M6800 Precision - Tesla M6 & Firepro 6100M - Working/updated/switchable graphics

Discussion in 'Dell Latitude, Vostro, and Precision' started by Keep Guessing, Jan 3, 2021.

  1. Keep Guessing

    Keep Guessing Notebook Enthusiast

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    Eww, a server card as a graphics unit? Why!?!
    Simple really! It's a budget friendly option on a monster machine, that can be kicked into graphic gear, to outperform GTX980m's and M5000M Quadros, for well under 100$. The firepro 6100M, was the top of the line for the M6800 back when it released, and stil l holds it's own as a Radeon 8950, for less than 40$. Win/Win!
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    Installing the Tesla M6 into the Dell Precision Series (M6700-6800), Updating and working in switchable graphics mode on Windows 10.


    We'll need a few small, free programs or similar, easily found on google (NVCleanstall, DD Uninstaller, and IObit Driver Updater)

    1) Grab the "Support Assist" from Dell's home site, under drivers, for your model (M6600-6800), install. (Small, helps identify your actual make, and exact components)
    2) Run Support Assist, and install your official Dell drivers, main focus here are chipset/wmi and Intel HD 4600 drivers. (Will correctly handle graphics, while we install the Tesla M6)
    ---Let's check out Windows Update, and grab any optional updates for identified components you might need.
    3) Run DD Uninstaller, and completely remove whatever GPU your model has, that your wanting to replace, and shutdown. (NVIDIA, AMD, We want to leave the updated INTEL drivers)
    4) Battery out, laptop apart, install your new graphics card. (The Tesla's form factor fit's the original NVIDIA heatsink well enough, I do suggest adjust thermal pad thicknesses) (0.5/1.0/1.5mm)
    5) Cranking up the laptop, and back into Windows 10, device driver should now should our 4600 HD GPU, as well now as "Standard Microsoft Display Adapter". (Normal, no worries)
    6) Now, because later we'll need part of the components, let's crank up IOBit driver updater, and mainly focus on updating the display adapter, as well as any others you want. (One from "2015")
    7) Reboot. Now heading into Device Manager, should show our updated Intel 4600 drivers, as well as.....wait for it......Tesla M6! (Congrats, now a working, switchable, graphics/compute mode Tesla M6)

    This will safely, and fairly straightforwardly, get you installed and setup with the "old" Tesla driver, working, with switchable graphics via the NVIDIA panel, and both easily select-able compute/display modes

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    At this point, we've got a working Tesla in Win10 on the M6800. Sadly, this is where things get a bit more problematic.

    Essentially, we have a GPU in laptop, that it was never intended to be inside. As such, NVIDIA had no need to include it in proper installer .inf's for laptops it wasn't officially supported in, and Windows update can't readily identify it and update. Luckily IOBit has an ancient one on their server. Unfortunately, it's the only one, and it's 5 years old :).

    8) Let's start by typing "gpedit.msc" in our search bar. In policy editor, find user configuration > administrative templates > system > driver installation > double click "code signing for device drivers".
    9) In the policy editor, code signing for device drivers, on the top left, click enabled. Below it, "When Windows detects a device driver without a signature", click ignore. Hit apply, and dip out like a boss.
    10) Now we need NVCleanstall that we got earlier in the first post. Let's install it, and run. It's also going to have no suggestions for driver updates, instead, let's click on manual download, show all.
    11) After a few moment's, it will update, and the line above it will say "Install best driver for my hardware". This is the option we want (DCH 460.89 in my case, yours too prob, mobile/64-bit). Click Next.
    12) NVCleanstall will now give you a list of broken down optionals in the driver package, the main ones being PhysX, Optimus, and the Graphic Driver. If you want to be safe, check all to include. Hit Next.
    13) Now, NVCleanstall will build the driver package with only the options you want (takes a minute, depending on size). In the next field, enable "install NVIDIA Control Panel" and "Add Hardware Support".
    ---NVCleanstall will now NVIDIA app, on top of, ours already installed from IOBit, actually enabling original options from Tesla (graphics and compute mode), while enabling the new driver ones as well.
    14) With hardware support enabled, click on template, and scroll to Quadro M5000M, and click/enable it. On the "ID" line, fill in our 4 digit HWID number (13F3), and new device name below (Tesla M6).
    ---Quite a few listings of Quadro M5000M will be located in the installer, no worries, these are just different PC brands (Acer/HP/Dell). NVCleanstall will now replace our Tesla Identifier number with the ---aforementioned, which the NVIDIA driver installer can now recognize, and proceed to installing correctly.
    15) The build process can be quite lengthy. After completed, Click "Show in Folder", and copy your new, custom Telsa M6 drivers to a safe spot, or, adversely you can begin installation.

