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Modified 2011 MacBook Pro 15" - Now On Catalina 10.15.3 - SUCCESS!
Posted by: SKYLANE
Date: March 27, 2020 12:54AM
REF: [forums.macresource.com]

Per the thread above, I modified my 2011 MBP due to a failed AMD Radeon GPU as follows:

Summary of Mods Performed: (details on REF thread linked above)

STEP (1) EFI Modification

STEP (2) R8911 Removal

STEP (3) Password Protect the EFI

Mod Not Performed: (as of yet, maybe never)

STEP (4) Wire Jumper Modification
This step would fix the sleeping issue associated with performing STEPs (1) thru (3)

The Modified MBP with STEPs (1) thru (3) ran fine on High Sierra. I selected machine to NEVER SLEEP while on either battery or plug. Moves in and out of Screen Saver without issue. I have a new battery in the machine, so when I was playing with the computer on High Sierra it ran for several hours off of the plug just fine.



My Next Trial Completed: Installed Catalina 10.15.3 onto the Modified MacBook Pro 8,2

DosDude1 Catalina Tutorial: [dosdude1.com]

Since I had migrated all my data to a 2017 MacBookAir7,2, I decided to see if I could get Catalina installed on the Modified MacBook Pro (M-MBP). Using the method described at [dosdude1.com] , I built the installation thumb drive and installed Catalina on to the M-MBP. Success! Super easy! Exciting! Seems to run fine so far playing around with Safari, YouTube, and other easy stuff. (Note: as of today, DosDude1 is only setup for 10.15.3, he is working on 10.15.4.)


I selected the following settings on CATALINA:

(1) As when the M-MBP was on High Sierra, I selected for the M-MBP on Catalina to NEVER SLEEP on either battery or plug.

(2) As DosDude1 recommends in his Tutorial Video for installing Catalina, he mentions towards the end to use Dark Mode (due to issue when using light mode where menus and others things display too dark - see video for details). For those of you that may have installed Catalina (maybe Mojave too?) on other unsupported Macs, go to Accessibility Settings and select "Reduce Transparency". This setting appears to let you work in Light Mode just fine.

EDIT: When I just rewatched DosDude1's turorial video, I now picked up on the detail of the issue being relative to NVIDIA. My M-MBP has the Intel HD 3000 GPU, so I turned off "REDUCE TRANSPARENCY" and it seems to be operating fine. -- Thanks to space-time, his question below got me to go back and look at something that I viewed to fast first time around! (In Tutorial Video at DosDude1 Link, go to time marker 24:30.)

Have FUN if you try this too!



Some Questions for those of you that are familiar with this 2011 MBP Mod or the DosDude1 Catalina Installation on unsupported machines:

(1) If I plan to keep the M-MBP in NEVER SLEEP settings, I can't think of a reason to do STEP (4) above. Anyone disagree?

(2) Any reason not to use encryption in File Vault on the 2011 M-MBP? Encryption seems to run fine on my 2017 MacBookAir7,2, so was planning to encrypt the M-MBP as well.

(3) Since the M-MBP has the AMD Radeon disabled, the function of extending the display to external monitor through the Thunderbolt port no longer works (as expected since its output apparently came from the AMD Radeon GPU). I tried briefly using a 1080P AppleTV device, seemed like it extended just fine - did not play with it enough to see how responsive it was. Any other solutions for extending the display?

(4) Any comments to think about this mod?



Edited 10 time(s). Last edit at 03/27/2020 02:00PM by SKYLANE.
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Re: Modified 2011 MacBook Pro 15" - Now On Catalina 10.15.3 - SUCCESS!
Posted by: zachdog
Date: March 27, 2020 08:51AM
I would insert a gif of someone offering applause. Nice work!
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Re: Modified 2011 MacBook Pro 15" - Now On Catalina 10.15.3 - SUCCESS!
Posted by: space-time
Date: March 27, 2020 09:46AM
Well done. when I can go back to work (I have microscope, fine soldering stations), I am tempted to do the same.
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Re: Modified 2011 MacBook Pro 15" - Now On Catalina 10.15.3 - SUCCESS!
Posted by: space-time
Date: March 27, 2020 09:46AM
so what DOES NOT work in Catalina?
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Re: Modified 2011 MacBook Pro 15" - Now On Catalina 10.15.3 - SUCCESS!
Posted by: p8712
Date: March 27, 2020 09:54AM
Quote

(4) Any comments to think about this mod?

