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How to Run DW Spectrum Client in a Limited GPU Environment

How to Run DW Spectrum® Client in a Limited GPU Environment


Affected Roles:  Administrator, Owner

Related Digital Watchdog VMS Apps: DW Spectrum® IPVMS

Complexity:  Medium

Software Version:  v4.2 or newer

Last Edit:  June 4, 2021


Limited OpenGL 2.1 Support

The DW Spectrum® Client application requires a computer with support for OpenGL 2.1 or higher, whether on a virtual machine (VM) or an actual computer.  In most cases, this is not an issue.  However, if a user is utilizing a virtual machine (VMWare, VirtualBox) or a personal computer (PC) with limited graphics capability (or no GPU), OpenGL 2.1 may not be supported.  As a result, DW Spectrum® Client will not run.

To resolve this issue, an emulation of the necessary graphics to function through the CPU may allow the Client to run if the Server application is also installed on a computer using Windows x64 OS.

This article will outline how to emulate a GPU using a CPU on a WinOS x64-bit system.

**DISCLAIMER:  We do not recommend this method unless it is absolutely required.  Even then, please be aware that you will be performing this at your own risk.

Supported/Affected Devices:

  • DW Blackjack® Cube Series (WinOS)
  • DW Blackjack® Client Workstation Series (WinOS)

Things to Consider

  • When using this method, you will be transferring the computing load that would otherwise be directed to a GPU onto the CPU. This will cause the CPU usage to increase significantly.
  • We do not recommend using this method unless it is absolutely required.
  • Remember to close the DW Spectrum® Client application as soon as you are finished returning the CPU load to normal.
  • The hosting computer must be using a Windows x64-bit operating system.

Emulating a GPU Using a CPU

To emulate a GPU:

  1. Download the Open GL emulation library.

Extract the files “opengl32.dll” and “libglapi.dll” from the zipped/compressed folder.

  1. Next, stop the Spectrum Media Server service.  To do so, you can right-click on the service in the Windows Service Tray, then select Stop Server (started).

  1. Once the Media Server has been stopped, open the computer’s File Explorer program and navigate to:

C:\Program Files\Digital Watchdog\DW Spectrum\Client\<version_number>

**NOTE:  “<version_number>” (above) refers to the DW Spectrum® Client software version number.

  1. Copy-and-paste the opengl32.dll and libglapi.dll files to this directory. Do not place them into any additional folders beyond this directory.
  1. Start the Media Server from the Windows Service Tray.

Launch the DW Spectrum® Client.

The DW Spectrum Client application will now utilize the CPU for some of the graphical processing.  The processing load on the CPU of the host computer will increase as a result, so be sure to completely close the DW Spectrum® Client application when you are not actively using it.

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  • 04-Jun-2021