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Windows 10 Will Ship With DirectX 12

In a blog post, Bryan Langley from Microsoft has written that the final version of the just-announced Windows 10 will come with DirectX 12. To be clear, the current technical preview that's available does not come with DirectX 12.

In the blog post, Langley points out that Microsoft has also been working with Epic to create a DirectX 12 branch in the Unreal Engine 4 GitHub repository. If you've been granted a pass to the DirectX 12 Early Access program, you can already kick off your development for the new API on Windows 10.

The screenshot provided above is of Epic's UE4.4 Landscape Mountains demo running on Intel Haswell graphics hardware. (Yes, we would have liked a higher-resolution image too.)

What makes DirectX 12 so interesting is that it allows developers to code much closer to the hardware, resulting in reduced overhead and therefore improved performance. This is similar to AMD's already-available Mantle API, which was designed from the ground up to deliver better performance than DirectX 11.

Of course, it's all jolly good that Windows 10 will support DirectX 12, but that doesn't really matter if the hardware support isn't there. Well, the good news is that back in March at GDC, both Nvidia and AMD confirmed that DirectX 12 will be supported on all of the current hardware, which for Nvidia are Fermi-, Kepler- and Maxwell-based GPUs and for AMD is its GCN hardware. Whether the two companies will live up to their promises remains to be seen, but we're going to remain hopeful.

Follow Niels Broekhuijsen @NBroekhuijsen. Follow us @tomshardware, on Facebook and on Google+.

  • therogerwilco
    YAY!!!!!!
    Reply
  • Innocent_Bystander
    You'd hope so.
    That aside, Windows 10 is shaping up to be something really good. I hope they pull it off.
    Reply
  • MumblinBerk
    Sounds great. Looks exciting. Closer access to the hardware layer would be great. But, will MS now deny Win7 users access to DX12, to force migration to 9? Oh, sorry, Win 10?
    Reply
  • red77star
    What about Windows 7?
    Reply
  • RCguitarist
    You know they will not allow 7 to run DX12. Just like they did with not letting XP run DX10 or 11.
    Reply
  • voreo
    Heres to hoping the pricing rumors of 10 are true, then it wont matter, everyone should be able to move on a lot smoother , provided the final product is also a relief to businesses.

    I loved the transition to 8/8.1 but i would like to see all the flack ms received from 8 vanish
    Reply
  • MumblinBerk
    14301333 said:
    I loved the transition to 8/8.1 but i would like to see all the flack ms received from 8 vanish
    That is very, very unlikely.

    I'm hoping the whole event can be used to bring MS and it's CUSTOMERS closer.
    It is a learning opportunity. A direction change would be good for everyone.

    Distribution of DirectX 12 to existing Win7 users would be an EXCELLENT place to start,
    by engendering good will, and begin to re-establish trust with it's loyal customer base.

    Again... very, very unlikely.
    Reply
  • IndignantSkeptic
    WTF happened to Windows 9?
    Reply
  • dstarr3
    14301635 said:
    WTF happened to Windows 9?

    Windows 7 ate 9.
    Reply
  • The_Icon
    I just hope for a free upgrade to Windows 10 from 8.1.
    Reply