Since the VMware Certified Advanced Professional – Desktop Administration (VCAP-DTA) exam has finally been released, I decided to take a gander at the blueprint for the VDTA510 exam. As one might expect (based on the data of this exam), version 5.2 of VMware Horizon View is used. I’m all for this, since it’s one of the more frequent versions I actually use with clients – 5.3 isn’t quite baked enough for most people’s appetite, requiring a little more time out in the wild. The exam requires you to successfully perform a number of tasks, including the deployment of “highly available” View installations. This seems to imply creating a replica farm of connection servers – although I have yet to take the exam.
It just so happens that F5 recently released a special, inexpensive license for their BIG-IP Virtual Edition (VE) software (big thanks to Ethan Banks for the great walkthrough) for use with a lab. Although it’s definitely not on the exam, what better way to take your View skills to the next level than to actually configure proper load balancing across the front end View connection or security servers? After all, pretty much every environment I encounter uses some sort of load balancing device to accomplish this, with the majority of shops choosing F5.
At the time of writing, the part “F5-BIG-VE-LAB” is only $96.99 on CDW’s website. If you’re interested in figuring out an end-to-end solution for Horizon View, I think this is a complimentary addition to your lab. I’d also suggest heading over to DevCentral and looking at the various iApps available for F5 with Horizon View – it makes configuring the load balancer a snap.