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known issues with CUDA 5.0.17 and 5.0.24 driver (including crashes and kernel panics)

We have recently learned of some issues with the new CUDA drivers from Nvidia that cause crashes and kernel panics in some circumstances, including when switching between applications that use the GPU—e.g., when switching from Premiere Pro, to Safari, and then back to Premiere Pro.

Nvidia has summarized these issues and workarounds on their website. (Click the “Additional Information” tab and read the known issues.)

Here is the relevant part from that page on the Nvidia website:

  • There is a known issue in this release where forcing or allowing the system to go to sleep while running CUDA applications on 2012 MacBook Pro models with automatic graphics switching will cause a system crash (kernel panic). You can prevent the computer from automatically going to sleep by setting the Computer Sleep option slider to Never in the Energy Saver pane of the System Preferences.
  • There is a known issue in this release where CUDA applications will not automatically engage the discrete GPU on 2012 MacBook Pro models with automatic graphics switching. To run CUDA applications, it is necessary to uncheck the Automatic Graphics Switching checkbox in the Energy Saver pane of the System Preferences.

Nvidia is, of course, working on fixing these issues. We recommend staying tuned to the Nvidia website for updates.

This bug affects Mountain Lion (Mac OSX v10.8) and Lion (Mac OSX v10.7).

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