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DirectX 11 optimises for multithreading and GPGPU

DirectX 11 optimises for multithreading and GPGPU

DirectX 11 will feature a host of new changes, but still be backward compatible.

Last week at XNA Gamefest developers conference, Microsoft announced DirectX 11 which is tipped for being launched as part of next generation Windows 7.

Microsoft is cited as claiming DirectX 11 will be important for not only PCs but console platforms as well - possibly leading the way to a uniform ground between the entire gaming race, lowering development costs but making ports between PC and consoles ever more common.

TGDaily had a chat with Kevin Unangst, Senior Global Director of Windows Gaming at Microsoft, who clarified a few points for the future:
  • Games for Windows Live will be free for Windows users and developers
  • Marketplace will come to Windows Live this Autumn
  • Marketplace will offer the ability to distribute not only trailers, featured content but games too (just like Steam) however freely available games can be put on Marketplace free of charge
  • DirectX 11 will be backward compatible with DirectX 10 and 10.1, like 9 was with 8, 7, 6 etc. This means that those who own Vista and don't want to upgrade to Windows 7 will still be able to get the benefits of the latest DirectX.
  • DirectX 11 will better support multi-core and multi-threading machines so existing hardware will be better off.
  • Tessellation will also be introduced and will work on DirectX 10, 10.1 and 11 hardware - this means those with ATI HD 2000, 3000 and 4000 series cards will see benefits from DirectX 11 because they currently support this feature.
So while the hardware side looks like an evolutionary step for the better (one no doubt Tim will clarify in super-detail when the time is right), but the PC gaming master race might not take too kindly to having its platform in such close alignment with consoles. Understandably it's to keep games development costs down, while keeping the quality "high", but what incentive is there to use the inevitable extra performance on PCs if you're developing one game for all?

Let us know your thoughts on the next generation (no Star Trek quotes, please) in the forums.

44 Comments

Discuss in the forums Reply
ssj12 1st August 2008, 20:28 Quote
any info on what windows 7 will be like? will it not be crap like Vista?
koola 1st August 2008, 20:37 Quote
I'd like some DX11 for Windows XP please Microsoft...

They better not make it exclusive to Win7 like DX to Vista.
FeRaL 1st August 2008, 20:43 Quote
"Resistance is futile"

Sorry had to do it...

I know a MS MVP, I'm gonna see if I can get inside details on Windows 7.
500mph 1st August 2008, 20:43 Quote
They won't. DX11 should be available for vista too iirc.
GoodBytes 1st August 2008, 20:48 Quote
@ssj12
Windows 7 is Vista.
Like XP was over Windows 2000 (witch is based on NT1 in 1993, where no one knew that a virus and spyware was)... Just minor improvements a few features.

BTW, Vista is not crap. Just that you have 1 person that complained on the internet that his 200$ Dell laptop that can barely run Windows XP can't run Windows Vista and has issues. And for some reason it spread faster than a virus could ever do.
If you get to use it, or browse this forum, you will see that a great majority of users that have Vista, loves it and don't want to turn back to XP.
GoodBytes 1st August 2008, 20:54 Quote
@koola, Vista can have an upgrade to DX11, but XP is finished.
As it was talked in many forum posts, DirectX10 is impossible to have it on the XP, unless you do a changes to the OS to a point to have it as Vista.

Vista offered a foundation same for DirectX10. That was established, and now Microsoft is developing (Windows 7, and Direct X11) on it.
Narishma 1st August 2008, 21:30 Quote
By consoles I suppose they mean Xbox?
ComputerKing 1st August 2008, 21:40 Quote
I want a date for the release ?! mean Q1 2009 Q2 2009 or what? can you get that info guys?
Cupboard 1st August 2008, 21:52 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoodBytes
@ssj12
Windows 7 is Vista.

No, Windows 7 is the next version of Windows. So far, people have been saying it is what Vista should have been and can't come soon enough, but I will wait and see.

btw the news page doesn't seem to link here...
dk-melgaard 1st August 2008, 21:54 Quote
im loking foreward to the new windows.. it might be an upgrade worthy:/ vista wasnt!
Timmy_the_tortoise 1st August 2008, 21:56 Quote
MORE ports?

