What are the requirements to run Nx Witness in a VM?
In order to run the Desktop client in a virtual machine (VM), you need to have OpenGL 2.1 support. A possible solution is to download the OpenGL emulation library which utilizes your CPU to render OpenGL 2.1 graphics. This option will work in most cases and across different virtual machine providers, but it is very taxing on the CPU and is not the most optimal solution.
To have the best experience using Nx Witness (and other Powered-by-Nx products) in a VM environment, we recommend using VMware (Workstation Player/Pro). Installing VMware Tools and utilizing its 3D acceleration feature will allow you to use Nx Witness with minimal problems.
VMware Tools installs the VMware WDDM (Windows Display Driver Model) 1.1-compliant driver. This allows for software-based 2D and 3D rendering using your CPU (on Windows 7 and up), removing the need for a compatible GPU.
To get a feel for the type of performance you can expect, please look at our test results below. We used a virtual machine with the following specifications:
- Windows 10 64-Bit
- 2 Cores (i7-6700HQ)
- 4GB RAM
- 60GB Storage
In our test environment, we had 24 streams actively recording and open in the layout with an average CPU utilization of 75%. It was a stable and enjoyable experience, although results may vary depending on your hardware. In general, the more resources you dedicate to the VM the better your results will be.
How to install VMware Tools and enable 3D acceleration
- Open VMware.
- While the VM is off, select the desired VM and click Edit virtual machine settings.
- In the Hardware tab, click on Display.
- Under 3D graphics, check the box next to Accelerate 3D graphics and click Ok.
- Back in the main menu select the desired VM, open the Manage menu and click Install VMware Tools. VMware will proceed to automatically download and install VMware Tools.
- Nx Server will not start with the log file entries like below:
2017-06-09 15:12:06.945 704 ERROR: Can't save guid. Run once as administrator.
The solution can be found in a related support article.
- It might take a lot of time to initialize shared NAS devices. It happens because of delays in OS level calls. Nx team cannot do anything about it right now from the software side. As an option -- it is better to set up some pretty spacious local drive. It will be used for recording till NAS device is initialized.
- There is a slight chance that the virtual machine will improperly report the hardware information that the server requires generating hardware id. It might cause license keys not to be activated in the software. This should be reported when faced.
- VMware Workstation Player/Pro -- Windows (7, 8, 10, Server 2008, Server 2012) and Ubuntu (14.04, 16.04, 18.04)
- VirtualBox -- Windows (7, 8, 10, Server 2008, Server 2012) and Ubuntu (14.04, 16.04)
- XenServer -- Ubuntu 14.04 and 16.04. Issues are expected and not recommended to be used.
If you have any questions related to this topic or you want to share your experience with other community members or our team, please visit and engage in our support community or reach out to your local reseller.