VMware Horizon

VMware Horizon View™ 5.3 Brings Next-Generation 3D Graphics

By Mike Coleman, Senior Product Manager, End-User Computing, VMware

One of the great new features in VMware Horizon View 5.3 is full support for Virtual Dedicated Graphics Acceleration (vDGA), which leverages the PCI pass-through capabilities of ESXi, and allows administrators to dedicate an NVIDIA GRID GPU in their vSphere hosts directly to Horizon View-based virtual desktops.

Because the GPU is married directly to the virtual machine, end users are able to unleash the full power of the graphics hardware – allowing for maximum application compatibility and the highest level of performance.

As the name implies, with vDGA a single GPU is dedicated to a virtual machine. This GPU is not shared by any other virtual desktops, which means end users get its full processing power. Additionally, each virtual desktop gets all the video RAM associated with that GPU.

On the software side, unlike Soft 3D and Virtual Shared Graphics Acceleration (vSGA), vDGA leverages the native NVIDIA display driver. By utilizing a native driver, vDGA provides the highest level of application compatibility. It also ensures that users take advantage of the latest versions of OpenGL and DirectX, as well as utilizing computing technologies such as OpenCL and CUDA.

With this great combination of hardware and software, Horizon View 5.3 opens up a set of use cases previously unavailable on virtual desktops. Companies can now centralize complex 3D designs in a data center, and allow their engineers to access them over the network via PCoIP from nearly anywhere. This allows administrators to not only offer the flexibility and performance today’s engineers want, but also protect valuable IP.

We believe that with the addition of vDGA, VMware now offers the broadest set of 3D technologies. Administrators can now have the right balance of cost, compatibility and performance to enable users ranging from task workers to knowledge workers to graphic artists to the highest-end engineers.