Windows domain logon, automatically launch an associated VM by username?

Discussion in 'VMware, VirtualBox, Citrix' started by tullnd, Oct 18, 2018.

  1. tullnd

    tullnd Member

    Apr 19, 2016
    Likes Received:
    I'll preface this by stating: I'm not a systems admin or directly involved in IT anymore. I've been on the periphery for years and really not all that familiar with ESXI/HyperV and more advanced windows AD administration.

    Is it possible to configure a Windows AD server via group policy or something, to automatically launch an associated VM upon domain logon? As in, you are prompted for your username/password, and during authentication, maybe Active Directory can communicate with the VM server(ESXi or Hyper-V..don't know yet) and says "Bob is logging on and he has a when Windows sign on occurs, it'll automatically launch his VM, so he's presented his VM desktop right away". This would need to occur on server side, so it would work from any of our Windows 10 domain registered PC's.

    More details that probably will still frustrate you on why I'm asking:

    I'm involved in some discussions about potential changes in our infrastructure at my employer. Our department has operated as an island, without support from our corporate IT department and the guy who set this all up is leaving. We're trying to find a way to shift basic desktop workstation support back to corporate IT support and still perform our work functions. Part of this is moving off Solaris 10 workstations and migrating to Windows 10 machines. We interface with a lot of old applications that will require an XServer and other configuration settings that IT corporate support won't be handling.

    One of the ideas being discussed is to setup VM's for everyone in the group. The idea being that it works well for disaster recovery options if we have to connect from different locations(the bulk of these guys don't have laptops, nor would they be a good remote locations may just have normal corporate issued desktops of middling performance specs), that everyone has a basic VM config with the apps they need setup and plenty of allocated resources per VM to do their job, so they can connect from anywhere if necessary. The initial discussion being to use a solution like ESXi or Hyper V.

    Yes, we will be involving IT professionals to work out the logistics, this is only one of the ideas being considered, we're just not at the point of bringing the others into the room yet. Upper management has concerns about teaching some people to do a "remote connection" after they log in locally, so I wasn't sure if it was possible to initiate that VM launch from the logon process.
  2. kapone

    kapone Active Member

    May 23, 2015
    Likes Received:
    You're looking at this wrong. Look at VDI or a Citrix Virtual Desktop type mechanism.
  3. Rand__

    Rand__ Well-Known Member

    Mar 6, 2014
    Likes Received:
    Yep that should fit the bill nicely, either start your individual vms or a Remote Desktop Session on a terminal server. Can be used with specific devices (thin/zero clients) or o/c a software client on workstation/laptop/tablet/cell phone
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