Windows 10 Hyper-V Impact on Gaming


  • Service Provider

    Does anyone have any information or experience on using Hyper-V on a machine also used for gaming? Obviously this is for home use, not for business use, and it would be handy to have a Hyper-V environment at home and my only accessible Windows box is the kids' gaming system. But there is a lot of time that it is not used and Hyper-V could run there easily, it has more than enough power and RAM. Enabling Hyper-V means that the gaming environment is moved into a VM, however, so there is more overhead since Hyper-V is a type 1 / bare metal hypervisor. But that doesn't mean that the impact is large, MS has tuned this for this use case and the Dom0 retains some very efficient driver access and can talk directly to the GPU. Does anyone know if the impact is even noticeable? Obviously if guest VMs are running, that is noticeable. I mean when Hyper-V is enabled but no guests are running.



  • @scottalanmiller said in Windows 10 Hyper-V Impact on Gaming:

    Does anyone have any information or experience on using Hyper-V on a machine also used for gaming? Obviously this is for home use, not for business use, and it would be handy to have a Hyper-V environment at home and my only accessible Windows box is the kids' gaming system. But there is a lot of time that it is not used and Hyper-V could run there easily, it has more than enough power and RAM. Enabling Hyper-V means that the gaming environment is moved into a VM, however, so there is more overhead since Hyper-V is a type 1 / bare metal hypervisor. But that doesn't mean that the impact is large, MS has tuned this for this use case and the Dom0 retains some very efficient driver access and can talk directly to the GPU. Does anyone know if the impact is even noticeable? Obviously if guest VMs are running, that is noticeable. I mean when Hyper-V is enabled but no guests are running.

    I didn't see any on my desktop before switching it to Linux / KVM.


  • Service Provider

    @dafyre said in Windows 10 Hyper-V Impact on Gaming:

    @scottalanmiller said in Windows 10 Hyper-V Impact on Gaming:

    Does anyone have any information or experience on using Hyper-V on a machine also used for gaming? Obviously this is for home use, not for business use, and it would be handy to have a Hyper-V environment at home and my only accessible Windows box is the kids' gaming system. But there is a lot of time that it is not used and Hyper-V could run there easily, it has more than enough power and RAM. Enabling Hyper-V means that the gaming environment is moved into a VM, however, so there is more overhead since Hyper-V is a type 1 / bare metal hypervisor. But that doesn't mean that the impact is large, MS has tuned this for this use case and the Dom0 retains some very efficient driver access and can talk directly to the GPU. Does anyone know if the impact is even noticeable? Obviously if guest VMs are running, that is noticeable. I mean when Hyper-V is enabled but no guests are running.

    I didn't see any on my desktop before switching it to Linux / KVM.

    Did you do any gaming on it?



  • @scottalanmiller said in Windows 10 Hyper-V Impact on Gaming:

    @dafyre said in Windows 10 Hyper-V Impact on Gaming:

    @scottalanmiller said in Windows 10 Hyper-V Impact on Gaming:

    Does anyone have any information or experience on using Hyper-V on a machine also used for gaming? Obviously this is for home use, not for business use, and it would be handy to have a Hyper-V environment at home and my only accessible Windows box is the kids' gaming system. But there is a lot of time that it is not used and Hyper-V could run there easily, it has more than enough power and RAM. Enabling Hyper-V means that the gaming environment is moved into a VM, however, so there is more overhead since Hyper-V is a type 1 / bare metal hypervisor. But that doesn't mean that the impact is large, MS has tuned this for this use case and the Dom0 retains some very efficient driver access and can talk directly to the GPU. Does anyone know if the impact is even noticeable? Obviously if guest VMs are running, that is noticeable. I mean when Hyper-V is enabled but no guests are running.

    I didn't see any on my desktop before switching it to Linux / KVM.

    Did you do any gaming on it?

    Nothing Uber intensive, just World of Warcraft. It ran fine. I didn't have my VMs doing anything too intensive. It all ran decently. My Video Card in that system is a Radeon HD 5750.



  • @scottalanmiller is not noticeable. It works fine, I played Far Cry and call of Duty and it was a precision with Xeon on it running Windows 10.


  • Service Provider

    @dbeato said in Windows 10 Hyper-V Impact on Gaming:

    @scottalanmiller is not noticeable. It works fine, I played Far Cry and call of Duty and it was a precision with Xeon on it running Windows 10.

    That's good to hear. Having a Hyper-V host in the house would be really handy, especially for a lot of questions like we had today.



  • I have Hyper-V enabled and running a couple of VMs while playing 7 days to die with and it works. And my desktop and some of the components is old.


  • Service Provider

    @black3dynamite said in Windows 10 Hyper-V Impact on Gaming:

    I have Hyper-V enabled and running a couple of VMs while playing 7 days to die with and it works. And my desktop and some of the components is old.

    I'm not even worried about running VMs while gaming, I'll do just one or the other.



  • I have been wondering the same thing because there are some older games that I'd like to run but Windows 10 breaks the DRM and the game crashes or won't launch.


  • Service Provider

    @nadnerB said in Windows 10 Hyper-V Impact on Gaming:

    I have been wondering the same thing because there are some older games that I'd like to run but Windows 10 breaks the DRM and the game crashes or won't launch.

    This won't fix anything. This is still Windows 10, just with the extra overhead of Hyper-V.



  • I've enabled Hyper-V on Win10 on my personal desktop computer before I put it away, and I noticed literally zero impact for gaming... and you're not really going to either.

    The FPS stayed exactly the same.



