Wednesday, March 13th 2019

DirectX 12 Makes Windows 7 Debut With Latest World of Warcraft Patch

In what is likely to create a good deal of controversy along with a few cheers, Blizzard will be adding DirectX 12 support to World of Warcraft on Windows 7 thanks to a bit of effort from Microsoft. You might be wondering how that is possible? Well after seeing massive performance gains in WoW when Blizzard released their DirectX 12 update for Windows 10 in late 2018, resulted in the company wanting to bring those performance improvements to gamers still holding out on Windows 7. To facilitate this, they began talking with Microsoft who after getting a great deal of feedback from Blizzard decided to act on it. To achieve this Microsoft decided to port the user mode D3D12 runtime to Windows 7, which will unblock developers, thereby allows them to take advantage of the latest improvements that the DirectX 12 API offers while still giving full support to customers on older operating systems.

For now, World of Warcraft is the first game to run in DirectX 12 on Windows 7 with the latest 8.1.5 patch. However, they will not be the last as more developers are working on porting DirectX 12 games to Windows 7 with more announcements to follow. Microsoft, of course, has taken it upon themselves to remind everyone that the best possible performance with DirectX 12 will still be had on Windows 10 due to numerous OS optimizations. How true this is remains to be seen, but for many curmudgeons still holding out on Windows 7, this will likely be seen as a form of vindication for sticking with the now venerable OS.
Source: MSDN Blog
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111 Comments on DirectX 12 Makes Windows 7 Debut With Latest World of Warcraft Patch

#26
Easo
Totally unexpected, but, apparently, this is per-application only. There is no magic update, which enables it, the application will do it for itself and only.
Should have just let it die, EOL is less than a year away.
etayorius, post: 4011302, member: 93395"
Or you could just use Windows 10 LTSB or Windows 10 LTSC
Yeah, tell me again how a home user can get LTSB, legally. I'll wait :)
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#27
Tomorrow
Easo, post: 4011427, member: 70901"
Totally unexpected, but, apparently, this is per-application only. There is no magic update, which enables it, the application will do it for itself and only.
Should have just let it die, EOL is less than a year away.


Yeah, tell me again how a home user can get LTSB, legally. I'll wait :)
https://software-download.microsoft.com/download/sg/17763.107.101029-1455.rs5_release_svc_refresh_CLIENT_LTSC_EVAL_x64FRE_en-us.iso

From: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/evalcenter/evaluate-windows-10-enterprise
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#29
R0H1T
lexluthermiester, post: 4011311, member: 134537"
Myth. There are no such limitations except were artificially implemented deliberately by Microsoft. There are no real reasons why DX12 can't run on Windows 7 or 8.1, just like there was no real reason why DX10/11 couldn't run on XP. In fact, I'd bet real money DX12 could run on XP with the right supporting code libraries included in.


This is my current go-to version of 10.
This isn't a myth, you can't backport WDDM 2.0 to win7 without rewriting a lot of code, by a lot I mean something that's virtually impossible with the costs associated. Now whether WDDM itself is an artificial wall created by MS that's another debate altogether, but their key business is OS so they have to upsell the latest versions somehow.
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#31
lexluthermiester
Easo, post: 4011427, member: 70901"
Yeah, tell me again how a home user can get LTSB, legally. I'll wait :)
Buy a license, download the iso from Microsoft.
R0H1T, post: 4011479, member: 131092"
you can't backport WDDM 2.0 to win7 without rewriting a lot of code
You don't need WDDM 2.0 to implement DX12 code. Myth.
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#32
R0H1T
lexluthermiester, post: 4011486, member: 134537"
You don't need WDDM 2.0 to implement DX12 code
Technically no but then you won't get everything that comes with DX12 under win10 either.
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#33
lexluthermiester
Tomorrow, post: 4011483, member: 136792"
https://winaero.com/blog/upgrade-windows-10-evaluation-to-full-version-easily/
In Home and Pro versions the only nags on unactivated copy are watermark and not being able to set desktop background with windows tools.
That is effectively stealing. Easo was asking for a lawful method. It is possible for a home user to buy a license for Enterprise, but you have to jump through a few hoops.

R0H1T, post: 4011488, member: 131092"
Technically no but then you won't get everything that comes with DX12 under win10 either.
That's not true either. It's all software. Software is flexible and can be made to work regardless of where it's run. Examples you say? Windows games on Linux, Windows 9x games on NT based Windows, DOS games in Windows 10, Halo 2 modified to run on XP. It's all flexible, any limitations are only problems to be solved and in the case of DX12 running on Windows 7(or even Vista for that matter), it's only a matter of including the right modifications and code libraries.
Posted on Reply
#34
Tomorrow
lexluthermiester, post: 4011493, member: 134537"
That is effectively stealing. Easo was asking for a lawful method. It is possible for a home user to buy a license for Enterprise, but you have to jump through a few hoops.
Enterprise EVAL to full upgrade still requires valid license so i fail to see how that is stealing.

