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Microsoft Graphics

Microsoft Makes Direct X 11.1 a Windows 8 Exclusive 553

BluPhenix316 writes "Microsoft has made Direct X 11.1 a Windows 8 Exclusive. I think this is merely an update to make Direct X more integrated with Windows 8. Is this going to be the trend? To lock you into the OS updates so Windows 7 doesn't last as long as Windows XP has?" The update is pretty minor, but it does add Stereoscopic rendering, and there seemed to be an implication that no new DirectX updates after this will be made for Windows 7.
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Microsoft Makes Direct X 11.1 a Windows 8 Exclusive

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  • by Dan B. ( 20610 ) <slashdot@[ ] ['bry' in gap]> on Monday November 12, 2012 @09:15PM (#41962529)

    As per the subject, this just adds to the reasons for using OpenGL

  • by RobinH ( 124750 ) on Monday November 12, 2012 @09:17PM (#41962541) Homepage

    If a company releases a new product, they have to add new features to get you to buy it. Why add features to a product people have already bought when they're trying to push the new shiny?

    The real story would be if they didn't continue with security updates and bug fixes, but I doubt that's the case.

  • Doesn't matter (Score:5, Insightful)

    by santax ( 1541065 ) on Monday November 12, 2012 @09:18PM (#41962561)
    The big game-companies and the indies know that only newly bought pc's and laptops will have win8. Nobody else is going to make the switch and I assume a majority of new buyers will 'downgrade' to win7. So they won't develop for it. Maybe they use the api as a extra option, but they all will make sure their games run on win7. Because win8 is going to be the new ME/Vista. Nice on tablets, but keep that crap away from my desktop.
  • by Yarhj ( 1305397 ) on Monday November 12, 2012 @09:23PM (#41962589)
    Isn't this basically what they did back with Vista and 7? After the legacy-support nightmare (from Microsoft's perspective) that was XP I expect Microsoft is tired of supporting old software on old systems. I can't say that I blame them -- at some point you just have to draw a line in the sand and say "I'm not supporting 5.25" floppies anymore."

    We can argue about exactly when they should stop supporting old OSes, but at some point it makes sense to move resources from your old product to your new product.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 12, 2012 @09:27PM (#41962633)

    The baseline requirement in nearly all games being released today is still DX9, because that's what XP supports. MS absolutely failed in trying to leverage gaming requirements as a means to pawn off unwanted upgrades on users. Because of that previous failure, DX10/11 still feels new to most people and they won't be demanding upgrades for it anytime soon. In the meantime, the delay in new DX feature adoption gives OpenGL-based open source/indie game developers time to catch up, just as before. And more OpenGL means less dependence on Windows as a whole, so this is a win-win-win situation.

    Just like tying new IE releases to Windows upgrades. Chrome, Firefox, etc. cannot thank MS enough for that.

  • by humanrev ( 2606607 ) on Monday November 12, 2012 @09:29PM (#41962671) []

    Sounds like a key feature of DirectX 11.1, the stereoscopic 3D rendering, is a feature of WDDM 1.2 and given WDDM 1.2 is only available in Windows 8, that kinda ties DirectX 11.1 to it as well.

    Windows 7 uses WDDM 1.1. Could Microsoft safely update this to version 1.2 such that DirectX 11.1 could be made available for it as well? Probably (Microsoft developed it all, so there's no reason why they couldn't). Would it be a worthwhile investment for them to do so? Probably not; they're having enough trouble getting people to want to use Windows 8 as it is - forcing people to shift to it in any way possible, no matter how slimey, is not above them.

