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Microsoft Talks Hardware Acceleration in Windows 8

By - Source: The Verge | B 72 comments

Microsoft talks about graphics hardware acceleration in Windows 8, claiming a 438-percent increase in simple geometry rendering over Windows 7.

The latest Building Windows 8 blog details graphics hardware acceleration in the upcoming OS which will come packed with DirectX 11.1. The company said that it's approaching the graphical user interface (GUI) from two perspectives: raw performance and battery life. To tackle both, the company has implemented a unified graphics subsystem embodied in the new version of DirectX.

According to the post, Windows 8 divides and balances the process of rendering text, shapes and images between the CPU and GPU, giving each a task that it can achieve most efficiently. Thanks to this method, Microsoft is seeing an increased framerate of up to 336-percent in rendering titles and headings (compared to Windows 7), up to 438-percent in rendering simple geometry, and a 40-percent improvement in JPEG rendering.

"To improve apps that don’t need to redraw the entire screen for each frame, we optimized how DirectX deals with redrawing just portions of the screen and how it scrolls," the blog reads. "This work not only improves app efficiency and performance, but since it reduces redundant drawing and reduces the number of times graphics data needs to be copied in memory, it also reduces power consumption, thus increasing battery life."

Microsoft also said the Metro style platform was actually built on top of DirectX -- meaning all apps take full advantage of the graphics hardware on the system, regardless of the programming language and framework the developer chooses. The post goes on to state that the new Direct3D 11.1 API is the foundation for hardware acceleration of 2D graphics and text, image processing, 3D graphics and computaton, and video.

"The new API makes it much simpler to mix different types of content in a single scene because that single API now manages all of the GPU resources associated with rendering. This also reduces memory usage by eliminating the redundancy involved in creating multiple graphics device-management objects in app code. In addition, Direct3D 11.1 provides a uniform way for apps to access the various capabilities of different graphics hardware. It provides mechanisms for the app to determine what features are available, and then only uses those capabilities. This enables apps to make maximum use of the GPU’s capabilities, whether the GPU was designed for long battery life on a tablet, or high-end gaming on a desktop PC."

To read the full blog, head here.

 

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Top Comments
  • 24 Hide
    toddybody , July 24, 2012 1:18 PM
    I want to bitch about W8, because of all the Metro UI and mobile oriented designs. That said, these HW accelerations and boot time reductions are keeping me optimistic
  • 15 Hide
    Anonymous , July 24, 2012 1:17 PM
    Thats great, to show us how much faster it is than windows 7, wherein they removed hardware acceleration, so that when they put it back they could tell us how much faster their new unecessary OS will be. How bout telling us how much faster it is than XP.
Other Comments
  • 15 Hide
    Anonymous , July 24, 2012 1:17 PM
    Thats great, to show us how much faster it is than windows 7, wherein they removed hardware acceleration, so that when they put it back they could tell us how much faster their new unecessary OS will be. How bout telling us how much faster it is than XP.
  • 24 Hide
    toddybody , July 24, 2012 1:18 PM
    I want to bitch about W8, because of all the Metro UI and mobile oriented designs. That said, these HW accelerations and boot time reductions are keeping me optimistic
  • 5 Hide
    syrious1 , July 24, 2012 1:40 PM
    You can see the DirectX improvments in the latest buld of Office 2013 preview, check it out.
  • 3 Hide
    hannibal , July 24, 2012 1:42 PM
    Well in the main article they say that this is mainly to ingrease the 2D speed. And allso the speed of the most low power systems. There are some 3D improvements allso, but 2D is the area where there is the biggest advantage.
  • -1 Hide
    EDVINASM , July 24, 2012 1:47 PM
    I don't really care about Windows 8 other than I will have it for free (no funny stuff). I will have my fingers crossed that remote desktop will not show artefacts and rainbows when connected to though.. Hope that will be accelerated properly.
    As for Metro - I just hope it will crash and burn.
  • 7 Hide
    CaedenV , July 24, 2012 1:48 PM
    UCNetworkTechThats great, to show us how much faster it is than windows 7, wherein they removed hardware acceleration, so that when they put it back they could tell us how much faster their new unecessary OS will be. How bout telling us how much faster it is than XP.

    actually Aero in Win7 added a bit of hardware acceleration, and is the main reason why win7 runs so much smoother than Vista.

    It is changes like these that make me want win8 in spite of metro. There are tons of great little improvements like this that make win8 run smooth on my netbooks in spite of their lack of resources. Still not sold on the desktop... but I am leaning more and more towards it.
  • 7 Hide
    back_by_demand , July 24, 2012 1:48 PM
    At what point will the opinions of "I hatez Metroz" die down and people finally take notice of the masses and masses of actual real life improvements
    ...
    Part of me wants to get Server 2012, some of the features look PHAT!
  • 7 Hide
    enewmen , July 24, 2012 1:48 PM
    toddybodyI want to bitch about W8, because of all the Metro UI and mobile oriented designs. That said, these HW accelerations and boot time reductions are keeping me optimistic

    I was whining and complaining why phones can't run Windows and Windows applications for years. Such as running a Windows based translater, a full-size desktop type browser, REAL applications (not just castraterd "moble" versions) or simply plug in a USB keyboard & mouse and mini-HDMI to a 1080p monitor for a real DX11.1 desktop like experience I can take with me in my pocket. (just slower)
    So I'm also holding back my W8 bitching for now to keep this dream of one architecture on every size device a reality. At least any big problems will be fixed by W9.
  • -7 Hide
    killerclick , July 24, 2012 2:06 PM
    I don't get what's the halabaloo about faster boot times, like that can offset the constant switching between desktop and Metro you'll be forced to do, and the fact you're being pushed into the Metro walled garden where Microsoft decides which apps you can run, and the fact that you'll be using a tablet UI on your PC.

