The 3D Renderer setting for desktop pools provides options that let you configure graphics rendering in different ways.

3D Renderer Options for Pools Running on vSphere 5.1 or Later

Option

Description

Manage using vSphere Client

The 3D Renderer option that is set in vSphere Web Client for a virtual machine determines the type of 3D graphics rendering that takes place. View does not control 3D rendering.

In the vSphere Web Client, you can configure the Automatic, Software, or Hardware options. These options have the same effect as they do when you set them in View Administrator.

When you select the Manage using vSphere Client option, the Configure VRAM for 3D Guests, Max number of monitors, and Max resolution of any one monitor settings are inactive in View Administrator. You can configure these settings for a virtual machine in the vSphere Web Client.

Automatic

3D rendering is enabled. The ESXi host controls the type of 3D rendering that takes place.

For example, the ESXi host reserves GPU hardware resources on a first-come, first-served basis as virtual machines are powered on. If all GPU hardware resources are already reserved when a virtual machine is powered on, ESXi uses the software renderer for that machine.

When you configure hardware-based 3D rendering, you can examine the GPU resources that are allocated to each virtual machine on an ESXi host. For details, see Examining GPU Resources on an ESXi Host.

Software

3D rendering is enabled. The ESXi host uses software 3D graphics rendering. If a GPU graphics card is installed on the ESXi host, this pool will not use it.

In the Configure VRAM for 3D Guests dialog box, you can use the slider to increase the amount of VRAM that is reserved.

Hardware

3D rendering is enabled. The ESXi host reserves GPU hardware resources on a first-come, first-served basis as virtual machines are powered on.

The ESXi host allocates VRAM to a virtual machine based on the value that is set in the Configure VRAM for 3D Guests dialog box.

Important

If you configure the Hardware option, consider these potential constraints:

If a user tries to connect to a desktop when all GPU hardware resources are reserved, the virtual machine will not power on, and the user will receive an error message.

A desktop cannot be moved by vMotion to an ESXi host that does not have GPU hardware configured.

All ESXi hosts in the cluster must be version 5.1 or later. If a desktop is created on an ESXi 5.0 host in a mixed cluster, the virtual machine will not power on.

When you configure hardware-based 3D rendering, you can examine the GPU resources that are allocated to each virtual machine on an ESXi host. For details, see Examining GPU Resources on an ESXi Host.

Disabled

3D rendering is inactive.

3D Renderer Options for Pools Running on vSphere 5.0

Option

Description

Enabled

The 3D Renderer option is enabled. The ESXi host uses software 3D graphics rendering.

When software rendering is configured, the default VRAM size is 64MB, the minimum size. In the Configure VRAM for 3D Guests dialog box, you can use the slider to increase the amount of VRAM that is reserved. With software rendering, the ESXi host allocates up to a maximum of 128MB per virtual machine. If you set a higher VRAM size, it is ignored.

Disabled

3D rendering is inactive.

If a desktop pool is running on earlier vSphere version than 5.0, the 3D Renderer setting is inactive and is not available in View Administrator.