Graphics switching without restarting Windowserver?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by jgassens, Apr 13, 2010.

  1. jgassens macrumors newbie

    Dec 2, 2009
    Obviously the new Macbook Pros do not require a reboot to switch between graphics cards while the previous generation, the one which had two graphics cards made by the same company, requires a login/logout.

    The case made for the necessity of this login/logout has been the need for the WindowServer process to be relaunched, and to overcome this, WindowServer would need to be rewritten. Obviously that didn't happen.

    Further, if random Nvidia insiders are to be believed, this wasn't done using Optimus technology by Nvidia, but rather by Apple... so...

    How do you suppose they pulled that off?
  2. moel macrumors 6502

    Nov 7, 2007
  3. MeAngry macrumors member

    Aug 24, 2009
    The Netherlands
    Whatever they call it, or whatever Ars Technica may have heard; under the hood it's exactly the same as Optimus. The driverside, that's where the difference is.
    If you want to be able to switch graphics without having to restart your windowserver, you will need some framebuffer copying mechanism like Optimus delivers.

    On the driver side though, Apple managed to make this a whole lot more pleasant than under Windows because Apple made it. (With assistance of NVIDIA ofcourse) On Windows, NVIDIA was on their own, and Windows Vista/7 is always using some kind of graphics acceleration using Aero. So NVIDIA can't automatically detect when a game is running, or when Aero is doing a backflip. At least not as easily.

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