CEM Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI)

The CEM Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) provides remote access to a Virtual Machine containing software installed in College of Engineering and Mines' labs. OIT is working to add all the software, as we speak.

You can log on from anywhere, on or off campus, using your own device.


  • 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.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.alaska.edu and click Connect.
  7. On the login screen, enter UA\ followed by your standard UA login and password.
  8. Double-click on CEM Lab Desktops.
  9. A new window will pop up and you will be logged into one of the CEM 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 CEM Lab Desktops.
  4. Click on CEM 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.