    I doubt it'll matter much though - you'd have to be particularly crazy to develop a game that requires DirectX 11.1 any time soon. especially given the backlash against Windows 8.;

  • Stereoscopic 3D (Score:5, Insightful)

    by dagamer34 ( 1012833 ) on Monday November 12, 2012 @09:30PM (#41962679)
    Honestly, the only thing important to DirectX 11.1 besides some optimizations is a standardized way to support 3D instead of proprietary nVidia 3D vision and AMD HD3D. And if you don't care about S3D, then 11.1 is a non issue. Sounds like a bunch of FUD to me. Regardless, until you see a bunch of DirectX 11.1 exclusive games and DirectX 11 support is dropped (which will never happen), people are ranting about nothing.
  • by MrEricSir ( 398214 ) on Monday November 12, 2012 @09:32PM (#41962703) Homepage

    Instead of worrying about DirectX, you can worry about which versions of which distro has a driver for your graphics hardware.

    But sure, the grass is always greener and all that.

  • by saleenS281 ( 859657 ) on Monday November 12, 2012 @09:35PM (#41962735) Homepage
    In other news, Google releases android 4.2 with a new camera, a new keyboard, and smoother rendering. They aren't porting any of these features back to 2.3 or 4.0. Is this what it's come to?

    Linux has incorporated btrfs into the 3.x kernel and isn't porting it back to the 2.4 kernel. Is this what it's come to? Etc. etc. etc. Yes, this is Slashdot, but the MS bashing was played out sometime around 2006. If you're going to pick on them, at least pick something legitimate and don't whine about them not backporting features ad-infinitum.
  • Part of the Wall (Score:3, Insightful)

    by kawabago ( 551139 ) on Monday November 12, 2012 @09:51PM (#41962839)
    This is part of the new wall protecting Microsoft's new playland it's creating to squeeze unsuspecting customers dry and competition out of the market.
  • They'll Relent (Score:4, Insightful)

    by epp_b ( 944299 ) on Monday November 12, 2012 @09:55PM (#41962869)

    Because they'll have to.

    Windows 8 is a toilet (remember, it's the "other version" every "every other version of Windows sucks") and they're forcing obsolescence on Windows 7 far too early.

  • Re:So? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Billly Gates ( 198444 ) on Monday November 12, 2012 @09:55PM (#41962871) Journal

    It is more complicated than that. DirectX requires WDDM which is aero and 3D composition GPU support starting with DX 10. WDDM 1.2 is not compatible with any other kernel. A rewrite would be needed that would make WIndows 7 not Windows 7 anymore and break video and CAD software and piss off the corporate users.

    DirectX 11.1 uses this in an abstraction layer.

    This is why IE 9 is not available for XP. It has nothing to do with MS forcing users to upgrade. Its smooth graphics and font rendering require all that to make it smoother than FF or Chrome which rely on DirectX 9. IE 10 as a result is Win 8 only at the moment until it is rewritten for the older WDDM 1.1 and DIrectX11.

  • Not a big deal. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by c1t1z3nk41n3 ( 1112059 ) on Monday November 12, 2012 @10:07PM (#41962965)
    Gamers tend to upgrade a lot more often than other people to begin with and the Windows 8 upgrade is only 40 dollars. I don't really see a problem here.
  • by girlintraining ( 1395911 ) on Monday November 12, 2012 @10:08PM (#41962989)

    Has rendering technology finally matured?

    It's the game developers that have matured. The technology hasn't changed that much -- but the developers have gained experience and understanding. They aren't willing to jump to the latest version just because it's the latest version anymore. They have some business sense now; Which is why the Windows 8 app store looks like a barren desert. Developers know they won't make money there. Same with game developers -- they go where the money is, not where the marketing is. So when you're looking at DX10 versus DX11; The API doesn't make much difference in performance, so why not stick with something supported by more video cards out there, and better optimized in newer video cards anyway?

