Blackmagic eGPU/Pro Firmware Update Tool on macOS
 
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Blackmagic eGPU/Pro Firmware Update Tool on macOS  

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mac_editor
(@mac_editor)
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@itsage

And, yet another first-time-ever flash -> flashed Mantiz firmware to the Sonnet! 15W -> 87W PD!

Sonnet PD 87W
PD 87W

Of course, some may not believe me because after flashing the Sonnet board identifies itself completely as the Mantiz Venus board (TUL) lol!

@username

The Sonnet 350, 550, and 650 have the same PCB as far as I know so PD is not an issue. In fact, I just flashed it with the Mantiz firmware and its easily delivering 87W (Mantiz and Sonnet use same board).

"Desultory reading is delightful, but to be beneficial, our reading must be carefully directed." — Seneca

Author: kryptonitepurge-wranglertbt-flashpurge-nvdaset-eGPU
Insights Into macOS Video Editing Performance
Launching Apps on Specific (e)GPUs on macOS

Master Threads:
2014 15-inch MacBook Pro 750M
2018 15-inch MacBook Pro

 
2019 13" MacBook Pro [8th,4C,U] + RX Vega 64 @ 32Gbps-TB3 (Mantiz Venus) + macOS 10.14.6 & Win10 [build link]  


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Username
(@username)
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Joined: 5 years ago
 
Posted by: @mac_editor

@username

The Sonnet 350, 550, and 650 have the same PCB as far as I know so PD is not an issue. In fact, I just flashed it with the Mantiz firmware and its easily delivering 87W (Mantiz and Sonnet use same board).

Sweet!

Present: 2012 Mac mini + PowerColor RX 56 Vega Nano @10Gbps-TB1 + PowerColor Mini eGFX 180F via Apple TB3 to TB2 + macOS Catalina 10.15.7

Previous: 2012 Mac Mini + GTX1070 @ 10Gbps-TB1 (AKiTiO Thunder3 via Apple TB3 to TB2 adapter) + macOS

 
2012 Mac Mini [3rd,4C,Q] + GTX 970 @ 10Gbps-TB1>TB3 (AKiTiO Node) + macOS 10.12.4 // lots of benchmarks [build link]  


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mac_editor
(@mac_editor)
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Joined: 5 years ago
 

Some More Updates

What I’ve inferred from the 5+ patches we applied to the EFI app that handles firmware patching (ThorUtil.efi) is that nearly all of the differences (ACE version, DROM version, Firmware versions) are primarily artificial roadblocks to flashing for the sake of product segmentation (such Sonnet box variations). My friend and I eliminated these validation checks completely (we have a much simpler patch for doing all of them at once), which can possibly allow for extremely flexible (but potentially dangerous/bricking) patching scenarios. Additionally, these patches have eliminated the artificial requirement for Alpine Ridge controllers needed to patch some boards (such as Mantiz). Once I’ve tested thoroughly and built a good, user-friendly solution, the patches/resources will be open-sourced and free as always. This might take time however. In the meantime, I can send over the patched tool to @itsage for testing and more validation if desired.

Our next step is to investigate eGFX Thunderbolt firmware for the possibility of manually setting power delivery, H2D bandwidth, and anything else and potentially create custom firmware for enclosures.

"Desultory reading is delightful, but to be beneficial, our reading must be carefully directed." — Seneca

Author: kryptonitepurge-wranglertbt-flashpurge-nvdaset-eGPU
Insights Into macOS Video Editing Performance
Launching Apps on Specific (e)GPUs on macOS

Master Threads:
2014 15-inch MacBook Pro 750M
2018 15-inch MacBook Pro

 
2019 13" MacBook Pro [8th,4C,U] + RX Vega 64 @ 32Gbps-TB3 (Mantiz Venus) + macOS 10.14.6 & Win10 [build link]  


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itsage
(@itsage)
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Joined: 5 years ago
 

@mac_editor This is remarkable and we can't wait to see the final product! We had inquired Intel and Thunderbolt 3 partners about the possibility of granting power users a tool to configure the TBT FW to best suite their needs. They disregarded this feature. I believe it adds a lot of value to the promise of Thunderbolt 3 being the one cable that does it all.

Again congratulations on continuingly outdoing yourself. You represent the very spirit of our eGPU.io community, an environment where we can explore our interests in eGFX and discover our own abilities along the way. Your Mac-related solutions has given a deeper meaning to your username now. 😀

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external graphics card builds
best laptops for external GPU
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2021 14" Microsoft Surface Laptop Studio [11th,4C,H] + RTX 2080 Ti @ 32Gbps-TB4 (WD_Black D50) + Win11 [build link]  


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Username
(@username)
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This is an amazing progress!

Present: 2012 Mac mini + PowerColor RX 56 Vega Nano @10Gbps-TB1 + PowerColor Mini eGFX 180F via Apple TB3 to TB2 + macOS Catalina 10.15.7

Previous: 2012 Mac Mini + GTX1070 @ 10Gbps-TB1 (AKiTiO Thunder3 via Apple TB3 to TB2 adapter) + macOS

 
2012 Mac Mini [3rd,4C,Q] + GTX 970 @ 10Gbps-TB1>TB3 (AKiTiO Node) + macOS 10.12.4 // lots of benchmarks [build link]  


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load97
(@load97)
Active Member
Joined: 2 years ago
 

Thanks for the effort everyone!

