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  • Suraj Roy

Configuring Geolocation Redirection - VMware Horizon View

Certain organization have Web Apps which requires geolocation based on the users IP address. When users logs in to the Virtual Desktops, their IP addresses are from datacenter where the VDI are running on.


In case if we are running Azure Virtual Desktop, we can setup a static IP on an Azure load balancer that will route all outbound VM traffic via that IP.


However, with VMware Horizon View, we can achieve this using Geolocation Redirection feature.


In this blog we will see how Geolocation Redirection work with VMware Horizon View.

With this feature enabled, client device’s geolocation information can be redirected to remote desktops and published applications.


System Requirements for Geolocation Redirection


Client system requirements:

  • Install Horizon Client for Chrome, Horizon Client for Windows, or HTML Access on a client system. Other clients are not supported.

  • The Windows Location service setting must be ON in Settings > Privacy > Location

  • For Horizon Client for Chrome, the permissions for location services must be ON in Settings > Manage your apps > Apps > Horizon > Permissions > Location.



Agent system requirements:


  • The Windows Location service setting must be ON in Settings > Privacy > Location.


  • The Location permission setting, if any, must be enabled individually in each supported browser.

  • Install View agent with Geolocation Redirection feature enable. By default, this feature is disable at the time of agent installation.

  • Configure group policy setting on AD or define Geolocation Redirection registries on the master image.

  • Define which Application or Websites are going to use this feature.

  • Enable Geolocation Redirection Plugin / Extension in the browser of the agent machine.


Following remote desktop applications support Geolocation Redirection feature.



Limitation:


1. IE mode for Microsoft Edge (Chromium) is supported, but with the following conditions.

  • On an RDS host, geolocation information can be redirected, but only when the geolocation IE add-on is enabled.

  • On a Windows 10 virtual desktop, geolocation information can be redirected regardless of whether the geolocation IE add-on is enabled.

2. In China, the geolocation feature might not work Horizon Client for Chrome or HTML Access. It might not function at all, or might not show the correct location.



Installing and Configuring Geolocation Redirection:


Below action need to be followed for redirecting client’s geolocation to remote desktops:


  1. Enabling Geolocation feature on the Agent machine.

  2. Configure Group Policy settings on Active Directory Server or enabling the feature via registry on the master image.

  3. Specifying which apps or website are going to use this feature.

  4. Enable Geolocation Redirection Plugin / Extension in the browser.


Configuring Group Policy Settings:

  • Download the Horizon GPO Bundle .zip file from the VMware download site.



  • Extract the file VMware-Horizon-Extras-Bundle-YYMM-x.x.x-yyyyyy.zip


  • Copy all the .admx files and save in Active Directory server “C:\Windows\PolicyDefinitions folder” and .adml files from en-US to “C:\Windows\PolicyDefinitions\en-US”


NOTE: Incase while editing the GPO if “VMware View Agent Configuration” Policy is not listed under Computer Configuration > Policies > Administrative Templates > then copy the .admx and .adml files to below locations as well.


o .admx to “C:\Windows\SYSVOL\domain\Policies\PolicyDefinitions

o .adml to “C:\Windows\SYSVOL\domain\Policies\PolicyDefinitions\en-US


  • Navigate to the Computer Configuration > Policies > Administrative Templates > VMware View Agent Configuration > VMware HTML5 Features folder.

  • Open the Disable Automatically Detect Intranet setting, select Enabled, and click OK.

  • Open the Enable VMware HTML5 Features setting, select Enabled, and click OK.


  • Navigate to the Computer Configuration > Policies > Administrative Templates > VMware View Agent Configuration > VMware HTML5 Features > VMware Geolocation Redirection folder.

  • Open the Enable VMware Geolocation Redirection setting and select Enabled.



  • Open the Enable URL List for VMware Geolocation Redirection setting, select Enabled, and specify which websites can use the Geolocation Redirection feature.


NOTE: Only the URLs that are defined under the “Value Name” will be able to use the redirected geolocation information.


  • Open the Set the minimum distance for which to report location updates setting, select Enabled, and specify the minimum distance (in meters), between a location update in the client and the last update reported to the agent. for which the new location must be updated.

By default, the minimum distance is 75 meters.




  • Link the Group Policy to the VDI Machine OU.

  • On Agent Machine for Google Chrome browser: Add the “VMware Horizon Geolocation Redirection” Extension and Enable VMware Geolocation Redirection for Chrome Browser setting and select Enabled




  • For Microsoft Edge (Chromium) browser: Enable VMware Geolocation Redirection for Microsoft Edge (Chromium) setting and select Enabled.


TEST:


1. Connect to the VDI machine

2. When prompted, click on “Allow” Geolocation”

3. Launch Chrome browser and check if the current location matches with the client's current location.



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