    The developers have matured -- they have a business sense now, not just technical proficiency. DX11.1 can bite their shiny metal ass. Nobody will be developing on it for years to come.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 12, 2012 @10:08PM (#41962993)
    Yes and watch as they laugh at you and continue to sell millions of copies to gamers who don't give a shit whether their game is using OpenGL or not.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 12, 2012 @10:12PM (#41963041)

    If you have programmed shaders before you know that new APIs make absolutely no difference in advancing graphics since any graphics effect that has and will ever exist can be programmed using even ancient shader models like GLSL version 2. New APIs serve only to lock users into their own API artificially, even though the graphics capabilities already exist and will be the same for a long time to come. Using shaders, a programmer can do anything using graphics, even things that don't exist yet. All of the effects advancements like SSAO (screen space ambient occlusion) and raytracing are advancements in algorithms that can be easily written in any existing shader language. A new DirectX API version in my opinion is completely useless and only serves no purpose other than to try to get people to buy Windows 8. Programmers don't need a new API to make better graphics, they need creativity and ingenuity using existing shader languages which will never need to change.

  • by Luckyo ( 1726890 ) on Monday November 12, 2012 @10:24PM (#41963161)

    They're DX9 because that's what XBOX360 essentially "sorta kinda" renders with. It makes no sense costs-wise to add PC-only DX11 features into ports beyond bare minimum, if even that.

  • Re:WINE (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Nethemas the Great ( 909900 ) on Monday November 12, 2012 @10:31PM (#41963229)
    That's about as stupid as the whole HTML5/JavaScript thing in the name of cross-platform compatibility. The solution isn't to keep piling on more and more layers of abstraction. Each layer represents new compromises and needless expense. Just because a few college kids one day said "you know what would be cool...?" doesn't make it a good idea. I'm as much a fan of being able to make my toaster boot Linux as the next guy, but some things are better left as hobbies. Stop the god damn partisanship, stop the damn religious wars, stop the damn profiteering and develop a set of standard APIs that may be implemented and run as close to metal as is practicable while allowing the flexibility to utilize whatever tools, technologies, and languages desired. VMWare, Sun's JVM and Microsoft's CLR were excellent starting points. Now where the hell is the synthesis, what happened to the next generation?
  • by SplashMyBandit ( 1543257 ) on Monday November 12, 2012 @10:35PM (#41963259)
    Wrong. There are still hundreds of millions of users with perfectly good computers that are running XP. They don't want to upgrade and migrate all their data and settings. They don't want to pay for new software that will let them do the things they do already. Hell, the feature touted in the thread summary (stereoscopic rendering) is already on Windows XP in OpenGL (and has been forever, including lots of effects that Microsoft forced you to get Vista for). Requiring an OS upgrade for simple features has nothing to do with technology (since OpenGL has no problem) - it is all about bilking you for more money.
  • by Yvanhoe ( 564877 ) on Monday November 12, 2012 @10:46PM (#41963355) Journal
    Well, Valve considers Windows 8 as a threat, ports Steam under linux, put pressure on video card constructors to create better linux port of their drivers. This could very well make OpenGL the future standard.
  • by Sir_Sri ( 199544 ) on Monday November 12, 2012 @10:49PM (#41963389)

    What decade are you living in?

    Since the unified driver architectures of the mid 2000's both ATI and nVIDIA just support everything. It's only brand new cards where driver support is sketchy, but that's only ever a short term problem.

    Driver support is only bad in windows if you have a directx 8 class card, and for that you're talking about 8 year old parts at this point.


  • Re:Doesn't matter (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Cwix ( 1671282 ) on Monday November 12, 2012 @11:10PM (#41963541)

    I just bought a new computer. I chose the Win 7 option over Win 8.

    Frankly I am not interested in it. I have used it, I have a computer still running the RC. Just not interested in it. It is Win 7 with a tablet GUI slapped on the front.
    The fact is the new GUI does nothing to increase efficiency. Frankly it seems to me that it is a marketing ploy to force people to become familiar with the interface. This is in the hopes that once people get comfortable with it that they will choose the Windows tablets.

    I do not like it when people try to trick/force me into something. No thanks.

  • by westlake ( 615356 ) on Monday November 12, 2012 @11:34PM (#41963701)

    If you've just "tried" one, then you really have no room for an opinion.

    * by 'all' I mean the variations in desktop UI's... KDE, Gnome, MATE, XFCE, Fluxbox, Windowmaker, and so on and so forth.

    No one has time for this.

