1 Reply Latest reply on Oct 29, 2015 1:45 AM by SvenGus

    How to enable scaled Retina resolution in OS X guests

    SvenGus Expert

      (As, for some unknown reason, my replies to two old posts don't appear in the overview pane of this community, I repeat the concept here...)


      This worked for me, in Fusion 8, with OS X 10.11 host and guest (YMMV), on a late 2013 15" Retina MacBook Pro:


      Enable HiDPI mode on a VMware Fusion OS X 10.9 Mavericks Vagrant VM · GitHub


      In a few words, first of all enable full Retina resolution for the OS X VM in its settings, then run this command in the VM's Terminal:


      sudo defaults write /Library/Preferences/com.apple.windowserver.plist DisplayResolutionEnabled -bool true


      ... reboot the VM, and finally set the VM's Display resolution to the scaled value (half of the maximum), in the VM's System Preferences: for example, if the default Retina resolution is 2880x1800 (in full screen view), then choose 1440x900 (HiDPI).


      This should give you the same pixel-doubled resolution in the guest as in the host.


      Edited (2015-11-02):


      I forgot to say that you must select the scaled HiDPI resolution 2 times, i.e. both in full screen and in windowed mode, so that the OS X VM will subsequently remember this setting in both modes.


      As an experiment, I also tried this with a Mac OS X 10.7 (Lion) VM, and in this case getting the display to scale at 200% required installing VMsvga2: but it only worked in full screen mode.


      So, it looks like the tutorial in the link above only applies to OS X 10.9+ guests (and maybe also 10.8: I haven't tried that, yet)...


      Edited again (2015-11-03):

      ... Yes, it works also with Mac OS X 10.7 (Lion) and OS X 10.8 (Mountain Lion) VMs; for some unknown reason, the only Terminal command that works in Lion is this one (slightly different from the one above):


      sudo defaults write /Library/Preferences/com.apple.windowserver DisplayResolutionEnabled -bool YES


      ... with the minor glitch that when you switch from full screen to windowed mode the display reverts to the full resolution (the one with tiny text and icons): but that's easy to fix, by showing the Displays menu extra in Lion and installing a third party solution such as Display Menu in Mountain Lion (so you can switch to the correct HiDPI resolution without opening System Preferences).


      BTW, here are some useful links:


      Enable HiDPI mode in Mountain Lion w/o Quartz Debug · GitHub


      display - How to get back the missing monitor option in Mountain Lion's menubar? - Ask Different


      Bring Displays Menubar Item Back To Mountain Lion [OS X Tips] | Cult of Mac


      So, HiDPI works in Fusion for all "modern" (Mac) OS X virtual machines, from 10.7 to 10.11 (and works optimally from 10.9 to 10.11): very good, indeed!


      Now, if only all this could be included "automagically" in the (Mac) OS X VMware Tools - that would be almost perfect...