I can see a lot of people here being very unhappy with that.
-EVRE- 1st August 2008, 21:57 Quote
1.I Love vista, I need to get my current install upgraded to 64bit.
2. I'm very glad that consoles and PC's will be so close to each other in coding because it will mean more great titles for both. Developers will take advantage of the extra horsepower that PC's have to offer to make the game load faster, and look better.

cant wait for dx11, I'll get a new card :D
Timmy_the_tortoise 1st August 2008, 22:10 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by -EVRE-
1.I Love vista, I need to get my current install upgraded to 64bit.

I love Vista too.. I think a lot of people have slow-down problems because of all the bloatware you get on OEM systems and laptops.. Plus all of the OEM systems which didn't have enough RAM (just 1GB) which were on sale when Vista was released initially, before 2GB was identified as an absolute minimum for Vista for reasonable performance.

A nice, clean install is much faster.
LordPyrinc 1st August 2008, 23:56 Quote
I am very happy with Vista. Runs great, no noticeable performance issues on my PC. I've had less than 10 blue screen crashes in the last 8 months and all but one happened during the Exit of one particular game that I play at least 4 days a week. This leads me to believe its a problem with that game and not Vista.
Joeymac 2nd August 2008, 00:03 Quote
Yes Vista is much better than XP... Vista does need 2GB, but you can upgrade from a gig to 2gig for about £10. ANY dual core processor will run it fine and a DX10 graphics card to run aero (which is a must feature as far as I'm concerned - Window tearing should have been fixed a decade ago) can be got for £20-£30. Where is the problem! I would hardly say less than £50 of upgrades on a 3-4 year old machine is a problem.
Rahneshin 2nd August 2008, 00:34 Quote
GoodBytes -
I completely and wholeheartedly agree. I've been running 64-bit Vista for 10 months now and haven't had any problems with it. I keep wondering what people who're complaining about Vista are talking about. My wife has XP on her system and in comparison to Vista it's, well, crap.
Some people just love to complain. I think it's a way of seeming discerning or something. Except, it's not.
samkiller42 2nd August 2008, 02:06 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Joeymac
Yes Vista is much better than XP... Vista does need 2GB, but you can upgrade from a gig to 2gig for about £10. ANY dual core processor will run it fine and a DX10 graphics card to run aero (which is a must feature as far as I'm concerned - Window tearing should have been fixed a decade ago) can be got for £20-£30. Where is the problem! I would hardly say less than £50 of upgrades on a 3-4 year old machine is a problem.

You don't need a DX10 card to run aero either... I used to run Vista's aero on my old laptops geforce go 7300, which is far from DX10, and it was fine.
I have no issues with Vista, tis stable, and easy to use, my only concern (which is tiny) is i can't play Red Alert 2 over my network because it can't find the tcp/ipx protocol, and that's it. Vista works for me, so, if it ain't broke, don't fix it is what some say.

Sam
Mentai 2nd August 2008, 02:21 Quote
In my mind Microsoft shot themselves in the foot with setting the minimum Vista specs too low. 512MB ram for basic. Good Lord that is ridicuously slow. Also people don't like the "are you sure?" security checks. I personally like to know what my system is doing though, and with 3gb of ram and a core 2 duo e8400, this computer runs with vista faster than any other computer I've used, so I think it's a good OS.
What's the beat windows 7 performs exactly the same but people will like it cause the low end hardware will have caught up.
GoodBytes 2nd August 2008, 02:39 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mentai
"are you sure?" security checks.
What "Are you sure..."? It says "Is it you that does it or a program that moved your mouse and sent a double click for you (something that can be easily done in Windows)
So that you don't have a malware/virus that access your system files, and if it tries to access it by moving your mouse and clicking, then you will be prompted and you can click on "cancel", and have Windows kill the application. And because the dialog box loads on a secure automatically generated account, the program can't send mouse movement or keyboard command for you to bypass it. Granted it's a bit excess and should have an option to have it only protect the system file and not the global account (so that when you delete a shortcut on the start menu, you don't have the UAC prompt). But hey you don't edit the start menu everyday.

