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I'm using ESXi 4.1 for my virtualitzation platform, and I would like to display one of the guests screen to the host VGA output. Is this possible?

I want to do this because my host machine is plugged to my TV (using VGA calbe), this way I can use one of my guests as a media center box, now I'm connecting my laptop to the TV (using HDMI) while getting the videos files using SMB (from one of my guests).

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3 Answers 3

Not possible sorry, the VM's virtualised frame buffer can't be mapped to the physical one - that's not what bare-metal hypervisors are designed for - you need something like VMWare Workstation for that functionality.

Can I ask you to have a quick read of our FAQ too please as this question is really more appropriate for our consumer-oriented sister-site superuser.com.

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If you have a relatively new machine that supports Intel VT-d (IOMMU) you can do this. Basically VT-d allows you to attach a PCIe device (or all the PCI devices behind a PCIe-PCI bridge) directly to a virtual machine. You may need to enable it in your BIOS, but it's controlled in ESXi under the Configuration Tab->Hardware->Advanced. I really recommend you backup VMs first as a mucked VT-d config can keep ESX from showing the console (since it's reserved for a VM) or even booting altogether.

Alternatively, if you don't have a VT-d enabled system, you could probably attach a USB->VGA adaptor to the guest and output that way as well, but I'm not sure if the performance would be up to snuff.

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+1, really useful to know. And the USB->VGA adaptor is a great idea too. –  Jed Daniels Feb 1 '11 at 17:47

What you could try is to put the VM guest console in full screen and move that screen to your TV. Honestly though, I'm not exactly clear on what you're trying to achieve.

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