The Deployments and Onboarding Pods collection of pages describes what to do when your tenant account is newly created in the control plane, the day-0 tasks prior to deploying the first pod to that tenant, as well as the day-1 tasks of onboarding your first pod to your tenant. This specific page right here serves as the entry page to this collection, and also describes the relationship between the Horizon subscription licensing and your tenant account.

Tip: If your tenant already has at least one cloud-connected pod in its pod fleet, instead of this onboarding set of topics, use the companion administration collection of pages for information about day-2 operations.

Welcome Email, Initial License Purchaser, and the New Cloud Plane Tenant

The following is written from the point of view of license purchases. Trial requests typically follow the same sequence.

  1. An initial purchaser purchases one of the Horizon subscription licenses. This initial purchaser might be yourself or might be another person in your organization who handles purchases.
  2. In the control plane, VMware sets up the new tenant account and associates it with the initial purchaser's VMware Customer Connect™ account and the purchased license information.

    If the purchase is also associated with a VMware Cloud services org or a Workspace ONE environment, VMware associates the tenant account with that information.

  3. In that new tenant account, VMware also specifies one of the regional Horizon Cloud control plane instances. The information in the license purchase or trial 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.
  4. VMware sends the Welcome to the VMware Horizon Service email to the initial purchaser's email address. This email address is the one associated with that initial purchase order or 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.
    Screenshot example of the top portion of the Welcome email.
  5. The email contains information and hypertext links to key destinations. Those URLs link to the tenant environment portal (named the Horizon Universal Console or console for short), the Horizon Cloud Connector software download location, and online documentation.

The Subscription License

A subscription type of Horizon license is the initial requirement, because that is the point at which VMware generates your tenant account and configures the tenant environment in the service's cloud plane.

The license entitles you to use the cloud-plane services as well as use the subscription licensing with your pods. The day-1 onboarding flow is the key that enables you to exploit your Horizon subscription licenses, onboard your existing Horizon pods to use cloud-plane services, deploy new Horizon Cloud pods on Microsoft Azure, and leverage all of the cloud-plane services that VMware Horizon® Cloud Service™ currently provides for cloud-connected pods.

  • A Horizon Cloud pod runs on the VMware Horizon Cloud pod-manager technology, which runs natively in Microsoft Azure along with the pod's virtual desktops. 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.
  • A Horizon pod runs on the Horizon Connection Server software. This pod type requires VMware SDDC infrastructure for the pod's virtual desktops, whether the VMware SDDC is an on-premises vSphere infrastructure or a cloud-based VMware SDDC environment such as Google Cloud VMware Engine (GCVE). You onboard such pods to the cloud plane using the Horizon Cloud Connector.

About Your New Cloud-Plane Tenant Account

Understanding your cloud-plane tenant account is important even when your only use case is to use a subscription license with your existing Horizon pods, while you are not yet planning to use cloud-hosted services with your pods. The reason why understanding this tenant account is important is because the same tenant account is used 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.

Relating the Cloud-Plane Tenant to the Initial Purchaser's VMware Customer Connect Account or VMware Cloud Services Account

An account must be used to obtain the license in the first place — either a purchase or a trial order. The initial account is registered with the newly created 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 initial purchaser.

Note: If you were not automatically made an administrator for your organization's Horizon deployments when the tenant was provisioned, you can either request the original license acquirer to add you as an administrator using the Horizon Universal Console or you can file a non-technical support request in Customer Connect Support using the steps in KB article 2006985. In the support request, your account's domain must match the domain in the initial purchase or trial order.

If you are the initial purchaser or trial requester and you are an administrator for your organization's Horizon deployments, then when you have received the email, you should log in to the tenant environment portal and add the additional administrators from your organization that you want involved in onboarding pods and managing your tenant. Adding additional admins to your tenant at the outset helps avoid access delays for your organization as a whole. Access to the tenant is needed to onboard pods, as well as to perform related workflows, such as reconfiguring the Horizon Cloud Connector. One admin can add additional admins for tenant access using the steps in Add Administrators to Log in to Your Horizon Cloud Tenant Environment.

The following screenshot illustrates a sample of the welcome email and calls out where the account is referenced. Notice that the email has helpful links guiding to downloads for the Horizon Cloud Connector, to open the administrative console, and so on.


Screenshot of an example of the welcome email with arrows to where the My VMware account information is referenced.
Tip: The name My VMware was the former name of VMware Customer Connect. Both names are used interchangeably in emails, documentation, and the consoles for Horizon Service.

