Alienware 18 - 980M SLI - Auto Switching to Integrated GPU?

Discussion in 'Alienware 18 and M18x' started by cope123abc, Dec 8, 2019.

  1. cope123abc

    cope123abc Notebook Evangelist

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    Hi guys,
    Wondering if anybody is able to help me please.

    I have a Alienware 18 on the latest system bios, she has 2 x 980M's in SLI.

    Now whenever i restart the machine it's automatically defaulting back to the integrated GPU.

    I have to do a manual switch over to get SLI working again or the 980's to be even recognised.

    Is there a fix for this?

    Both 980's seem to be working no issues after doing the manual swap on fn+5

    Edit: Just noticed both BIOS versions do not match, could this be the cause?
    Not sure which BIOS i should go with for both the cards?

    @Mr. Fox any ideas bro ? im lost on this one...

    [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2019
  2. Mr. Fox

    Mr. Fox BGA Filth-Hating Elitist

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    The vBIOS is supposed to be mismatched. If you make them the same the slave GPU fan will malfunction and cook the GPU. I would use GPU-Z and back them up with 980M_Master.ROM and 980M_Slave.ROM for the file names in case you ever need to replace one of them.

    The 980M was never quite right on the 18 or the M18xR2. Neither machine ever reached the ability to deliver full 980M performance like MSI and Clevo laptops did for some weird reason. Is it switching to IGFX automatically only when running on battery, or it does it also when plugged in?

    You might want to look at this thread for more info how to unlock the BIOS.

    [Release] Alienware 18 BIOS A12 Unlocked
     
  3. cope123abc

    cope123abc Notebook Evangelist

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    Thanks for taking the time bro.

    Basically what's happening is, I just flashed the unlocked bios.
    Told it to use PEG not IGFX and it still switched after a restart or shutdown back to integrated?
    I'm complete lost.. Is this Windows 10 doing this.. Its a fresh install.

    It's basically wiping out the 980s each restart unless manually switched back, don't appear in device manager or bios

    @Raidriar you seen this before bro?
     
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2019
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  4. Mr. Fox

    Mr. Fox BGA Filth-Hating Elitist

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    This is normal. When it is set to use IGFX the MXM slots are turned off and that is by design. So, they won't show in the BIOS or in Device Manager. It's the automatic flip from PEG to IGFX that I have not seen before. That's weird.

    I thought maybe flashing the unlocked BIOS might have some affect on that behavior, but I guess not.
     
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  5. ssj92

    ssj92 Neutron Star

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    Do you have the Alienware On-Screen Display driver installed?

    Did you try checking the SLI cable to make sure it is properly seated?
     
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  6. cope123abc

    cope123abc Notebook Evangelist

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    Hey guys, got her recognising both cards all the time

    Repasted and stripped her down.

    Can't get the system to recognise both fans though ? WTF is going on...

    Only CPU fan is recognised... GPU fans wont work at all, or even noticed in HwINFO
     
  7. cope123abc

    cope123abc Notebook Evangelist

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    solved initial issue bro - now no fans?
     
  8. ssj92

    ssj92 Neutron Star

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    Trying seeing if HWInfo allows you to control them
     
  9. cope123abc

    cope123abc Notebook Evangelist

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    Okay ran the SLI fix from dell bro.

    All fans now working passively and no need for hwinfo she's staying under 70 when benchmarking.

    Thanks again buddy, I reckon the SLI cable was the original issue
     
  10. ssj92

    ssj92 Neutron Star

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    Yeah I found the AW18 SLI cable to be flimsy compared to the older M18x style one
     
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