Chapter 2. Before You Begin

This chapter covers the prerequisites before you can proceed with the remaining steps in this guide.

Hardware

This guide uses a single host for a complete Oracle VDI deployment. The host provides everything needed to run and access virtual desktops, including the virtualization platform and storage.

The host must meet the following minimum hardware requirements:

  • 8 gigabytes (GB) of random-access memory (RAM)

    8 GB is sufficient to run approximately six virtual desktops.

  • Quad core x86-64 (64-bit) central processing unit (CPU), with virtualization support (Intel VT-x or AMD-V)

  • 100 gigabytes (GB) of free disk space

    In this guide, a local disk is used to store the virtual desktops. It is best to use a host with at least two disks, so that the storage can be separated from the operating system. Make sure the storage disk has enough capacity to store your virtual desktops.

  • 1 gigabit (Gbit) network interface card (NIC)

These requirements assume that the host will be a dedicated host, used only for Oracle VDI.

Operating System

You can use either Oracle Linux or Oracle Solaris as the operating system for the host.

The following information provides a summary of the main requirements. For detailed system requirements, see the following information in the Oracle Virtual Desktop Infrastructure Administrator's Guide:

The following is a summary of the main requirements for Oracle Linux platforms:

  • Oracle Linux release 5.8 or 6.3 is supported.

  • You must use Oracle's Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel. Currently a single-host deployment is not possible on any other kernel.

  • For Oracle Linux 5 platforms, the default package set is required and must be installed on the host.

  • For Oracle Linux 6 platforms, the Desktop package set is required and must be installed on the host.

    You must also enable the Oracle Linux 6 GDM Multiseat repository.

  • Ensure that yum is configured correctly and that it is working, so that any missing required packages can be installed automatically when you install Oracle VDI.

    If you have not purchased Oracle Linux Support and your host has Internet access, you can resolve package dependencies by using the Oracle Public Yum Server. See http://public-yum.oracle.com for details of how to enable access to these repositories.

    For Oracle Linux 6 platforms, you must download the latest yum configuration file (http://public-yum.oracle.com/public-yum-ol6.repo) and copy it to the /etc/yum.repos.d directory on the host. The latest yum configuration file contains entries for the Oracle Linux 6 GDM Multiseat repository.

  • Check the maximum transmission unit (MTU) of the loopback network interface.

    You might experience poor performance with desktops if the MTU of the loopback network interface is too high. You can check the MTU, and decrease it if needed, as follows:

    1. Use the ifconfig command to check the current MTU of the loopback interface.

      For example:

      # /sbin/ifconfig lo
      lo        Link encap:Local Loopback  
                inet addr:127.0.0.1  Mask:255.0.0.0
                inet6 addr: ::1/128 Scope:Host
                UP LOOPBACK RUNNING  MTU:16346  Metric:1
                RX packets:134095573 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 frame:0
                TX packets:134095573 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 carrier:0
                collisions:0 txqueuelen:0 
                RX bytes:82894163173 (77.2 GiB)  TX bytes:82894163173 (77.2 GiB)
      
    2. If the MTU is 8192 bytes or more, change the MTU of the loopback interface to 8154 bytes.

      The MTU must be less than 8192 bytes. A value of 8154 bytes has been tested and is known to resolve the performance issue.

      Use the ifconfig command to change the MTU, for example:

      # /sbin/ifconfig lo mtu 8154

      To make the change persist after a reboot, edit the /etc/sysconfig/network-scripts/ifcfg-lo file and add the following line:

      MTU=8154

      Use the ifconfig command to verify that the MTU of the loopback interface has been changed.

  • The host must be running in runlevel 5 (full multi-user mode with a graphical user interface).

  • SELinux must be disabled.

    Use either the sestatus or the getenforce command to check the current SELinux status. To disable SELinux:

    1. Edit the /etc/selinux/config file and change the SELINUX setting to SELINUX=disabled.

      The setenforce command only enables you to change between Enforcing or Permissive .

    2. Reboot the host to apply the configuration change.

The following is a summary of the main requirements for Oracle Solaris platforms:

  • Oracle Solaris 10 release 8/11 (update 10) or later and Oracle Solaris 11.1 or later is supported.

  • For Oracle Solaris 10 platforms, the Entire Distribution software cluster is required and must be installed on the host.

  • For Oracle Solaris 11 platforms, the default Oracle Solaris 11 packages, which are provided through the solaris package publisher, are required and must be installed on the host.

    Ensure that the Oracle Solaris Image Packaging System (IPS) is configured correctly and that it is working, so that any missing required packages can be installed automatically when you install Oracle VDI.

  • The system must be running in runlevel 3 (multi-user level with NFS resources shared).

