Noob here, need resources for installing non-EFI GPU

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by srmaximo, Dec 11, 2014.

  1. srmaximo macrumors newbie

    Dec 11, 2014
    Seattle, WA

    First post here. What a great resource for Mac Pro users this forum is.

    I'm planning on finally getting my first GPU upgrade for my Mac Pro tower: A GTX 980. I'm thinking I want to get a non-EFI GTX 980 instead of wait for MacVidCards to release their flashed version.

    I've been looking for step-by-step instructions for the software portion of this installation, but what I've found has been either potentially out-of-date (the FAQ here is from 2012) or too sketchy for my level of knowledge.

    Anyone know of a good step-by-step tutorial? Specific questions I have are...

    1) How do I know what NVidia driver to use? I've found links on other threads but is there a way of knowing whether those files are still the most current version?

    2) How do I install the driver? MacVidCards has a great tutorial r.e. installing the hardware, but no info on drivers.

    3) Eventually, I'll probably want to re-install my old GPU when I send my new one to MacVidCards. How to I revert to my old drivers?

    Thanks a ton,

  2. Asgorath macrumors 68000

    Mar 30, 2012
    The FAQ thread is still actively maintained, so don't use the fact it was started in 2012 as a sign the information is out of date.

    1) There is usually only one NVIDIA driver per Apple OS release. If there are multiple versions, always use the latest one.

    2) Double click the package you downloaded from the NVIDIA web site, then follow the instructions.

    3) Use the NVIDIA Driver Manager in System Preferences and select the Apple drivers, then reboot.
  3. srmaximo thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 11, 2014
    Seattle, WA
    Great, thanks so much for your reply. It's a relief to hear that the NVIDIA driver package holds your hand through the process.

    And good to hear the FAQ gets maintained. I got concerned when I read this: "As mentioned above, all stock OS drivers from Apple will now make stock NVIDIA PC cards work." That's not true of the 980, right? Otherwise I could just plug in the card and it would get recognized?
  4. apphotography macrumors regular

    Nov 19, 2014

    I recently purchased a custom Mac Pro with a GTX 980. It's very easy to set up but you need to install a graphics card supported by Apple's drivers (such as a GT 120) before you install the web drivers that support the GTX 980 otherwise you will just get a blank screen when you boot. After you install the latest Web drivers from Nvidia then you can install the new graphics card.

    On Bootcamp things are easier. Windows will start up with a generic graphics drivers when you install the OS and then you can install the latest drivers from NVidia.
  5. srmaximo thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 11, 2014
    Seattle, WA
    Good to hear the Windows driver installation can be done after installing the card. I hadn't thought about that.
  6. flowrider macrumors 603


    Nov 23, 2012
    Also, in addition to the Nvidia Web Driver, don't forget to download and install the Cuda Driver.

  7. Asgorath macrumors 68000

    Mar 30, 2012
    Right, that language is specifically talking about the self-init code that NVIDIA added a long time ago. That is, the driver Apple ships now also has the self-init code, and you don't have to do anything extra to make the cards that are enabled by the driver work. As for what driver/OS is required for specific GPU models/families, I would direct you at question 5 in the FAQ:

    5) What GPUs will work?

    As far as we can tell, basically any card will work, especially with Mountain Lion. The Lion driver appears to work well with the Fermi generation, but the Kepler generation cards only work with Mountain Lion and beyond.


    Here's a rough list of when new cards started working.
    • GK110B (GTX 780, GTX 780 Ti etc) needs 10.9.2 and 331.01.01f01
    • GM107 (GTX 750) and GM204 (GTX 970, GTX 980 etc) need 10.10 and 343.01.XX.XX
  8. Obibob macrumors member

    Dec 11, 2014
    l,estartit spain
    just got my mac

    Hi just got my mac changed this & that upgraded to mavericks wos runing ati radeon hd 6770 1gb ram intermitant problems so changed to NVIDIA GeForce GT 630: i had laying about worked striate out of the box

    Chipset Model: NVIDIA GeForce GT 630
    Type: GPU
    Bus: PCIe
    Slot: Slot-2
    PCIe Lane Width: x1
    VRAM (Total): 2048 MB
    Vendor: NVIDIA (0x10de)
    Device ID: 0x0f00
    Revision ID: 0x00a1
    ROM Revision: preset 1.0.0
    Resolution: 1680 x 1050 @ 60 Hz
    Pixel Depth: 32-Bit Color (ARGB8888)
    Main Display: Yes
    Mirror: Off
    Online: Yes
    Rotation: Supported
    Television: Yes
  9. MacVidCards Suspended

    Nov 17, 2008
    Hollywood, CA
    This thread should get merged into the giant sticky thread.

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