I agree with Mentai, but showing the minimum system requirement surpass a game will be like Microsoft BOB that was in the old old days, it required so much power for the time that barely few people purchased it, and even thus now hardware cost has diminished significantly, it will be laugh out. And people will say "Is it worth it?". What Vista should had have is a system that detects your hardware and disables features that it judges not necessary at the moment your first start Windows (rendering the benchmark system/optimization it has more useful) and once done, give you a list of all the disabled features witch check marks to disable them, and enable other. Obviously this is technical, and probably should be in Vista Business and Ultimate edition only.
What Microsoft did bad is having a 32-bit version... granted that it would have been hard (remember that MS did not see all the complaining of Vista... as they did not release it), but assured that it's users would have proper computers and prevent people with 200$ Dell computer that can't even run XP smoothly say how crappy Vista is on it and of course, seriously push 64-bit applications and games. Moreover, as 32-bit was done at the last minute it had the most bugs, and because it was the default disk it came with Retail (except for Ultimate edition) edition of vista and OEMs choice, news didn't even report that problem is not in Vista 64-bit.

I hope Windows 7 will be 64-bit by default. If JUST seeing how crazy the performance is for videos using 64-bit codec on Vista with just Windows Media Player, I can't wiat to use all my software in 64-bit version, and a push to that technology is needed.
dworvos 2nd August 2008, 09:27 Quote
I do not understand why people complain about UAC being a Vista only issue. You have to go through the same type of dialog with Mac OS X (At least the version of Tiger which I used before) and in Linux. You have to "authenticate" or run certain programs using "sudo" which is essentially the same thing as the overlay box asking your permission in Vista. Why all the hate for the last operating system to prevent escalated privileges from being granted automatically? Personally I prefer that Vista is letting me know that something is trying to gain escalated privileges so I can be sure I'm not letting malware infect my computer.
seveneleven 2nd August 2008, 12:04 Quote
I hope M$ finally makes the deadline and includes the feature we were promised back when Longhorn was around - WinFS.Thanks to this new file system the Longhorn project was rebadged and scaled down to Vista as it was too innovative.I wonder how our files will be sorted once WinFS gets incorporated in Windows 7?What else is there besides folders?
GoodBytes 2nd August 2008, 16:13 Quote
@seveneleven, I would guess nothing would have changed.
Probably Microsoft found it was more complicated then helpful, or realized to not change standards that was established for oh so many years, like the QWERTY keyboard and how you execute a program (unlike MacOS where it's Ctrl+O instead of Enter). Which probably explains why Microsoft totally canceled it (I mean the concept), it will end up (if it is included) to the same thing as we have now, just maybe deliver instant search results faster on your screen or something like that. Anyway, it's all so so vague... I guess we have to wait and found out.
Phil Rhodes 2nd August 2008, 19:30 Quote
I'm not so much worried about the extra performance of a PC being used, as I am that all games - witness Bioshock - will be targeted squarely at twitch-thumbed ten-year-olds with the attention span of a rapidly-decaying neutrino.

P
ParaHelix.org 2nd August 2008, 21:19 Quote
Microsoft Windows 7 = Microsoft Windows Vista service pack 2.
But a very expensive service pack, lol.

Edit: By the way, for people who would respond to that like "Duh noob itz nt a srvs pck minge itz new", I was joking.
ParaHelix.org 2nd August 2008, 21:21 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by koola
I'd like some DX11 for Windows XP please Microsoft...

They better not make it exclusive to Win7 like DX to Vista.

