When visiting customer sites, I often meet geologists, mining engineers and surveyors with a wealth of industry and software experience. However, given the relentless and rapid advancement of computer science, with ever more complex system configurations, many users are often disinterested, unfamiliar or struggle to keep up to date with latest methods of system configuration. This blog post aims to address one of the most common system settings that is often overlooked during software installation.
Like most computer-aided design (CAD) packages, GEOVIA Surpac software relies heavily on a dedicated graphics card (e.g. NVIDIA Quadro graphics cards) and the associated memory to graphically show complex 3D representations of drilling, geology and mine designs.
However, many laptops and notebooks today are supplied with integrated graphics cards (e.g. Intel HD cards) that share memory with the motherboard and in many cases do not provide adequate processing power for the rigors of CAD and therefore produce a poorer quality user experience.
Usually in a new machine (e.g. a laptop), both an integrated and dedicated graphics cards are fitted. However, the preinstalled software on the machine nearly always assigns the integrated card to the majority of tasks, including GEOVIA Surpac. By using the integrated card, GEOVIA Surpac typically has less available memory, struggles with large datasets, and is therefore more unstable and more difficult to use.
Below we will examine the methodology for configuring NVIDIA graphics cards to increase performance.
Workflow: Example NVIDIA Quadro M2000M card
1. Right click on the desktop and in the menu select ‘NVIDIA Control Panel’.
2. Once inside the ‘NVIDIA Control Panel’, navigate to ‘Manage 3D Settings’.
3. Click on the ‘Program Settings’ tab.
4. Either select Surpac from the drop down or click ‘Add’ to add the relevant executable path.
*Note: If multiple Surpac versions are installed on the machine, check the Surpac version selected in the drop-down form is the correct one.
5. Lastly, ensure ‘OpenGL rendering GPU’ is set to the NVIDIA Card (see image below).
6. Click Apply in the form below and restart GEOVIA Surpac for changes to take effect (if open).
ALTERNATIVE BRAND GRAPHICS CARDS
For other graphics card manufacturers (e.g. AMD) the process defined above may be considerably different. Please contact the GEOVIA Technical Support desk (Support.firstname.lastname@example.org) for advice with regards to specific machines and/or hardware configurations.
To know whether your system meets GEOVIA Surpac’s minimum or recommended system requirements please visit this page: https://www.3ds.com/fileadmin/PRODUCTS-SERVICES/GEOVIA/PDF/datasheet/GEOVIA-Surpac2019-System-Requirements.pdf