Accelerating Windows Virtual Desktop Deployments

Using Windows Virtual Desktop enables a secure, remote desktop experience from anywhere, helping companies build resilience as they adapt to working in new ways.

Before I start working on WVD engagements, I keep the following checklist in mind to have a productive working sessions with my customers. I’m also expanding this page that helps in delivering a Minimum Viable Product (MVP).

Prerequisites

  • You need to have the Microsoft 365 E3 or E5 licenses. Pls validate with your Microsoft’s Account Executive.
  • Have a valid Azure subscription :-) If you need one, you can sign up for a one-month free trial.
  • Create a Resource Group, Virtual Network (VNet)
  • Validate the connectivity from Azure to your On-premise Active Directory (AD) Server.
  • The user must be sourced from the same Active Directory that’s connected to Azure AD. The UPN you use to subscribe to Windows Virtual Desktop must exist in the Active Directory domain the VM is joined to.
  • Review the Supported Remote Desktop Clients and Virtual Machine OS images

Day-1 : Personal Desktops

Start with Personal Desktops for a quick validation of WVD.

  • Go to Azure Portal
  • Search for Windows Virtual Desktop
  • Create a WVD Host Pool, Select the right VM shape, OS image, Create a Workspace etc..
  • Within 5–10 minutes your WVD host pool is ready. Refer to the troubleshooting section if the host pool creation fails.

Add users to the Application Group

  • Go to your Host pool >> Application groups >> {your Desktop Application Group} >> Manage >> Assignments
  • Select Azure AD users or user groups.
  • Save the settings

Connect to your WVD workspace

  • Click on MyPersonalWorkspace >> PersonalDesktop
  • You’ll be prompted to login with on-prem AD credentials.
  • That’s it, You are inside your Windows 10 Enterprise WVD session host.

Day-2 : Building a Golden Image

Day-3 : Pooled Desktops

Windows Virtual Desktop lets you use Windows 10 Enterprise multi-session, the only Windows client-based operating system that enables multiple concurrent users on a single virtual machine (VM). With multi-session(pooled) desktops you’ll get a full desktop as well as Remote Apps.

  • Create a new WVD Host pool for multi-session desktops.
  • Go to Azure Portal >> Windows Virtual Desktop
  • Create a host pool
  • Start with Windows 10 Enterprise multi-session , Version 2004 + Microsoft 365 Apps

Full Desktops

  • Finish the remaining steps in the host pool creation wizard.
  • Give it 5–10 minutes to complete the provisioning process. Add users to the Application Group.
  • Follow the same steps mentioned in Day-1 to connect to the Workspace and to login to the session hosts.
  • Based on the above settings, you can have 4 users connecting to these 2 multi-session desktops at any given time.

RemoteApps

  • Repeat the same process to create a new hostpool, workspace etc.
  • By default a “Desktop Application Group” (DAG) is created but we now add a Remote Application Group to expose remote apps.
  • Go to your WVD Host pool >> Manage >> Application Groups
  • + Add

Now go back to your Remote Application Group (myRAG) and add the remote apps. These apps could be built-in apps or custom apps. Refer to the screenshot below

Day-4 — Configure FSLogix for roaming profiles

  • Create a new Windows 10 Enterprise multi-session 2004 + Microsoft 365 Apps virtual machine. We’ll use this VM to build a golden image for multi-session desktops.
  • RDP in to the VM
  • Install FSLogix — https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/fslogix/install-ht
  • Create a new Storage Account and File Share
#Add FSLogix settingsNew-Item -Path HKLM:\Software\FSLogix\ -Name Profiles –ForceSet-ItemProperty -Path HKLM:\Software\FSLogix\Profiles -Name "Enabled" -Type "Dword" -Value "1"New-ItemProperty -Path HKLM:\Software\FSLogix\Profiles -Name "VHDLocations" -Value "\\wvdrg1storage.file.core.windows.net\myfslogixshare" -PropertyType MultiString -Force

Note: Pls make sure input the right storage account name and file share that’s valid in your subscription.

Day-5 : WVD Monitoring

Conclusion

I have repeatedly used this process to successfully deliver a MVP to my customers. Hope you’ll find this blog useful. I sincerely thank WVD Product Management team, Global BackBelt team, CAT team, MVPs and the extended Cloud Solution Architects (CSA) team in helping me to deliver successful customer engagements.

Useful Blogs

References