[Sticky] [Petition to Apple] – Please enable Bootcamp eGPU support  

 

theitsage
(@itsage)
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September 11, 2017 2:35 pm  

If you have tried setting up an eGPU in Bootcamp with a Thunderbolt 3 15" MacBook Pro, you experienced first hand how painful this process is [link]. Updating the firmware of a TB3 enclosure with this MacBook Pro is a confusing and maddening adventure [link].

It doesn't have to be this way if Apple decides to help. We'd like to hear your opinions on ways Apple can improve eGPU support for Bootcamp. Please keep your feedback constructive and positive.

Update: @TiM has submitted a radar to Apple's bug reporting platform:  http://openradar.appspot.com/radar?id=5047804011479040 . If you're an Apple developer, please dupe and comment on his radar #32830264.

Best ultrabooks for eGPU use

eGPU enclosure buying guide

66 external GPU build guides


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mac_editor
(@mac_editor)
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September 11, 2017 2:53 pm  

Apple has already taken a small step on the 2017 Macs as we know - with a DSDT override not required as a "Large Memory" is already present in some cases.

On the other hand, Apple should update Mac firmware to allow the use of integrated graphics and third-party graphics switching implementations to eliminate the need for spoofing a macOS boot to enable integrated GPU on non-macOS operating systems. This will also allow for internal acceleration via external graphics automatically. Finally, "Large Memory" should also be made a standard across all bootcamp installations (thus being somewhat like macOS - which has no issues allocating eGPUs if set up correctly), ensuring space for multiple addressable eGPUs.

Additionally, for Macs with discrete graphics, Apple should provide an option to use iGPU-only (like a Power Saver mode) that works by setting some value in the NVRAM permanently - which would allow for a discrete MBP to behave as one with iGPU-only graphics. Well, that's a bit much to ask for.

purge-wrangler.shpurge-nvda.shset-eGPU.sh
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Troubleshooting eGPUs on macOS
Command Line Swiss Knife
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3 Build Guides


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Eightarmedpet
(@eightarmedpet)
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September 14, 2017 1:27 pm  

Nothing positive or constructive to add really, just that I very much hope they do (maybe making this an actual petition could be a good idea so folks can sign?) so I can get my 570 working in both macOS and Windows.

And subbing, I always forget to tick the damn box...

2017 13" MacBook Pro Touchbar + GTX1060@32Gbps-TB3 (AKiTiO Thunder3) + Win10
2017 13" MacBook Pro Touch Bar + GTX1070@32Gbps-TB3 (Sonnet Breakaway Box) + Win10
---
LG 5K Ultrafine flickering issue fix


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theitsage
(@itsage)
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September 14, 2017 1:53 pm  

Even if you don't have a constructive suggestion please post a response to tell Apple you need better eGPU support in Bootcamp.

Best ultrabooks for eGPU use

eGPU enclosure buying guide

66 external GPU build guides


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Eightarmedpet
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September 14, 2017 1:56 pm  

I guess my constructive suggestion was turning this into an online petition... but happy to pester Apple to if you can point me in the right direction?

2017 13" MacBook Pro Touchbar + GTX1060@32Gbps-TB3 (AKiTiO Thunder3) + Win10
2017 13" MacBook Pro Touch Bar + GTX1070@32Gbps-TB3 (Sonnet Breakaway Box) + Win10
---
LG 5K Ultrafine flickering issue fix


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Rycco
(@rycco)
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September 14, 2017 3:02 pm  

Every time macOS freezes because of the eGPU, when it reboots and ask you to send Apple a message about the crash, I say something like "Hey Apple plz enable Nvidia eGPU support on High Sierra"

mid-2017 15" Macbook Pro RP555 + GTX1080i@32Gbps-TB3 (Mantiz Venus) + macOS & Win10


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jefniro
(@jefniro)
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September 14, 2017 3:36 pm  

Uhm.. petitions never worked on internet...and it needs many years to reach a large number of members. 