Accessing the New Cloud-Plane Tenant

As soon as the initial purchaser receives the welcome email from VMware, the account stated in that email can log in to the newly created cloud-plane tenant, even when the tenant has zero cloud-connected pods. If the initial purchase or trial order was done by a person who is not or will not be an administrator for your organization's Horizon deployments, then the people who will be administrators must request support to authorize them to log in to the new tenant environment. To make that request, file a non-technical support request in Customer Connect Support using the steps in KB article 2006985 to request your addition to your organization's existing tenant record. To be added this way, the domain in your account must match the domain in the initial purchase or trial order.

Additional ways in which a person in your organization might have access to the tenant is if they belong to an org in VMware Cloud service within which access to the service is granted, or if they belong to a Workspace ONE environment that is integrated with Horizon Cloud.

A brand new tenant environment, provides access to a single Horizon Universal Console 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 the tenant account is first created.

Tip: After logging in, you must click on the General Setup bar to see the key actions that are listed below.

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

Prior to onboarding your first pod, you can take these key actions from the rows in this screen.

Capacity section
If you meet the license and role requirements, the View perpetual keys link is available to you in the heading. Click the View perpetual keys link to access the Perpetual Keys page where you can view and generate perpetual keys for foundational VMware products. After your first pod is onboarded and domain registration is completed, the link is available on both the Licenses page and the Getting Started page, if you meet the license and role requirements. See information about viewing perpetual keys on the Licenses Page. Screenshot illustrating the Capacity section with the View perpetual keys link.
VMware SDDC row
Click Add to learn how to download the Horizon Cloud Connector to connect a Horizon pod to your cloud tenant. This type of pod is based on the Connection Server software must already be deployed before you can connect it to your cloud-plane tenant. 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
Microsoft Azure row
Start the automated wizard that will automate the deployment of a Horizon Cloud pod into your subscription in Microsoft Azure. These pods are based on the VMware Horizon Cloud pod-manager technology.
Screenshot illustrating the Microsoft Azure row in tenant portal's Getting Started screen.
General Setup section - My VMware Accounts
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 initial license purchaser's account 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 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 purchaser's account going inactive for some reason — such as that person leaving your company or organization — it is prudent to add the first set of administrators as soon as the Welcome to Horizon Service email is sent to the initial purchaser, even before the first pod is onboarded. If the initial purchaser is not an administrator for your organization's Horizon deployments, then at least one person who will be an administrator must request support to authorize their VMware Customer Connect account to the brand new service tenant account. After that person is authorized, they can log in and add additional administrators using this My VMware Accounts row. To make that request, file a non-technical support request using the steps in KB article 2006985.

My VMware Accounts row in tenant portal's Getting Started screen.
General Setup section - Cloud Monitoring Service (CMS)
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.

Banner - Onboard to VMware Cloud Services Engagement Platform

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 the platform, that blue banner will not appear.

Onboarding Requirements Checklists

If your first pod onboarding is to exploit your Horizon subscription license with a Horizon pod — the Connection Server pod type — before starting the steps described in this onboarding documentation set, first read VMware Horizon Pods with Horizon Cloud Control Plane - Requirements Checklist - Appropriately Updated Starting from the November 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 additional cloud management services can be activated for your use.

If your first pod onboarding is for a Horizon Cloud pod — 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 Starting From the November 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 and Amazon Web Services EC2 (AWS EC2)
  • Microsoft Azure and its Marketplace
  • Azure VMware Solution (AVS)
  • Google Cloud Platform (GCP) and Google Cloud VMware Engine (GCVE)

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 VMware Customer Connect 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
A pod that is constructed using the Horizon Connection Server software and related software components. The Horizon Connection Server components are running in an infrastructure that VMware supports for use with such pods. A Horizon pod typically requires an VMware SDDC (software-defined data center). Some examples of VMware SDDCs are an on-premises vSphere environment, VMware Cloud on AWS, Google Cloud VMware Engine (GCVE), or Azure VMware Solution (AVS), to name a few.
Horizon Cloud pod, Horizon Cloud pod on Microsoft Azure
A pod that is constructed by running the Horizon Cloud pod deployment wizard which automates deployment 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.

One of the Horizon Control Plane services is the Universal Broker service. 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.

A Horizon pod's Connection Server or a Horizon Cloud pod's pod manager VM is the component that facilitates the routing of the end-user client to a resource in the pod that meets the client's connection request.

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.