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VMware ESXi 5.5 graphics card pass thru

Posted on 2014-01-21
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Last Modified: 2014-04-09
How to make the graphics card on ESXi 5.5 server to pass thru and work on Win 8 virtual machine. As shown in pic, I got the settings right on esxi direct path I/O but VM doesn't see it.
Graphics card is NVIDIA quadro 2000
Capture.JPG
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Question by:kavlins
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15 Comments
 
LVL 10

Expert Comment

by:Subhashish Laha
ID: 39797180
Did you add PCI device in VM settings?

You need to add the pass through device on VM.
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LVL 6

Author Comment

by:kavlins
ID: 39797211
Tried that, PCI Device shows unavailable.
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Author Comment

by:kavlins
ID: 39797488
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LVL 123

Assisted Solution

by:Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2) earned 2000 total points
ID: 39797489
Is your graphics card on the HCL ?

Is you server on the HCL?

Does your server support VM Direct Path I/O, also make sure they graphics card is compatible, server is compatible and on the HCL.

see this example of VM Direct Path I/O

http://www.vm-help.com/esx40i/VMDirectPath/USB_Setup.php
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LVL 6

Author Comment

by:kavlins
ID: 39797549
That's a good point Andrew, let me check that..

ESXi 5.5 is installed on Dell T3600 precision and Graphics card is NVIDIA Quadro 2000. This is a testing platform.
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LVL 123
ID: 39797566
If this is a Dell T3600, that would suggest a non-Server, just a desktop computer.

e.g. not on the HCL.

I do not believe the Quadro 2000 is on the HCL either, but VM Direct Path I/O is very selective of graphics cards, and nVidia GPUs are often problematic, unlike AMD!

(except the new breed of GPU, e.g. K10, K20, K40)
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LVL 6

Author Comment

by:kavlins
ID: 39842338
I bought a refurbished Dell r415 to test this out, but again unable to find a compatible Graphics card at VMware website .
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LVL 123

Accepted Solution

by:
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2) earned 2000 total points
ID: 39842445
nVidia K10, K20 and K40, nVidia Grid are supported.

otherwise did not pick any consumer nVidia they do not work.

Certain AMD cards are compatible if they have stock of AMD cards
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LVL 6

Author Comment

by:kavlins
ID: 39842494
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LVL 123
ID: 39842503
Do you have a large budget for card, or is this just a test for lab?

nVidia Grid K1 and K2 are supported - officially and in the HCL
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LVL 6

Author Comment

by:kavlins
ID: 39842552
Good question. At this point testing only but testing has to be with right hardware before making recommendations to software development guys/management. So I believe will be forced to buy for trial. Any other cards you know of , which isn't officially supported?

i found the link for NVIDIA Grid cards http://www.nvidia.com/object/grid-boards.html
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LVL 123

Assisted Solution

by:Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2) earned 2000 total points
ID: 39842602
Yes, that's if you do the supported route, that's why I asked, because people do not realise how expensive they are.....for test!

Same can be achieved with an AMD card, but it's quite hit and miss.

It does not work work nVidia low range cards, they do not work with VM Direct Path I/O.

Issue is AMD card purchases have gone through the roof, with people mining Litecoin with them!

I've a list if you want, of cards we've tested that work, but often it's also dependant upon the Server!
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LVL 6

Author Comment

by:kavlins
ID: 39842647
Sure, please..if you don't mind passing it on to me..
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LVL 123
ID: 39842943
I'll dig it out, and upload.
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