Nvidia software limits mining in an attempt to increase GPU availability

Originally published at: Nvidia software limits mining in an attempt to increase GPU availability | Boing Boing


I’m sure the greedpigs and degenerate gamblers will find a way around the cryptocurrency limitation quickly and resume their wasteful activities.


Liiiike… maybe just not update their drivers? Or use one of the cards better suited to mining in the first place?

This is a token gesture, likely to do absolutely nothing to impede the mining of cryptocurrency with these cards.


On the one hand: unfuck the cryptocurrency grifters.

On the other hand: unfuck anti-general-purpose-computing corporate posturing.

There are no good guys here.


The 3060 isn’t released yet, so there will be no driver support without the nerf. The intent is to make them less desirable to the miners so gamers can actually get one.

As someone who has been trying to get a 3080 for months, I understand the issue they’re trying to solve, but I suspect someone will reverse engineer it and release an unofficial driver in fairly short order and the GPU shortage will continue.


GPU computation is also useful for less pointless tasks such as aligning DNA sequences more quickly than can be done using CPUs, though. Will anti-mining methods interfere with these uses as well?


Go on, put a “DO NOT MOD THIS TO PLAY DOOM!” message in the patch notes. Rickrolling is ooooold.

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I’m curious if someone has a more informed answer, but Nvidia has a huge stake in GPGPU (with Cuda). So I assume it won’t affect things outside of crypto mining. In CG for tv and film, the GPU based renderers are mostly written using Cuda, hence tied to Nvidia. Traditionally, they are CPU based. It would be a big deal if they were affected.

Nvidia (and ATI) have added in app specific code into their drivers to cheat benchmarks in games. I’m guessing this is another example—except backwards.


I think Nvidia wants people to buy Quadros for those tasks.


Not so much an attempt to increase GPU availability as an attempt to control application-specific market supply of their GPUs.

If they’re smart, they’ll use the lowest binned GPUs for the new CMPs and sell them at less than their GeForce cards. They did the exact same thing when they forked the GeForce and Quadro lines. Quadros are higher binned slower but more accurate dies with error correction code memory supported starting at twice the price. They’re for enterprise solutions where downtime costs more than hardware, but essentially overpriced and second rate for gaming.

But so far at least they use the same core architectures across both lines, and I’ll be surprised if they’ve designed an entirely new architecture just for these CMPs since that would be a colossal waste of resources on their part.

I doubt their goal is so much to get miners to stop buying Nvidia GPUs, but to give them their own option separate from gamers. As a gamer who can only dream of a 3000 series, I sincerely hope it pans out.


I couldn’t agree with this more. I mean, sure I’d love it if the GPU shortage would fucking end and prices would return to something more normal. I’d also love to be able to buy a second-hand card and know that the thing hadn’t been abused under mining-use type conditions. But at the same time deliberately hobbling a use-case is bullshit of the DRM style and doesn’t sit right with me.


It’s worth remembering, though, that Nvidia has their lines of workstation and datacenter cards that are specifically aimed at GPU compute, priced accordingly; and what they would really prefer that you buy.

Actually breaking CUDA support on non-workstation parts would be a significant departure from past practice; but seeing to it that the GPU compute performance of gamer cards is limited to be closer to their price relative to the workstation gear rather than maximizing it at all costs would not be at all out of character.


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