    Also, who turns off or reboots their computer, anyway? Maybe if you use a laptop, but that's not a proper computer. Last time I booted my desktop was 114 hours (almost 5 days) ago, when I was installing a new GPU. Suspend to RAM turns the computer off and on in like 5 seconds if you're worried about wasting electricity.
  • 6 Hide
    anonymous_user , July 24, 2012 2:17 PM
    killerclickAlso, who turns off or reboots their computer, anyway? Maybe if you use a laptop, but that's not a proper computer. Last time I booted my desktop was 114 hours (almost 5 days) ago, when I was installing a new GPU. Suspend to RAM turns the computer off and on in like 5 seconds if you're worried about wasting electricity.

    First I'd love to hear your definition of a "proper computer". Second there are people who dual-boot and thus reboot for that. Just because you prefer to use suspend doesn't invalidate other people's decision to reboot or shutdown.
  • 0 Hide
    killerclick , July 24, 2012 2:20 PM
    back_by_demandAt what point will the opinions of "I hatez Metroz" die down and people finally take notice of the masses and masses of actual real life improvements...


    Never. Metro has to die and those in Microsoft who are pushing it need to get kicked to the curb.

    Microsoft is trying to stage a coup to rush everybody to Metro, where they decide which apps you can use and take a 30% cut from app sales. To do that, they have to kill the desktop as soon as possible, which is why they won't allow users to disable Metro and why they already started pulling support from some features in Windows 7 (desktop gadgets), with more to come in the following months. They don't mind losing desktop market share, because they see that Apple money and they would be fine with throwing even 50% desktop Windows users under the bus if they could retain those 20% diehard fanboys who are gushing about W8, WP8, Surface, etc.
  • 4 Hide
    mayankleoboy1 , July 24, 2012 2:30 PM
    nothing like hyping HWA to woo gamers into buying win8 :/ 
  • 5 Hide
    ohim , July 24, 2012 2:44 PM
    mayankleoboy1nothing like hyping HWA to woo gamers into buying win8

    Actually that has nothing to do with gaming, till now everybody was bitching about metro, now you bitch about HWA ? OK we get it, no matter how many improvements they did to Win 8 you don`t want it, now please go away with useless comments.

    @killerclick i like to shut down my computer, i don`t like it to have electricity run inside it for nothing.

    Incredible, now bitching about faster boots, what else ? bitch about color GUI?
  • -1 Hide
    killerclick , July 24, 2012 2:47 PM
    ohimIncredible, now bitching about faster boots


    Not bitching about faster boots, but the price for saving like 20 seconds every time you boot (in my case once in two weeks, for most people maybe 2 minutes a day total) is too high - assuming you have a problem with Metro, as most people here seem to.
  • -5 Hide
    bryonhowley , July 24, 2012 2:50 PM
    Windows 8 is great and the faster boot times and acceleration is just another reason I will be upgrading to it as soon as it comes out. As far as Metro there is no difference as far as mouse clicks speed performance or function between starting a program in Windows 7 or Windows 8. The wine bags complaining about Windows 8 have nether installed or even used Windows 8 but just need something to complain about so they post the same shit in every Windows 8 related post. The best thing Microsoft could do would be to ensure that no Start Menu hacks patches addins or anything else can ever be installed in Windows 8. You do not like Windows 8 get over get a life or what ever you have to do or just move over to Linux and compile your kernel!
  • 1 Hide
    megiv , July 24, 2012 2:53 PM
    So when does MS plan to update XNA w/ DX 11.1?
  • 0 Hide
    atikkur , July 24, 2012 2:58 PM
    You can talk all you want MS.
  • 5 Hide
    math1337 , July 24, 2012 3:00 PM
    It's cool as long as these improvements apply to desktop as well. That's where I will be spending 99% of my time anyways.

    (1% time spent launching desktop applications using the start menu.
  • 9 Hide
    mayankleoboy1 , July 24, 2012 3:06 PM
    just used the office 2013.
    to the same work, i have to click more number of times, compared to office2010.
  • 3 Hide
    ejb222 , July 24, 2012 3:11 PM
    I've noticed W8 is pretty fast...definitely faster than W7. I've really grown to like it. I don't understand why people would complain that its faster. People have no problem spending $100 or more on a SSD but when it comes to HWA there's an issue? Sounds like people just need something to troll about. But Trolololo all you want haters...doesn't change the FACT that W8 has a ton of enhancements. And yes, my W8 is running on my desktop. Zero issues on my desktop.
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