A few days ago it was confirmed that the beta version of its next driver broke the limitation to mine, something that in the end NVIDIA had to recognize and which has resulted in said limitation having returned to said driver. But what is surprising is the way in which hackers can break this limitation, in a way that is as simple as it is surprising.
An adapter breaks NVIDIA’s mining limitation
Luck for NVIDIA has not lasted long, as hackers have found a way to break this limitation and it is through a “dummy” HDMI interface, a type of interface that does absolutely nothing, but is placed as a replacement of an HDMI cable. NVIDIA’s limiter is based on the fact that Ethereum mining does not use the graphical pipeline, but rather the computing one. That is the first premise that the driver uses to know if we are mining or not.
The reason for this is that when mining several GPUs are used, the first of them is in charge of managing the screen from where the information is given, while the others are in charge of mining. As soon as the driver detects that the RTX 3060 is set as a secondary GPU and therefore not displaying graphics or mining, it is when the driver’s limiter is triggered causing the mining rate to be halved or less.
And how does the driver detect if the GPU is not sending images to the screen? Well, very simple, once we have connected an HDMI cable to a graphics card, it is when the mechanism for sending images to the screen is activated. So the solution is to place HDMI Dummy connectors, which are connected to the HDMI interface. With this, the display driver is activated and makes the driver believe that this GPU is not mining but generating graphics.
Has NVIDIA underestimated miners?
The fact that it is so easy to break NVIDIA’s anti-mining limitations should turn on all the red lights, we are not talking about something as complex as changing the EEPROM where the Firmware is or changing the BIOS via software, but something as simple as taking a piece that usually costs very few euros and connects it to the HDMI ports of the card.
Considering that NVIDIA promised that the following RTX 3000s are going to carry this measure, and we all know that the RTX 3070 Ti and RTX 3080 Ti are right around the corner. This means that we will continue to have a stock problem due to the mining bubble.
The way in which NVIDIA has underestimated the knowledge and capabilities of miners is surprising. Especially if we consider that we are talking about people who are experts in tinkering their GPUs to a higher level than that of a normal user. All that NVIDIA had achieved was to limit mining to ordinary users, but not to large mining farms. In any case, that the limitation to be mined can be broken with a simple adapter is surprising to say the least.