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  • cendrizzi Level 1 (0 points)
    I have a 17" i7 and it's always using the nvidia processor and my battery life is certainly suffering for it. Not sure why and don't want to have to track it down. Hope Apple can fix this well. When they announced it was tied to API's I wondered how they could make such a large assumption about how developers use the API's provided in their applications. Clearly their assumptions were off.

    Great idea, if it only worked.
  • dougjacobs Level 1 (0 points)
    It's definitely good to see that some of the Dev's are contacting Apple about this. Hopefully they will get an update out soon.

    I just noticed that if I hide the chat pane in iGoogle, it immediately switches from the 330M back to the Intel HD. I wonder why it forces the 330M on in the first place?
  • Don Trammell Level 3 (620 points)
    Just tried Yahoo Messenger. It too triggers the Nvidia GPU. As does Time Palette. Right now, I am on the Intel HD GPU but I am trying to search for other apps that might trigger the Nvidia. Apple needs to fix this and quickly as it seriously is killing my battery life.
  • bitninja Level 1 (10 points)
    Hey all,

    I made a menu bar app that lets you know which card is in use, so you don't have to check the system profiler anymore. It updates when you launch/terminate any application, and when the display configuration changes or an external display is plugged in. There's also a manual update if you feel it isn't correct. See this thread if you're interested (anchored to my first post of the app):

    There are screenshots and some feature list updates further down the thread if you want to see what it looks like in action before you try it out. It has worked for everyone with an i5 or i7 MacBook Pro that has tried it yet, so it should do the same for you if you choose to try it out. Thanks, let me know what you think!

  • Tim Rand 2 Level 1 (0 points)
    On my 15" Core i5, I found that the Microsoft Office Auto Update daemon (Microsoft AU was triggering the 330M to run all the time. That runs (well ran) as part of my Login Items, so restarting didn't resolve the issue either.

    Pretty odd for a faceless background app.

    Message was edited by: Tim Rand 2
  • Rod Hagen Level 7 (31,985 points)
    Saw another user who found that removing the AutoUpdate Daemon from his log-in items (amongst a group of others) resolved the problem of the computer switching to the Intel at startup too, and your post seems to confirm that it was at least part of his issue.

    Given that it is part of the "default" installation of MS Office it is certainly likely to be an issue for many, many people with the i5 and i7 MBps. Maybe even more so than Skype and Tweetie! Thanks for the info.


  • ReallyBigFeet Level 1 (0 points)
    Put me down as someone who really wants more control over this "autoswitching" of the GPU's. It doesn't seem to be working as intended and it is forcing me to play cat and mouse with a variety of installed (and well-used) apps to find out which ones are forcing me into discrete versus integrated GPU modes. Today I discovered that Firefox was forcing the machine to stay in discrete mode, but when I shut down Firefox and re-started it, the machine switched back into integrated mode (nothing else was running).

    Someone posted these suggestions on the macrumors forum and I'm copying them here as I think they represent good ideas Apple should consider for an update patch soon:

    1) Mac OS X should use the discrete Nvidia GT 330M NOT just by detecting any OpenGL, OpenCL, Quartz Composer, Core Animation and Core Graphics. It should also judge if the application running one of these technologies really needs the resources of the Nvidia GT 330M (such as tweetie, igoogle, iPhoto, Skype....).

    2)Mac OS X system preferences should provide a setting for the user to completely turn off the Nvidia GT 330M (like the previous generation Macbook Pro).

    3)Furthermore, in advanced settings, the user should be able to choose which applications should trigger the Nvidia GPU to wake up and which shouldn't. This can help conserve the valuable battery life and allow the user to use Nvidia GPU at the times demanded by the user AUTOMATICALLY.

    In summary: While I appreciate that the MBP is 'smart' enough to auto-switch when it feels it needs to, that decision should have an override ability controlled by me, the user and owner of the machine.
  • bitninja Level 1 (10 points)
    Ditto, ReallyBigFeet. Some kind of user-controlled list should definitely be implemented to tell OS X when to switch on and off the 330M, and there should be a way to "lock" one card on for use.
  • yonajon Level 1 (0 points)
    I too am plagued by GPU issues. I can confirm that both Skype and Gmail chat (whether in Gmail or in iGoogle) cause the 330m to kick in. It would be great to have the following features:

    1. Ability to completely disable the 330m, preferably by power source (i.e., disable the 330m for all applications when on battery).

    2. Ability to dictate for which apps to engage the 330m.

    3. Ability to turn off the 330m regardless of power source.
  • sshhoott Level 1 (0 points)
    Thanks for spreading the word ReallyBigFeet

    Message was edited by: sshhoott
  • eeeeee Level 1 (0 points)
    I can confirm that my 15" MBP dropped into using the Intel graphics card once I'd disabled the MS AutoUpdate daemon.

    It may just be coincidence but it changed at the second I ran pmset -g on the command line!

    Thanks to bitnija for the little util - very useful!

  • cendrizzi Level 1 (0 points)
    I am against a list. Apple was clearly trying to avoid the clunky way Nvidia implemented this switching on the windows side. The problem is it appears that Apple does nothing more than switch when a certain api function is getting called. To me this is just way over assuming since many programs will use stuff that hooks into game grade api's (did Apple not test this?). Besides detecting that a program has gone full screen and using opengl, it seems like consideration should be given to how much the intel HD graphics is actually being burdened.

    I'm sure this would be hard too. Apple just needs to find a more workable solution that takes into account existing applications this time .

    Message was edited by: cendrizzi
  • bitninja Level 1 (10 points)
    My pleasure! Glad I could be of assistance.
  • tsqu Level 1 (0 points)
    I think people would be happy with a way to simply disable nVidia if they are on battery, no lists, no magic thank you very much. Why would Apple not have done that, I wonder?
  • washley Level 1 (0 points)
    For anyone affected by Skype, you can stop it from causing a switch to Nvidia graphics by disabling video support. Go to Preferences -> Video and uncheck "Enable Skype Video" then restart Skype.