To use the VMware Horizon Desktop Recording feature, install the Desktop Recording Server component on a machine to collect information about the session as well as raw recording data for storage and playback.

The Desktop Recording Server component consists of these items:
  • A database for session information storage and configuration
  • A Windows NTFS folder for recording storage
  • A web service for collecting recording data, administration, and playback

You can deploy the Desktop Recording Server as a standalone setup where the server is installed on a machine that leverages a local SQLite database stored in the installation directory as local.db, and a local NTFS folder.

You can also deploy the Desktop Recording Server in a high available environment using multiple servers behind a load balancer, leveraging Microsoft SQL or PostgreSQL databases, as well as a shared NTFS folder on all servers for storing recording data. Load balancers configured with L4 load distribution are supported.


Minimum Server Resource Requirements (required to support 2,000 active recordings)
Resource Minimum Value
Memory 8 GB
Free Disk Space 20 GB
Note: This depends on the type of applications the user runs in the session and also the frame change rate. You must monitor usage and add extra disk space as required.
Additional Requirements
  • The Desktop Recording Server is built in .Net Core and requires a 64-bit Windows server operating system that is a member of the domain if you use group extraction. The server operating system must be Windows Server 2016 or later (64-bit).
  • You cannot perform this installation if a previous version of Horizon Desktop Recording is installed.


  1. To install the Desktop Recording Server, download the HorizonDesktopRecordingServer.exe file and copy it to a local folder on the server.
  2. Run the installer and follow the steps.
    Default credentials are shown below.

    Username/Password: administrator/Recording123

    The server is available on https://<localservername>:9443
  3. To uninstall the Desktop Recording Server, use Add Remove Programs (appwiz.cpl) to remove the Desktop Recording server binaries and delete the following components manually:
    • The local database file (local.db) in installation directory.
    • The logs located in C:\programdata\VMware\Horizon Desktop Recording
    • Local recordings located in installation directory\Recordings
  4. To reset the installation:
    1. Stop the Desktop Recording service.
    2. Delete the Recordings folder from the installation directory.
    3. Delete the servicesettings.json file and the local.db file from the installation directory.
    4. Start the Desktop Recording service.
      The servicesettings.json and local.db files are recreated afresh.
  5. Manually secure the recordings folder permissions so that only the recording servers active directory accounts have access to the folder to add, modify, or delete recordings.