Issue

Looking for a virtual desktop for gaming

posted in Hypervisor
Monday, October 14 2013, 05:29 AM
0
I have a bunch of kids (5), and a bunch of laptops (total of 7 including mom & dads). I am cheap, and don't like to spend a bunch of money on toys. My video games (Civ V, Xcom) run pretty slow on our laptops (AMD A6 quad core, 8GB RAM, 512 MB onboard ATI 512 Mb video, $350 cheap laptops) connected via wireless lan to fios. Rather than buying new laptops, I was considering building a tower and installing a virtual desktop solution to host virtual desktops for each kid to connect to from their own laptop. This would theoretically move the CPU and GPU work off the laptop and onto a box I build that is more suitable (and cheaper than buying a bunch of new laptops). The tower I am thinking of building would look like this: AMD FX 8320 8 core, 16 Gb 1600 GHz ram, one or two saphire radion hd 7870 2 GB 256 bit, SATA III HD. I am familiar with ESXI from work, but almost totally ignorant about Xen.

My questions:
Does Xen host virtual windows 7/8 64 bit desktops accessible over my home network?
If I put the Xen hypervisor on the tower, will it take advantage of the GPU of the tower effectively and run windows games well in multiple virtual desktops?
Will this configuration take advantage of multiple GPUs (if I chose to buy a 2nd or third GPU) configured with CrossfireX?
Do I have to buy a windoze license for each VDI to be legal? The kids games and school software all run on windows only.
Does anyone know of a VDI server that already does this, so that I don't have to build one :) . I would gladly pay a few dollars a month to use a VDI with some GPU horsepower to run games on.

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Responses (6)
  • Accepted Answer

    Cyd
    Cyd
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    Tuesday, October 15 2013, 03:22 AM - #permalink
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    Yes... You can install Windows 7 64 bit OS.

    Can't claim to think Xen would run your games faster then a standalone game system built for that purpose. Although I could be wrong. It wouldn't be the first time.
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  • Accepted Answer

    Wednesday, October 16 2013, 05:34 AM - #permalink
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    So basically, I would install Xen ... create a couple of virtual desktops and install Win7 64 bit on each Virtual desktop? I am not familiar with Xen, I have a basic understanding of how ESXI works, and I am assuming Xen is similar.

    I have been looking at an app called splashtop that is a remote desktop tool that has good frame/second and low latency. But that will only allow me to connect one laptop at a time to the tower. On the performance issue, it is a question of the video cards. They need the drivers, and I would assume the drivers are windows based, not sure if the video cards are going to run correctly on Xen. I am wondering if anyone has run it on a machine with a decent video card. Most corporate installations doesn't care much about video cards.
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  • Accepted Answer

    Lars Kurth
    Lars Kurth
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    Thursday, October 17 2013, 05:22 PM - #permalink
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    Hi, check out http://wiki.xen.org/wiki/Category:VGA and http://wiki.xen.org/wiki/Xen_VGA_Passthrough_Tested_Adapters. There is also always lots of discussion on related to playing using Xen and VGA passthrough on xen-users@lists.xen.org. You can post without being subscribed and can search via http://xen.markmail.org/
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  • Accepted Answer

    Friday, October 25 2013, 03:17 PM - #permalink
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    As cool as I think it would be to do something like this... I'm not to sure you will get much better performance than your laptops.

    Even though there are cloud gaming services that deploy a similar technology. I would do your research before spending the money..
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  • Accepted Answer

    Sunday, November 17 2013, 11:22 PM - #permalink
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    I could answer here but all the info you need to do EXACTLY what you want is on my blog...

    Http://blog.ktz.me
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  • Accepted Answer

    Sunday, November 17 2013, 11:23 PM - #permalink
    0
    I should add one GPU required per VM.
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