I think that someone from Apple should discover this forum and think about the opportunity that Apple has to sell more MacBook Pro notebook, also because the portable market has been in decline for years. The Thunderbolt 3 enclosure is a new market and if Apple has understood this, it means that that's their new focus.

late-2016 13" MacBook Pro Touchbar + XFX-RX480@32Gbps-TB3 (AKiTiO Node) + macOS & Win10


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Eightarmedpet
(@eightarmedpet)
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September 14, 2017 3:45 pm  

Yep.

 

Also, glad you posted, your set up guide is prob going to be relevant to me trying to get my 570 working...

2017 13" MacBook Pro Touchbar + GTX1060@32Gbps-TB3 (AKiTiO Thunder3) + Win10
2017 13" MacBook Pro Touch Bar + GTX1070@32Gbps-TB3 (Sonnet Breakaway Box) + Win10
---
LG 5K Ultrafine flickering issue fix


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DrDubya
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September 15, 2017 1:47 pm  

^^^this


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(@tom_morter-laing)
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September 15, 2017 4:21 pm  

I for one don't understand why there isn't more support, especially for NVIDIA cards. Please Apple, I'm a gamer! I beg you to let me game!


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goalque
(@goalque)
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September 15, 2017 5:46 pm  

The problem is that Apple's switchable graphics is build for macOS. And its purpose is to save battery life. Apple had no other choice than to force dGPU graphics because Windows does not have a concept of "automatic graphics switching", and generally dGPU is more useful than iGPU in a non-eGPU world.

Nvidia Optimus and similar software-based solutions shouldn't be confused with this because they rely on iGPU-dGPU co-operation and writing frames to the iGPU's frame buffer, whereas in Apple's technology, the internal LCD is physically wired to either iGPU or dGPU through the gmux chip. AFAIK, it is impossible to wire it to the Thunderbolt interface unless Apple builds such a machine.

However, they could provide an iGPU-only boot option in Window's Boot Camp settings. That would be the same what we already have: gpu-switch + apple_set_os.efi but in a one package. 

Rewriting a more eGPU friendly firmware for Win10 is possible but they can't guarantee 100% plug-and-play functionality due to different Windows versions, Boot managers and winloader EFIs, with all GPUs and enclosures.

I think they focus on macOS High Sierra & AMD cards - they want people to develop games and apps for macOS, with their new technology Metal 2.

automate-eGPU EFIapple_set_os.efi
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late-2016 13" Macbook Pro nTB + Vega64@32Gbps-TB3 (Netstor HL23T) + macOS & Win10
late-2016 13" Macbook Pro nTB + GTX980/RX580@32Gbps-TB3 (Netstor HL23T) + macOS10.13 & Win10


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XCVG
 XCVG
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September 17, 2017 11:54 pm  
Posted by: goalque

The problem is that Apple's switchable graphics is build for macOS. And its purpose is to save battery life. Apple had no other choice than to force dGPU graphics because Windows does not have a concept of "automatic graphics switching", and generally dGPU is more useful than iGPU in a non-eGPU world.

Nvidia Optimus and similar software-based solutions shouldn't be confused with this because they rely on iGPU-dGPU co-operation and writing frames to the iGPU's frame buffer, whereas in Apple's technology, the internal LCD is physically wired to either iGPU or dGPU through the gmux chip. AFAIK, it is impossible to wire it to the Thunderbolt interface unless Apple builds such a machine.

While Optimus and whatever AMD calls their technology these days don't work like this, the earliest switchable solutions on PC did. I had an Acer 3820TG with Intel HD (Nehalem) and a dedicated HD5470. Only one graphics adapter was active at a time, and the screen would cut out for several seconds during the switch. It never worked well, and at least on Windows the newer solution is well worth the slight performance tradeoff.

Is there a technical reason why Apple can't switch the mux to the iGPU and enable both in Windows? That would allow old-style graphics switching in macOS, and the newer type of mixed acceleration in Windows.

Late-2015 15" Dell XPS 9550 GTX960M + GTX1080@16Gbps-TB3 (Mantiz Venus) + Win10


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TiM
 TiM
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September 18, 2017 5:17 am  

I develop software for Apple's platforms, so I submitted a radar to Apple's bug reporting platform requesting better support for eGPUs in Boot Camp:  http://openradar.appspot.com/radar?id=5047804011479040

If there are any other Apple developers here, please feel free to dupe my radar #32830264 (Apparently that helps!). I didn't really mention the iGPU issue much in there (I wrote it when I was still dealing with getting it working on an external display. And apparently you can't edit them after submission.), so also be sure to add as much information as you can.


