CoEng Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI)

Overview

The College of Engineering Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) provides remote access to a Virtual Machine containing all software installed in College of Engineering labs.  You can log on from anywhere - on or off campus, using your own device - to utilize CoEng software!

Requirements

  • Must be currently enrolled in at least one College of Engineering class
  • Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS, or Android device
  • Broadband internet connection

Getting Started

  • In a web browser, navigate to https://vdi.uaa.alaska.edu
  • You will have the option to Install VMWare Horizon Client or utilize the VMWare Horizon HTML Access

Using the VMWare Horizon Client is recommended for the best experience.  However, the initial installation will take a few minutes and requires a system restart.

  • Option 1: Install VMWare Horizon Client
    1. Select Install VMWare Horizon Client.  You will be directed to the VMWare Downloads page.
    2. Select the Product for your device and click on Go to Downloads on the right.
    3. Download and install the client by running the .exe file.  You will be asked to restart your system.
    4. After restarting, open the VMWare Horizon Client.  The icon should be on your desktop, or you can find it in the Start Menu.
    5. Select New Server in the upper left.
    6. Enter the name of the Connection Server: vdi.uaa.alaska.edu and click Connect.
    7. On the login screen, enter UA\ followed by your standard UA login and password.
    8. Double-click on CoEng Lab Desktops.
    9. A new window will pop up and you will be logged into one of the CoEng Virtual Machines.
  • Option 2: Use VMWare Horizon HTML Access
    1. Select VMWare Horizon HTML Access on the right.
    2. On the login screen, enter UA\ followed by your standard UA login and password.
    3. Once logged in you will see a single desktop pool called CoEng Lab Desktops.
    4. Click on CoEng Lab Desktops and you will be logged into a machine.  Be patient – the window may appear blank for a few minutes during the login process.
    5. Note you may receive a warning about a Potential Security Risk.  It is okay to accept and continue on to the website.  For some browsers, you many need to use an Incognito or InPrivate browser window.  If you continue to have problems, you may want to try another browser.

Saving Your Data

DO NOT SAVE DATA TO THE VIRTUAL MACHINE! Any data saved to the hard drive will be deleted when your session is closed.  Save all work to your Google Drive or other cloud locations.

For easy access to Google Drive, map the drive to your computer using Google File Stream.  Files will be uploaded/downloaded straight to the cloud without saving to the computer’s hard drive.

  1. From the Windows Menu, find and open Drive File Stream
  2. Sign in to your account using your username@alaska.edu email.
  3. The drive will be available in the File Explorer under Devices and Drives.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • I am off-campus.  Do I need to log on to the VPN?
    No, it is not necessary to connect to the VPN.
  • I received a message that no desktop resources currently available.  What does this mean?
    There are currently 100 virtual machines available for simultaneous login.  If that limit is reached, students will have to wait for an available machine before logging on.  Please be courteous to fellow students and remember to sign out when you are done with your work!
  • Can I log into multiple virtual machines?
    You may only be signed on to one virtual machine at a time.  If you are currently logged on and start a new connection, your previous connection will be signed off and all data deleted.
  • The software I need is not installed on the Virtual Machine.  How do get it?

    Use the Windows Menu to find and open the Software Center.  Look under Applications to see if the software is available and click Install.

    You may also submit a request through the Seawolf Tech Portal or contact Kim Riggs (kariggs@alaska.edu) for additional software or to request permanent installation of the software on the Virtual Image.

  • Will my session time out due to inactivity?

    After 60 minutes of inactivity, your session will time out and you will be logged out of the virtual machine.  Any data saved to the virtual machine will be deleted. 

    If you close the window without signing out, your session will remain available for 60 minutes before timing out.  If you sign back in during those 60 minutes, you will return to the same virtual machine and can access your previous work.

    Please note that there are only 100 virtual machines available for simultaneous login, so please be courteous to fellow students and remember to sign out when you are done with your work!

  •  How do I sign out?
    1. To sign out, open the Windows Menu and click on the user icon.
    2. Select Sign Out.  You will be logged out of the virtual machine and all saved data will be deleted.  The virtual machine will be made available to another user.
  • I accidentally closed my window! Is my data lost?
    If you accidentally close the client or browser window using the “X” button, your session will remain active for 60 minutes before automatically signing out.  If you sign back on during the 60-minute window, you will be logged back into the same virtual machine and can access your previous work.
  • Who do I contact for additional assistance?