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When I turn on my macbook pro late 2011 I want it to use the integrated video card(not discrete one).

Is there some sort of setting I can set or a driver I can install or some bios setting to achieve this?

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  • May I ask for your motivation? Is your discrete chip faulty or something?
    – n1000
    Jul 22, 2015 at 10:52
  • 1
    By accident I just noticed that my Macs NVRAM contains a key called "gpu-policy". Try: nvram -p. Maybe this determines also what GPU is used during boot.
    – n1000
    Jul 22, 2015 at 12:20
  • If you have a faulty GPU, visit nearest Apple Store or Authorized Service Center as soon as possible as Apple will fix it FREE for you till feb 2016.
    – Pratik
    Dec 7, 2015 at 9:34
  • @PratikaRana, thank you very much for the info! Yes, my GPU is faulty. I deleted drivers for AMD GPU, and somehow it works under Intel without problems, don't know how it happened. But I can't upgrade Mac OS. I will try to contact Apple Service abroad, since there is no Apple in my country.
    – Dmitriy
    Jan 20, 2016 at 19:06
  • @geotavros Not even any Apple Resellers or Apple Authorised Service Centers?
    – Pratik
    Jan 21, 2016 at 2:15

3 Answers 3

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You cannot force the OS X to use the integrated GPU if you have dual GPU (integrated + descrete). By default OS X will use descrete GPU when booting.

Anyway, if you were a victim of infamous GPU failure for MacBook Pros in Late 2011, Apple was fixing it for free. That program ended at the beginning of 2017.

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  • Thank you for letting me know about the free Apple fixing. I was able to repair it for free in Moldova
    – Dmitriy
    Nov 24, 2016 at 18:53
  • You certainly can force OS X to use integrated GPU. I explain how in my answer. You should remove first sentence of this answer. Jun 8, 2017 at 17:22
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Yes, you can achieve that modifying certain EFI variable. I answered this other question with the full procedure to permanently disable discrete graphics card on startup.

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Your machine should boot with the integrated card by default.

  1. Under System Preferences > Energy Saver > make sure "Automatic Graphics Switching" or (depending on your OSX) "Better Battery Life" is checked.

  2. Download and install gfxCardStatus. Reboot your machine. Before you do anything else at login, from its drop down menu, check the PID causing the system to switch to the discrete card. Once you isolate the process, you can isolate the application causing it to do so using Activity Monitor.

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    1. it's checked, but it doesn't use integrated. Integrated card is sometimes used for booting when macbook has low electricity charge or previous booting failed with crash. 2. I have that app, but it doesn't allow to chose the videocard for booting
    – Dmitriy
    Jun 13, 2014 at 4:46
  • @what do you exactly mean by "for booting?". Once you are logged in, you can see, using gfx card status, which process is forcing the discrete card. You can't change to integrated when there's process running that's dependent on the discrete. Once you identify the process ID, use Activity Monitor to identify the process name and (possibly) its associated application.
    – njboot
    Jun 13, 2014 at 20:03
  • @geotavros just to reiterate, when that is checked, integrated is the default. Period. It's always used unless a program implements the discrete GPU. That's what is happening at startup. There is a kext or launchd process forcing switch to the discrete GPU.
    – njboot
    Jun 13, 2014 at 20:05
  • by booting I mean the process when you press the power button on macbook and it starts to boot. I want the integrated to be active right after I press the power button, not after I logged in.
    – Dmitriy
    Jun 13, 2014 at 23:15
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    what makes you think it uses integrated?
    – Dmitriy
    Jun 14, 2014 at 7:50

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