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goalque
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September 18, 2017 10:32 pm  

@XCVG: It is possible, both the iGPU and dGPU can be active by executing apple_set_os.efi. Only with some iMac models, the iGPU is completely turned off. If they have a gmux, might be possible to turn on by UEFI commands but I don't know, because I've never owned an iMac. I think that the only technical reason would be iGPU-dGPU unreliability. Neither AMD nor Nvidia provide Windows eGPU drivers for Macs, and gmux drivers don't exist in Windows.

However, AMD's desktop drivers work surprisingly well - my Mid 2015 15" MBP (M370X) is plug-and-play with an AMD eGPU, hot-plugging works as well. No workarounds.

Officially provided Boot Camp drivers from AMD are old:

http://support.amd.com/en-us/download/desktop/bootcamp

Intel will neither provide support for Apple products, here's one good example:

https://communities.intel.com/thread/97975

At present, Boot Camp is not supported.

"Boot Camp is not supported by the External Graphics Development Kit"

https://developer.apple.com/development-kit/media/external-graphics/Release-Notes-ECDK_v1.pdf

automate-eGPU EFIapple_set_os.efi
--
late-2016 13" Macbook Pro nTB + Vega64@32Gbps-TB3 (Netstor HL23T) + macOS & Win10
late-2016 13" Macbook Pro nTB + GTX980/RX580@32Gbps-TB3 (Netstor HL23T) + macOS10.13 & Win10


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Eightarmedpet
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September 19, 2017 8:52 am  

Plug and play with the latest drivers via Bootcamp.com or whatever that site is? I never got round error 12 (didn't try the work arounds to be honest, don't want to mess with core system files or boot from USB) but wondering if newer drivers would solve the issue, I downloaded from the AMD site.

2017 13" MacBook Pro Touchbar + GTX1060@32Gbps-TB3 (AKiTiO Thunder3) + Win10
2017 13" MacBook Pro Touch Bar + GTX1070@32Gbps-TB3 (Sonnet Breakaway Box) + Win10
---
LG 5K Ultrafine flickering issue fix


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goalque
(@goalque)
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September 19, 2017 10:43 am  

Latest desktop drivers from AMD's web site.

The first requirement in your case is the apple_set_os.efi (not necessary if you have a Mid 2015 15" M370X).

The reason why you're getting error code 12 with AMD (if also after apple_set_os.efi) is due to 2017 13" MBP firmware or Thunder3. Please try all TB3 ports of your MBP, the upper TB3 port of the Thunder3 may work better. It matters a lot which port you use.

automate-eGPU EFIapple_set_os.efi
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late-2016 13" Macbook Pro nTB + Vega64@32Gbps-TB3 (Netstor HL23T) + macOS & Win10
late-2016 13" Macbook Pro nTB + GTX980/RX580@32Gbps-TB3 (Netstor HL23T) + macOS10.13 & Win10


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ikir
 ikir
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March 20, 2018 3:56 pm  

Any update on Bootcamp? Maybe Apple Windows drivers got better (eGPU aware) with 10.13.4?

eGPU.it | LG 34" 4K 34UC88 curved ultrawide display
MacBook Pro 2018 Touch Bar i7 quad-core 2.7Ghz - 16GB RAM - 512GB PCIe SSD --> my Mantiz Venus extreme mod with Sapphire Nitro+ RX Vega 64


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Mize
 Mize
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April 3, 2018 3:20 pm  

10.13.4 had nothing to do with improving eGPU and everything to do with stopping the practice of using eGPU with TB1/TB2 Macs and blocking all Nvidia cards from working as eGPUs under macos.

iMac Pro (2017), 3.2 GHz Xeon W, 32 GB, 1TB SSD, RX Vega 56 + AKiTiO Node Pro w/ Zotac 1080 Ti, working with login hack on 10.13.3 but BROKEN by Apple blocking Nvidia in 10.13.4. Boo-hiss you Apple!


