I have an early 15" 2011 Macbook Pro that is affected by the defective discrete GPU.

I know there are workarounds in OSX to force the use of the integrated Intel GPU, or disable the drivers for the discrete GPU. However these workarounds either make the computer too slow to use or are not reliable: although initially disabled discrete GPU may be activated when using some software and then the computer would stop working.

I have found these instructions for Arch Linux that look promising, because they mention a way to enable only the Intel GPU:


This is a similar question, that would achieve the same goal, but it is unanswered and does not mention running Linux: Macbook Pro: How to disable discrete GPU permanently from EFI?

3 Answers 3


Yes, you can user Linux on a 2011 Macbook Pro that has a defective discrete GPU.

I just installed Ubuntu 14.04 on mine and it's working correctly. I followed these instructions:



In this MacRumours thread you can find a procedure to disable the discrete GPU by modifying the EFI variables:


  • BTW mine failed again a few months again after the having it repaired by Apple under the extended repair program. I'm now running it with the discrete GPU disabled as explained in the MacRumours thread.
    – xpereta
    Aug 2, 2017 at 9:08
  • second @xpereta above. check out forums.macrumors.com/threads/… that's a massive thread, because they were figuring out what to do all the while in it. don't use the OPs suggestion - you don't need Linux to write to the efivars - and I couldn't do it with the SystemRescueCd distrib - you can use the nvram command instead. My link is for post #528, the one most people settle on using.
    – JL Peyret
    Oct 10, 2017 at 14:49
  • Just to be clear - after applying the above fix, I am back on Sierra, not Linux, and things are working perfectly. I'd hold off on High Sierra though, not sure how many people have looked into that yet - then again, it could very well apply the same way and what would you have to lose if your GPU's hosed?
    – JL Peyret
    Oct 10, 2017 at 14:52

Call Apple care. They lost a lawsuit and they fix my mac. I took it to the store. It took 6days.


  • Welcome to AskDifferent, please note that your answer should rather be a comment on the question. And thank you, I got mine fixed already but I managed to use it with Ubuntu until Apple decided to repair them.
    – xpereta
    Oct 16, 2015 at 9:43
  • AppleCare and Repar Extension Program expired. Want to keep the hardware going? Go here: apple.stackexchange.com/a/295805/251859 Oct 16, 2017 at 16:50

Got mine fixed by Apple 9 months ago. Extended repair program ended at the end of 2016 Graphics failed again now, verified by Apple Cost for a board swap, upwards of $500

If I thought their replacement parts were any better, I'd probably pay that.

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