Horizon 7.10: Enabling dynamic codec switching

VMware Horizon 7.10 – released on September 17, 2019 – ships with a new dynamic encoder. Depending on what content you’re watching to in your VDI, it will seamless switch to the best suiting codec for optimal performance/quality-balance. While H.264 is ideal for rapidly changing contents like videos, JPG/PNG offers better quality for more static content like Office applications. Overall: Neat stuff!

As of this release the “switch”-Codec is disabled by default and must be explicitly enabled via registry. Also make sure you’re using Horizon Client 5.2 or later to make the codec work.

To enable the new feature, you need to set this registry key on your VDI machine:

Key: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\VMware, Inc.\VMware Blast\Config\EncoderSwitchEnabled
Type: REG_SZ
Value: 1

When you have created the registry key, re-initiate the connection to your VDI machine. Then check with the “VMware Horizon Performance Tracker”-tool if you can see “Encoder Name” is set to “switch”. Like in the screenshot of my HomeLab here:

If you would like to get more details about the 7.10 release, you can get the release notes here or a blog article by VMware here.

Author: Patrik Kernstock

May I introduce my self? I am Patrik Kernstock, 23 years old, perfectionist, born in Austria, living in Ireland, Cork. Me explained in short: Tech- and security enthusiast, series junky and gaming addicted. Basically my interests belong to many different things in the IT-world, but specially in Ubuntu/Debian, nginx, MariaDB, Docker and many software solutions by Microsoft, Veeam and VMware.

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Roman
Roman

Hi Patrik, I am trying to get this to work too. VMware documentation suggest to make the change in HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\VMware, Inc.\VMware Blast\Config\EncoderSwitchEnabled so not where group policy changes appear. Does this work for you? Do you see this enabled in Blast-Worker-SessionId1.log? What client do you use? Windows Horizon Client 5.2 or a thin client? Thank you.