  • by epyT-R ( 613989 ) on Monday November 12, 2012 @11:58PM (#41963889)

    yes, I'm well aware of this, and with that specialization comes the consumer hostile lockdown. The difference as that a dvd player (traditional ones anyway) doesn't track your play history and upload it to some assholes online who then sell the data to anyone who wants to know. The last thing I'd do is plug my tv into the internet, esp if it's got a camera on it. Since I can't easily control the software, I'm at the whim of the 'quality' code running on the device which was probably coded by underpaid indians or koreans.. No thanks. That ethernet jack is never getting a route to the internet. This is all far far worse than the aggregates the cable company gets from tracking stats with the cable box.

    No, before long, all your data will be on the network somewhere, where it is beholden to the auspices and behavioral expectations of the ASP, the ISP, and of course, the state. Your only interaction will be that of access, not control. This access will be closely monitored and I can guarantee any action taken that is antithetical to the interests of the above will result in the related data erased and possibly your account terminated...or worse, jailtime. There are a lot of scary trends in place that make these statements less paranoid sounding every day, so don't bother retorting it as such.

    The upgrade from the floppy to removable hds and then to flash was not riddled with middle men grabbing control and passing it off as convenience along the way. That's the difference. Since you agree with some of this perhaps you can throw away that initial fallacious argument. In many ways the 1990s were about computers as tools of individual empowerment. Today, they're becoming more and more the tools of enslavement.

  • by epyT-R ( 613989 ) on Tuesday November 13, 2012 @12:12AM (#41963993)

    well yeah.. my statements include that implicitly. The specialized devices don't generally allow control over the firmware if anything because they're not meant to be general purpose computers. The difference is that in the past, these specialized devices were fixed function and unnetworked. Today it's much different and that power is being used in consumer unfriendly ways.

  • by Trilkin ( 2042026 ) on Tuesday November 13, 2012 @12:16AM (#41964019)

    Or he can just save himself the trouble and use Acrobat. Try explaining to someone that you extracted images from his PDFs and repackaged them in a OSS-friendly manner. At BEST, he'll go 'that's nice, but could you just give me a PDF please?' At worst (and most likely, honestly,) he'll call you an idiot and stop doing business with you.

    Just because you CAN do something doesn't mean it's worth the time or effort. In the long run, the average user will almost always prefer Windows or OSX to any flavor of Linux you throw at him.

    Linux fills its niches, but a desktop OS just isn't one of those niches. The primary goal of a desktop OS should be ease of use and compatibility of software. A lot of Linux distributions have come a long way in the former, but the latter is still just not there. Just because there's an 'equivalent' of a piece of software available for a Linux platform doesn't necessarily mean it's actually equal.

    Blind zealotry for any platform is stupid because it's just that - a platform. A working environment. Every environment is going to be better at some things than others. There's a reason why multi-booting exists.

  • by KingMotley ( 944240 ) on Tuesday November 13, 2012 @01:21AM (#41964349) Journal

    Microsoft could go a long way if they just stopped selling Visual Studio.... give it away so you can get the dev tools in the hands of those who need it (and have the most time to make apps for you...

    You mean like they have been doing for the last 5+ years?

    Here's a link to the latest: []

  • by knarf ( 34928 ) on Tuesday November 13, 2012 @03:10AM (#41964851) Homepage

    and no she could never run a Linux distro - she's a teacher, schools use Microsoft Office, and I don't want to cause added stress by making extra work for her

    A teacher. Who can not learn new things.

    Cognitive disconnect?

    My wife is a vet (as in 'animal doctor'). She has tons of patience - for animals (horses, to be specific). When it comes to technology she has no patience whatsoever, and seems to have a complete lack of the urge to explore. You can guide her to press the button which says 'click' ten times, and will need to do the same the eleventh because she'll have forgotten how to do it. At her work they use Windows since all that crappy vet-software is built on the ramshackle house of cards called Microsoft - parts of it still need VB6...