  • If you use Solaris zones, all the configuration steps in this guide must be performed in the global zone. Non-global zones are not supported.

  • Ensure that the host has at least 8 gigabytes (GB) swap space. For information about configuring swap space:

  • The zfs_arc_min parameter must be set in the /etc/system file. If this parameter is not set, set it to 1 gigabyte (GB) to start with (you can adjust it later if the system performance is affected). You should also set the zfs_arc_max parameter to be the same value as zfs_arc_min. You set the parameter values in bytes as follows:

    set zfs:zfs_arc_min = 1073741824
    set zfs:zfs_arc_max = 1073741824

Other Host Requirements

You must be able to log in as the root user, or assume the root role (Oracle Solaris), on the host. The user must have a home directory and the home directory must not be shared between several hosts that run VirtualBox.

SSH must be enabled on the host, and SSH must be configured to permit logins by the root user or by a user that can assume the root role (Oracle Solaris). If SSH is configured to use a non-standard port, make sure you know the port number.

Before you install Oracle VDI, you must disable the firewall on the host. This ensures that the required configuration can take place. After installation and configuration, you can re-enable the firewall. See Firewall Ports and Protocols in the Oracle Virtual Desktop Infrastructure Administrator's Guide for details of the ports that might need to be opened.

The host must have Domain Name System (DNS) entries that can be resolved by clients. The DNS forward lookup and reverse lookup for the host must always succeed. There must be a one-to-one mapping between the forward and reverse lookup.

The host must have a fixed host name and a static IP address. The host cannot be a DHCP client.

Currently, Oracle VDI does not support IPv6 or IP MultiPathing (IPMP).

Oracle VDI Software

You should download the Oracle VDI software archive to a temporary location on the host. Links to the software downloads and instructions for downloading can be found at:

http://www.oracle.com/technetwork/server-storage/virtualdesktop/downloads/index.html

Typically, Sun Ray Clients are used to display Oracle VDI desktops. Sun Ray Clients are low-powered hardware devices. For ease and speed of access, this guide uses Oracle Virtual Desktop Client to access desktops. Oracle Virtual Desktop Client is a software alternative to using a Sun Ray Client. Links to the Oracle Virtual Desktop Client downloads and instructions for downloading can be found at:

http://www.oracle.com/technetwork/server-storage/sunrayproducts/downloads/index.html

After you download Oracle Virtual Desktop Client, install it. You do not have to install Oracle Virtual Desktop Client on the server, you can install it on your desktop PC or laptop. The client platform must be able to connect to your Oracle VDI host. For details on the supported platforms and for installation instructions, see the Release Notes for the version of the client you download at:

http://www.oracle.com/technetwork/server-storage/sunrayproducts/docs/index.html

Virtualization Platform

The default virtualization platform for Oracle VDI is Oracle VM VirtualBox and this is the platform used in this guide.

If you are familiar with VirtualBox and have an existing virtual machine, this guide shows you how to prepare the virtual machine for use as a desktop template.

If you have an existing virtual machine that was prepared in a different virtualization platform and you can export from that platform in Open Virtualization Format (OVF or OVA), this guide shows you how to import a machine into VirtualBox. You should copy all the exported files to a temporary location on the host.

If you are unfamiliar with VirtualBox, this guide takes you through the steps for creating a virtual machine, which requires the installation media. This guide uses Windows 7. The installation media can be a physical CD/DVD or it can be an ISO image. If you are using an ISO image, copy the image to a temporary location on the host. In order to avoid issues with things like Windows Activation, it is best to have a Windows volume license key for your selected desktop operating system.

User Directory

Typically, you configure Oracle VDI to use the information held in a corporate user directory. This guide assumes you are using Microsoft Active Directory but the steps in this guide for connecting to a user directory should work for any supported user directory. Details of the supported directories can be found in the Oracle Virtual Desktop Infrastructure Administrator's Guide. Make a note of the URL used to access the directory, including whether SSL (LDAPS) is required for connections. You also need the distinguished name, for example cn=Jane Doe,cn=Users,dc=example,dc=com, and password of a user that has read access to the directory.

Windows Domain

In this guide, you perform the steps needed to configure windows desktops for automatic logins and Oracle VDI Fast Preparation. These steps are optional, but they provide users with the best experience. With this configuration, when users log in to Oracle VDI, they are automatically logged in to their desktop and the desktop is joined to a Windows domain. For this to succeed, you need the following information:

  • The credentials of a domain administrator with permission to create a computer account and join the domain.

  • The distinguished name of the container that Active Directory uses for computers. The default container is ou=Computers.

  • For Windows Server 2008 and later, whether the domain controllers are configured as read-only.

Once you have completed the preparation, you are ready to install the software. Chapter 3, Installing the Software, shows you how to do this.