GPU Select

Balance performance and battery life

Select GPU to meet your needs. Use the Nvidia GPU to drive maximum performance and support three 4K external monitors. Use the Intel GPU to maximize battery life.

Please read the disclaimer before proceeding. This solution is updated regularly. Please write authorship with suggestions or requests.

Check GPU

Check GPU

Nvidia SettingsThe Nvidia Max-Q RTX GPU is needed for demanding tasks such as deep learning, video editing, or gaming. However, if you aren't using those capabilities, switching to the integrated graphics can extend battery life up to 5 hours in the real-world.

When the power cable is unplugged the system takes actions to conserve power and extend battery life. The most obvious actions — all of which are Kubuntu Focus optimizations — include:

Use Nvidia Settings

Use Nvidia Settings

Nvidia SettingsStart Nvidia Settings. Click on Prime Profiles at the bottom right corner. Select the preferred GPU. Provide your password when prompted.

Preferred GPUAuthorizeSelect Leave

One should reboot immediately after switching graphics to avoid artifacts and glitches. Right-click on the desktop and select Leave... and then select reboot.

Use Command-line

Konsole TerminalThis is much faster using a GUI and completely replaces the above procedure. Reboot if you change modes to avoid glitches.

prime-select query # Shows 'nvidia' or 'intel' prime-select intel # Select Intel iGPU (power-save) prime-select nvidia # Select Nvidia dGPU (performance) sudo reboot # Do this if you have changed the mode

Troubleshooting

Q: This seems related to battery life. Where can I learn more?

A: See Battery Reset for a full discussion of battery management.

Q: Can I use the Nvidia On-Demand mode found in the Nvidia Settings application?

A: This mode results in both GPUs being available after boot and is useful if you wish to use the iGPU for display and reserve the dGPU for Deep Learning or other compute tasks. This mode does not significantly improve battery life so we recommend using Nvidia (Performance mode) or Intel (Power Saving Mode) as suits your needs.

Revisions

This is a partial revision history. See the git repository for all entries.

Disclaimer

We try hard to provide a useful solution validated by professionals. However, we cannot anticipate every situation, and therefore cannot guarantee this procedure will work for your needs. Always backup your data and test the solution to determine the correct procedure for you.

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