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Bofe
 Bofe
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April 4, 2018 10:08 pm  
Posted by: Mize

10.13.4 had nothing to do with improving eGPU and everything to do with stopping the practice of using eGPU with TB1/TB2 Macs and blocking all Nvidia cards from working as eGPUs under macos.

I mean, OK. Apple was twirling their mustaches saying "how can we make a couple hundred people really mad" and this is how they decided to do it? Come on...

Listen, I got screwed by this too. My GTX 1050/Zotac box now only works under Boot Camp -- which isn't a huge pain point for me because I wasn't trying to do many GPU-dependent things under Mac OS anyway -- but any analysis of Apple's choices that says "they just want to fuck with their customers" doesn't pass the sniff test.

I suppose I can understand them wanting to limit the surface areas of things they'll officially support. I understand less why they would take active steps to remove unsupported functionality that was previously working. I'll be interested to see how this evolves (both in our community and through official support)...


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Zetthard
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April 11, 2018 11:33 am  

I'm using mid-2014 15" MBP, and I'm waiting so much on official Bootcamp eGPU support for TB2 MACs as well. Please, Apple.


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robertmanley
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April 11, 2018 12:56 pm  

Non-TB MacBooks should work fairly well as the bus drivers don't try to incorrectly allocate 8 PCIe lanes.  The TB drivers in the Creator's edition released late 2017 (without Intel signature) are having problems with this where the previous version used a bit more common sense.  As the experimenters have found, finding the right combination of ports to disable and/or the port to connect to on MBP 13's will eventually get the driver loaded without the resource conflict but that still won't guarantee the drivers will function properly.

Forcing an update to old Intel drivers from gold Win10 would be an interesting experiment for those with lots of time and patience.


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SE12897
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April 15, 2018 3:34 am  

Both Apples and Optimus graphics switching work in a very similar way. I believe Apple uses hardware muxing instead of transferring frame buffer to the iGPU like optimus does it. That's why optimus can work on any hardware minus Apples that isn't moded in some way. Once the UEFI is locked to using the iGPU, and bypasses the mux then it's the same. I personally don't like Apples version but they had no choice as non Windows OSes don't support optimus and is licensed to windows only. I don't think Apple makes this hard on purpose they just want it to work in a predictable way and not having two GPUs active at the same time is way more reliable even though I've never had a problem with Optimus (other than it being really slow when you don't have dual channel memory) 

Maybe I'm wrong but this is how they used to do it on the 2011's and up?


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hexley
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April 29, 2018 2:46 pm  

For what its worth, I'm an apple developer and I duped @TiM 's open radar and filed it as well through bugreport.apple.com.

I'm considering an egpu setup for my late 2016 MBP-TB 15 inch retina running macOS Sierra, but am kinda turned off right now by the error code 12 issues I'm reading about. I haven't tried an egpu setup before but would ideally want something that's relatively easy to switch between usage and the discrete gpu included with the laptop, especially on the road.

If anyone has any current updates on their experience on a setup similar to this, I would love to hear it.


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 Yurk
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April 29, 2018 5:47 pm  

I work on AI and HPC, and using CUDA is a must for me. It is plain idiotic for Apple to block support for Nvidia eGPUs, and bootcamp eGPU support. I would encourage everyone to submit feedback here:

https://www.apple.com/feedback/macbookpro.html

 


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hexley
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April 29, 2018 8:39 pm  

It definitely isn't ideal for the contemporary AI developer 1 bit. But unfortunately, whether its idiotic or not, the business decision driven forces will always win. They probably will expand into that market but through AMD who wasn't at the scale of NVIDIA  which probably made it possible for apple to enter into a deal with them. That and the fact AMD is starting to unveil their own ML libraries through their ROCm framework, which is in the early stages enough that will let Apple fine tune and design their chips to be optimized for that framework. It'll unfortunately probably be at least 2-3 years before its anything worth being explored as opposed to using NVIDIA.


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 Yurk
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April 30, 2018 4:54 pm  

You are right. AMD is unfortunately way behind in the AI game. They completely ignored it for the past decade, whereas Nvidia invested heavily on it, and reaped the fruits. I hope AMD with their promised 7nm Navi GPU might catch up, but 2-3 years in this field is like centuries. No tech company or HPC center can afford to be left years behind the competition. My HPC team has to invest in new hardware (laptops and workstations). I wish this wasn't the case, but Apple / AMD are years behind, and unfortunately must be excluded from consideration. I do not see how Apple thinks their decisions are good business decisions.


