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Reduced Performance with Citrix Linux Receiver 13.7 / 13.8 (compared to 13.5)

Today I would like to show you a current issue when upgrading your Linux Receiver 13.5 to 13.7 or 13.8. This is especially important for you when you are using Thin Clients. With a new Firmware a ThinClient Vendor often also updates the used Receiver Version. For example with one of the last Firmware’s Igel switched the default Receiver to Version 13.7. Unfortunately, it seems that there was a bigger change in the Linux Receiver, which leads to a performance reduction – especially when playing a video. This is a problem because it means that all HDX 3D Pro users are effected (HDX 3D Pro = H264 Stream). To show you the differences between both Receiver versions I created the following Video. Both screens are using the same Hardware / Firmware. Only the Linux Receiver Version was changed.

We currently have a ticket open at Citrix to fix the problem – but there is no solution until now available.

NVIDIA Grid Cards – OEM “List” Price Comparison

In a discussion with a smart guy from NVIDIA he showed me as a nice source for Supermicro Servers (and Grid Cards). The visible prices for the Grid cards were kind of “interesting” – so I thought a comparison of the somewhere public visible list prices for Grid cards from the different OEMs might be interesting. Prices might change in the future. In addition you need for some cards a separate Cable Kit. All Prices from 13.02.2018. (Don’t forget – that are list prices!)

OEM M10 M60 P4 P40
Dell $5,050.56 $9,821.84 $4,020.79 $12,305.72
Supermicro $2,299.00 $4,399.00 $1,899.00 $5,699.00
HP $3,999.00 $8,999.00 $3,699.00 $11,599.00
Cisco $8,750.00 $16,873.00 $6,999.00 $21,000.00
Lenovo ?? $9,649.00 ?? ??

If you know a source for the missing Lenovo List Prices – please let me know so I can add them.



=> ProLiant DL Servers => ProLiant DL300 Servers => HPE ProLiant DL380 Gen10 Server => Configure (just choose one) => Graphics Options



NVIDIA Grid Version Overview

When you have a look at Grid-Versioning you might getting confused by the Official Version Number, the Hypervisor Driver-Number and the VM-Driver Number. Especially when you have multiple systems and cannot upgrade all systems at the same time or would like to test new versions, it’s quite helpful to know which Grid Version is which Hypervisor- and VM-Driver version. Thus I created a simple table to show the corresponding versions:


GRID Version Hypervisor-Driver VM-Treiber (Windows) VM-Treiber (Linux)
4.0 367.43 369.17
4.1 367.64 369.61
4.2 367.92 369.95
4.5 367.123 370.17
4.6 367.124 370.21
5.0 384.73 385.41 384.73
5.1 384.99 385.90 384.73
5.2 384.111 386.09 384.111
5.3 384.137 386.37 384.137
6.0 390.42 391.03 390.42
6.1 390.57 391.58 390.57
6.2 390.72 391.81 390.75

Data comparison of NVIDIA GRID Tesla P4 and P40

For my book about NVIDIA GRID I created a Data comparison table of the two graphics cards P4 and P40. From my point of view the P4 is a real underestimated card. After my presentation at NVIDIA GTC Europe this year NVIDIA added the P4 to their comparison slides – thanks for listening. During DCUG TecCon I showed my Data comparison table and got some real positive feedback. So I thought it’s worth to publish the comparison in a blog post:

P40 (3X)

P4 (6X)


3X Pascal

6X Pascal

CUDA Cores (per Card)



CUDA Cores (Total)



Frame Buffer (Total)



H.264 1080p30 Streams (Total)



Max vGPU (Total)



Max Power (per Card)



Max Power (Total)



Price per Card (in $)*



Price for all Cards (in $)*



*NVIDIA doesn’t publish list prices – so I picked list prices from one server vendor.

Current server generations allow either the usage of six P4 or three P40. As you can see the price of the P4 is much lower. On the other side the available CUDE Cores on the P40 are higher. Thus one user could get a higher peak performance on a P40 card. On the other hand you have more CUDE cores available on all P4 cards compared to all P40 cards. With the P4 cards you are limited to 48 vGPU Instances – the P40 allows up to 72.

There is another fact most people don’t think about. Citrix uses H264 in it’s HDX 3D Pro Protocol. When a user now connects to a VM one stream is created for every monitor he is using. In many offices nearly every user already has two monitors – resulting in two streams. If you now connect 72 users to a P40 and every user has two monitors – it would require 144 streams. However there are only 75 available. This can lead to a reduced performance for the user. In contrast the P4 has 150 streams available – for 48 vGPU Instances.

In addition the maximum power of all six P4 is 300W lower than three P40 resulting in lower cooling requirements and power needs for the Data Center.

I hope you like the comparison – if you think something is wrong or missing please contact me.

Published Applications blacked out / Published Desktop black borders with Citrix XenDesktop and NVIDIA GRID

During the last days I was facing an interesting error. Starting a published application from a Windows Server 2016 with a NVIDIA GRID vGPU only showed a black screen:


Interestingly it was possible to move the black window around and even maximize it. But it stayed black. The taskbar Icon instead was correctly shown:


Other users had the problem that when they started a published desktop they had black borders on the side:


To fix this they needed to change the window size of the desktop.

There was no specific graphics setting configured for the server – except from this one:

Use the hardware default graphics adapter for all Remote Desktop Services sessions


The same problem is described in this Citrix Discussion. It’s also mentioned that LC7875 fixes the problem. Thus I created a Case at Citrix and requested this hotfix. The hotfix contains a changed icardd.dll (C:\Windows\System32). After installing the fix the problem was gone.

GPU Powered VDI – Virtual Desktops with NVIDIA GRID


As you might have noticed I only wrote a few blog posts during the last month. One of the reasons was that I was (secretely) working on a book about Virtual Desktops using a Graphics card. The ones which joined Thomas Remmlinger and my session @NVIDIA GTC Europe today already know that this book is now finished and available at Amazon. Only one thing – sorry for that – currently it’s only available in German. Hope you like it – if (not) please tell Smile.


Remove pinned Server Manager Icon from Start Menu for new Users on Server 2016

If you plan to deploy a Server 2016 e.g. as an RDSH or XenApp VDA you might want to remove the pinned Server Manager from the Start Menu for new users. I don’t know why, but Microsoft does not offer a GPO setting for this. This blog post from Clint Boessen describes how to remove the pinned Server Manager Icon from Server 2012. For Server 2016 the Shortcut that needs to be removed is in a different Path:

C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs

After deleting the shortcut new users don’t get a pinned Server Manager in their Start Menu. It is not necessary to remove the shortcut from the following path:

C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Windows Administrative Tools


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