To do: Create my signature with system and expected eGPU configuration information to give context to my posts. I have no builds.

.

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joevt
(@joevt)
Noble Member
Joined: 4 years ago
 

This firmware updater currently works for eGPUs.

What about other Thunderbolt peripherals like a Thunderbolt dock?

What about Thunderbolt hosts? I have GC-TITAN RIDGE and GC-ALPINE RIDGE. My GC-TITAN RIDGE has NVM Firmware 23.00. The latest firmware is 43.00. I think 43.00 removes automatic PCIe tunnelling from Windows warm boot that people use for classic Mac Pros or Hackintoshes or some PCs so I am wondering if there is a way to downgrade the firmware?

Is there a way to backup the firmware before modifying it?

Intel has a tool called Imaginarium2 which is a "Thunderbolt NVM customization tool". You can find mention of the tool in various places, including a list of some items that it can customize.
http://threads489.rssing.com/chan-6462796/all_p8126.html

 

Mac mini (2018), Mac Pro (Early 2008), GA-Z170X-Gaming 7, Sapphire Pulse Radeon RX 580 8GB GDDR5, Radeon Pro W5700, Sonnet Echo Express III-D, Trebleet Thunderbolt 3 to NVMe M.2 case


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mac_editor
(@mac_editor)
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Joined: 5 years ago
 
Posted by: @joevt

What about other Thunderbolt peripherals like a Thunderbolt dock?

I believe it should work. I anticipate all thunderbolt firmware to be designed according to some base/standard specifications. The Apple flashing tool is very flexible and should be able to read data off such controllers easily.

Posted by: @joevt

What about Thunderbolt hosts? I have GC-TITAN RIDGE and GC-ALPINE RIDGE. My GC-TITAN RIDGE has NVM Firmware 23.00. The latest firmware is 43.00. I think 43.00 removes automatic PCIe tunnelling from Windows warm boot that people use for classic Mac Pros or Hackintoshes or some PCs so I am wondering if there is a way to downgrade the firmware?

Incidentally, it seems ThorUtil.efi was initially written to update firmware for thunderbolt hosts. By default, ThorUtil.efi prevents firmware downgrade and also prevents flashing if firmware version is same. Removing that (and some other checks) will allow for patching. In fact, I believe the process will be exactly the same - just substitute the UID with that of Thunderbolt controller on host, get the firmware for that controller, and flash. This EFI program is very powerful and self-sufficient.

Posted by: @joevt

Is there a way to backup the firmware before modifying it?

The only way would be dump the firmware as a flat binary file that is reflashable (not all dumps necessarily are). ThorUtil.efi already has the capability to read off the controller firmware completely and it is likely using standard EFI protocols/calls (for which we can refer to source code) to set up some of this. There are of course custom Apple routines around as well but we haven’t completely analyzed the program (that’s a big task).

Another breakthrough could come through by analyzing Linux Thunderbolt drivers: https://github.com/torvalds/linux/tree/master/drivers/thunderbolt

As well as the TB Firmware Update tools we are provided by Gigabyte/Lenovo in Windows that can flash in OS instead of being EFI-dependent. 

"Desultory reading is delightful, but to be beneficial, our reading must be carefully directed." — Seneca

Author: kryptonitepurge-wranglertbt-flashpurge-nvdaset-eGPU
Insights Into macOS Video Editing Performance
Launching Apps on Specific (e)GPUs on macOS

Master Threads:
2014 15-inch MacBook Pro 750M
2018 15-inch MacBook Pro

 
2019 13" MacBook Pro [8th,4C,U] + RX Vega 64 @ 32Gbps-TB3 (Mantiz Venus) + macOS 10.14.6 & Win10 [build link]  


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mac_editor
(@mac_editor)
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Joined: 5 years ago
 

We were able to succeed in initiating the flash from macOS directly (no EFI shell) using my initial findings. SIP will have to be disabled for flashing to be initiated on macOS. But you'll get to see a nice Apple logo and progress bar as the firmware is flashed.

"Desultory reading is delightful, but to be beneficial, our reading must be carefully directed." — Seneca

Author: kryptonitepurge-wranglertbt-flashpurge-nvdaset-eGPU
Insights Into macOS Video Editing Performance
Launching Apps on Specific (e)GPUs on macOS

Master Threads:
2014 15-inch MacBook Pro 750M
2018 15-inch MacBook Pro

 
2019 13" MacBook Pro [8th,4C,U] + RX Vega 64 @ 32Gbps-TB3 (Mantiz Venus) + macOS 10.14.6 & Win10 [build link]  


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itsage
(@itsage)
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Joined: 5 years ago
 

@mac_editor This is excellent to hear! A drag-and-drop tool would be great but I think due to risks involved maybe a process that requires reading and careful preparation would be best.

 

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external graphics card builds
best laptops for external GPU
eGPU enclosure buyer's guide

 
2021 14" Microsoft Surface Laptop Studio [11th,4C,H] + RTX 2080 Ti @ 32Gbps-TB4 (WD_Black D50) + Win11 [build link]  


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