VMware Appvolumes 2.12 released – What is New?

VMware released App Volumes 2.12 yesterday (9th Dec 2016), This is a very exciting release, the next version of VMware App Volumes with a lot of improvements. In this article I will quickly take you through the changes and improvements in v2.12.

As you all aware its seventh major release of App Volumes and v2.12 has new set of capabilities and huge improvements to enhance a great user experience.

Release Note & User Guide : Click Here 

Lets go ahead and take a quick look at whats available in v2.12.

v2.12

Performance improvements for faster user login and application launch :

  • Optimized handling of application registry hives by not blocking end-user login.
  • Addressed a bug that caused the App Volumes agent to scan Appstacks and Writable Volumes before the Windows explorer shell is available.

Integration with Active Directory:

  • you can manage application and writable volumes assignments across multiple Active Directory domains and forests.
  • We can add multiple domains without a trust in place, using an account with Read privileges to the domains.
  • It Supports one-way and two-way trusts.
  • You can register multiple domains by entering alternate credentials for each domain.

Smart Domain Controller Discovery and Routing :

The Smart DC Discovery feature leverages AD Site info to determine which site DC(s) should be used, and then measures ping response times to further optimize performance.

  • Automatically detect nearest DC with best response time.
  • Generate ordered list of available DCs.
  • This improves fail-over capabilities as we will get the best Domain controller based on the ping response and if the active DC fails the next one available will be assigned.

Security Enhancements:

SSL Certificates :  

  • App Volumes v2.12 have the option to replace the self signed certificate of the AV manager with a CA-signed one.
  • It can now use certificates to secure communication between App Volumes Manager, App Volumes Agent, vCenter, and SQL.

Accept vCenter Certificate :

  • Another new feature is that, by default, certificate validation is required between App Volumes Manager and vSphere.
  • Accept vCenter cert (self-signed or CA-signed) while creating the Machine Manager in App Volumes Manager.

Support for Delivering Office 365 (Office 2016) Applications Through AppStacks

You can deliver Office 365 (Office 2016) applications through AppStacks. See KB 2146035 for detailed information.

Support for Windows 10 Anniversary Update (AU) build 1607

You can now deliver applications, user-installed applications, and profiles through AppStacks and Writable Volumes to Windows 10 version 1607 (Windows 10 Anniversary Update) on Current Branch, Current Branch for Business and Long-term Service Branch. Windows 10 version 1511 is not supported with App Volumes 2.12. See KB 2148177 for more information.

Here are the Teach preview features:

Note : The Tech Preview features and capabilities are not supported for production deployment, rather they are available as a preview of potential upcoming innovations to test in a lab or UAT environment.

Asynchronous Mounting:

  • It allows App Volumes Manager to handle a large number of login requests within a short time and improve scalability.
  • Improves logon times and scalability, because the Appvol Manager can service more users in a given amount of time.
  • Writable volume will still hold up logon process. Asynch mounting only applies to AppStacks
  • Its disabled by default. To enable this feature refer  KB 2147985

Centralized Log Collection :

  • Central repository for App Volumes Manager and App Volumes Agent logs.

A few tips for you to create the share;

  • The remote file share path must end with a folder called LOGS.
  • It is recommended to use IP rather than FQDN fro the remote file share.
  • The NTFS and share permissions for the Log file share user has to be;
    1. File System – Modify
    2. Share – Change

Read-Only Role in App Volumes Manager :

  • You can now provide Read-Only Role access to appvolume manager. This would benefit for large enterprises to provide role base access to Level 1 (help desk team) support team to perform first level of support.

Thats all,

I hope you got an overview about the latest release of App Volumes and its new features. I will explain all the new features in details in my up coming articles after i upgrade my appvol lab to v2.12. Please stand by…

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