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ID: AR02L00779
Applies to: NoMachine Software
Added on: 2014-02-12
Last update: 2018-07-24
The X11 vector graphics mode in X-Window virtual desktop

The X11 vector graphics mode (previously known as “lightweight” mode), enabled by default, is a server side configuration available since v. 4.2.15 in all of the enterprise-oriented server products that support the virtual desktop functionality (N.B. Enterprise Desktop does not support the virtual desktop functionality. This product is for access to the physical display).

This setting overrides other streaming methods only when connecting to Linux virtual desktops. It doesn't have any effect on connections to the physical desktop nor when connecting to Mac and Windows remote desktops.

When this mode is selected, NoMachine proxies and compresses the X11 protocol by the same methods of the NX protocol in version 3. A significant benefit of the X11 vector graphics mode is that, depending on the deployed desktop environment or application, it can greatly reduce the bandwidth usage and the HW requirements on both the client and the server by by-passing the expensive video encoding and decoding operations.

Starting from NoMachine v. 5.1.7, when the X11 vector graphics mode is used these compression techniques are applied to all non-video contents like textual elements, while multimedia contents of virtual deskops and custom sessions in a floating window (single applications) are encoded in a video stream (VP8 or H.264).

The X11 vector graphics mode is useful for avoiding loss of image quality and in general is the best option when working with traditional GUIs or a large amount of text. However it's not suggested for multimedia contents or applications with many graphical effects.

It also may help to reduce bandwidth usage, decrease the HW requirements on client and server (expensive video encoding/decoding operations are applied only to multimedia contents), increase responsiveness on slow link and end-users' clients without hardware accelerated video encoding/decoding capabilities.

 

To disable the X11 vector graphics mode on the server and use the video streaming mode:

- open the NoMachine User Interface (GUI) from the Programs/Applications menu
- click on the last icon (two cogs)
- select 'Server status'
- select 'Server preferences'
- select 'Performances'
- uncheck the box 'Use X11 vector graphics mode in virtual sessions' (previously named  'Use lightweight mode in virtual sessions')

 For further information about enabling hardware acceleration via 'Use acceleration for display processing' in the same panel, please see https://www.nomachine.com/AR02L00782

 

Administrators can also disable the X11 vector graphics mode in the /usr/NX/etc/node.cfg file by setting:

'AgentX11VectorGraphics 0'

or 'AgentLightweightMode 0' for previous versions of the software.
 

NOTES:

- In a load-balanced infrastructure, the AgentX11VectorGraphics has to be configured  in the node.cfg file of each node.

- Starting from NoMachine v. 5.1.7, video streaming techniques are applied to multimedia content of virtual deskops and custom sessions in a floating window (single applications) also when the X11 vector graphics mode is used (default).