Install and configure MyWorkSpace at WUR in Linux

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Table of Contents

Motivation

At Wageningen University & Research the Linux Operating System is supported on a best effort principle, meaning that it is supported as far as the knowledge of Facilities and Services Information Technology (FB-IT) reaches. FB-IT is supported by their colleagues maintaining the High Performance Computing Cluster Anunna, who have a lot of knowledge about the Linux Operating System because it’s the Operating System usde by Anunna.

Unfortunately not all programs are available for the Linux Operating System, that employees need for their work at Wageningen University & Research. One example is MyProjects, which employees need for time recording of their workweek. This program is only available on Windows WURclients. Therefore, it is essential to be able to access a Windows WURclient when needed.

One solution would be to use a remote desktop client to access a Windows WURclient desktop. However, this would require each Linux user to have access to at least one Windows WURclient desktop. A more elegant solution is to use a Virtual Windows WURclient desktop via MyWorkspace.

In this post I will describe, how to install and configure MyWorkspace at Wageningen University & Research on a Debian/Ubuntu based Linux system.

This post will show how to install and configure MyWorkspace on a Debian/Ubuntu based Linux system within WUR.

Connecting to a Virtual Windows WURclient desktop with VMWare Horizon Client does not require a VPN connection.

VMWare Horizon Client has ssh-tunneling build into the application and, therefore, creates its own safe connection to WURNET.

Download VMWare Horizon Client

At the time this post was written Horizon 8 is the latest version of the VMWare Horizon client. To check if there is a newer version available, check the pull down menu in the top left of the web page provided below.

To download the latest version of VMWare Horizon Client perform the following steps:

  1. Open in a web browser https://my.vmware.com/en/web/vmware/downloads/info/slug/desktop_end_user_computing/vmware_horizon_clients/horizon_8
  2. Navigate to ‘VMware Horizon Client for 64-bit Linux’ and click the ‘GO TO DOWNLOADS’ link provided on that line.
  3. A new page will open in the same window. Select the version to download. At the time this post written the latest version of the VMware Horizon Client for 64-bit Linux is version 2013 build number: 17742757 (Release Date 2021-03-23).
  4. Right-click the DOWNLOAD NOW button and copy the link address.
  5. Open a terminal
  6. Change the directory to your personal downloads directory with the command cd ~/Downloads/
  7. Execute the following command to download the VMWare Horizon Client bundle: wget URL. Instead of URL use the copied ‘DOWNLOAD NOW’ url from step 4. This url can be pasted in the console with Shift+Insert. At the time this post was written, the command looked like this:
wget https://download3.vmware.com/software/view/viewclients/CART22FQ1/VMware-Horizon-Client-2103-8.2.0-17742757.x64.bundle
  1. As administrator (root) make the downloaded bundle executable with chmod +x in the terminal, e.g.
sudo chmod +x VMware-Horizon-Client-2103-8.2.0-17742757.x64.bundle
  1. Do not close the terminal!

Install VMWare Horizon Client

In the following part it is assumed that you are using a Linux system, which is based on at least Ubuntu 19.04, for example Linux Mint 20, or higher. The reason is that I assume your Linux system is using /usr merge, where softlinks have been created between / folders and their equivalents in /usr (e.g. /bin -> /usr/bin, /lib -> /usr/lib, etc.).

To install VMWare Horizon Client perform the following steps:

  1. Become root in the terminal using: sudo -i. Your console prompt should change to root@<your-system-name>:~#.
  2. Change the active directory to /usr/lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/ using:
cd /usr/lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/
  1. Create the following softlinks:

    • ln -sf libudev.so.1 libudev.so.0
    • ln -sf libgstapp-1.0.so.0 libgstapp-0.10.so.0
    • ln -sf libgstbase-1.0.so.0 libgstbase-0.10.so.0
    • ln -sf libgstreamer-1.0.so.0 libgstreamer-0.10.so.0
    • ln -sf libffi.so.7 libffi.so.5
  2. Leave the adminstrator (root) mode in the terminal by executing: exit

  3. Change the directory to your Downloads folder with cd ~/Downloads

  4. Start the VMWare Horizon Client installer, for the version you downloaded, as administrator (root):

sudo ./VMware-Horizon-Client-2103-8.2.0-17742757.x64.bundle --eulas-agreed
  1. Follow the steps of the installer to properly install VMWare Horizon Client. Make sure all boxes during the installation with respect to USB Redirection, Virtual Printing, etc. are ticked during the installation of the VMWare Horizon client to ensure correct operation later.

Configure VMWare Horizon Client

Once the installation of the VMWare Horizon Client has finished, the application can be started (logging out and in might be required).

Next a connection server needs to be added to the client. The address to use is: workspace.wur.nl

To log in to MyWorkspace you need to provide:

  • Username: user001 (this is your WUR username)
  • Password: your-windows-password (this is the WUR Windows password for your WUR username)
  • Domain: WUR (this is optional, because the client will use the domain as provided by the connection server)

VMWare Horizon Blast Settings

After adding the connection server and logging in the VMWare Horizon Blast settings need to be configured. This has to done only once.

Navigate to and click ‘File’ in the top menu of the VMWare Horizon Client. Next select ‘Configure VMWare Blast’. Match the setting as displayed in Figure 1 and click ‘OK’ to confirm.

Configure VMWare Horizon Blast
Configure VMWare Horizon Blast
Now VMWare Horizon Client is fully installed, configured and ready to log in to a Virtual Windows WURclient desktop, where you can use MyProjects and other Windows only applications you need to do your work within WUR.
Maikel Verouden, Ph.D.
Maikel Verouden, Ph.D.
Researcher | Lecturer | IT & Organization contact person

My research interests include Statistics, Teaching and programmable matter (statistical software).