I ran into another notable gotcha working with VMware View v4. I set up Windows 7 virtual machines in linked clone pools, but I was not able to get dual-monitors to work using PCoIP. After several hours of very frustrating troubleshooting, it turns out that VMware has changed the type of display driver that is included with the VMTools install on Windows 7. Prior to Windows 7, VMware used an SVGA II driver for all Windows guest OSes. With Windows 7, they are now “experimenting” with a new WDDM (Windows Display Driver Model) driver. The default VMTools install for Windows 7 uses the WDDM driver instead of the SVGA II driver. Here are some notable limitations of the WDDM driver:

  • No support for OpenGL
  • No multimonitor support
  • VM may be slow to respond or resume
  • Overlay video acceleration is disabled (basically this means flash acceleration and MMR is disabled) [more]

I’m thinking this thing isn’t fully cooked…The original article I found on this had me extract the SVGA II adapter from Workstation 7, but it appears as if new versions of the VMTools actually include it at install time, but its just not used. So, here are the instructions to revert to the SVGA II adapter so that stuff actually works!

  1. Open Device Manager from Control Panel
  2. Expand Display Adapters entry
  3. Right click on VMWare SVGA 3D (WDDM) and click properties
  4. Click on Uninstall Button
  5. Check the “Delete the driver software for this device” option
  6. Click OK
  7. Your screen may flicker as the driver is removed.  
  8. Close Device Manager and reboot Windows 7.
  9. Windows will default to the Standard VGA device
  10. Open Device Manager, expand Display Adapters
  11. Right Click Standard VGA and select Properties
  12. Click on Update Driver
  13. Click on Browse my Computer 
  14. Browse to directory C:\Program Files\Common Files\VMware\Drivers\video
  15. Click Next
  16. Confirm driver installation
  17. Close window and reboot