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lots
10-13-2005, 09:26 AM
This is really just pure curiosity, as I dont know for sure about how Vista will handle OpenGL.

I have been seeing around the web that MS wants to take full control of the graphics pipeline from and control it directly through the OS. As a result, things like OpenGL will be handled by DirectX. Which is somewhat alarming.

When Vista arrives, will LW have to be modified to use DirectX? It seems like a pretty drastic change to me, to have to swap from a recently added OpenGL 2.0 API to DirectX. Surely there must be a solution that will not damage performance through some OpenGL to D3D conversion?

Heck, I'd be all for a linux version :) but thats me...

I dont know, anyone have any ideas about this?

Karmacop
10-13-2005, 09:51 AM
From what I've read, if you want the new opengl features in vista you'll need to run without the new windows interface.

Hopefully xp is supported for a lot longer, or Lightwave for Linux is released ...

Elmar Moelzer
10-13-2005, 09:53 AM
Well for now I would simply not consider buying Vista.
Heck even Win2k is still good for most things including LW and has IMHO not reached the end of its life cycle yet.

I am not 100% sure, but I have heard that it will not really make much of a difference in the end since the Windows OpenGL- support was only in regards to the OpenGL- software drivers that come with Windows and these are at 1.2 or so, if I am not mistaken.
The rest should still be via the Hardware Vendor OpenGL- drivers like it is now too for most of us that want to work seriously with OpenGL.
In any case it is a bit of an confusing situation and I will sit back and wait and watch the experiences of other people before I update my OS.
Heck, we still have mostly Win2k here anyway and unless it is for a 64bit machine, I am not going to update to XP any time soon...
To bad there is no Win2k 64...
CU
Elmar

Elmar Moelzer
10-13-2005, 10:02 AM
LOL, who needs all that new interface toy- crap anyway?
I have it all turned off on my laptop (only WinXp machine here, all others are running Win2k in classic mode ;) ). Call me a purist, but all that eyecandy is for gamers, hobbyists and people with to little other stuff to do in their lives ;)
I just wished they offered more customization options during the installation of Windows so I can prevent that stuff from wasting HD- space and dont have to go through the process of manually removing everything after the installation ;)
Funny sidenote:
In previous versions of Windows than Win2k it was possible to turn of the features for handicaped people during the installation, now MS obviously is convinced that you must have serious health issues if you install Windows on your machine and does not allow to turn them off anymore ;)
CU
Elmar

Captain Obvious
10-13-2005, 10:13 AM
Being a user interface design nerd, I must say there is nothing wrong with eye-candy, as such. In fact, many things that many people would consider eye-candy is actually a very helpful tool. Humans are largely visual, and we don't interact well with computers. In many circumstance, getting things to behave sort of like we'd expect them to in real life can be a big help. For example, when you drag around a window it helps to see the content moved about in real-time instead of just a border like you did ten years ago. It doesn't really serve a purpose, you might think (honestly, how often to you really need to see what's inside the window to know where to put it?), but it helps all the same. Another good example is Mac OS X's Exposť feature. When you activate it, the windows zoom into place. They don't just pop up. I've heard quite a few people call this useless eye-candy, but things like this really make things more fluid. Objects in real life don't just go away and appear somewhere else. They move there.

That said, I haven't seen much Aero does better than the current Windows version. It just does it looking better. Not necessarily a bad thing, even if it doesn't help. But when it comes to Vista, it seems you pay a rather hefty price for the pretty looks. Supposedly, while you can replace the OpenGL drivers for full native support, if you run OpenGL side by side with Direct3D (which you do all the time if you use Aero), it is still emulated. Feh.

Elmar Moelzer
10-13-2005, 10:23 AM
Well, the only thing Linux does not have is a fully working DirectX support and some better driver support too, I guess.
The first thing will most likely never happen. Thats why I think that Linux will never be widely used among consumers...
To me DirectX was Microsofts best idea. It gives them something that cant be copied by anyone else. Only MS OSes will ever have DirectX and this is going to secure their market position among consumers for a looong time.

CU
Elmar

Karmacop
10-13-2005, 10:40 AM
LOL, who needs all that new interface toy- crap anyway?
I have it all turned off on my laptop (only WinXp machine here, all others are running Win2k in classic mode ;) ). Call me a purist, but all that eyecandy is for gamers, hobbyists and people with to little other stuff to do in their lives ;)

I have it turned off too ;) The default windows xp interface is slow, large, and ugly. Classic windows looks much nicer, but that's not the problem. The problem is most people will say "if I want to play this open gl game it makes windows look bad, open gl must be bad". So it turns the average person against open gl, which is bad.


Well, the only thing Linux does not have is a fully working DirectX support and some better driver support too, I guess.
The first thing will most likely never happen. Thats why I think that Linux will never be widely used among consumers...

Who cares about directx? Not me :) If Lightwave worked on Linux I'd switch straight away, I have a replacement for everything else :)

EDIT: Oh, and nice sig Elmar, I hope you show some more renders soon .. :)

lots
10-13-2005, 12:02 PM
Oh I turn off the eye candy as well. That's not the issue :) Though the main reason i turn off the eye candy is because it is ugly and annoying :) I'm just wondering what direction LW is headed. If future development on the Windows platform is planned, then it would make sense to take advantage of newer versions of the OS. There are some nice things that Vista could bring to the table. The new UI, for one, is driven by the video card, thus off loading alot of the work to the GPU, as opposed to the style today. Fortunately (or unfortunately depending on your point of view :P), many of vista's features are being back ported to XP. So if you want to have some of the new features, you can. Neat. :P I guess this means we can be selective and only get updates that WE think we need (ie: no eye-candy).

So is OpenGL on windows doomed? Or will it be translated to the efficiency that Win32 binaries are on WoW64 (X64's 32bit module)? Knowing the performance of WoW64 makes me think MS is able to support OpenGL calls through a translation layer to DirectX with as small a performance hit as WoW64 has.

Of cource that assumes that OpenGL is not supported by Windows' graphics sub system nativly....

Captain Obvious
10-13-2005, 01:41 PM
The offloading of the GUI to the GPU is not entirely beneficial for 3D graphics. A 3D application strives to take advantage of the GPU for all viewports as much as possible. If you have to have all the interface in the VRAM at the same time, it can potentially decrease performance. In fact, it might sometimes be better to just do it on the CPU instead, and do away with all silly alpha blending and what have you.

lots
10-13-2005, 02:00 PM
Well in that context yes :) But generally speaking, doing email, surfing the web, off loading to the GPU in the general usage point of view, would be pretty handy if you need CPU intensive things. This could be benificial during rendering, when the OpenGL viewports aren't updated anyway :)

I guess its a mixed blessing.. it can hurt and help performance..