Problem: You have an application that requires 32-bit color and you want to install it in a virtual machine running on a Windows Server 2008 Hyper-V host. Unfortunately the Hyper-V guest additions limit virtual machines running on Windows Server 2008 to 16-bit color. What can you do?
Workaround: Try disabling the synthetic video adapter in the virtual machine. Doing this will cause the virtual machine to fall back to using the emulated VGA video adapter which supports 32-bit color. You can do this as follows:
- Log on to the virtual machine and open Device manager
- Expand the Display Adapters section
- Right-click on the Microsoft Hyper-V Video device and disable it
- Restart the virtual machine
Note the following concerning this workaround:
- The graphic performance of the virtual machine may be poorer as a result.
- You must use an RDP connection to connect to the virtual machine's desktop to experience 32-bit color because the VMConnect console on Windows Server 2008 only supports 16-bit color.
Mitch Tulloch is an eight-time recipient of the Microsoft Most Valuable Professional (MVP) award and a widely recognized expert on Windows administration, deployment and virtualization. For more information about him, see http://www.mtit.com