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Brian D

Publisher keeping Graphics Card active even when in App Nap

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As the title says, Publisher is keeping the discrete graphics card on my MacBook Pro alive, even when Publisher has long since been minimised and in app nap mode. There are no documents open, the app itself shows no energy impact, but keeping the graphics card awake is eating heavily into battery life and keeping the laptop quite warm constantly. The app also remains in the "Apps using significant energy" drop down until it's force quit.

The only options I seem to have are quitting the app entirely and opening again when I need it, or forcing APub to use integrated graphics only... neither of which are ideal (or should be necessary).

Screenshot 2020-01-29 at 13.49.09.png

Screenshot 2020-01-29 at 13.49.33.png

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11 hours ago, Brian D said:

Publisher is keeping the discrete graphics card on my MacBook Pro alive

Possibly you misread both the graphic card info in Activity Monitor and the significant energy usage info in the battery menu. The Graphics Card "Yes" is rather a permanent entry and doesn't give info about any current usage, it says "Yes" if an app demands this graphic card at all. Some apps run only in this mode, others never. Similar with the battery info, which doesn't show high usage at a specific moment but for a longer average period. So an app can appear in the battery menu even if it has used a lot energy for a short moment only, for instance at application start to render preview images of a document containing many images.

The energy usage in Activity Monitor changes quite often, even if I don't work in any app besides Activity Monitor. These two screenshots show that the battery menu is not syncronised with the Activity Monitor but it names apps which obviously don't use significant energy usage at that moment:

1170464953_energy1.jpg.60c8e01bb2d376b545a278d884807936.jpg
 

1128940614_energy2.jpg.2d00d157a2f4b8c0d71b527253fd8a13.jpg

 

11 hours ago, Brian D said:

keeping the graphics card awake is eating heavily into battery life and keeping the laptop quite warm constantly.

In your screenshot two browsers obviously have a larger energy consumption over time than APub, according to the 8 hrs average values. From your picts you can't determine whether APub uses much energy all time. I doubt that "keeping the graphic card awake" pulls energy, it rather depends on the amount of graphic processor usage (GPU).

Also, a macbook's temperature doesn't depend on GPU only but on CPU, too. To detect whether APub is a culprit you would need to have it run alone and watch/show the Activity Monitor for a longer period, not at one moment only. According to your screenshot the two browsers took 3 x more energy in the last 8 hours than APub, while it doesn't show what else took what energy.


macOS 10.14.6, Macbook Pro Retina 15" + Eizo 24", Affinity in Separated Mode (documents merged)

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Not to dismiss everything you just wrote, but you can tell the graphics card is being kept active by opening "about this mac". That will list which graphics card is currently in use. When APub is open (even in minimised and using app nap) the discrete graphics card remains active.

I'm aware that the Energy tab doesn't show APub using more energy than my browsers, I added that to show that it was in app nap. Keeping the graphics card active, even idle, absolutely does drain the battery on these devices. It won't show as Affinity using significant energy, but the battery will drain faster nonetheless. When in the background, and particularly during app nap, the discrete graphics card should not be kept awake.

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1 hour ago, Brian D said:

during app nap, the discrete graphics card should not be kept awake. 

Like macOS apps also Affinity can hardly influence such "kept awake". The "Yes" in this column just says that an app gets access to this processor – it doesn't inform about actual energy usage or battery drain of that app. In Activity Monitor all apps which demand the GPU show the YES all time, regardless of their napping state, e.g. shown in this screenshot for two Apple applications:

macos-high-sierra-activity-monitor-requires-high-perf-gpu.thumb.jpg.60a430a899d426c8ed6df6111b59176d.jpg

It appears there is no choice for an app running in macOS to switch between CPU and GPU during a session. For instance this apple info (2013 ?) said:

Possibly you may want to post a feature request on the Feedback forum to become enabled to prevent the use of discrete GPUs in Affinity manually (– with the disadvantage of reduced speed while working with Affinity). Note: if you use an external monitor with your macbook the GPU is active automatically and can't be stopped.


macOS 10.14.6, Macbook Pro Retina 15" + Eizo 24", Affinity in Separated Mode (documents merged)

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Regarding the first portion of your reply, my screenshot has given you the wrong impression of what I'm implying. This updated screenshot might help. As Apple themselves state, this is how you tell when your graphics card is awake and active.

Seems you're correct though, reading your link about "not switching back until the application quits". Thanks for taking the time to respond.

affinity.jpg

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7 minutes ago, Brian D said:

my screenshot has given you the wrong impression of what I'm implying. This updated screenshot might help. As Apple themselves state, this is how you tell when your graphics card is awake and active. 

To me there is no new energy info in your "About..."-windows. Yes, as long Affinity is opened, also the door to GPU is open, or like Apple says, Affinity "creates an OpenGL context". That info indeed is given already with your Activity Monitor screenshot: Both the App Nap + the GPU columns show "Yes".

Concerning battery drain the point of interest would rather be how much energy is taken by a napping Affinity compared to the energy of all other processes. You can't determine by your screenshots that Affinity is consuming much or most energy, in particular compared to your browsers it isn't noted that way. To detect Affinities energy use in nap mode you could run your macbook for a couple of hours, twice: one run with Affinity opened, the other with Affinity closed. You should reboot the mac before each run into the same setup + don't work with it + deactivate macbook's sleeping mode during the test runs.

Or, if you like to experiment, you could try to prevent the general, automatical use of GPU by Affinity with a hack of its setting "NSSupportsAutomaticGraphicsSwitching" in the Info.plist within the app package, as mentioned in the apple developer link above. – To check or set the use of a particular processor you then can try the menubar tool "gfxCardStatus"   https://gfx.io/switching.html#integrated-only-mode-limitations

However, I understand your desire for a comment by a Serif moderator about this topic, regardless whether its source is related to macOS only or Affinity, too. I don't want to prevent them or any others to respond at all.


macOS 10.14.6, Macbook Pro Retina 15" + Eizo 24", Affinity in Separated Mode (documents merged)

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22 minutes ago, thomaso said:

However, I understand your desire for a comment by a Serif moderator about this topic, regardless whether its source is related to macOS only or Affinity, too. I don't want to prevent them or any others to respond at all.

No I edited my comment after posting and reading through the link you added. I'm happy to admit this appears to be on Apple and by design, it's not a bug so I don't want to waste anyone's time.

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thanks to appuser99
@Brian, have you tried in Affinity the "Use only integrated GPU" option, or the "Display:" pulldown menu,  to reduce your unwanted GPU usage?

Screenshot 2020-01-29 at 15.08.23.png


macOS 10.14.6, Macbook Pro Retina 15" + Eizo 24", Affinity in Separated Mode (documents merged)

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Sorry.

Thank you for reporting a problem using 1.7.x . It appears that a member of the Affinity QA team didn't get round to fully investigating this specific report posted in the bugs forums. We are very sorry for this oversight. Yours is one of a number of reports that I am posting this apology to, using an automated script.

Now we have released 1.8.3 on all platforms containing many hundreds of bug fixes, and we hope your problem has already been fully addressed. If you still have this problem in the 1.8.3 release build, then the QA team would really appreciate you reporting again it in the relevant Bugs forum.

Each of those links above contains instructions how best to report a bug to us. If that is what you already did in this thread just copy paste your original report into a new thread. We appreciate all the information that you have including sample files and screen shots to help us replicate your problem.

This thread has now been locked as the QA team are not following the threads to which this automatic reply is made, which is why we would appreciate a new bug report if you are still have this problem in the current 1.8.3 release build.


Patrick Connor
Serif Europe Ltd

Latest releases on each platform 

 

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