The online racing simulator
Spinoff : DirectX and Windows version discussion
(291 posts, started )
Quote from cargame.nl :If that tyre psychics saga is not going to be completed / shutdown / put behind then there is no LFS future to begin with. How many times I now have heard the last years; "after the tyre psychics have been updated", it's becoming uncountable.

I don't really care about the tire psychics update, progress in any form is good. If we can move forward in any way, that's a good thing. If nothing else, I'm quite happy with Scawen working on other things while we all wait for the new tire model.
I still recall the moaning here about how the tires physics need update badly and it should be top priority... It's not that long, only about like 5 years ago? Now Scawen did listen to it and is working hard toward the goal. Yeah, it takes long, maybe way much longer than most people would like. But in the end he's doing just what players did ask him to do. And I hope he will nail it down soon.
Quote from cargame.nl :If that tyre psychics saga is not going to be completed / shutdown / put behind then there is no LFS future to begin with. How many times I now have heard the last years; "after the tyre psychics have been updated", it's becoming uncountable.

Thanks Dave - big smile on my face reading "psychics" instead of "physics"
(Now, was that accidental or am I missing the joke?)

But, hell yes, agreed. We can fantasise about a lovely multi-platform future for LFS, but tyre physics first please. This recent venture into DX tweaks is great to give the poor guy a short break from the tyre model but let's not extend it too far

Edit: ...OR, I'd also be OK with Scavier saying "tyre model is postponed indefinitely, but here are some new tracks"...
Quote from Neilser :
(Now, was that accidental

Yes.. I am switching languages all the time, or I post here and talk at the same time in voice.. You should try that and see how it works out. In daily life I sometimes speak in the wrong language already without realizing it.

But a smile is good
Quote from Dygear :I'm quite happy with Scawen working on other things while we all wait for the new tire model.

It shouldn't be depended on only one person doing programming stuff. Multiple projects within a project cannot be done by one person at the same time. Thats the whole problem here. If some smart kid already has loads of experience to port DX9 to OpenGL it's better to ask him/her to do that. You see why Assetto Corsa is moving so fast lately, the team is much bigger. I am sure there are lots of talented young people in the UK.

Scawen maybe still ignores it, but he is aging, it's getting slower and slower by nature
Quote from cargame.nl :
Scawen maybe still ignores it, but he is aging, it's getting slower and slower by nature

You are forgeting about Leo
Many games work on WinXP and many people still use it, if not the highest number of computers is still with WinXP.
They work, they are fast and hardly a tie with Win7 in terms of speed. On older machines they are superior and something like Vista or Win7 just slows down the whole computer where as WinXP is lightweight and runs fast.

Games should be able to fall back to DX9 and many do, including craziness like Crysis etc. it's all playable on DX9 graphic cards.

Only thing unplayable now on DX9 is Assetto Corsa that refuses to fall back on DX9 due to their fancy and a little messy graphics and the whole engine.

Please keep support of older versions of DX9, personally I don't need fancy shaders and motion blurs and that's all DX10+ is all about, shaders and minor improvements in batch sizes.

I think more interesting would be Mantle and possibly step away from DX all together.
Mantle? What for? Does LFS has performance issues with graphics? It will be more likely CPU bound when Scawen will add further features to simulation and physics. So if he decides to go away from DX, OGL is the only answer. Performance wise it's sufficient, and it's much better supported than Mantle (and will be, for a decade or two at least).
Except OpenGL isn't the answer. OpenGL only provides 1 piece of the whole puzzle. LFS would actually need to transition to something like SDL which is more of a complete DirectX functionality match (handles input, sound, graphics, etc).

I think it'd be foolish for Scawen to do this though. LFS runs more than sufficient in WINE. Why waste more time porting to a different graphics API for no benefit.
Quote from JackCY :Many games work on WinXP and many people still use it, if not the highest number of computers is still with WinXP.
They work, they are fast and hardly a tie with Win7 in terms of speed. On older machines they are superior and something like Vista or Win7 just slows down the whole computer where as WinXP is lightweight and runs fast.

Games should be able to fall back to DX9 and many do, including craziness like Crysis etc. it's all playable on DX9 graphic cards.

Only thing unplayable now on DX9 is Assetto Corsa that refuses to fall back on DX9 due to their fancy and a little messy graphics and the whole engine.

Please keep support of older versions of DX9, personally I don't need fancy shaders and motion blurs and that's all DX10+ is all about, shaders and minor improvements in batch sizes.