Regarding using Home or Pro past activation period despite nags...well that is a lot more gray. It's not stealing per se because digital copies are limitless and thus the original owner does not lose an item but it is certainly a morally dubious method to use client version.

When it comes to the topic itself if find it hard to believe that WoW runs DX12 on Win7 just with the included game files. If that's the case then all DX12 games which all ship with DX12 executables should run, but alas they don't because of missing system level support libraries.

My guess is that MS has a whitelist system in place to allow DX12 on Win7. Meaning any game not on the whitelist will not run in DX12 mode. I hope it's actually kind of like Nvidia supporting Adaptive Sync where only a handful of products are certified while the rest may work but may also be somewhat buggy.
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#35
lexluthermiester
Tomorrow, post: 4011502, member: 136792"
Enterprise EVAL to full upgrade still requires valid license so i fail to see how that is stealing.
The article you quoted...
Tomorrow, post: 4011483, member: 136792"
https://winaero.com/blog/upgrade-windows-10-evaluation-to-full-version-easily/
...describes a registry hack to "Change the EditionID value data from EnterpriseEval to Enterprise". That is stealing if you don't own a valid license, which most people don't.
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#36
MrGenius
natr0n, post: 4011092, member: 102496"
WoW addicts actually did something that could benefit us all for once.
There was The Corrupted Blood Incident. Which has been used as a case study of sorts. Not that they participated in it intentionally. Nonetheless, it was something that could benefit us all by analyzing how players behaved and applying it to potential real world scenarios. Skip to 5:50 to see where I got the idea.
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#37
lynx29
64K, post: 4011095, member: 148270"
I'm pretty impressed with MS lately. First the Master Chief Collection coming to PC and on Steam and now this. It's even more impressive because for a while there MS was intent on getting everyone on Win 10 one way or another and DX12 was one of there lures. I wonder now if MS will extend support for Win 7 beyond Jan of next year.
Don't worry, they already announced popups are coming to Win 7 next month reminding you you need to upgrade to Win 10 before its too late. They say it will be easy to turn off, but I doubt it. lol
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#38
newtekie1
Semi-Retired Folder
Argh, this sucks. The death of Windows 7 can't come quick enough. Using that OS is like riding a dinosaur to work at this point.
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#39
Tomorrow
newtekie1, post: 4011531, member: 20670"
Argh, this sucks. The death of Windows 7 can't come quick enough. Using that OS is like riding a dinosaur to work at this point.
A few games getting DX12 support in Win7 will not change the tide. Besides newer hardware comes wiith Win10 exclusively. Laptops especially.
Besides assuming you are on Win10 what does it matter to you when and if Win7 support ends?

And calling it a dinosaur is a gross exaggeration. Pre-XP yes but Win7 and even Vista are still quite modern in terms of how they do things.
Posted on Reply
#40
newtekie1
Semi-Retired Folder
Tomorrow, post: 4011546, member: 136792"
Besides assuming you are on Win10 what does it matter to you when and if Win7 support ends?
Because I still have to work on that PoS* on a daily basis until it dies.

Tomorrow, post: 4011546, member: 136792"
And calling it a dinosaur is a gross exaggeration. Pre-XP yes but Win7 and even Vista are still quite modern in terms of how they do things.
Of course it is an exaggeration, that's the point. But using it for any length of time after having been on 10 for so long, feels like using a dinosaur. I find myself regularly trying to do something when on a Win7 machine that I do regularly on Win10 only to remember that Win7 doesn't have that function.

* - Yes, I'm well aware calling it a PoS is also an exaggeration. It's not that bad, but it's time to put it out to pasture.
Posted on Reply
#41
lexluthermiester
newtekie1, post: 4011531, member: 20670"
Argh, this sucks. The death of Windows 7 can't come quick enough. Using that OS is like riding a dinosaur to work at this point.
News flash for you there, If you're running Windows 10, you're running a system the inner workings of which are VERY similar to 7. Windows 10 has a new UI, IE a face transplant, but otherwise nearly the same. Hardware drivers are still interchangeable and programs made for 7 run flawlessly on 10 with very few exceptions. If you think 7 is a dinosaur compared to 10, I'd like to know what drugs you're using so I can avoid them.
Tomorrow, post: 4011546, member: 136792"
And calling it a dinosaur is a gross exaggeration. Pre-XP yes but Win7 and even Vista are still quite modern in terms of how they do things.
This.

newtekie1, post: 4011561, member: 20670"
I find myself regularly trying to do something when on a Win7 machine that I do regularly on Win10 only to remember that Win7 doesn't have that function.
Funny, I'm same experience in reverse and it's not fun or productive.
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#42
newtekie1
Semi-Retired Folder
lexluthermiester, post: 4011572, member: 134537"
News flash for you there, If you're running Windows 10, you're running a system the inner workings of which are VERY similar to 7. Windows 10 has a new UI, IE a face transplant, but otherwise nearly the same. Hardware drivers are still interchangeable and programs made for 7 run flawlessly on 10 with very few exceptions. If you think 7 is a dinosaur compared to 10, I'd like to know what drugs you're using so I can avoid them.
Not really a news flash to me, but whatever. The UI is what makes Win 10 better and what makes Win 7 feel dated. If Win 7 had the same improvements that 10 had, I'd happily still use it.

