Linux on Hyper-V with High Resolution

I finally managed to get a version of Linux working on Hyper-V that isn’t horribly slow. This is good, because Hyper-V does not play with VMWare Player or VirtualBox. You need to reboot and disable Hyper-V from the boot menu to run other virtual machines when the Hyper-V feature is installed, which is rather annoying, especially for Android development as you can’t run the Intel Android emulator either.

Mint 16 with Cinnamon did not work very well, but using the MATE version does for some reason. Cinnamon complained about lack of 3D video support and ran like a dog. MATE is pretty snappy.

Speaking of running like a dog… I tried XRDP for Linux. Note, to run XRDP, you also need to install a VNC server like tightvncserver. It doesn’t install as a dependency and the error message for the connection doesn’t make it obvious what the problem is. I found VNC very slow at updating the screen and terrible for video.

Looking for a better solution than VNC, I found NoMachine. NoMachine performs really well for a remote desktop solution. There are version for Linux, Windows and Mac OS X. Interestingly first quarter 2014 will bring NoMachine Alpha versions for Android and iOS!

Another cool thing I found is that you can get a resolution up to 1900x1080 for Linux under Hyper-V… finally a decent resolution. It seems Microsoft have been doing some work on the Linux kernel.

See this post about Hyper-V Linux display resolution on how to configure it.

Check out the Linux kernel source file hyperv-fb.c for the latest resolution updates.

Hyper-V also has a new Generation 2 format for virtual images. This only works for Windows 8.1 and Windows Server 2012, but I believe I read they are also doing some work to support Linux. Hyper-V generation 2 provides better interaction between the VM and the host.