top of page

Differentiate Horizon Protocols

An interesting conversation has to do with the 3 different protocols that the Horizon Client provides. These are the network protocol that connects the user to their desktop. These are 3 different protocols you can select either as you create the desktop groups or you can give your users the ability to select their own for connecting up to their internal data center.

Microsoft RDP

The first is Microsoft RDP (port 3389) that has been around since the beginning of View, since the original entry into the VDI space and has been around for decades traditionally used for connecting up to servers and later desktops. This is a very mature protocol and an excellent solution on the part of Microsoft in improving that protocol from version to version. Microsoft has done a lot of good work and created a very good protocol for connecting up users to desktop, the issue here is that it is not a VMware Protocol and in earlier versions there were certain features that did not exist in the RDP protocol that VMware required or really wanted. So VMware partnered with a company called Teradici to offer PCoIP a PC over IP Protocol.


This protocol has been commonly associated with VMware View and Horizon and is still in use in many locations today. PCoIP (port 4172) at some point in the past offered additional functionality that was not seen in Microsoft RDP. The capabilities have evolved in which one is better or worse has kind of leap frogged each other from time to time depending on who you ask. So PCoIP is I guess, without getting into a political conversation, is another approach that you can use for connecting up users with their internal resources. The issues with PCoIP is that some of the ways that it went about performing its actions, some administrative options did not originally resolve things in ways that was comfortable with VMware in some use cases on how PCoIP was actually manifesting those connections. So VMware because of this and also because they were looking for their own protocol eventually created a proprietary protocol called Blast.

Blast Extreme

Blast (port 8443) is a VMware creation in itself entire code was designed and built by VMware and their internal engineers. With this version there is Blast Extreme, but in reality this is VMware’s attempt to create a protocol that works and that is not Microsoft or Teradici but offers the flexibility for supporting the wide array of different possible use cases that you see some people actually connecting up to Horizon View resources desktops and applications too. Blast Extreme uses the H.264 protocol. It is also very well defined to tune itself to the different types of devices that are connecting in like mobile devices. So again, without delving into the politics, Blast offers a 3rd option on how your users connect up with your Horizon resources.

You can go online spending days taking a look at the different pros and cons and the analysis of which of these work best, and when you do your own personal due diligence pay careful attention to what year and date the articles you are reading where actually released in. Because again, there has been quite a bit of leap frogging in terms of capabilities and performance across all 3 of these different protocols over time. The most important thing you should be aware of with this version of Horizon 7 that the original implementation of Blast was limited only to the HTML Client access option. These days Blast is available with both the Client and HTML approach. All 3 of these options are available when creating your pools and making assignments to your users.


Featured Posts
Check back soon
Once posts are published, you’ll see them here.
Recent Posts
Search By Tags
No tags yet.
Follow Us
  • Facebook Basic Square
  • Twitter Basic Square
  • Google+ Social Icon
bottom of page