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ID: AR09O00938
Applies to: NoMachine Software
Added on: 2017-09-21
Last update: 2017-09-22
How to use Intel H.264 HW encoder with NoMachine on Linux platforms

Starting from v. 5.3.12, NoMachine's support for GPU-accelerated H.264 encoding provided by QuickSync APIs comes out of beta status.

On Windows and Linux platforms, NoMachine is able to use Intel® Quick Sync technology on those machines with a suitable hardware.

Windows (from Vista onward) comes with drivers for Quick Sync video support included. Hardware accelerated encoding works out-of-the-box in NoMachine sessions, given that the processor supports it.  Intel® HD Graphics 4200” and “Intel® HD Graphics P4600” or higher, support Quick Sync Video. Quick Sync video is supported since NoMachine v. 5.1.40.

On Linux instead, to enable HW acceleration by Quick Sync it's necessary to install Intel® Media SDK (MSDK). The kernel must also be recompiled (except on CentOS 7.3/RHEL 7.3 ). Quick Sync video is supported since NoMachine v. 5.2.11.

Pre-requisite is to verify your hardware compatibility with MSDK.

MSDK 2017R3 Intel supports these platforms with integrated graphics:
- 5th and 6th Generation Intel Core,
- Xeon E3-1200 v4 Family (C226 chipset), E3-1200 v5 and E3-1500 v5 Family (C236).


How to install Intel® Media SDK on Linux

The following instructions use the Intel® Media Server Studio suite v. 2017 R3.
Execute the following commands as root or sudo user, when necessary.

1. Add users who will use QuickSync to the 'video' group:

usermod -a -G video [LOGIN]

for example:

sudo usermod -a -G video nxtest01

2. Check if Intel VGA adapter is listed:

lspci -nn -s 0:02.0

3. Download Intel Media Server Studio ( for Linux and extract the archive:

tar -xzf MediaServerStudio*.tar.gz
cd MediaServerStudio*
tar -xzf SDK2017*.tar.gz

4. Ensure to have glibc >= 2.12 and gcc >= 4.7:

gcc --version
ldd --version

5. Install Intel Media Server Studio

On Centos 7.3.

These instructions apply only to CentOS 7.3.1611 (kernel 3.10.0-514.el7.x86_64).

Extract and run the SDK installation script as root:

cd SDK2017*/CentOS
tar -xzf install_scripts_*.tar.gz

Reboot the system.

On other Linux platforms

5.1. Remove libdrm and libva modules:

find /usr -name "libdrm*" | xargs rm -rf
find /usr -name "libva*" | xargs rm -rf

5.2. Remove old MSDK files:

rm -rf /opt/intel/mediasdk
rm -rf /opt/intel/common
rm -rf /opt/intel/opencl

5.3. Unpack user mode components:

cd SDK2017*/Generic
tar -xvzf intel-linux-media_generic*.tar.gz
tar -xvJf intel-opencl-cpu-*.tar.xz
tar -xvJf intel-opencl-devel-*.tar.xz
tar -xvJf intel-opencl-r*.tar.xz

5.4. Copy components to standard locations:

cp -r etc/* /etc
cp -r lib/* /lib
cp -r opt/* /opt
cp -r usr/* /usr

5.5. Ensure that the new libraries can be found:

echo '/usr/lib64' > /etc/
echo '/usr/local/lib' >> /etc/

5.6. Install kernel build dependencies:

apt-get -y install git fakeroot build-essential ncurses-dev xz-utils libssl-dev bc g++

5.7. Download and unpack kernel:

tar -xJf linux-4.4.tar.xz

5.8. Apply kernel patches:

cp /opt/intel/mediasdk/opensource/patches/kmd/4.4/intel-kernel-patches.tar.bz2 .
tar -xvjf intel-kernel-patches.tar.bz2
cd linux-4.4
for i in ../intel-kernel-patches/*.patch; do patch -p1 < $i; done

5.9. Build kernel:

make olddefconfig
make -j 8
make modules_install
make install

5.10. Update LD_LIBRARY_PATH to include "/usr/lib64:/usr/local/lib" in /etc/environment.

5.11. Reboot the system.


6. Verify that NoMachine is using QuickSync:

Create a new NoMachine virtual desktop or connect to the remote physical desktop. On the server host look for the 'session' file for in /usr/NX/var/log/node/C-*/ directory.

If everything is working correctly you will see the following string in the session file:

Info: Using Intel H.264 hardware encoder.



For further details to configure Intel Quick Sync Video, please refer to the official documentation: