View Architecture



View consists of the following components:

Horizon Client – Horizon Clients are available for Windows, Mac, Ubuntu Linux, iOS, and Android to provide the connection to remote desktops from your device of choice. By installing Horizon Client on each endpoint device, end users can access their virtual desktops from smartphones, zero clients, thin clients, Windows PCs, Macs, and iOS and Android mobile devices. Unity Touch for Horizon Clients makes it easier to run Windows apps on iPhone, iPad, and Android devices.

View Connection Server – View Connection Server streamlines the management, provisioning, and deployment of virtual desktops. Administrators can centrally manage thousands of virtual desktops from a single console. End users connect through View Connection Server to securely and easily access their personalized virtual desktops. View Connection Server acts as a broker for client connections by authenticating and directing incoming user desktop requests.

View security server – A View security server is an instance of View Connection Server that adds an additional layer of security between the Internet and your internal network. Outside the corporate firewall, in the DMZ, you can install and configure View Connection Server as a View security server. Security servers in the DMZ communicate with View Connection Servers inside the corporate firewall. Security servers ensure that the only remote desktop traffic that can enter the corporate data center is traffic on behalf of a strongly authenticated user. Users can only access the desktop resources for which they are authorized.

View Composer – View Composer is an optional service that enables you to manage pools of “like” desktops, called linked-clone desktops, by creating master images that share a common virtual disk. Linked-clone desktop images are one or more copies of a parent virtual machine that share the virtual disks of the parent, but which operate as individual virtual machines. Linked-clone desktop images can optimize your use of storage space and facilitate updates. You can make changes to a single master image through VMware vSphere Client™. These changes trigger View Composer to apply the updates to all cloned user desktops that are linked to that master image, without affecting users’ settings or persona data.

Horizon View Agent (including Remote Experience Pack) – The Horizon View Agent service communicates between virtual machines and Horizon Client. You must install Horizon View Agent on all virtual machines managed by vCenter Server so that View Connection Server can communicate with them. Horizon View Agent provides features such as connection monitoring, virtual printing, persona management, and access to locally connected USB devices. Horizon View Agent is installed in the guest OS.


VMware Reference Architecture Guide: 

As for calculators, I usually recommend a VDI tool built by Andre Leibovici at

Also the LakeSide SysTrack Desktop Assessment which is a free cloud based service provides you with everything you need to gain visibility into your end user environment, understand the best deployment options for Horizon and assess your costs.