I think more interesting would be Mantle and possibly step away from DX all together.

You are aware that this is 2014 I assume.

If we want to accept that something works so why change it, then why have we moved on from punch cards ?

Or, why have we moved on from Model T's, they work well so why do we need anything better ?

If your PC is too slow to run later games, ie, anything since 2009, then perhaps it's time to move on.

If you PC is so slow it can't deal with Win 7, which most XP dual cores do without an issue, then perhaps it's time to accept that single cores are a bit past it now, at least for gaming !

DX10 is too new for you ?, cool, be happy with Win98 SE, don't upgrade to ME, and be happy playing games on this platform.

Phuq, my PC is from 2008 and still more than happily deals with DX11 titles. XP, as good as it is as an OS, is in fact over 10 years old, while I disagree with any opinion to do away with it, it is important to realise that technology does in fact move on.

DX9 is the bees knees in graphics ? Yeah, right.

Rant time !
IMHO, why don't game makers actually move away from the windoze platform completely, embrace OpenGL and the Debian distribution, grow Linux support for drivers and graphics, allow gaming and computing to move on from the windows money fed upgrade path. Allow the unwashed masses to accept that a PC doesn't need to mean windows and office.

But no, games makers are scared, generally, to accept change, probably more than users.
Hopefully steam moving to support Linux May start the ball rolling.
Quote from JackCY :They work, they are fast and hardly a tie with Win7 in terms of speed. On older machines they are superior and something like Vista or Win7 just slows down the whole computer where as WinXP is lightweight and runs fast.

If your machine suffers from performance loss with W7 then you must be running some properly ancient hardware. Which is fine by itself if that's good enough for you, but technology and game development shouldn't be limited by obsolete, outdated hardware and operating systems.

What comes after W7 support ends is the interesting question however. MS clearly isn't interested in what the gamers want. Linux with the aid of Valves SteamOS machines is where developers should be paying close attention, because that just might be the way of things to come.
Quote from Matrixi :If your machine suffers from performance loss with W7 then you must be running some properly ancient hardware.

In fact W7 gets noticeably lower FPS in LFS compared to XP, even on quite new hardware (haswell CPU+HD6750). in some cases difference is even more than 50 %.
I noticed that too when benchmarking LFS, it's not very surprising considering XP is the lead development OS for it. Same thing didn't happen with Crysis between XP and W7 back when I did some testing.
Quote from JackCY :

I think more interesting would be Mantle and possibly step away from DX all together.

Mantle is a brand-specific low level API for AMD graphic cards, just like NVAPI for Nvidia. OpenGL and DirectX are abstraction layers that are used to access the same/very similiar function on different GPU´s.
Mantle is a rather weird idea. Although the basic idea of giving programmers more control over the GPU is good I'm quite concerned that it might hurt PC as a gaming platform in the long run. Here's why:

- It's Windows-only and it will most likely stay that way for some time. This is particularly unfortunate because Intel and AMD have been making huge advancements with their open source 3D graphics stack. If this development continued, I think there was a real chance that SteamOS for example could've been running without proprietary GPU drivers in a year or two. Unless somebody will be willing to pour huge resources into FOSS Mantle implementation, this is not going to happen.

- Coding closer to the hardware means the need for more device-specific optimizations. Even if nVidia and Intel provided their own implementation of Mantle, the programmers would still have to write different rendering paths for different GPUs. This could in extreme cases cause old games to perform poorly with new generations of GPUs. Even various kinds of x86 CPUs - which are all fully backwards compatible with the now 39 years old Intel 8086 - perform differently under different workloads and operating systems, compilers and programmers implement CPU-specific code to achieve optimal performance. GPU architectures are much more diverse so the extent of the problem could be worse.

- If nVidia decides to battle Mantle with a low-ish level API of their own, we'll basically regress 20 years back to the age of no 3D API standards. This will be another reason for the game developers to target consoles.

If there is any change to use our GPUs more effectively, I'm all for it but I'd rather see this done by extensions and updates to APIs we already have rather than by introducing something completely new and possibly proprietary.
Quote from DANIEL-CRO :In fact W7 gets noticeably lower FPS in LFS compared to XP, even on quite new hardware (haswell CPU+HD6750). in some cases difference is even more than 50 %.

That is probably due to the fact that DX8 was released in 2000, 14 years ago. There is a similar problem with COD, in their case, probably a bad console port.

I think the question should be, why does a program run better with a 10 year old, 32 bit OS ( and XP often has issues with more than 3 gig of ram ) than a 2 year old 64 bit OS.