Add an EGPU to the thunderbolt port and rock 'n roll!
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Re: Modified 2011 MacBook Pro 15" - Now On Catalina 10.15.3 - SUCCESS!
Posted by: Lew Zealand
Date: March 27, 2020 11:48AM
Quote
SKYLANE
REF: [forums.macresource.com]

Per the thread above, I modified my 2011 MBP due to a failed AMD Radeon GPU as follows:

Summary of Mods Performed: (details on REF thread linked above)

STEP (1) EFI Modification

STEP (2) R8911 Removal

STEP (3) Password Protect the EFI

Mod Not Performed: (as of yet, maybe never)

STEP (4) Wire Jumper Modification
This step would fix the sleeping issue associated with performing STEPs (1) thru (3)

The Modified MBP ran fine on High Sierra. I selected machine to NEVER SLEEP while on either battery or plug. Moves in and out of Screen Saver without issue. I have a new battery in the machine, so when I was playing with the computer on High Sierra it ran for several hours off of the plug just fine.



My Next Trial Completed: Installed Catalina 10.15.3 onto the Modified MacBook Pro 8,2

Since I had migrated all my data to a 2017 MacBookAir7,2, I decided to see if I could get Catalina installed on the Modified MacBook Pro (M-MBP). Using the method described at [dosdude1.com] , I built the installation thumb drive and installed Catalina on to the M-MBP. Success! Super easy! Exciting! Seems to run fine so far playing around with Safari, YouTube, and other easy stuff. (Note: as of today, DosDude1 is only setup for 10.15.3, he is working on 10.15.4.)


I selected the following settings on CATALINA:

(1) As when the M-MBP was on High Sierra, I selected for the M-MBP on Catalina to NEVER SLEEP on either battery or plug.

(2) As DosDude1 recommends in his Tutorial Video for installing Catalina, he mentions towards the end to use Dark Mode (due to issue when using light mode where menus and others things display too dark - see video for details). For those of you that may have installed Catalina (maybe Mojave too?) on other unsupported Macs, go to Accessibility Settings and select "Reduce Transparency". This setting appears to let you work in Light Mode just fine.

Have FUN if you try this too!



Some Questions for those of you that are familiar with this 2011 MBP Mod or the DosDude1 Catalina Installation on unsupported machines:

(1) If I plan to keep the M-MBP in NEVER SLEEP settings, I can't think of a reason to do STEP (4) above. Anyone disagree?

(2) Any reason not to use encryption in File Vault on the 2011 M-MBP? Encryption seems to run fine on my 2017 MacBookAir7,2, so was planning to encrypt the M-MBP as well.

(3) Since the M-MBP has the AMD Radeon disabled, the function of extending the display to external monitor through the Thunderbolt port no longer works (as expected since its output apparently came from the AMD Radeon GPU). I tried briefly using a 1080P AppleTV device, seemed like it extended just fine - did not play with it enough to see how responsive it was. Any other solutions for extending the display?

(4) Any comments to think about this mod?

My answers to questions:

1. If you set never to sleep, then don't do Step 4. I prefer my MBPros to sleep so if I go the Radeon disable route, I'll probably have to do the clip. For now my Radeon still mostly functions.