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AVT
 AVT
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May 20, 2018 11:47 am  

FYI, I have Boot Camp working fine on a late '16 MacBook Pro function keys. I am using Akitio Node and Nvidia Titan X Pascal. The trick is you need to disable two devices in device manager.

- Intel Serial IO SPI Host Controller - 9D2A (to disable this one you need to do view -> devices by connection and uninstall every device underneath it, then Windows will let you disable it)
- Mobile 6th/7th Generation Intel(R) Processor Family I/O PCI Express Root Port #10 - 9D19

WARNING: the built-in keyboard, trackpad, and webcam will not work once this is done. You need an external keyboard and mouse plugged in via USB port.

Restart computer, and plug the eGPU in. You should see your sound and WiFi immediately disconnect in status bar - if you see this, everything is good, and eGPU will be enabled in about 30 seconds. If not, restart your computer - for some reason the eGPU doesn't initialize correctly and gives an error message in device manager some of the time, it usually takes me 2-3 tries to get everything going.

With these tweaks, my setup is stable and works great. Do not unplug any powered USB hub once eGPU is enabled or system will BSOD.


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ICULikeMac
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May 20, 2018 12:22 pm  

Interesting @avt thanks for the information. If you didn't disable those two devices, is the node not recognised at all? Or code error 12 or something of the like? I am having great trouble getting windows to recognise my Aorus box so hoping for some answers!

Late 2017 15" MBP w/R560
Late 2013 Mac Pro + AGB1070 - MacOS
Late 2012 Mac Mini + AGB1070 - MacOS + Win10


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BillyBob
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June 4, 2018 8:37 pm  

Working for me OoB on iMac + Boot Camp + Win10 Pro + Zotac GTX 1080:
https://egpu.io/forums/pc-setup/problem-with-installing-thunderbolt-drivers-in-bootcamp-for-akitio-node/#post-37675


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sorenhornum
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August 18, 2018 10:50 am  

I have no constructive feedbacck as this is all very new to me! But I am aware that nVidia cards are according to many superior when it comes to gaming so I would really love to see support for nVidia, both in bootcamp but also in macOs as well! Hoping that more games will be available and runnable on the mac side so we don't need bootcamp, but hopin that apple takes the steps to enable us to play the windows only games while game developers start including mac. Not to mention show game developers that Mac is a platform worthy of their attention.

Also, if anyone have any experience with the gaming performance of an external Vega 56 or Vega 64 natively in MacOs please let me know. Really wanting to buy one of these cards and a Razer Core X, but would be great to know that the investment is worth it in Mac OS as well.


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Jyin
 Jyin
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August 18, 2018 3:55 pm  
Posted by: sorenhornum

I have no constructive feedbacck as this is all very new to me! But I am aware that nVidia cards are according to many superior when it comes to gaming so I would really love to see support for nVidia, both in bootcamp but also in macOs as well! Hoping that more games will be available and runnable on the mac side so we don't need bootcamp, but hopin that apple takes the steps to enable us to play the windows only games while game developers start including mac. Not to mention show game developers that Mac is a platform worthy of their attention.

Also, if anyone have any experience with the gaming performance of an external Vega 56 or Vega 64 natively in MacOs please let me know. Really wanting to buy one of these cards and a Razer Core X, but would be great to know that the investment is worth it in Mac OS as well.

I use the Vega FE/LC overclocked, with Sonnet 550 and upgraded 850W PSU and extra cooling fans.

Perfomance of the GPU is amazing. It’s cool, quiet, fast and very reliable in both Mac and Bootcamp.

I am currently playing No Man’s Sky on Bootcamp, and it’s a game that have bad reputation about performance. But I get 30fps average with 5780x1080 on Ultra settings. I do see dips around very complex scenery, but that’s more on the game than the GPU.

I have no experience with Core X, but from what I seen, I would still picked Sonnet over Core. It’s bigger, easier to upgrade (which is important, especially if you are going to get Vega 64).

J


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