lexluthermiester, post: 4011572, member: 134537"
Funny, I'm same experience in reverse and it's not fun or productive.
I have yet to find a single thing that Win 7 does that Win 10 doesn't, maybe you can enlighten me?
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#43
darksf
Windows 7 support will die :O Snap no more spam updates for dummy users ? If you browse the net your PC is going to die :O All of that is bullshit by first rule since the dawn of the Internet Dont get your computer directly exposed to the Internet - stay behind a router with some firewall. It will be easier to get a virus :O Well use an antivirus if you are that afraid or just don't open phishing e-mails and visit doubtfull websites and download random torrents.It is that easy!
About DX12 running on windows 7 well it is an set of APIs if microsoft had the wish they could port it and to Linux and any other OS in existence that has the proper GPU drivers and GPU hardware support.My personal opionion as an Win7 user at home - I don't care my favorite game WoT just finally recieved full DX11.0 support :D My opinion as someone who hates fake and marketing locks of certain features - Don't go against the market you will loose. Since Vulkan API is a real threat to DX12 you can't ingnore it and force devs to use it instead of your product so they can have bigger user coverage and you to force users to switch to the new OS because of an artificial locks.

At the end i believe MS will stop working on a per title basis and just release DX12 to Win7 as an stand alone the way it should be.
Posted on Reply
#44
lexluthermiester
newtekie1, post: 4011642, member: 20670"
The UI is what makes Win 10 better and what makes Win 7 feel dated.
That is your opinion, not shared by everyone.

newtekie1, post: 4011642, member: 20670"
I have yet to find a single thing that Win 7 does that Win 10 doesn't, maybe you can enlighten me?
A whole ton of system configs become a pain to access or just plain don't exist.
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#45
Prima.Vera
Just remember guys, Win 7 is heavely used in the Enterprise enviroments. Most of companies are still using it and Win 10 migrations are slow as f.
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#46
lexluthermiester
Prima.Vera, post: 4011676, member: 98685"
Just remember guys, Win 7 is heavily used in the Enterprise environments. Most of companies are still using it and Win 10 migrations are slow as f.
Steam stats show gamers are slow on the uptake as well. Though the margin is lower with 10 being 65% and 7 being 27% as of the time of this post.
https://store.steampowered.com/hwsurvey
Posted on Reply
#47
newtekie1
Semi-Retired Folder
lexluthermiester, post: 4011661, member: 134537"
A whole ton of system configs become a pain to access or just plain don't exist.
None of the configs, as far as I've found, have been completely removed from Windows 10. And just because something has been moved, doesn't mean it is a pain in the ass to access. In fact, I find most of the configurations that I use are actually made easier to find in Win10, once you realize where they have been moved to.

Hell, the right click on the start menu to directly access things like Computer Management, PowerShell, Power Options, Run, Settings, Network & Internet Settings, Event Viewer is awesome. The right click menu on the Start button alone is worth switching to Windows 10.
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#48
etayorius
rtwjunkie, post: 4011334, member: 56774"
It’s going to be a per game basis, to only work with the patched games. WOW is first one. It will be distributed as a game patch, not MS.
I see... probably not worth to go back to Win7 just for one game.
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#49
R0H1T
lexluthermiester, post: 4011493, member: 134537"
That is effectively stealing. Easo was asking for a lawful method. It is possible for a home user to buy a license for Enterprise, but you have to jump through a few hoops.


That's not true either. It's all software. Software is flexible and can be made to work regardless of where it's run. Examples you say? Windows games on Linux, Windows 9x games on NT based Windows, DOS games in Windows 10, Halo 2 modified to run on XP. It's all flexible, any limitations are only problems to be solved and in the case of DX12 running on Windows 7(or even Vista for that matter), it's only a matter of including the right modifications and code libraries.
Oh really, how do you suppose many of the DX12 features will work without kernel level support?

Emulation, windows gaming on linux (via Wine?) often takes a massive performance hit. The same goes for any sort of emulation, granted it also depends on the hardware but native performance will always be higher. Admittedly we'll have to see what DX12 features WoW has on win7, but it goes without saying that not everything will work as it does on win10.
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#50
lexluthermiester
R0H1T, post: 4011710, member: 131092"
Oh really, how do you suppose many of the DX12 features will work without kernel level support?
How does Vulkan work without kernel level support? Simple, doesn't need it.
R0H1T, post: 4011710, member: 131092"
Emulation, windows gaming on linux (via Wine?)
Incorrect.
R0H1T, post: 4011710, member: 131092"
often takes a massive performance hit.
Also incorrect.
R0H1T, post: 4011710, member: 131092"
The same goes for any sort of emulation
Your statement shows you don't really understand how things work.
R0H1T, post: 4011710, member: 131092"
Admittedly we'll have to see what DX12 features WoW has on win7, but it goes without saying that not everything will work as it does on win10.
It'll be whatever Blizzard wants to implement.
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