Optimizing HDX 3D Pro
Since the announcement of HDX 3D Pro and NVIDIA GRID vGPU at Synergy 2013, I have done many presentations, demonstrations and builds of this technology for customers and partners. The interest is massive, as it clearly addresses a use case that desktop virtualisation couldn’t efficiently manage previously. In this blog, I want to share five of my learnings from deploying HDX 3D Pro setups in customer environments, for both XenApp Hosted Shared Desktops and XenDesktop VDI.
Configure XenDesktop policies – minor changes can be the difference between perfect and pathetic
When you configure a machine with HDX 3D Pro and look through the policies available in Citrix Studio, you’ll find that there isn’t a huge number of specific HDX 3D Pro policies. The most useful policies are more generic, and can be applied to any workload in Studio. The five most important XenDesktop policies that I tweak for 3D applications are:
- Moving Image Compression
- Visual Quality
- Lossy Compression Level
- Enable Lossless
- Progressive Compression Level
I typically use these five policies to tweak the performance of an application over any network access scenario (LAN, WAN, remote access). Policies such as lossless compression and moving image compression will assist in maximising the performance of 3D applications over the WAN. Each application and workload behave differently, so it is important to test the user experience each time you change one of these settings.
To set the most appropriate policy level, it is important to understand the requirements of the users. If they are WAN users, what is the available bandwidth? How many users in a site? What is the latency between site and virtual desktop? Is there any optimisation of the user experience done by a CloudBridge? Use this criteria to validate your policy settings. In my setups, I reduce image quality and increase compression on moving images when deploying apps out for remote access. In this scenario, I have no control over the client connection bandwidth, so I provide the minimal acceptable performance. Tailor how your LAN and WAN policies look, and filter them by site and user for maximum effect.