The following elements are required to install and configure vGPU software on VMware vSphere. For demonstration purposes, this guide uses ESXi release 7.0.3.


The requirements to install and configure vGPU software on VMware vSphere are the same for implementing VMware Horizon as a Server.

Ensure to use the appropriate NVIDIA GPU for your use case. Refer to the NVIDIA Virtual GPU Positioning Guide to better understand which GPU suits your deployment requirements. For additional guidance, contact your NVIDIA and VMware sales representatives.

VMware vSphere 7.0.2 build:

  • vSphere and vCenter Server is available from the VMware website at Product Evaluation Center for VMware vSphere 7.0.

  • As of vSphere 7.0, deploying a new vCenter Server or upgrading to vCenter Server 7.0 requires using the vCenter Server Appliance (VCSA).

NVIDIA vGPU software:

  • NVIDIA vGPU manager vSphere Installation Bundle (VIB)


The vGPU Manager VIB is loaded similarly to a driver in the vSphere hypervisor, and the vCenter Server then manages it.

For NVIDIA vGPU software builds latest releases, please refer to your NVIDIA Application Hub.

For additional information on these current releases, please consult NVIDIA vGPU product documentation for VMware vSphere.

Microsoft software:

Your choice of one of the following CLI/SSH/SCP tools installed on your Windows-based toolbox PC:


  • From the VMWare website

    • vSphere/ESXi Enterprise Plus is required to use vGPU on vSphere

  • Microsoft licenses can be found at the service center here

    • Volume licenses recommended

Testing and Benchmarking tools (Optional but recommended):

An NVIDIA-Certified Systems

  • VMware vSphere ESXi

  • VMware vCenter

  • Must be joined to a domain

  • Must be assigned a static IP address

Preparation for Pre-Installation

Before you install NVIDIA vGPU software:

  1. Determine how vSphere will run on the physical hosts. Consider booting from a thumb drive, as this is an Early Access build.

  2. Download and install any of the following for SSH and SCP:

    • An SSH tool (such as PuTTY)

    • WinSCP, which handles both SSH and SCP functions

    • MobaXterm, which handles both SSH and SCP functions

    • Tight VNCViewer (Remote console)

Server BIOS Settings

Configure the BIOS for your physical hosts, as described below:

  • Hyperthreading - Enabled

  • Power Setting or System Profile - High Performance

  • CPU Performance (if applicable) - Enterprise or High Throughput

  • Memory Mapped I/O above 4-GB - Enabled (if applicable)

  • SR-IOV enabled

  • VT-d/IOMMU - Enabled


NVIDIA GPU architectures after the Maxwell architecture (Pascal, Turing, & Ampere) support VT-d and IOMMU.