The article made it very clear that DirectX 11 would be Vista compatable, try reading it sometime.
ParaHelix.org 2nd August 2008, 21:25 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoodBytes
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mentai
"are you sure?" security checks.
What "Are you sure..."? It says "Is it you that does it or a program that moved your mouse and sent a double click for you (something that can be easily done in Windows)
So that you don't have a malware/virus that access your system files, and if it tries to access it by moving your mouse and clicking, then you will be prompted and you can click on "cancel", and have Windows kill the application. And because the dialog box loads on a secure automatically generated account, the program can't send mouse movement or keyboard command for you to bypass it. Granted it's a bit excess and should have an option to have it only protect the system file and not the global account (so that when you delete a shortcut on the start menu, you don't have the UAC prompt). But hey you don't edit the start menu everyday.

I agree with Mentai, but showing the minimum system requirement surpass a game will be like Microsoft BOB that was in the old old days, it required so much power for the time that barely few people purchased it, and even thus now hardware cost has diminished significantly, it will be laugh out. And people will say "Is it worth it?". What Vista should had have is a system that detects your hardware and disables features that it judges not necessary at the moment your first start Windows (rendering the benchmark system/optimization it has more useful) and once done, give you a list of all the disabled features witch check marks to disable them, and enable other. Obviously this is technical, and probably should be in Vista Business and Ultimate edition only.
What Microsoft did bad is having a 32-bit version... granted that it would have been hard (remember that MS did not see all the complaining of Vista... as they did not release it), but assured that it's users would have proper computers and prevent people with 200$ Dell computer that can't even run XP smoothly say how crappy Vista is on it and of course, seriously push 64-bit applications and games. Moreover, as 32-bit was done at the last minute it had the most bugs, and because it was the default disk it came with Retail (except for Ultimate edition) edition of vista and OEMs choice, news didn't even report that problem is not in Vista 64-bit.

I hope Windows 7 will be 64-bit by default. If JUST seeing how crazy the performance is for videos using 64-bit codec on Vista with just Windows Media Player, I can't wiat to use all my software in 64-bit version, and a push to that technology is needed.

Even extremely basic and free antivirus and firewalls stop such activity as remote desktop control, however, that would be a really crappy virus or cracker anyway as they would use somthing such as invisable command prompt and preset command files.
GoodBytes 2nd August 2008, 21:56 Quote
That is why Vista system in integrated on the kernal, so that it can't be bypassed. So far it isn't the case.
koola 3rd August 2008, 16:47 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by ParaHelix.org
Microsoft Windows 7 = Microsoft Windows Vista service pack 2.

No.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ParaHelix.org
The article made it very clear that DirectX 11 would be Vista compatable, try reading it sometime.

Microsoft have plenty of time to change their mind. I was merly stipulating the scenario of DX10 to Vista.
GoodBytes 3rd August 2008, 17:03 Quote
koola, you still don't get.
Microsoft wants DirectX to be popular... I mean they invest money on it. To get used they need to present to companies market share. If few people have it, no games/software will be made for it. But if a lot, then yes. Now why DirectX10 is not for XP, simply, because they can't do it. I mean anything is possible, it's just business wise, time consumption spend on it is not worth it, especially that it will turn the OS to the OS that they try to sell. That would be dumb from them to do such thing.
Dreaming 3rd August 2008, 18:09 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by ssj12
any info on what windows 7 will be like? will it not be crap like Vista?

Vista isn't any crapper than XP. This attitude boggles me!

It's going to vista with bells on. Like XP was to 2000. It's only an operating system at the end of the day.

Question is, in the article, what is "Games for Windows Live"? Is it a "Games for Windows, Live", or "Games for 'Windows Live'" or...? If that's the case, what is Windows Live? Is it just Windows?
Dreaming 3rd August 2008, 18:16 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by seveneleven
I hope M$ finally makes the deadline and includes the feature we were promised back when Longhorn was around - WinFS.Thanks to this new file system the Longhorn project was rebadged and scaled down to Vista as it was too innovative.I wonder how our files will be sorted once WinFS gets incorporated in Windows 7?What else is there besides folders?

Don't know if this is what is in windows 7, but I would guess you could do indexing of tags? So you could have one file under two tags instead of one directory. Or three tags. Or four.
wuyanxu 3rd August 2008, 22:46 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dreaming

Question is, in the article, what is "Games for Windows Live"? Is it a "Games for Windows, Live", or "Games for 'Windows Live'" or...? If that's the case, what is Windows Live? Is it just Windows?

