a few.
Horizon pod on Microsoft Azure, Horizon Cloud pod on Microsoft Azure, Horizon Cloud pod
A pod that is constructed by running the Horizon Cloud pod deployment wizard which deploys a pod-manager-based pod into your Microsoft Azure subscription. This type of pod is based on VMware Horizon Cloud pod-manager technology, and is supported to run in Microsoft Azure solely.
Note: A Horizon pod on Microsoft Azure is separate and distinct entity from a Horizon pod on Azure VMware Solution (AVS). Those two are based on completely different technology — one is based on Horizon Connection Server technology and one is based on the Horizon Cloud pod-manager technology.
connection broker

A connection broker is responsible for connecting end users' clients with a virtual desktop VM or farm VM for the purpose of setting up a connected session between each end-user client and the agent running in that VM. This noun — broker — is used because one general definition of the noun broker in the English language is one who negotiates a transaction.

In desktop virtualization software's use cases, the connection broker receives the end-user's client request to make a connection with a virtual desktop VM or farm VM. The connection broker then routes the request appropriately and negotiates a connected session between the agent running in one of the VMs and that end-user client. The negotiation takes into consideration what types of pod-provisioned resources the end user is entitled to make connections with.

The Horizon Cloud control plane provides two distinct connection brokering technologies: Universal Broker and Single-Pod Broker (available for Horizon Cloud pods in Microsoft Azure only). Universal Broker is a multi-tenant, cloud-based service that enables the brokering of resources that span multiple pods and makes brokering decisions based on the geographic sites of users and pods. Single-Pod Broker enables the brokering of resources from a single Horizon Cloud pod in Microsoft Azure.

The Horizon Connection Server within a Horizon pod on VMware SDDC, or the pod manager VM within a Horizon Cloud pod in Microsoft Azure, facilitates the routing of the end-user client to a resource in the pod that meets the client's connection request. (Remember that a Horizon pod on Azure VMware Solution actually has the Horizon Connection Server and not the pod manager.)

About the Screenshots

The screenshots typically:

  • Show only that portion of the overall user interface screen that corresponds to the text at which point the screenshot appears, and not necessarily the full user interface.
  • Have blurred areas where appropriate to maintain data anonymity.
  • In the PDF format, screenshot images that are wider than 6 inches are automatically resized. As a result, such images might appear blurry in the PDF format. In the parallel HTML pages, you can click on such wide screenshot images to see the image at its full-size.
Note: Some screenshots are taken at a higher resolution than others, and might look grainy when the PDF is viewed at 100%. However, if you zoom to 200%, those images start to look clear and readable.

VMware Technical Publications Glossary

VMware Technical Publications provides a glossary of terms that might be unfamiliar to you. For definitions of terms as they are used in VMware technical documentation, visit http://www.vmware.com/support/pubs.