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Following this guide and substituting GeForce for AMD, I've been able to get my mid-2012 MacBook Pro Retina functional again, albeit without the advantages of the discrete GPU (background: original GPU failed sometime between 2013 and Oct 2017 but machine continued to function and I had no reason to check for the GPU until Oct of 2017, Apple replaced logic board Jan 23 2018, second GPU failed most likely on last Friday evening and machine refused to boot at all).

The only problem, or at least the only one that I'm going to worry about, is that things are running a bit hot. Is there any way through software that I can either power down or throttle the GPU? At least I assume from the information in that guide that it is the GPU causing extra heat due to there not being any drivers loaded to control it.

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gfxCardStatus is a menu bar app that lets you choose which of the integrated or discrete GPU is active.

I believe if you choose 'integrated only' the dedicated GPU won't be used. Just remember to set it each reboot, I haven't found a way to get it to remember settings across shutdowns.

  • I have that app installed, but I haven't noticed things being any cooler. Of course my temperature estimates are purely subjective based on the feel of the case since I haven't been able to find an app that can give me the GPU temp (if that's even possible without the GeForce kext loaded), only the CPU. – Colin Young Jun 26 '18 at 12:53
  • @ColinYoung my mac generally runs hotter while running GPU intensive applications with the discrete chip disabled. My (nvidia) GPU doesn't seem to generate any noticeable heat unless I'm doing something GPU intensive, does the AMD chip not behave the same way? – Scottmeup Jun 26 '18 at 13:05
  • I have no idea about the AMD chip. Does Google Chrome count as "GPU intensive"? :) Like I said, it's a subjective heat estimate. I could just be paranoid since I've mucked about with things and potentially disabled the ability to control the power to the chip. – Colin Young Jun 26 '18 at 14:56
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    @ColinYoung you might find it helpful (if you haven't already) to locate the GPU and CPU locations and check if the GPU is noticeably warmer than the CPU. At least on my mac, the two are somewhat separated and it's clear when the GPU is producing heat by touch alone. – Scottmeup Jun 26 '18 at 22:42
  • That's a good idea. Unfortunately I've been finding it difficult to find an image that I can be confident is the correct logic board in my machine and allows me to identify the GPU and CPU. At this point it might actually be faster and easier to order a set of pentalobe drivers and just open it up myself... – Colin Young Jun 26 '18 at 23:41

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