Games for Windows Live is Microsoft's answer to Steam's integrated chat+server browser.

basically useless.

how do DirectX support multi-thread? it's already multi-threaded as it is with shaders going off to the 128 possible pipelines.
[USRF]Obiwan 4th August 2008, 10:45 Quote
People who still use XP (me included) need to get along and step up. Because XP is really getting old now. You can wish for DX10.x till you're dead but deep inside you know it will never come to XP. And you really really want to get all the magic out of your expensive dx10 card don't ya?

I know its hard when your beloved XP is full with a shipload of software and other crap "you don't need but really really wanted" and do not want to install again. Well with a fresh vista install you do not have too. And the "are you sure nag screens" can be disabled too, just google for it. It's not wise to do it, but if it really bothers you...

If your really like the XP look then you're probably the only one who likes the teletubbies. And vista looks can be changed with ease. And you got a nice sidebar where you can put in monitor tools like processor loads, network use, speedfan readings and other stuff.

You can stick to peanut butter every day for the rest of your life or try something new and refreshing.
Blademrk 4th August 2008, 11:27 Quote
I'm running 64bit in a dual boot with XP MCE, but I find myself running XP more ofthen than Vista for 2 reasons (although I really do like Vista)

Nearly all PC's sold these days are 64bit so why make a new 32bit OS?

Some companies are lazy, they know they have to create drivers for XP and it's easy enough to port over to 32bit Vista but then 64bit gets completely left out (case in point, my new Sony Alpha 350 camera Drivers only for XP & Vista 32bit so if I want to take the pics off my camera I need to either use Vista or a memory card reader - and the RAW conversion program won't work either).

I still struggle to get drivers for several devices (including my new camera) for the 64bit version whereas the 32bit drivers will work on either XP or Vista 32bit.
The other problem (in my case) is that my graphics card still crashes under vista (latest drivers installed).
I may be lucky and not a crash at all some days whereas others it will happen every 5 minutes. It could be because my card is too old and no longer supported by nVidia though (6600 GT). :S
GoodBytes 4th August 2008, 13:34 Quote
Blademrk, Are you kidding me? Geforce 6600GT!?
I was using this video card recently for about 2 months (I sold my 8800) and I had no problem whatsoever under Vista 64.
And I was like "What does these people complain about... I have no issue (same for the 8800)?". Do you uninstall your drivers before installing the new ones? If you try both ways... then something is making Vista a monkey, hehe (Vista bug?!)
ParaHelix.org 4th August 2008, 20:41 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by koola
No.



Microsoft have plenty of time to change their mind. I was merly stipulating the scenario of DX10 to Vista.

About the Win 7 = Vista SP2 it was a joke...as I said in my comment, about Microsoft changing their mind, they havn't ever done it before.
GoodBytes 4th August 2008, 22:29 Quote
Quote:
Win 7 = Vista SP2
Actually... it MAY be... Depends on the number of new features, and number bug fixes and improvements.
Are they going to cancel everything and have only 1 or 2 new features.... based on history it's most unlikely, but just IF they do then yes, we could say it's Vista SP2.
wuyanxu 4th August 2008, 23:14 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoodBytes
Actually... it MAY be... Depends on the number of new features, and number bug fixes and improvements.
Are they going to cancel everything and have only 1 or 2 new features.... based on history it's most unlikely, but just IF they do then yes, we could say it's Vista SP2.
and they plan to charge us, just like Snow Leopard?

god, they are getting desperate.
GoodBytes 4th August 2008, 23:41 Quote
I am not saying they are.
it was just a hypothetical.
scuzzphut 6th August 2008, 12:34 Quote
How hard is it to get DX10 running on XP ? Anyone actually tried this ? I'd love to get Halo2 running on my XCP box :-)
GoodBytes 6th August 2008, 13:50 Quote
Go search for it on bit-tech forum. It was discussed enough.
obSCURED 7th August 2009, 20:25 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by dworvos
I do not understand why people complain about UAC being a Vista only issue. You have to go through the same type of dialog with Mac OS X (At least the version of Tiger which I used before) and in Linux. You have to "authenticate" or run certain programs using "sudo" which is essentially the same thing as the overlay box asking your permission in Vista. Why all the hate for the last operating system to prevent escalated privileges from being granted automatically? Personally I prefer that Vista is letting me know that something is trying to gain escalated privileges so I can be sure I'm not letting malware infect my computer.

