Help Me Get Started ? Switching from Windows to Linux and gaming on Windows VM

Hello all,

I’ve been a part time lurker of the community. I’ve recently built a new main gaming/productivity computer. It’s my first full run at Windows. Unfortunately I cannot bear it. Before this build I’ve used Ubuntu on laptops, and OSX on Macs/Hackintoshes.

I’d like to make the switch to Linux, and new distro besides Ubuntu. I can make those choices up for myself.

What I need help with though, is getting a ViFo set up working. Let me preface first with my current hardware setup:

  • GTX 1080Ti
  • 8700k @ 5.0
  • ASUS Rog Maximus X Hero
  • 16GB Dual Channel
  • 500GB Nvme SSD (Current main Windows boot drive)
  • 500GB SATA SSD (Games)
  • 1TB HD (Games)
  • 1440p 165Hz Monitor (G-Sync, but probably won’t be using that anymore) [Main[
  • 1080p 60Hz Secondary on iGPU because watching a video while gaming on windows causes an issue where the game will lower its Framerate

I’d be interested in trying looking glass out. The way it stands I would probably set my VM like this:


  • Intel iGPU
    * 8GB Ram ?
    * 4 Cores ?


  • 1080Ti
    * 8GB Ram?
    * 2 Cores ?

I put those question marks there because I’m unsure if I’ll be able to allocate my hardware like that I’m assuming you can. I’m also assuming I would be able to use my Intel iGPU as my Linux host GPU. I’d probably snag a cheap RX AMD card in the future if the price is right.

So I would make my main monitor connected to the primary display. I’m now realizing my next road block. I would have to see if my Mobo has multiple display outputs until I can get another dedicated GPU.

Would this work ?

Would I need 2 sets of KB/Mice ? or will looking glass be able to take care of this for me ? Do I need VM software or is it built into Linux?

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Can you list the games you would be playing? Chances are a Windows VM is not required

  1. It is posible, in fact is is necessary to specify how much ram and how many cores you want to let the VM have access to.

  2. I would recommend 4 cores in the VM and 2 for the host. There are plenty of games that do not run very well with only two cores. However, Linux can get along fine with two cores for normal desktop usage, then just shut down the VM whenever you need all the ram and cores in Linux, such as compiling a large piece of software.

  3. The Intel iGPU can be used for the host. How many ports it has, and of what type depends on the motherboard, some motherboards definitely have multiple, I have seen upto three.

  4. I would strongly recommend getting a second KB/mouse set for setup and troubleshooting purposes , even if your eventual setup does not require two sets. You should be able to get a cheap set for $15 or less.

  5. As for software, I would strongly recommend KVM+QEMU. What is installed depends on the distro. KVM is normally part of the QEMU package, then you also will want OVMF(UFEI firmware for the VM), and probably libvirt and virt-manager. Some people prefer using a custom script with plain QEMU, while many use the GUI available with virt-manager. Looking-glass is currently only available as source code for the linux application, but is is really easy and quick to compile.

  6. Xen and Virtualbox both have some passthrough capability but are not as good for graphics passthrough as KVM.

  7. How you have your monitor(s) and KB/mouse set(s) configured is really up to you. There are lots of permutations.

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Possibly BFV

Here’s my steam library

I don’t think playing games natively will work out too well. Through, Steam’s new implementation may help with that.

Thank you very much for this detailed write up. This surely will point in the direction of fun trial and error. I will see if I can snag a KB+M somewhere cheap. I shall read up on KVM+QEMU today.

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