And now we have good old MS locking down DX11 upgrades to win 8 only, yet another example of them trying to control the market.

There's a great rant here about OpenGL, http://blog.wolfire.com/2010/0 ... se-OpenGL-and-not-DirectX from a developer.

As John Carmack said when asked if Rage was a DirectX game , "It’s still OpenGL, although we obviously use a D3D-ish API [on the Xbox 360], and CG on the PS3. It’s interesting how little of the technology cares what API you’re using and what generation of the technology you’re on. You’ve got a small handful of files that care about what API they’re on, and millions of lines of code that are agnostic to the platform that they’re on." If you can hit every platform using OpenGL, why shoot yourself in the foot by relying on DirectX?
Quote from Racer X NZ :That is probably due to the fact that DX8 was released in 2000, 14 years ago.

Same thing happen with DX9, which is little younger. Problem is more in needed CPU power.

I posted few days ago that for same thing XP uses about 20-22% CPU, while W7 need 27-28% CPU.
Few days ago I test installed W8.1 and it uses 30-32% CPU for this same thing!

Also there is clear difference while benchmarking too, XP 104.45 FPS, W7 92.63FPS, W8.1 81.91FPS.
Minimum config benchmark
Just done couple of benchmarks with minimum graphics settings config from lfsbench on multiple OS, here are results:

Windows 8.1
DX8
Frames: 24848 - Time: 107532ms - Avg: 231.075 - Min: 182 - Max: 267

DX9
Frames: 23901 - Time: 107641ms - Avg: 222.044 - Min: 176 - Max: 267

Windows XP
DX8
Frames: 34590 - Time: 107609ms - Avg: 321.442 - Min: 265 - Max: 385

DX9
Frames: 33129 - Time: 107531ms - Avg: 308.088 - Min: 257 - Max: 380

Interestingly DX9 give slightly lower FPS in both OSes in case of minimal graphics settings. When running minimum graphics settings CPU power became more important than GPU. As I already stated XP require less CPU power for same thing, which can be again seen from this benchmark results.
Why is that a surprise ?

LFS is DX8, and DX9 is a journey into the unknown.....
Therefore it (DX9) should give a lower benchmark as it ( LFS ) is not designed for it.

Why do you think I'm suggesting that OpenGL, as a step forward, may well be a better use of the limited time availible committed to developement.

I run an IT company and this is the type of call that needs to be made regularly, what is the most effective use of the limited resources that you have ?

Or Plan B; I work for the govt with an unlimited budget, LETS DO EVERYTHING !!!!
Twice, with additions, and extras, and what else do you want, WE CAN DO IT !!!, FYI, It's now going to cost............
Quote from MadCatX :Mantle is a rather weird idea...

Eh no, it is not related to Windows. Its related to the driver. Of course by now the windows driver will be only supporting it. But I think it could be implemented into the linux driver as well.
Why should old games perform worse than they do now …DirectX is still around as high-level api ?

Gaming consoles supported low level hardware apis in the past to get the most out of their hardware. So if mantle becomes a success (on consoles too) porting from console to pc will be more easy.

The problem you describe has opengl now … every main manufacturer has made their own extension to it and the poor graphics developer has to check for these extensions to get to now what is supported and what not … so you have to implement the same thing often in different ways for different extensions.

I see mantle as great step forward to get away from directx and microsoft.
Of course as a company you will need more advanced developers for that. It is not as easy as directx.

To be a success nvidia and intel have to be going to support it and this might become the biggest problem. If they don't do it will vanish. So lets hope BF4 with mantle support blasts them away.
Quote from yankman :
I see mantle as great step forward to get away from directx and microsoft.
Of course as a company you will need more advanced developers for that. It is not as easy as directx.

Mantle is HUGE LEAP BACKWARDS into ages when game developer had to do the graphic engine separately for each graphic card brand! I repeat again, DirectX and OpenGL are abstraction layers to prevent this.

Quote from yankman :
To be a success nvidia and intel have to be going to support it and this might become the biggest problem. If they don't do it will vanish. So lets hope BF4 with mantle support blasts them away.

OMG, Intel and Nvidia alredy have APIs like Mantle but who the hell would want to write the same game (rendering engine) three times for each graphics card brand?! The amount of graphics bugs would be astonishing.

And im not talking just about recompiling for another platform+ some minor changes, but probably it would be like porting from DirectX and back... three times.

Stop believing this marketing bull.... please.

