Excellent tool for server access, especially for accessing files on local machine
November 16, 2018

Excellent tool for server access, especially for accessing files on local machine

Ho'omana Nathan Horton | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
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Overall Satisfaction with VMware Horizon (formerly VMware View)

In the lab, we use VMWare to access various software provided by the university but which we can't or don't want to install on the machines in the lab. Most commonly, we use VMware Horizon to access statistical analysis software, especially IBM SPSS. We use VMware Horizon to access software from on campus and off-campus (in conjunction with a VPN).
  • The ability to access local files is an excellent feature.
  • The ability to preserve the state of logged-in users is also nice.
  • In my experience, this is about as close as one can get to using Microsoft Remote Desktop.
  • The interface isn't always super straightforward and newer or less proficient users may need some detailed help getting it set up.
  • This makes it easy for us to access costly software from off-campus.
  • Although I'm not sure about the administrative or implementation side of this software, there are no negatives for those of us who use software such as SPSS and want to be able to use it on our own machines, and off-site.
Although I really prefer Microsoft Remote Desktop for accessing Windows servers (from Windows machines especially), and this can be done from off-site with a VPN, this entails much more effort, namely getting everyone's Active Directory in the correct group to have access. VMWare Horizon is a much simpler solution in terms of granting access.

Chrome Remote Desktop and TeamViewer are really not viable solutions for remotely accessing servers in business settings, although they work alright for home servers and such, especially from off-site.
In a situation like ours, where one hosts a server with software and wants to grant access (but not licenses) to others, this is a great solution. It's particularly nice in situations where the users may want to easily work with files on their local machines. It's also a little better in some cases than Microsoft's Remote Desktop because you don't have to worry about giving AD access to certain people. It can be a little clunky, so whenever you use it, it's probably best to give detailed walkthroughs, especially for less proficient computer users.