2. The Sandy Bridge Core i7s have good AES encryption blocks so encryption should be seamless.

3. Display extension may be best with an external GPU but that kills the idea of using this as a portable and of course costs $. Also the TB1 in this machine has 1/4 the throughput of the TB3 in other eGPU devices so for gaming there will be a big bottleneck. For more normal people use, this bottleneck is probably not an issue. Funny thing is: I have all the equipment to do these tests (eGPU box, TB2 to 3 cable adapter) but I only have Nvidia GPUs, which Apple doesn't support. One day I'll buy a cheap AMD Radeon 570 for ~$120 and finally do the tests.
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Re: Modified 2011 MacBook Pro 15" - Now On Catalina 10.15.3 - SUCCESS!
Posted by: SKYLANE
Date: March 27, 2020 01:44PM
Quote
space-time
so what DOES NOT work in Catalina?

DosDude1 Catalina Tutorial (25:47) found at both these links:

[dosdude1.com]

[www.youtube.com]

If you look at the end of this tutorial starting at 24:30, DosDude1 describes an issue which seems to be inherent to NVIDIA cards. You can witness on his screen what he is talking about. I had found another site that said you could get around that by REDUCE TRANSPARENCY if you wanted to work in Light Mode rather than Dark Mode.

When I just rewatched video, I now picked up on the detail of the issue being relative to NVIDIA. My M-MBP has Intel HD 3000 GPU, so I turned off "REDUCE TRANSPARENCY" and it seems to be operating fine. -- Thanks! Your question got me to go back and look at something that I viewed to fast first time around!

Jeff



Edited 4 time(s). Last edit at 03/27/2020 02:01PM by SKYLANE.
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Re: Modified 2011 MacBook Pro 15" - Now On Catalina 10.15.3 - SUCCESS!
Posted by: SKYLANE
Date: March 27, 2020 02:11PM
Quote
Lew Zealand
My answers to questions:

1. If you set never to sleep, then don't do Step 4. I prefer my MBPros to sleep so if I go the Radeon disable route, I'll probably have to do the clip. For now my Radeon still mostly functions.

2. The Sandy Bridge Core i7s have good AES encryption blocks so encryption should be seamless.

3. Display extension may be best with an external GPU but that kills the idea of using this as a portable and of course costs $. Also the TB1 in this machine has 1/4 the throughput of the TB3 in other eGPU devices so for gaming there will be a big bottleneck. For more normal people use, this bottleneck is probably not an issue. Funny thing is: I have all the equipment to do these tests (eGPU box, TB2 to 3 cable adapter) but I only have Nvidia GPUs, which Apple doesn't support. One day I'll buy a cheap AMD Radeon 570 for ~$120 and finally do the tests.

2. Thanks for the input on that.

3. I was not aware of EGPUs until you and p8712 brought them up! I looked at those, and they are pricey. I don't do gaming, but would like to build up a simple flight simulator in garage. Not sure if simulators demand the high end graphics that gaming does, I will check it out. (My 2011 Mac Mini Server might be the computer that gets that duty, will see. It has the same Intel HD 3000 in it as well.)

Since the only time I would need the EGPU is when I am at my monitor, I could easily leave the EGPU behind when going portable with my M-MBP. Thanks for the spec details between TB1 & TB3.



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 03/27/2020 02:14PM by SKYLANE.
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Re: Modified 2011 MacBook Pro 15" - Now On Catalina 10.15.3 - SUCCESS!
Posted by: p8712
Date: March 27, 2020 02:21PM
You would need the Apple thunderbolt 2 to USBc converter. I’ve got a sonnet box with an RX580 - it works nicely to accelerate the internal display as well as attach to a 4K TV for gaming. Thunderbolt one is not bad for non-pro EGPU applications.
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Re: Modified 2011 MacBook Pro 15" - Now On Catalina 10.15.3 - SUCCESS!
Posted by: Sarcany
Date: March 27, 2020 05:03PM
Thanks!

I needed a Catalina Mac for stuff for work. Need to recertify on the OS every year.

In past years, I upgraded my Mac server to the latest OS for study-purposes, but I've frozen it at High Sierra because I don't want to lose services... and I have too much attached to it to put it at risk.

Was inspired by your post. I had an unsupported 2011 MBA 4,2 that I set up for some relatives to use during the lock-down and all that I had to do was disable SIP and run the dosdude tool to get Catalina on an external SSD for it.

Working perfectly!



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