GNOME Shell Making It Easy To Launch Apps/Games For Optimus / Dual GPU Systems

Written by Michael Larabel in GNOME on 22 October 2016 at 08:38 AM EDT. 12 Comments
With the GNOME 3.24 desktop that's currently in development the latest GNOME Shell code has support for easily letting the user launch an app on a dedicated GPU when applicable for handling NVIDIA Optimus use-cases of having integrated and discrete GPU laptops.

When a dual-GPU system is detected, a menu item will be added to opt for "Launch using Dedicated Graphics Card", per this commit. The GNOME Shell change for supporting discrete GPUs was made and when the user opts to launch on the dedicated GPU, the DRI_PRIME=1 environment variable will automatically be set for that new program/game.

It's nothing that couldn't be done before when launching from the command-line or when manually modifying your shortcuts, but now it's easier to do for applications you are launching from the GNOME Shell where sometimes you may want to run it on the dedicated GPU using DRI_PRIME. These latest patches to the GNOME Shell are working to address this GNOME bug report about "Add a way to launch an app on the discrete GPU" with Optimus being the primary use-case.
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