    ***Now you should have a updated, Tesla M6 with 2020 drivers, and legacy graphic options (compute/graphics), as well as all the full GTX980M/M5000M 3D settings available inside the NVIDIA control panel***

    Links :
    Illustration, dated, but still viable, on modding .inf files to do what you need for official drivers :
    https://null-src.com/posts/nvidia-notebook-driver-inf-mod/post.php
    Illustration, disassembly : (Please pay no attention to the optical DVD driver and SSD removal, absolutely not needed for a GPU replacement)
     
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2021
  2. Keep Guessing

    Keep Guessing Notebook Enthusiast

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    Installing the Firepro 6100M into the Dell Precision Series (M6600-6800), Updating and working in switchable graphics mode on Windows 10.

    We'll need a few small, free programs or similar, easily found on google (NVCleanstall, DD Uninstaller, and IObit Driver Updater)

    1) Grab the "Support Assist" from Dell's home site, under drivers, for your model (M6600-6800), install. (Small, helps identify your actual make, and exact components)
    ---Next, start by typing "gpedit.msc" in our search bar. In policy editor, find user configuration > administrative templates > system > driver installation > double click "code signing for device drivers".
    2) Run Support Assist, and install your official Dell drivers, main focus here are chipset/wmi and Intel HD 4600 drivers. (Will correctly handle graphics, while we install the Firepro 6100M)
    ---Let's check out Windows Update, and grab any optional updates for identified components you might need.
    3) Run DD Uninstaller, and completely remove whatever GPU your model has, that your wanting to replace, and shutdown. (NVIDIA, AMD, We want to leave the updated INTEL drivers)
    4) Battery out, laptop apart, install your new graphics card. (The Firepro's form factor fit's the original NVIDIA heatsink well enough, I do suggest adjusting thermal pad thicknesses) (0.5/1.0/1.5mm)
    5) Cranking up the laptop, and back into Windows 10, device driver should now should our 4600 HD GPU, as well now as "Standard Microsoft Display Adapter". (Normal, no worries)
    6) Now it varies from the above Tesla install, in that Windows Update is fully capable of finding, and downloading/installing official drivers for the Firepro 6100, Just search the optional updates. Update.
    7) Reboot. Now heading into Device Manager, should show our updated Intel 4600 drivers, as well as.....Firepro 6100! (Congrats, now working, and correctly with switchable graphics)
    8) Now it gets a lot easier than the Tesla M6 driver, as you only need to navigate (granted everything was installed from step 1 and updated correctly, to AMD's driver page and grab the latest Firepro driver.
    9) After downloading, install away with no issues. This should, without incident or terrible effort, install correctly. Afterward, open device manager, and it should now display HD 4600, and Radeon 8950.
    ---The Firepro 6100M is based off the 8950 Radeon card line, so this is normal to display with a updated driver, and much faster/improved from the original AMD 6100 drivers.


    ***Now you should have a updated, Firepro 6100m with 2020 drivers, as well as all the full AMD Catalyst control center and 3D settings suite, and working switchable graphics***

    Links : Disassembly - (Please pay no attention to the optical drive dvd removal or SSD, 100%not needed to get to the GPU)
     
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2021
  3. Reciever

    Reciever D! For Dragon!

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    So you didnt need to solder on the vBIOS chip for the card to work? The variants I see are all HP, and typically dont have vBIOS chips soldered on as they have them embedded on the mainboard system bios.

