Multiple Video Cards and VMware-DirectX or Games

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by matthewtoney, Sep 16, 2009.

  1. matthewtoney macrumors regular

    matthewtoney

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2009
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    #1
    Ok, I know I'm not the only one on here with multiple video cards in their Mac Pro, and I'm wondering if any others that also do can share their own experience with the following:

    I've got one ATI 4870 as the primary card (a flashed XFX 1GB card really) and one GT120 as my secondary card (the one that came with my 2009 Pro)

    Both cards in OSX are reported as they should be and show acceleration, etc. however, I've noticed that the couple of games I've tried on the OSX side don't work right (well don't display right anyway) plus more bothersome is the fact that in VMware Fusion (2.05) running XP with DirectX acceleration turned on for the virtual machine, *any* software that runs and tries to use DirectX makes Fusion throw an error about the virtual machine performing invalid operations. (the error is thrown on the OSX side, not in the XP virtual machine)

    I'm curious as to whether this is related to my two cards being from different vendors, something new with VMware Fusion combined with Snow Leopard - who knows. If you have a similar setup at all and use VMware, share your own experience if you can.
     
  2. lemonade-maker macrumors 6502

    lemonade-maker

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2009
    #2
    I think you are experiencing an issue with ati versus nvidia drivers being accessed from vmware. I have never had any luck with any ati + nvidia setup and vmware fusion. I have had all kinds of success with multi nvidia cards with fusion. I have used gt120, flashed 8800gt, 9600gt and 9800gt with nvdarwin.kext. All have worked great. Never tried multi ati cards, probably never will.
     
  3. matthewtoney thread starter macrumors regular

    matthewtoney

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2009
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    #3
    That's definitely what I'm afraid it is, although I'm hoping some of the others with 4870's and GT120's will comment on their own results as well. Did you try any games at all when you had the ATI/Nvidia combo?

    If this driver conflict between different vendors effects anyone with VMware *and* other software it almost deserves a sticky - I would have configured my system differently if I knew the result I'd get. (as it is, if I get confirmation that the two cards are the issue, I suppose I'll try and find a way to replace one of them with another from the same vendor)
     
  4. matthewtoney thread starter macrumors regular

    matthewtoney

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2009
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    #4
    Well if I have to go the "both cards from the same vendor" route, the GTX285 is *way* too expensive a proposition for replacing my 4870 - that leaves repla ing the GT120. What's a good single-slot-no-additional-power-cables-requirement ATI replacement for the GT120?

    And I know there are other folks on here who have a 4870 and a GT120 - I sure wish they'd drop in here and say if they've ever run into this sort of thing in either Fusion *or* games. :(
     
  5. lemonade-maker macrumors 6502

    lemonade-maker

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2009
    #5
    I have done 2 2600xts. Nothing special and i think the 2600xt lack hardware needed by osx 10.6, maybe it was OpenCL? Anyway, a 2600xt is pretty close to the performance of a 9500gt which is the same as a gt120. I am pretty sure vmware fusion wont use OpenCL so that may not matter.
     
  6. matthewtoney thread starter macrumors regular

    matthewtoney

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2009
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    #6
    Sounds like picking up a cheap 2600 XT off ebay and replacing the GT120 with it then might be a good (and reasonably priced) solution for me. Only thing that worries me now is the OpenCL part. So if the card that is running the primary monitor (in my case a 4870) has OpenCL support but you have another card in there that doesn't, do the OpenCL-written apps work or not?

    Anyone know?
     
  7. lemonade-maker macrumors 6502

    lemonade-maker

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2009
    #7
    I asked someone with 2 ati cards and they said it works fine, just use the opencl card as the main one.
     
  8. matthewtoney thread starter macrumors regular

    matthewtoney

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2009
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    #8
    Excellent! That is much appreciated - now I know picking up a cheap 2600XT looks like the way for me to go. Thanks!
     

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