    At home we have no Windows so she uses Linux. In her case it is Ubuntu, but if she happens to use one of my computers she's confronted with Debian running Xmonad. She grumbles, but then she always grumbles when it comes to computers. I don't notice her grumbling any more using Linux than she does using Windows. If she can, so can your wife - and as it seems to be her job to teach children about new things I hope she has the aptitude and open mind to pick up a new thing or two herself. If not, I pity the children under her care.

  • by SmallFurryCreature ( 593017 ) on Tuesday November 13, 2012 @03:11AM (#41964859) Journal

    A desktop, any desktop, is for using, not for admiring the same bloody animation over and over again. I use windows for gaming but have EVERYTHING turned off except the font options. Aero was disabled years ago. And I just tested it but my start menu shows instantly. A second? I would already be killing Ballmer with a rusty spoon if it took a tenth of a second. My life is worth more to me then wait a second everytime I want to do something.

    You are aware that all these startup animations and such are completly useless?E17 had to articiially slow the loading process on Linux to be able to show off its animation effect of the loading screen. Nice... and disabled. What the fuck is the logic behind that?

    My PC is not a movie prop. It doesn't have to look the part, it has a task to do and it should do its task as quickly as possible. Maybe if you disabled all the bling, your PC wouldn't need a full second to load a start menu.

    Is your life that devoid of meaning that it needs the soothing animation effect to make it tolerable? It is like people who complain about a tearing effect when they move a window around... who the fuck cares? I select a window, drag it to where I want it and I want it done as fast possible and not as nice as possible. I guess there are people who really do have all the compiz options on for more then the 1 minute it takes to get utterly tired of them.

    Maybe I am just wrong in thinking an OS is about its applications, not about its bling.

    Considering the Windows 7 guy was fired and the Windows 8 and Office girl was promoted, I am starting to feel very alone.

  • Re:Years later ... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by zrbyte ( 1666979 ) on Tuesday November 13, 2012 @03:59AM (#41965001)

    It would be nice to have a +1 "I hope you're right" mod.

  • by hairyfish ( 1653411 ) on Tuesday November 13, 2012 @05:10AM (#41965255)

    Windows 7 will be the last loved OS by Microsoft. Windows 8 will be rejected in an unprecedented manner. It will be rejected by users... that has been done before. Windows 8 will be rejected by developers -- the people Microsoft has most depended on. At the end of the day, what keeps people using Windows is the applications. And when people start coding for other platforms instead of Windows 8, that'll be the end of Microsoft's reign. After that, it's all coasting downhill under its own weight.

    Lol. Let share a little bit of wisdom with you. People don't stop using something because it sucks, people stop using things because there are "better" alternatives. The key word here is "better". Right now there is nothing that even comes close to Microsoft's suite of offerings for the corporate market. You might argue the Linux is technically better for reason X or Apple is better because reason Y, but the simple fact is that MS has the market cornered for business apps, and they are the incumbent, which is an extremely hard position to change. Don't be confused by Apple's recent success, consumer's are fickle which is why MS has invested heavily in Corporate lock-in. The only cases of MS "rejection" were because MS themselves had better alternatives, not the competition. Windows 8 might not be your cup of tea, but I've got a prediction for you. The only thing that will beat it will either be Windows 7 or Windows 9.

  • by somersault ( 912633 ) on Tuesday November 13, 2012 @09:48AM (#41966599) Homepage Journal

    Where does this expectation that a company should support old hardware/software forever on every new OS come from?

    From the fact that it's generally quite easy to do so. Not necessarily forever, but something like 10 years is very reasonable for keeping drivers available. Do you really expect everyone to have to buy new hardware every couple of years, when the "old" stuff still works fine in today's world? Would you be happy if your car manufacturer stopped servicing your car after a couple of years and told you to buy a new one?

    And why shouldn't a company in business to sell something want you to buy the newest model, their goal is to make money after all.

    They can do that if they want, but then why should anyone want to buy from them if they're just going to drop support without notice?

Where it is a duty to worship the sun it is pretty sure to be a crime to examine the laws of heat. -- Christopher Morley