UAC is able to be set at multiple levels on se7en, I just got ahold of the Windows7 RTM not too long ago (which for those that don't know, is the final version or Release To Manufacterer) I can without a doubt say it is far more than just an "upgraded vista" The amount of security problems they solved is amazing alone, As for the UAC thing, I was always annoyed in vista that you got the red shield on startup if you had it turned off. This is not the case in windows7, when turned off it gives you no warnings after. The new taskbar features are mind-blowing, the speed in comparison to vista is incredible, there is a new location now called "library" it acts as a general location that you may put all of your most used folders in. You can choose to have it pinned to your taskbar, I removed it due to it being a kind of ugly icon lol. DX11 is amazing, you can tell a difference. 7 also includes a new version of paintshop that is very similar to adobe photoshop, as well as the new pretty much unseen Windows Media Player 12, WMP12 is more like the media player embedded in Windows Media Center, It is a solid black box that your films, vids ect play in but when you scroll over it a tranparent bar with all of your buttons shows up until you scroll off WMP again. All of the drivers that worked on Vista SP1 and SP2 are transferred over to this OS as well. The only thing I had to do is uninstall AVG antivirus and reinstall it due to it losing some files (this might have possibly happened during upgrade) ALL IN ALL, WINDOWS 7 IS ABSOLUTELY INCREDIBLE, I loved vista and this blows it out of the water!
GoodBytes 7th August 2009, 23:14 Quote
@obSCURED,
Welcome to bit-tech forum! :D

On your post, sorry, but:
1- Reducing UAC in Win7 reduces security level. Max security would be to set it to max level which is what Vista was. So technically Win7 is less secure by default on that section, but true that there was many security fixes applied.

2- DirectX11 cannot be seen at anyone outside a video manufacturing engineer from a company which work on a DirectX11 video card. So far no DirecttX11 compatible video cards exists. Moreover, there is no content for this and that will take a long time before we start to see true fully DirectX11 content to judge.

3- Microsoft doesn't not have "Paintshop". It's just an updated Microsoft Paint with a new look and few new features. No where near big programs like: Corel PaintShop Pro, Adobe Photoshop, Paint.NET (not associated with Microsoft) and The Gimp.
obSCURED 7th August 2009, 23:45 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoodBytes
@obSCURED,
Welcome to bit-tech forum! :D

On your post, sorry, but:
1- Reducing UAC in Win7 reduces security level. Max security would be to set it to max level which is what Vista was. So technically Win7 is less secure by default on that section, but true that there was many security fixes applied.

2- DirectX11 cannot be seen at anyone outside a video manufacturing engineer from a company which work on a DirectX11 video card. So far no DirecttX11 compatible video cards exists. Moreover, there is no content for this and that will take a long time before we start to see true fully DirectX11 content to judge.

3- Microsoft doesn't not have "Paintshop". It's just an updated Microsoft Paint with a new look and few new features. No where near big programs like: Corel PaintShop Pro, Adobe Photoshop, Paint.NET (not associated with Microsoft) and The Gimp.

I said that it is similar to photoshop, i did not say it was. As for my calling it paintshop, i hardly see how there was a correction necessary there, we all know what I meant. As for directx11, although the full version cannot be used on any particular video card currently, it is a fact that ATI has video cards out currently that are compatible with the proper driver updates. As for UAC, i belive that is a matter of preference. I cannot stand it so I choose to turn it off. I have multiple firewalls and a decent amount of computer knowlege so I can do checks of security manually. Don't take what I say rudely, I am not doubting your intelligence. I am just saying that I research things just as much as the next pc nerd would.
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