Nerdio, WVD

Getting Started with Nerdio – Part 1 – Image Creation

Introduction

Hello everyone!! I recently accepted a position with Nerdio to become their UK Field CTO. I was not really looking for a new position but I have followed Nerdio’s journey since they released Nerdio Manager for WVD and I was extremely impressed with the product, the people and the passion that they all have. When they approached me for the position it definitely peaked my interest and I am glad to say I will be starting my new position at the end of February.

I am going to write a series of blog posts which will hopefully show you why I love the product so much and how easy it is to manage and maintain a WVD Deployment using Nerdio Manager for WVD. Personally, during the past 12 months I have done a few WVD Deployments, and to somebody who has not done it before, there is ALOT to learn. If I could describe Nerdio in once sentence it would be, “Nerdio makes the complicated simple”. So in this first post I will show you how to deploy a WVD image, optimize the image, install Office, Teams, Enable RDP Shortpath and Enable Screen Capture Protection! So let’s get started:

Deploying the image

Log onto the Nerdio Console, go to Desktop Images and select Add from Azure Library

Add a name and description for your image. Now we need to select the Image. These are the same Images which are in the Azure Marketplace. You can select:

  • Windows Server 2012 R2
  • Windows Server 2016
  • Windows Server 2019
  • Windows 7 Enterprise
  • Windows 10 1909 – Windows 10 20H2

You also have the option to select a custom image you have created yourself also. For this demo we will select Windows 10 20H2 EVD

We can select the option to Join to AD. Nerdio gives us the option to configure multiple active directory domains which are configured in the settings. We can also select which OU to place the host in.

We will also configure TimeZone Redirection and set the Time Zone on our hosts.

We also need to select the VM Size, the OS Disk Type and the Resource Group the hosts will be deployed to For this test I have just selected a B-Series VM, with a 128GB Standard SSD

Now we can select which Applications to install from some pre-created Scripted Actions. These run some PowerShell scripts which download and install the latest versions of the Apps, and also implement optimisations. You can also add your own custom PowerShell scripts to be ran when the VM is created also. As you can see I will perform the following:

  • Install Teams
  • Install Office 365
  • Optimize the image
  • Enable RDP Shortpath
  • Enable WVD Screen Capture Protection

Now we are ready to deploy our image!

There will now be a job showing in the Desktop Images Tasks Tab from which we can monitor the progress:

Now you can go away, watch some TV, have a brew and let Nerdio do its magic. If you come back in around 1 hour the image should be created successfully:

As we can see, Nerdio has installed the applications we requested and performed the OS Optimisations for us. Total time taken, just over 1 hour.

And now we have a fully optimised desktop running all the very latest versions of Office, Teams, and FSLogix, performed in 5 steps, and deployed just over an hour.

No complicated PowerShell scripts, no DevOps pipelines and totally customisable. This is why I joined Nerdio, it makes deploying and managing WVD so easy and painless.

It’s also worth noting that this was all done within the Nerdio portal, I didn’t have to log onto the Azure Portal or log onto any VMs to do this, so this can easily be done by any of your IT Teams.

In the next post I will discuss creating a host pool and configuring a few of the options.

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