Windows Virtual Desktop (WVD) was finally released to
public preview GA (UPDATED 9/2019), so here’s your step-by-step guide to deploy Windows Virtual Desktop! For those of you that have been living under a rock (or spending time with your friends and families), WVD is Microsoft’s new Desktop-as-a-Service offering to provide Windows 10 virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) in the Azure cloud for Windows 10 E3 / E5 subscribers. (Full WVD pricing plan details here.)
Here are a few prerequisites that you’ll need already configured in your lab before you start deploying Windows Virtual Desktop:
Now for the fun part!
a. You’re doing this in a lab, so there’s no need to get approval from legal.
b. To lookup your AAD Tenant GUID, copy the Directory ID from this page: https://portal.azure.com/#blade/Microsoft_AAD_IAM/ActiveDirectoryMenuBlade/Properties
Deploy a Windows Virtual Desktop Tenant in PowerShell
Install-Module -Name Microsoft.RDInfra.RDPowerShell Import-Module -Name Microsoft.RDInfra.RDPowerShell Add-RdsAccount -DeploymentUrl "https://rdbroker.wvd.microsoft.com" New-RdsTenant -Name <TenantName> -AadTenantId <DirectoryID> -AzureSubscriptionId <SubscriptionID>
The last line should look something like:
New-RdsTenant -Name ContosoWVD -AadTenantId 00000000-1111-2222-3333-444444444444 -AzureSubscriptionId 55555555-6666-7777-8888-999999999999
*Choose a name for the host pool and keep a note of it, as we’ll need it later
NOTE: Windows Virtual Desktop management is only available in East US 2 or the Central US during preview. Check a current list here:
3. Don’t get in trouble with your boss—choose a small B series VM for testing. (If you get a validation error, choose a D-Series and resize the VM after creating it as needed.)
4. Everyone is so excited about Azure being the only cloud to offer a true multi-session Windows 10 Enterprise desktop, so let’s use that image:
Update: Make sure you use the new image for Windows 10 Enterprise multi-session with Office 365 ProPlus otherwise you will have to manually deploy Office 365 ProPlus to WVD.
NOTE: Make sure you choose a network that has access to your AD environment
5. Specify the Windows Virtual Desktop Tenant Name that you created via PowerShell above and the AAD account that you used to create it:
6. Buy it!
First, we’ll need to assign users to Enterprise Application in the Azure portal.
Then open PowerShell again and run the following command for every user you want to add. (Groups support isn’t ready yet.)
Add-RdsAppGroupUser -TenantName ContosoWVD -HostPoolName "DAN-USE2-WVD-HostPool" -AppGroupName "Desktop Application Group" -UserPrincipalName firstname.lastname@example.org
You’re done! (Maybe.)
Update: I’ve had multiple people tell me they receive a DSC failure. If you get this error, you’ll also need to run through the PowerShell scripts on this page as well. These are the steps to follow:
# Generate a WVD registration token for your Host Pool New-RdsRegistrationInfo -TenantName ContosoWVD -HostPoolName "DAN-USE2-WVD-HostPool" -ExpirationHours 4 | Select-Object -ExpandProperty Token
Access your WVD environment here:
You should see a web page with the following icon that will load the RDS session in the browser:
Or use our guide to install the WVD (Windows Virtual Desktop) client on any device.
Using the desktop app, I was able to run three 4K monitors without any lag connecting to the East US2 Azure data center from San Diego, CA. That’s incredible!
I screwed up the first three times I deployed this today. Pro tip: RTFM.
Microsoft’s official Windows Virtual Desktop guide is available here:
I also had to RDP into the WVD Host Pool and run everything in this guide before I was able to connect:
Once I read the entire deployment guide, I was able to deploy WVD in under an hour. Granted, I haven’t configured any auto-scaling rules yet, that is an incredibly short amount of time for a small business to setup a VDI environment.
Some points to consider:
Overall, I am hugely impressed with the initial preview of Windows Virtual Desktop and I can’t wait to see what features Microsoft adds to the service over the next few months. Pricing for WVD is broken out by service here.
After setting up MFA for WVD, check out our guide to configure FSLogix in WVD.
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