From: Alexander Balaeff (
Date: Thu Oct 14 2021 - 15:17:59 CDT

Dear VMD community:

I need advice on how to force VMD to use the correct graphics card in a
remote session. Details: I am working remotely on a Linux workstation via
Microsoft Remote Desktop. The workstation is equipped with two NVIDIA
Quadro cards. However, VMD uses neither of the cards but the built-in
X-window MESA for OpenGL rendering. I am copy-pasting the startup VMD
output below. The issue appears to be system-wide, e.g., Maestro runs on
the MESA graphics "card", too. Needless to say, performance suffers.

Has anyone encountered the same situation before? Any suggestion as to how
to direct VMD to use the right graphics card (or, perhaps, enable the right
graphics card to be used for the whole remote session?) would be greatly

Thank you,


/* The startup output:

Info) VMD for LINUXAMD64, version 1.9.4a51 (December 21, 2020)
Info) Email questions and bug reports to
Info) Please include this reference in published work using VMD:
Info) Humphrey, W., Dalke, A. and Schulten, K., `VMD - Visual
Info) Molecular Dynamics', J. Molec. Graphics 1996, 14.1, 33-38.
Info) -------------------------------------------------------------
Info) Multithreading available, 64 CPUs detected.
Info) CPU features: SSE2 SSE4.1 AVX AVX2 FMA F16 AVX512F AVX512CD HT
Info) Free system memory: 91GB (97%)
Info) Creating CUDA device pool and initializing hardware...
Info) Detected 2 available CUDA accelerators:
Info) [0] NVIDIA Quadro RTX 6000 72 SM_7.5 2.1 GHz, 24GB RAM SP32 AE3 ZC
Info) [1] NVIDIA Quadro P620 4 SM_6.1 1.4 GHz, 2.0GB RAM SP32 AE2 ZC
Warning) Detected X11 'Composite' extension: if incorrect display occurs
Warning) try disabling this X server option. Most OpenGL drivers
Warning) disable stereoscopic display when 'Composite' is enabled.
Info) OpenGL renderer: llvmpipe (LLVM 12.0.0, 256 bits)
Info) Full GLSL rendering mode is available.
Info) Textures: 2-D (16384x16384), 3-D (512x512x512), Multitexture (8)
Info) Detected 2 available TachyonL/OptiX ray tracing accelerators
Info) Compiling OptiX shaders on 2 target GPUs...
Info) Dynamically loaded 3 plugins in directory:

   Dr. Alexander Balaeff Black Diamond Therapeutics;!!DZ3fjg!qvtbdkdHI1qd74YsFMVea1QqVa6BMcEGRO6nfaJryIeyurI0Htlg2jEBROa0MnXtlQ$