Success Story with getting switchable graphics to work on Windows 10 with an Inspiron 15r se / Inspiron 7520 - Video - Laptop - Dell Community

Success Story with getting switchable graphics to work on Windows 10 with an Inspiron 15r se / Inspiron 7520

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Success Story with getting switchable graphics to work on Windows 10 with an Inspiron 15r se / Inspiron 7520

This question has been answered by jzhangphd

For background, some Dell laptops have a feature where they use a low-powered intel graphics card when undemanding applications are running, but they switch to a high-power, high-wattage graphics card (AMD Radeon series) when demanding games are running. With the AMD/Intel version of this, it is a very fragile configuration and you can't download any old version of the drivers and expect them to work. Dell engineers have to specificaly craft a version of the intell driver installers that is compatible with this configuration.

Automatic driver/windows updates and OS changes can trounce on this delicate configuration and you're at the mercy of the Dell support people about when you'll get an updated driver. If you just use the vanilla Intel video drivers, they won't respect the AMD wish to take control of graphics and the AMD video card will sit unused in your laptop.

There are three parts to getting Windows to use your preferred driver for the hardware, one is removing any installed software that provides drivers. This is done by uninstalling all software that puts drivers on the hard drive. The second step is to delete any drivers that windows is pegged against because Windows will not allow drivers it is using to be fully uninstalled. This is done by putting Windows into "safe mode" where it does not use most drivers and then uninstalling and deleting the driver files themselves. the final step is installing your preferred drivers, both the AMD and Intel video drivers in this case.

Here's how I got AMD/Intel switchable graphics to work in Windows 10:

  1. I went to the dell drivers site with Internet Explorer (not Microsoft Edge/Google Chrome/etc.) and used the system detect feature to recognize my laptop. I then downloaded the Intel and AMD video drivers for 64-bit Windows 10
  2. I uninstalled all AMD and Intel video drivers via the add/remove programs app in the Windows control panel.
    1. You can search for "Remove programs" in the search box on the windows bar to get to the applet in Windows 10.
    2. There are a lot of Intel drivers for things like network adapters, be sure to only uninstall drivers for video cards.

  3. I booted into Windows 10 safe mode. Search for instructions on the internet for how to get into safe mode.
  4. I opened the control panel and went to the device manager to delete the video drivers left on the system.
    1. I think currently-used driver files are not fully uninstalled when you uninstall driver software in the normal way, you have to do more.
    2. Open the device manager (one way is windows key + 'x')
    3. Open display adapters, there should be one for intel and one for amd. 
    4. Right click each display adapter and choose uninstall. Then click on the delete driver option checkbox and delete the drivers
    5. reboot
  5. After rebooting, verify that the display adapters in the device manager are very generic, they probably won't say intel or amd.
  6. Install the intel device driver software you downloaded from dell
  7. reboot
  8. Install the amd device driver software you downloaded from dell
  9. reboot
  10. You should now see the "Configure switchable graphics" option if you right-click the desktop.
  11. Try running a game that demands a little of the graphics card
  12. Open the "Configure switchable graphics" app and verify that it found the game you just ran and that it set it for "high performance"
  13. done

You should probably be on A/C power during all of this. I think I've heard that switchable graphics can change if on battery power, not sure.

Skyrim worked fine after doing this, and l4d2's intros ran very smoothly (they're incredibly choppy when they run on the intel graphics), but the app itself crashed without warning to the desktop just as it finished loading a single-player campaign for me. I suspect that this is probably more a windows 10 thing than an graphics thing and I hope reinstalling the game will fix it.

Verified Answer
  • Well, my case is very simple. I just install the newest driver from Intel.com and amd.com, and everything works. I just wish that Dell can update the Audio driver for Conexant Audio Device.

All Replies
  • Well, my case is very simple. I just install the newest driver from Intel.com and amd.com, and everything works. I just wish that Dell can update the Audio driver for Conexant Audio Device.

  • Wow, it would be great if switchable graphics no longer required a specialized Intel driver. I'd like to think Windows 10 made drivers better, but the pessimist in me has some doubts.

    I've definitely been in a state where the switchable graphics option is on the desktop right-click menu and the AMD drivers appear to be working, but when I run games, the Intel drivers don't cede control to the AMD display adapter. I suppose that's a case where I have a compatible AMD driver, but not a compatible Intel driver.

    The only way I know of to reliably tell if my laptop is configured correctly is to run a demanding game and see if the framerate is smooth and medium/high graphics levels. It will be extremely choppy on Intel graphics at 720p.  Have you done this?

  • Huh, maybe things have actually gotten better. This post seems to imply that AMD and Intel's vanilla drivers both now know how to handle AMD/Intel switchable graphics for Dell (but perhaps not all vendors') laptops.

    That doesn't really change my advice above for people who have broken graphics and have not been able to fix them, other than they can choose to go to amd/intel sites for drivers.

    However, it means we aren't at the mercy of Dell for driver updates, which would be awesome. Also, things that are built into the intel chipset that were unusable(for me at least) due to the weird driver configuration may work now, such as WiDi. Previously Dell didn't build an Intel driver that supported WiDi, and when I tried to install a vanilla Intel driver that did, I would break switchable graphics. I'll have to give WiDi a try.

  • Well, I've installed the latest graphic driver directly from Intel and AMD since Win 8.1. I haven't played any games on Win 10 yet. I've been using Photoshop, Solidworks, and the switchable graphics can switch automatically. It is capable of choosing which program to run under high performance mode (AMD activated) or power saving mode in Win 10. I played Dota 2 in my pervious Win 8.1 system and everything works just fine.

  • Dell need to upgrade the Audio Driver for Win 10 for Dell 15R 7520. The AUDIODG.EXE crashes.

  • Update on Left 4 Dead 2:

    Using the "Verify game cached data" option in Steam for the game found and replaced 4 bad files. After, that the game ran fine. I was too pessimistic by half about how well my laptop would work on Windows 10.

    Dave

  • Are U on W Windows 10 or 8.1?

    .

    I am facing issues with AMD Radeon after upgrading to Win 10, I have same laptop as yours but I have to keep the AMD graphic disabled otherwise the PC starts giving " Thread Stuck in device driver error" and keeps on restarting until I go in safe mode and disable AMD Radeon.

    My AMD Radeon  driver version is 15.200.1045.0

    And  Intel Graphic version is 10.18.10.4358

    Which is same as yours.