[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.

Edited: 5 months  ago

Numerous implementation 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.

Mid-2014 15" MacBook Pro GT750M + RX480@16Gbps-TB2 (AKiTiO Node via TB3->TB2 adapter) + macOS & Win10
Purge-NVDA - Enable AMD eGPUs on NVDA Macs on High Sierra


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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…

Edited: 5 months  ago

2017 13" MacBook Pro Touchbar + GTX1060@32Gbps-TB3 (AKiTiO Thunder3) + Win10
2017 13" MacBook Pro Touch Bar + GTX1070@32Gbps-TB3 (Sonnet Breakaway Box) + Win10


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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.

Numerous implementation guides


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Eightarmedpet
(@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


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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


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DrDubya
(@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.shapple_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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XCVG
 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
(@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
(@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.shapple_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
(@eightarmedpet)
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Posts: 493
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


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goalque
(@goalque)
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Joined:1 year  ago
Posts: 779
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.

Edited: 5 months  ago

automate-eGPU.shapple_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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