Thunderbolt, Thunderbolt 2 eGPU compatibility purged from macOS High Sierra beta 5

Posted:
in macOS edited March 2018
Monday's update to the High Sierra 10.13.4 beta has continued to advance external GPU technology, but at a cost -- older hardware using Thunderbolt 2 including the cylinder Mac Pro -- are out out luck at present.




Connection and disconnection of an external Thunderbolt 3 GPU is now a bit faster than it was in the previous beta release. But, the improvements are tempered somewhat by owners of older equipment no longer being able to use the technology at all.

At present, it is unclear if there are any hacks to install to re-enable the feature. Those wanting to use the technology with Nvidia PCI-E cards already have to run a script to get them to work, so a community fix may be possible in the future.

The eradication was spotted by continued AppleInsider testing, as well as users in the egpu.io forums.

It isn't clear at this point if this is a permanent removal, or a temporary one. If permanent, the technology will be limited to the 2016 and 2017 MacBook Pro, and the 2017 line of iMacs, including the iMac Pro.

Under the betas of High Sierra 10.13.4, an external GPU can be connected while the machine is running, and it will not pop up a notification to logout to enable the GPU. Rather, it connects automatically, and shifts to the previous configuration.

Before High Sierra 10.13.4, clamshell mode was partially implemented. If the displays were mirrored to begin with, if you shut the lid on a MacBook Pro it would turn off that display. However, if you had two workplaces, the workspace on the MacBook Pro's screen would remain active, even with the lid shut.

With the new release, Clamshell mode implements properly on lid-shut, even with a workspace spanning the MacBook Pro's internal display in conjunction with external displays.

Apple's support for external Thunderbolt 3 enclosures containing a PCI-E GPU began following the 2017 WWDC. The feature, while present in all High Sierra builds, is still considered a beta. Apple has announced that support for external GPUs will be fully supported in the spring.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 25
    Can we skip Vista, err High Sierra?
    anton zuykov
  • Reply 2 of 25
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 4,870administrator
    Can we skip Vista, err High Sierra?
    I guess, but waiting until (MacOS) = [(High Sierra) +1] won't fix this, I don't think.
    edited March 2018
  • Reply 3 of 25
    DAalsethDAalseth Posts: 716member
    Does this mean that TB and TB2 ports on older machines will be totally disabled or does this only impact eGPUs through those ports?
  • Reply 4 of 25
    keithwkeithw Posts: 44member
    This is not a good development.  I used eGPU with the late 2013 Mac Pro with good results.  Also, Apple needs to make sure both AMD and nVidia cards are supported without kernel hacks.  Drivers can continue to come from nVidia, but the OS should just work with the cards, from EITHER manufacturer.

    edited March 2018 propod
  • Reply 5 of 25
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 4,870administrator
    DAalseth said:
    Does this mean that TB and TB2 ports on older machines will be totally disabled or does this only impact eGPUs through those ports?
    Just eGPU compatibility.
  • Reply 6 of 25
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 4,870administrator
    keithw said:
    This is not a good development.  I used eGPU with the late 2013 Mac Pro with good results.  Also, Apple needs to make sure both AMD and nVidia cards are supported without kernel hacks.  Drivers can continue to come from nVidia, but the OS should just work with the cards, from EITHER manufacturer.

    We'd like that as well. But, it's looking more and more like Apple will have blessed configurations without hackery, which is disappointing.
  • Reply 7 of 25
    racerhomie3racerhomie3 Posts: 1,153member
    Can we skip Vista, err High Sierra?
    High Sierra is fine.
    StrangeDayschasm
  • Reply 8 of 25
    DAalsethDAalseth Posts: 716member
    DAalseth said:
    Does this mean that TB and TB2 ports on older machines will be totally disabled or does this only impact eGPUs through those ports?
    Just eGPU compatibility.
    That's a relief, Thanks
  • Reply 9 of 25
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 5,136member
    I see eGPU was potentially revolutionizing computing by expanding high end computing to low end devices.

    I am hoping Apple takes this seriously and does it right (as they usually, but not always, do)
    LoneStar88
  • Reply 10 of 25
    igerardigerard Posts: 12member
    Bad move, I sent an email to Tim ...  :#

    They need to have their current customers happy !
  • Reply 11 of 25
    anton zuykovanton zuykov Posts: 1,040member
    Can we skip Vista, err High Sierra?
    I guess, but waiting until (MacOS) = [(High Sierra) +1] won't fix this, I don't think.
    Wouldn't that be High_Sierra++?
  • Reply 12 of 25
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 4,963member
    I see eGPU was potentially revolutionizing computing by expanding high end computing to low end devices.

