NVIDIA GRID vGPU provides direct access to the physical GPU on an ESXi host, allowing multiple VMs to share a single GPU using vendor graphics card drivers.

Follow these instructions to configure VMs and ESXi hosts to create NVIDIA GRID vGPU-enabled desktop pools in Horizon 7. For complete information and detailed procedures, see NVIDIA GRID vGPU Deployment Guide for VMware Horizon 6.1.

  1. Verify the host machine is supported in the VMware Compatibility Guide, and check with the vendor to verify the host meets power and configuration requirements. Install the graphics card in the ESXi host.

  2. Download the NVIDIA vSphere Installation Bundle (VIB) for the appropriate version of ESXi. VIBs are compatible with major version releases. For instance, the NVIDIA ESXi 6.5 VIB works with ESXi 6.5U2, but will not work with ESXi 6.7.

  3. Update VMware Tools and Virtual Hardware (vSphere Compatability) for the template or each VM that will use vGPU.

  4. In the vSphere Web Client, edit the VM settings and add a shared PCI device. PCI devices require reserving guest memory. Expand New PCI Device and click Reserve all guest memory. You can also modify this setting in the VM Memory settings.

  5. Select the appropriate GPU Profile for your use case. For sizing guidelines, see NVIDIA vGPU™ GRID Deployment Guide for VMware Horizon 7.x on VMware vSphere 6.7

  6. Download the NVIDIA Guest Driver installer package to the VM. Make sure it matches the version of the installed NVIDIA VIB on ESXi.

  7. Choose one of the following methods to install the NVIDIA Guest Driver. After the NVIDIA driver is installed, vCenter Server console will display a black screen.

    • Desktop Pool

    • View Agent Direct-Connection Plugin

    • RDP

Desktop Pool

This method is for creating a template VM or a small manual pool of dedicated desktops.

  1. Install Horizon Agent.

  2. Configure domain and other network settings, as needed.

  3. Configure the VMs as desktops in the pool.

  4. Assign admin level access to accounts.

  5. Connect Horizon Client to Horizon Administrator to access desktops.

  6. Install NVIDIA driver, reboot, and reconnect.

  7. Access NVIDIA Control Panel and enter license server information.

View Agent Direct-Connection Plugin

This method is for a quick environment verification, or a simple user level access.

  1. Install Horizon Agent.

  2. Install the matching View Agent Direct Connection Plugin. You need local administrator account access.

  3. Log in with Horizon Client. Use the VM IP address as Connection Server.

  4. Install NVIDIA driver, reboot, and reconnect.

  5. Access NVIDIA Control Panel and enter license server information.

RDP

This method is for creating a template VM or a snapshot before installing Horizon Agent.

  1. Enable Remote Desktop access in the VMs. For Windows 7, apply https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/kb/3080079.

  2. Log in using Microsoft Remote Desktop Connection.

  3. Install NVIDIA driver, reboot, and reconnect.

  4. Access NVIDIA Control Panel and enter license server information.

  5. Install Horizon Agent.

  6. Configure domain and other network settings, as needed.

After a base VM is configured and licensed for vGPU, you can configure the VM as a template or take a snapshot for use as a base image in a View Composer linked-clone pool. You must power off the virtual machine before taking the snapshot. In the Add Desktop Pool wizard, select the NVIDIA GRID vGPU option for 3D Renderer and only NVIDIA GRID vGPU-enabled ESXi hosts and NVIDIA GRID vGPU-enabled virtual machine templates and snapshots appear for selection in the wizard. VMware recommends using the default Blast settings for the pool protocol. For additional protocol options and other advanced configuration settings, consult the following guides: