Managing guest VMs

There are two basic types of guest VMs when using Parallels RAS VDI: template-based and non-template based. This topic describes management tasks for both guest VM types, indicating whether a task applies to a particular guest VM type.

Viewing guest VM list

To view the list of non-template based guest VMs, select Farm > <Site> > VDI > Desktops. If you have a filter applied to the list, remove it by click the magnifying glass icon. Without the filter, the list shows all desktops available in this RAS Farm, including guest VMs (both template-based and non-template based), guest VMs from a pool (RAS or native), and pool-based Remote PCs. Therefore, the Desktops tab is a location where you can view all of your desktops in one place. Here you can perform all of the standard desktop management tasks accessible from the Tasks menu, including Recreate, Delete, Assign, Unassign, Start, Stop, Restart, Suspend, Reset, Show sessions, and others.The Restart operation (graceful) has a 10 min timeout. If not completed during this time, the Reset operation (forced) will be used.

To view the list of guest VMs created from a template, select Farm > <Site> > VDI > Templates. Select a template and click Tasks > Show guest VMs. You will be switched to the Desktops tab where the list of desktops will be filtered to include only those that belong to the template. As was mentioned above, you can perform all of the standard desktop management operations on this tab, including power operations, which are described in detail later in this section.

For the list to include only the guest VMs from a particular pool, select a pool in the Pools tab and click Tasks > Show guest VMs in Pool.

The filter in the Desktop tab can also be applied manually by clicking the magnifying glass icon and entering the filter criteria in the fields that appear at the top of the list.

Site defaults

Guest VMs created from a template inherit the template settings. To view the settings, note on which template a guest VM is based and then view properties of that template, specifically the Settings and Security tabs. For more information, see Site defaults. Note that you a template can inherit Site default settings or you can specify your own custom settings for it.

Non-template based guest VMs have their own settings, some of which (specifically Settings and Security) are inherited from Site defaults. To see settings for a non template-based VM, navigate to Farm > <Site> > VDI > Desktops. A guest VM that doesn't belong to a template is identified by an empty value in the Template column. Right-click a template and choose Properties (note that template-based guest VMs do not have this menu option).

Checking the RAS Guest Agent status

A guest VM must have the RAS Guest Agent installed and the agent must match the Parallels RAS version. The agent is installed by default when a guest VM is created from a template. If a guest VM was created using the native hypervisor tools, it may not have the agent installed in it. In such a case, the guest VM will be able to serve only the remote desktop. To enable it to server applications or documents, you'll need to install the agent yourself.

To check if the RAS Guest Agent is installed in a guest VM and is up to date:

  1. Select a guest VM in the list and then click Tasks > Troubleshooting > Check agent.
  2. The Guest Agent Information dialog opens displaying the information about the RAS Guest Agent.
  3. If the agent is not installed, click the Install button and follow the instructions. The agent will be push installed in Windows running inside the guest VM.

Deleting a guest VM

To delete a template-based guest VM, select it and then click the Tasks > Delete.

Managing guest VMs that failed preparation

If a template-based guest VM encounters a problem during the preparation stage, it remains on the server but cannot be used. You can identify such VMs by the "Failed to create" value in the Status column. Unless a VM like this is repaired, it will be automatically removed after the time period specified in the Site defaults. To see Site defaults:

  1. Select Farm > <Site> > VDI > Desktop and then click Tasks > Site defaults.
  2. In the dialog that opens, on the General tab, view or modify (if needed) the Auto remove guest VMs which failed preparation after option. You can set any of the available time periods by selecting it from the drop-down list or you can type a desired value, such as "8 days" or "12 hours".

Recreating a guest VM

If something happens to a template-based guest VM and it becomes unusable, you don't have to delete it and create a new one. Instead, you can recreate it keeping its name, MAC address, and other properties. This way none of the other Site settings, which may rely on a broken guest VM, will be affected. Another reason for recreating a guest VM is to apply changes made to the template (when you exit from maintenance without executing the Recreate command). Please note that keeping the MAC address is supported on ESXi, vCenter, Hyper-v and Hyper-v Failover Cluster only.

Please note that recreated VMs can keep the the following properties:

  • MAC address is kept on ESXi, vCenter, Hyper-v, Nutanix AHV (AOS), and Hyper-v Failover Cluster.
  • BIOS UUID is kept on ESXi and vCenter.
  • DRS groups are kept on vCenter.

To recreate one or more guest VMs:

  1. In the Parallels RAS Console, navigate to Farm \ <Site> \ VDI \ Templates.
  2. To recreate all deployed guest VMs, click the Tasks drop-down list and choose Recreate all guest VMs.
  3. To recreate a specific guest VM (or multiple guest VMs), click Tasks > Show guest VMs. This will open the Desktops tab, which will list guest VMs. Select one or more guest VMs and then click the Tasks > Recreate.

When you recreate a guest VM:

  • The procedure deletes a VM and creates a new one from the same template.
  • The new guest VM retains the same computer name as the one it replaces.
  • If a guest VM is running, all unsaved data in its memory will be lost. For this reason, an important data should be saved to an external storage.
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