Ethereum miners may have hacked NVIDIA’s graphics card to speed up hash rate

NVIDIA announced the creation of a new product lineup – the NVIDIA CMP designed exclusively for cryptocurrency mining last month.

In order to separate its product offerings between crypto miners and gamers, NVIDIA put a cap on the hash rate of its GeForce RTX 3060 mining microchip that had become highly in-demand in the cryptocurrency mining industry.

NVIDIA disclosed to PC Gamer that the graphic card’s operating system “cannot be hacked to remove the limiter.” The company later clarified that “end users cannot remove the hash limiter from the driver,” as per Windows Central.

Hash rate limit aimed at discouraging crypto miners

“We are limiting the hash rate of GeForce RTX 3060 GPUs, so they are less desirable to miners and launching NVIDIA CMP for professional mining,” Benzinga quoted NVIDIA as saying in a blog.

However, NVIDIA’s attempt to discourage crypto miners from patronizing its new GeForce RTX 3060 GPU by reducing its hash rate appears to have been for naught as Ethereum miners headquartered in China discovered a technique to bypass this limited hash rate using a customized mod.

This followed growing concerns expressed by the gamers, who were worried about suffering another graphics card shortage because of growing demand from crypto miners.

How ‘unhackable’ is it?

The hack — if proven to have worked — massively contradicts a recent disclosure by NVIDIA global chief of public relations, Bryan Del Rizzo, who said on Feb. 21 that secure interactions between the graphics card hardware, driver software, and the computer firmware would block the removal of the hash rate limiter, CoinTelegraph reported.

Screenshots posted by a Twitter account that shows the tech tweaks depicted a stack of eight RTX 3060 GPU’s running far beyond NVIDIA’s pre-programmed 20-25 MH/s mining limit. Meanwhile, a group of miners from Vietname also confirmed on Facebook the graphic card’s power to accelerate to 50 MH/s.

But these claims have to be taken with a proverbial grain of salt. A single Facebook group, according to Windows Central, appears to be the only origin of these images.

 

Image courtesy of Moose Photos/Pexels

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