  • @scottalanmiller said in Windows 10 Hyper-V Impact on Gaming:

    Obviously if guest VMs are running, that is noticeable. I mean when Hyper-V is enabled but no guests are running.

    It's still not noticeable while gaming if you have sufficient RAM and CPU, unless you are using video memory via RemoteFX for your VMs, then yes it is noticeable.

    Back when I did this I had a few VMs running for some labs when I was studying for the MCSE. I kept them running sometimes when I was gaming and FPS and responsiveness stayed the same.


  • Service Provider

    @Tim_G said in Windows 10 Hyper-V Impact on Gaming:

    I've enabled Hyper-V on Win10 on my personal desktop computer before I put it away, and I noticed literally zero impact for gaming... and you're not really going to either.

    The FPS stayed exactly the same.

    Great, I plan to do this today then.


  • Service Provider

    @Tim_G said in Windows 10 Hyper-V Impact on Gaming:

    @scottalanmiller said in Windows 10 Hyper-V Impact on Gaming:

    Obviously if guest VMs are running, that is noticeable. I mean when Hyper-V is enabled but no guests are running.

    It's still not noticeable while gaming if you have sufficient RAM and CPU, unless you are using video memory via RemoteFX for your VMs, then yes it is noticeable.

    Back when I did this I had a few VMs running for some labs when I was studying for the MCSE. I kept them running sometimes when I was gaming and FPS and responsiveness stayed the same.

    That's crazy. But with prioritization and enough overhead, no reason this wouldn't be true.



  • Take a backup of the machine as is. Then, try. See what its like. Have fun!
    If all goes tits up, restore the backup.


  • Service Provider

    No impact with hyper-v enabled on Windows 10 from what I could see.



  • @scottalanmiller

    I recently read one of your posts on spiceworks and thus watched your video which explained how Hyper-V is a still a type 1 hypervisor even when installed as a role within the OS and how it then virtualizes the 'host OS' and transparently runs it within Hyper-V. Very interesting and enlightening.

    This caused me to wonder about gaming on that OS. I had tried gaming in VMs on type 2 hypervisors before and found the performance awful or even completely unusable.

    I have a spare win10 pro box that I mostly use for casual gaming or browsing, and had put hyper-V on it mostly to host a minecraft server to play around on with my nephew. It still works fine for minecraft, and other not too demanding games that I use on that box- I hadn't noticed a difference, but haven't bench-marked at all either.

    My 'main' box is still Win7 and I have recently put a decent-ish video card in it (GTX1060) for games. I do run a few testing VMs on it in Virtualbox. I have considered upgrading it to 10 and doing the VMs in Hyper-V and upon learning that this would virtualize my host OS, I wondered how much of a penalty I would suffer, or if it would be unfeasible.

    Web Searching this topic lead me to this post on your blog. So, your spiceworks post lead me to your video, which lead to a question, which lead to a search, which lead to your blog, haha!

    Other search results on the question varied wildly. From some saying negligible effect, to some claiming frame-rates of like 80% less.

    I would be very interested to read how your testing of the matter went.



  • @dukeofkanabec said in Windows 10 Hyper-V Impact on Gaming:

    @scottalanmiller

    I recently read one of your posts on spiceworks and thus watched your video which explained how Hyper-V is a still a type 1 hypervisor even when installed as a role within the OS and how it then virtualizes the 'host OS' and transparently runs it within Hyper-V. Very interesting and enlightening.

    This caused me to wonder about gaming on that OS. I had tried gaming in VMs on type 2 hypervisors before and found the performance awful or even completely unusable.

    I have a spare win10 pro box that I mostly use for casual gaming or browsing, and had put hyper-V on it mostly to host a minecraft server to play around on with my nephew. It still works fine for minecraft, and other not too demanding games that I use on that box- I hadn't noticed a difference, but haven't bench-marked at all either.

    My 'main' box is still Win7 and I have recently put a decent-ish video card in it (GTX1060) for games. I do run a few testing VMs on it in Virtualbox. I have considered upgrading it to 10 and doing the VMs in Hyper-V and upon learning that this would virtualize my host OS, I wondered how much of a penalty I would suffer, or if it would be unfeasible.

    Web Searching this topic lead me to this post on your blog. So, your spiceworks post lead me to your video, which lead to a question, which lead to a search, which lead to your blog, haha!

    Other search results on the question varied wildly. From some saying negligible effect, to some claiming frame-rates of like 80% less.

    I would be very interested to read how your testing of the matter went.

    I am sure that @scottalanmiller will answer you back. This week has been our MangoCon 2017 conference week. Everyone is taking naps and recovering from last night before we jump into tonight!



  • @dukeofkanabec If you are not using any VMs the part of enabling Windows 10 will not have many effects if any on the main OS with the role installed. Once you have the OS and VMs running at the same time that's where performance might be affected.



  • @scottalanmiller

    instead of virtual drivers talking to the GPU, why you dont want to consider GPU pass-through ? and dedicate it to specific VM. going this route you can choose any modern hypervisor


  • Service Provider

    @emad-r said in Windows 10 Hyper-V Impact on Gaming:

    @scottalanmiller

    instead of virtual drivers talking to the GPU, why you dont want to consider GPU pass-through ? and dedicate it to specific VM. going this route you can choose any modern hypervisor

    It's an existing Windows box that only needs to run Steam 99% of the time. Was only looking to get a little additional visualization use out of it on rare occasion for testing use. Installing any other hypervisor or moving the Windows workload to a VM would be very cumbersome. It's 2TB in size.



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