I have a Dell XPS 15 9570 with both intel graphics and nvidia grpahics. Currently I am running Wayland (to avoid screen tearing issues) and the nvidia 410 driver.

I want to always know whether I am using intel or nvidia and be able to switch between the two.

If I run the commands

 sudo prime-select nvidia
 prime-select query

the terminal returns in fact


However when I go to "About", under graphics it continues to list "Intel HD Graphics (Coffeelake 3x8 GT2)".

What gives?

Update: I suspect the issue is that "About" is not reflecting correctly what my computer is using. The reason being that if

 prime-select query 



Then I cannot even log into Ubuntu Xorg (Gnome crashes immediately and returns me to login screen), but if it returns


then I have no problem (FYI Wayland allows me to log on regardless). So something must be changing...

  • When you log into wayland you are using the Intel gpu even if the nvidia drivers are installed. There is no wayland support for nvidia drivers in 'optimus' laptops and likely never will be.
    – doug
    Nov 7, 2018 at 21:48
  • To clarify above - Even if nvidia drivers are installed & selected a wayland session will switch to Intel. If you were able to log into an Xserver session you'd be using the NVIDIA drivers.
    – doug
    Nov 7, 2018 at 22:00
  • What about if I use the Nouveau display driver? Wayland still will use Intel?
    – Econ
    Nov 7, 2018 at 22:03
  • I've no clue myself how you'd do that on an optimus laptop. Here I've no issue, nvidia driver is installed and prime-selected. On X session it's nvidia, on wayland it's intel
    – doug
    Nov 7, 2018 at 22:28

1 Answer 1


you need to reboot after running

prime-select (nvidia or intel)

for the changes to take effect,

also ligtDM (Display manager) with Unity 7 (now community maintained) desktop (deptecated by Canonical since Ubuntu 16.04) seems to work better, for nVidia with multiple GPU setup,

than GDM (Display Manager) which is the default for Gnome Desktop which is the default Desktop Environment since Ubuntu 18.04 (I think).

  • This is true but actually not my problem,which I think is fully addressed in the comments above. Thanks though
    – Econ
    Nov 15, 2018 at 18:46

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