To proof the capability of XenApp to deliver 3D rendered applications, we build a very basic PoC. We took a used Lenovo ThinkCentre Tower PC with an Intel Core i5 and 4GB RAM and bought a used Nvidia Quadro 2000 for it. It is important to use a Quadro card, because this makes the driver installation much easier. We tried other cards in the first place, but it was just way too much work to get drivers for a Windows Server installation to work properly.
After we got the Nvidia Quadro 2000, I installed Windows Server 2012 R2 and the the XenApp VDA 7.11. Onto the RDSH Host I installed Siemens Solid Edge Viewer ST8 and the Unigine Heaven Benchmark 4.0. There is a very good list for Free 3D Test Tools over at Citrix Blogs. Then I created a new Machine Catalog and a Delivery Group with a published Desktop.
When I first connected to the published Desktop, there wasn’t any difference in the displayed performance, compared to my previous tests with a XenApp 7.11 VMware virtual machine. The desktop worked just fine, but 3D objects in Solid Edge didn’t rotate, and the Benchmark didn’t have more than 1 FPS.
What I didn’t know from the start was, that I had to set a GPO Computer Policy, to allow the use of a GPU in Session Host mode:
After I enabled the setting via gpedit.msc a reboot, the FPS increased dramatically!
After that I made my first live demo meeting with a customer from our company, and the audience was very impressed by the results.
Ps.: I wrote this blog post months ago, but totally forgot to publish it. Maybe it still helps someone 😉