EDIT: Nvidia and Intel cannot support Mantle because it is a low-level aPI for GPU´s with completely different hardware architecture.
Quote from yankman :Eh no, it is not related to Windows. Its related to the driver. Of course by now the windows driver will be only supporting it. But I think it could be implemented into the linux driver as well.

Unless AMD is willing to provide open source implementation for mesa, it will be a setback for the FOSS 3D graphics stack.

Quote from yankman :
Why should old games perform worse than they do now …DirectX is still around as high-level api ?

I was talking about a hypothetical situation where Mantle is the no. 1 API. Game devs will naturally optimize for the latest graphics hardware available at the time. This might result in those games performing considerably worse on the previous generation hardware and even the next generation hardware. With high-level APIs you have the driver doing some generic optimizations which don't allow you to reach GPU's full potential but they also let you to write a common code for all GPUs which should perform reasonably well in most cases.

I read an article by a guy who specialized in low-level optimizations for CPUs some time ago. The article was from the ancient times when 3D acceleration was very new so you had to do most of the calculations on the CPU. I remember how he sometimes had to bend over backwards just to make sure there were no "bubbles" in the pipeline, how the CPU cache on certain AMD K6 CPUs wasn't entirely random access and other sorts of quite crazy stuff. Imagine this minus the common ground that is the x86 architecture...

Quote from yankman :
The problem you describe has opengl now … every main manufacturer has made their own extension to it and the poor graphics developer has to check for these extensions to get to now what is supported and what not … so you have to implement the same thing often in different ways for different extensions.

I agree, but doesn't Mantle make the problem even worse? OpenGL is a set of common functions plus vendor-specific extensions. Mantle as it is now is completely vendor(and architecture) specific and even if it gets wide adoption, I'm afraid that what I wrote above might apply. Would it not make sense to implement the most desired Mantle features in a form of API extensions as well instead of creating something entirely new?

Whatever is a step away from a vendor lock-in is a good thing, but I'm not convinced that going from D3D to Mantle wouldn't just change the "vendor" part, not the "lock-in" part.


BTW, NVAPI is something completely different and apparently you cannot write a 3D engine with it.
Lolz, OpenGL , open source, runs on Linux, macOS, windoze, etc.

Because it works, is free, is OS independent, then no one wants to use it as ' if I use this I may upset MS' even though they actually pay nothing to front line developers.
Quote from MadCatX :
BTW, NVAPI is something completely different and apparently you cannot write a 3D engine with it.

Could you please tell me more? I thought that NVAPI is a low level API for Nvidiia GPU´s that are abstracted by DX/OGL

EDIT: https://developer.nvidia.com/nvapi Have a look here
Quote from MadCatX :Unless AMD is willing to provide open source ...

I think we got a different assumption what mantle is … both of us of course speculating.

I am imaging mantle in the first place as a way for game developers to circumvent limitations set by directx. They talked about the limit of drawing calls which is only due to directx and could be much higher if talking directly to the driver.
In second there might be support for vendor specific extensions.
But don't you think amd is not aware of the fact, that mantle can only be a success if at least nvidia supports it too ?

AMD said only GCN based cards will support mantle. That could be for two reasons.
First the API mantle exposes only works on GCN cards.
Or second AMD will not waste resources to develop new drivers for older cards to support mantle.

Mantle itself imho can't open source as it is an api. It depends on the vendor how to implement it. So they could put their drivers open source, which I doubt they will.

Forget about mesa/opengl in this context as opengl is targeted for a different market and has/will have similar limitations as directx.

Funny fact … talking about mantle in a forum of a game thats just about supporting 10 years old directx 9c. But I know lfs is not meant to be a screenshot generator .
Quote from Bigbob1993 :Could you please tell me more? I thought that NVAPI is a low level API for Nvidiia GPU´s that are abstracted by DX/OGL

EDIT: https://developer.nvidia.com/nvapi Have a look here

It doesn't seem to be anything like Mantle. The way I understand it, Mantle gives you more direct control over the rendering process and it gives you access to the GPU memory so you can manage your resources more efficiently. High-level APIs are more like "I need this rendered, make it so... somehow".

NVAPI just lets you query some GPU parameters (clock, temp, number of physical GPUs etc.) and control some features such as GSync, SLI and Video output. Some part of the NVAPI is under NDA so god knows what else it can do. Even if the NDA-part was comparable to Mantle (which it most likely isn't) it wouldn't make much of a difference because it's under NDA.

Spinoff : DirectX and Windows version discussion
(291 posts, started )
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