    I am hoping Apple takes this seriously and does it right (as they usually, but not always, do)
    I think so too. I think it also allows Apple to put mid to lower end GPUs in their products to do the designs they want to do and if people see they need more, then they can get an eGPU enclosure with a proper card. This is what I'd like to do....get the current high end 27" iMac with the Radeon 580 and then if I need more, get an enclosure with a proper video card.

    This would also allow Macs to be expanded into the future should that be required. 

    Perhaps Apple is just trying to get this working correctly and will leave the video card end up to AMD and NVIDIA. At least, I hope that's what they're up to. With the security Apple is doing with newer Macs I'm sure there its not just plug n play anymore. 
    edited March 2018 GeorgeBMac
  • Reply 13 of 25
    I see eGPU was potentially revolutionizing computing by expanding high end computing to low end devices.

    I am hoping Apple takes this seriously and does it right (as they usually, but not always, do)
    This was my thinking when Thunderbolt first appeared with the trashcan Mac Pro: a modular expansion capability via daisy-chained devices.

    We are currently contemplating upgrading our aging iMacs, and may very well take a "lower end" approach: buying iMacs, albeit with 64GB RAM, as long as there is this type of upgrade option for the GPU.
    GeorgeBMac
  • Reply 14 of 25
    dysamoriadysamoria Posts: 2,280member
    Can we skip Vista, err High Sierra?
    High Sierra is fine.
    Except for all the problems in software due to the new file system. Oh hey, can you delete browser web content in High Sierra? You can't on iOS 10.3.3 or higher...
  • Reply 15 of 25
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 4,870administrator
    I see eGPU was potentially revolutionizing computing by expanding high end computing to low end devices.

    I am hoping Apple takes this seriously and does it right (as they usually, but not always, do)
    This was my thinking when Thunderbolt first appeared with the trashcan Mac Pro: a modular expansion capability via daisy-chained devices.

    We are currently contemplating upgrading our aging iMacs, and may very well take a "lower end" approach: buying iMacs, albeit with 64GB RAM, as long as there is this type of upgrade option for the GPU.
    You guys know that looping back a video signal to an internal display through TB3 is 1) a hack and 2) starves the GPU for bandwidth, no?
  • Reply 16 of 25
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 4,963member
    dysamoria said:
    Can we skip Vista, err High Sierra?
    High Sierra is fine.
    Except for all the problems in software due to the new file system. Oh hey, can you delete browser web content in High Sierra? You can't on iOS 10.3.3 or higher...
    Because creating a brand new file system and making it work perfect out of the box is easy...yeah right! Were lucky it works as well as it does and for the most part, APFS works pretty damn well for as new as it is. Just look at Microsoft and their file system issues. 
    MacPro
  • Reply 17 of 25
    MacProMacPro Posts: 18,367member
    Things may change.  It is beta after all.  Any one else notice iBooks was dropped for Books in an earlier beta now we are back to iBooks again?
  • Reply 18 of 25
    MacProMacPro Posts: 18,367member
    macxpress said:
    dysamoria said:
    Can we skip Vista, err High Sierra?
    High Sierra is fine.
    Except for all the problems in software due to the new file system. Oh hey, can you delete browser web content in High Sierra? You can't on iOS 10.3.3 or higher...
    Because creating a brand new file system and making it work perfect out of the box is easy...yeah right! Were lucky it works as well as it does and for the most part, APFS works pretty damn well for as new as it is. Just look at Microsoft and their file system issues. 
    Mostly it is the third party application developers that need to pull their finger out for APFS support.  Even Paragon's incredible utility Hard Disk Manager that can even back up a cloned and bootable Boot Camp is still struggling with APFS.  I'd buy the excuse that developers are waiting for APFS's development to finalize if it were not for Carbon Copy Cloner's ability to be bang unto date with even the latest betas as we went along.  Kudos to Mike Bombich.
    edited March 2018
  • Reply 19 of 25
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 4,870administrator
    Seriously?

    If you can't find your comment, take a minute to look at the commenting guidelines.
  • Reply 20 of 25
    igerard said:
    Bad move, I sent an email to Tim ...  :#

    They need to have their current customers happy !
    No they don’t. They give a shit about what think. It’s a corporation and they’re revenue stream is impervious to customer input. 
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