(VDI) – USC Information Technology Services (2024), also referred to as a virtual desktop interface (VDI), is a service provided by ITS that allows current USC students and faculty to access USC-licensed software packages from any computer or mobile device.
* Please note that Cloudapps requires USC multi-factor authentication.


There are two ways of accessingcloudapps.usc.edufrom your device: You can access it through your web browser or you can install the VMware Client on your computer.

The difference is that the VMWare Horizon client gives you full access to the files, microphone, USB, and other features on your device while the web-based HTML access gives you only basic functionality and limited file storage options.Notethat you cannot access your files between Cloudapps and your device when using the HTML version. ITS strongly suggests that you download the VMware Horizon client in order to get the full functionality ofCloudapps. The VMware client can be downloaded through and selectingClick Here to Download VMware Horizon Clientat the bottom of the VMware Horizon screen. (See image below) You will be directed to VMware’s site where you can download the VMware client for Windows, MacOS or Linux.

Note on Saving Content Created on

When you log out, all files that have not been saved to a storage device or cloud storage service will be deleted. In addition, if yourcloudapps.usc.edusession is left inactive or if the connection tocloudapps.usc.eduis lost without logging off, your session and all associated data will be automatically deleted after two hours.

Be sure to regularly save files to your device’s hard drive, removable storage device, or a preferred cloud storage service to avoid losing data.

Accessing through the VMWare Horizon Client

NOTE:The following instructions were created on a computer running Windows 10. These instructions will work for most Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android operating systems though there may be slight variations in the actual screens you see while installing the software.

Installing the VMWare Horizon Client

To accesscloudapps.usc.eduthrough the VMWare Horizon client for the first time:

  1. Go
  2. Click theInstall VMware Horizon Clientbutton.
  3. You will be taken to to download the client.
  4. From theProduct Downloadsmenu, find your device’s operating system and clickGo to Downloads.
  5. Click the blueDownloadbutton to start the download.
  6. Once the file has downloaded to your device, open the file to begin the installation
  7. Read the license agreement that appears and clickI Agree & Installto continue with the installation.
  8. When the installation has completed, clickFinishto exit the setup wizard. You may need to restart your computer before launching the client.

Running the VMWare Horizon Client

To accesscloudapps.usc.eduthrough the VMWare Horizon client:

  1. Double-click theVMware Horizon Clienticon on your desktop (Windows) or in the Applications folder (Mac) to launch the program.

NOTE:If you see a dialog box that saysStart remote USB and Printing services, clickContinue. On the next screen, enter your computer’s password and clickOK.

  1. On theVMware Horizon Clientscreen, double-click theAdd Server
  1. On the next screen, entercloudapps.usc.eduin theEnter the name of the Connection Serverfield and clickConnect.
  1. On the USC NetID Login screen, enter your USC NetID username and password.
  1. On the next screen, you will be asked to verify your identity using multi-factor authentication (MFA):
    1. Use the drop-down menu to select the device you chose when you set up USC MFA.
      • If you set up a telephone number, selectCall Me.
      • If you set up a bypass code, selectEnter Bypass Code.
  1. Read the welcome message that appears and then clickAccept.
  1. On the next screen, double-clickWin10 ITS Lab NEWto start your Cloudapps session.
  1. You will be prompted to select a file saving option. SelectAllowif you want to save files from onto your hard drive or removable storage device. SelectDenyif you want to save files online.
  1. It may take a few minutes for the Window 10 screen to load. Once you are at theStartmenu, you can search for your desired software application or clickAll Programsto see a list of all available.
  2. You are now at the Windows 10 desktop on Cloudapps. You can personalize your experience by clickingSettingsor the(ellipsis) at the top of the screen to enter the Settings menu.

PLEASE NOTE:You can leave most of the Cloudapps settings at their default value. Below is some information on how to change several common settings.

    • If you wish to change the access to your local storage, select Drive Sharing from the left menu.
    • In theDrive Sharingwindow, you can share specific folders between Cloudapps and your computer by clickingAddand then browsing to the folder that you want to share.
    • If you want to share your entire C drive, you can browse toThis PCand selectWindows C.
    • If you would like to share access to your computer’s USB and other removable storage, you can click the switchAllow access to all removable storage.
  1. When you are finished with your modifications, click Apply.

Note: On newer versions of MACOS you may need to assign permissions to the VMware Client. If you see the message “VMware Horizon Client” would like to receive keystrokes from any application, then click Open System Settings and follow the prompts to allow those permissions. (VDI) – USC Information Technology Services (11)

If you do not see the above message, then you follow the procedure below to assign the permissions manually:

Click Open System Settings and follow the prompts to add the permissions.

Open System Preferences.
Select Privacy and Security.
Select Accessibility
Enable the Accessibility Permissions for VMware Horizon Client
Return to Privacy and Security
Select Input Monitoring
Enable the Input Monitoring Permissions for VMware Horizon Client (VDI) – USC Information Technology Services (12) (VDI) – USC Information Technology Services (13)

You can now use the applications installed on Cloudapps. Please remember to save you work to your computer’s local storage, USB storage or cloud storage often and before you log out.

Accessing through a Web Browser

  1. Go
  2. ClickVMware Horizon HTML Access.
  1. On the USC NetID login screen, enter your USC NetID username and password.
  1. On the next screen, you will be asked to verify your identity using USC MFA:
    1. Use the drop-down menu to select the device you chose when you set up USC MFA.
      • If you set up a telephone number, selectCall Me.
      • If you set up a bypass code, selectEnter Bypass Code.
  1. On the next screen, read the welcome message and clickAccept.
  1. Double-click the Windows 10 Lab icon that appears to launch the software. You are now at the Windows 10 Lab image desktop. Click theStartbutton to search for desired software.

NOTE:Please remember that you cannot access your local storage on your computer from Cloudapps when using the HTML access. However, you can use Google Drive to store your files by clicking the Start menu and selecting Google Drive. (VDI) – USC Information Technology Services (2024)
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