How can I tell if an application is being rendered on the integrated graphics or dedicated NVIDIA GPU with an Optimus/Microsoft Hybrid graphics laptop?

Answer ID 2523
Updated 11/14/2018 07:40 PM

How can I tell if an application is being rendered on the IGP or GPU with NVIDIA's Optimus/Microsoft Hybrid graphics technology?


If your laptop is equipped with NVIDIA's Optimus/Microsoft Hybrid graphics technology, you may use the NVIDIA GPU activity tool to view if your application is being rendered on the NVIDIA dedicated graphics processor or the integrated graphics.  Notebooks with hybrid graphics technology will show two graphics controllers in the Microsoft Windows Device Manager, the integrated graphics and the dedicated NVIDIA graphics processor as shown in the screenshot below:       

How to display the NVIDIA GPU activity

1) Open the NVIDIA Control Panel by right-clicking over the Windows desktop -> select NVIDIA Control Panel from the context menu

2) This will bring up the NVIDIA Control Panel.  To display the GPU activity icon in the Windows taskbar, click on Desktop from the menu bar and select Display GPU Activity Icon in Notification Area.   

3) On the bottom right hand corner you should see the new GPU activity icon.  Double click on the icon.

4) The GPU activity utility will show which applications are currently being rendered on the NVIDIA dedicated graphics.  If you do not see any icons displayed, this means all of the open apps are being rendered on the integrated graphics.  

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