    Have you tested the M6600 with the Tesla M6? The BIOS on the M6600 was actually pretty terrible and didnt permit any other Nvidia cards to function beyond what it shipped with but did work with the M6100 and 7970m.

    Was this only under switchable graphics? dGPU mode would grant better frame times and performance
     
  4. Keep Guessing

    Keep Guessing Notebook Enthusiast

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    No soldering, luckily! All the Tesla needed in the end, were the .inf edits and proper updating to the core components, and BIOS before attempting. Luckily, piling new control panel on the other without uninstalling, allowed for it to keep both the switchable graphics in good working order, and compute/graphics mode for the card itself.

    To be specific : The laptop, both the 6800 and 6700, successfully have a working switchable graphics mode (IE intel drivers handle non-gpu intensive apps, then switch for heavy apps), with working fan control, and updated to 2020. The HP line of elitebooks (8770W/8760W), agreed, are far less accepting of new cards. The firepro 6100M on those producted a blank screen, and I haven't attempted remedying that yet, no attempt with the Tesla. (Have though, installed the 980M and 880M without any issues).

    I haven't yet tested on the 6600 with this card, but have had luck installing other cards on it, including the Firepro 6100/GTX980 and 880. I'll give it a shot this weekend and see how the Tesla does, not expecting (hopefully), any issues. (Does work in the 6700 though).
     
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2021
  5. Aaron44126

    Aaron44126 Notebook Prophet

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    We also had @supermoth report success installing the Tesla M6 into the Precision M6800. It works fine, similar performance to Quadro M5000M and GeForce 980M... as long as you have Optimus enabled and do not need the HDMI and DisplayPort outputs, which will not work with this card. The Tesla cards do not support display output at all and can only output anything by passing it through the Intel GPU.
     
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  6. supermoth

    supermoth Notebook Consultant

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    The M6 has been working smooth for the past 2 years on one of my M6800´s with EDP LCD.Performancewise is on par with the M5000M.
    Great card for the money.Only drawback as Aaron44126 mentioned is the Display output is limited.
     
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2021
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  7. Keep Guessing

    Keep Guessing Notebook Enthusiast

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    Rock on, wish I had bumped into that thread a few days ago Supermoth! While it didn't provide any real struggles to install or optimize, I definitely went in blind with the Tesla M6. I got tickled when I bumped into one of the youtube videos advising against gaming with it, the poster not realizing atall that they had separate function modes, and rather ticked off it it's performance in compute mode :).

    I knew it was built on the same Maxwell 204 architecture, the same chip as my GTX980m and the Quadro M5000M, along with a few other dated higher end cards, but had no real idea if it would plug and play. I had read up a bit about them when tricking out my Elitebook, and decided to give it a whirl having found one cheeps through Ebay. I carried the response post over, regarding the display ;

    @supermoth,
    It's indeed a EDP motherboard, on the 1980x1020 FHD LED panel (0TF0TC). However, and of course it figures, I can't locate my Display-port cable atm to test. Out of curiosity, what specs are you running on your M6800? I'm currently on the 4610MQ maxed with 16gb of ram, although expecting the 4712 processor in the next couple of days, and have already upgraded the ram slots to 32GB. Would be neat to do some side by side benchmark comparisons between a few driver setups, see what we can crank out of the ole Tesla. Unfortunately I'm located down on Dauphin Island, AL and we have rather poor net connection here, otherwise would happily upload the modded driver installation files for anyone having trouble with the steps above.
     
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2021
  8. supermoth

    supermoth Notebook Consultant

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    Hi there,I am running in both systems a 4910MQ and 32gb of ram.Quite happy with both systems.
    It is a good idea about the benchmarking with different sets of drivers.
     
  9. Reciever

    Reciever D! For Dragon!

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    Thus far I havent seen anything to suggest it is working on the M6600 though...
     
  10. Aaron44126

    Aaron44126 Notebook Prophet

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    I think it is pretty unlikely that it would work when M5000M and 980M do not.
     
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