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Any word when its coming, I thought it would be loaded with VISTA but that's not the case.

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DX10 is included with all versions of Vista. That's the good news. The bad news is that you need a DX10-compliant video card to be able to utilize any DX10 features. Vista contains both DX10 and DX9c and, absent the proper hardware, everything is run under DX9.Doug

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> The bad news is that you need a DX10-compliant video card to be able to utilize any DX10 features....not to mention a DX10 enhanced game or application. Just having DX10 hardware + vista still isn't enough! :)

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The question also becomes, why are games or other programs so slow to use either dual processors or DX10? Both have been out for a while now, the hardware seems to be surpassing the programmers by huge leaps. Quad Cores are already on the market and advertised as the ultimate gaming processor! WHAT GAMES!? Is it really that difficult for programmers to make patches for multithreading and DX10 or is it a marketing thing?

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Yes, multi-threaded programming spreading tasks across multiple processors is not easy, and it's only been a year since the mulitple core processors have been released and perhaps 8 months that people have been buying them in quantity.Thomas[a href=http://www.flyingscool.com] http://www.flyingscool.com/images/Signature.jpg [/a]I like using VC's :-)N15802 KASH '73 Piper Cherokee Challenger 180

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Actually, multi-thread programming is easy. I have been writing multi-thread applications that ran on multi-processor systems for the last 15 years. When it comes to games, it is a different story. Most games developers don't write code that really touches the "metal". They rely on engines that other companies wrote and have to pay a huge sum in royalty. When multi-core came along, those engine developers has to come up with engines that can private flexible programming environments and at the same time, a robust multi-threading model. However, those two usually don't get along well without the game developers doing more work. To make a long story short. Writing a multi-threaded game program is easy if you do every thing yourself. Writing a multi-thread game engine that can work with many different games is difficult.

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In case you guys haven't heard, Phil says, SP1 will include multicore support for FSX, and INTEL is promoting it (FSX SP1 Support) with their introduction of the QX6800. It will work on both Intel and AMD multi core systems!

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Interesting. My understanding, correct me of I'm wrong, is that the flightsim engine is done in house by MSFT so technically, granted with a lot of work, future iterations of the product can potentially be fully multi-threaded and the only thing stopping/slowing them down is resources?

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>The question also becomes, why are games or other programs so>slow to use either dual processors or DX10? Both have been out>for a while now, the hardware seems to be surpassing the>programmers by huge leaps. Thats a fact. Hardware is ALWAYS ahead of software.

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What about crysis? Its logic that the hardware needs to be released so the software can take advantage of it. So basically its impossible for software to be ahead of hardware.

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>Actually, multi-thread programming is easy. I have been>writing multi-thread applications that ran on multi-processor>systems for the last 15 years. When it comes to games, it is a>different story. Most games developers don't write code that>really touches the "metal". They rely on engines that other>companies wrote and have to pay a huge sum in royalty. When>multi-core came along, those engine developers has to come up>with engines that can private flexible programming>environments and at the same time, a robust multi-threading>model. However, those two usually don't get along well without>the game developers doing more work. To make a long story>short. Writing a multi-threaded game program is easy if you do>every thing yourself. Writing a multi-thread game engine that>can work with many different games is difficult. Those "engines other companies wrote" are primarily in fact games such as Half-Life 2, Far Cry, Unreal Tournament, Stalker, even FSX for that matter. There's a reason other companies buy the engines behind those games. You make it sound like it's trivially easy to program a better engine as long as you "do everything yourself" whatever that's supposed to mean. Since this isn't the first time I've seen you making such outlandish claims of how easy it is to program multi-core support into games, I'm gonna ask you to provide some credentials this time. Exactly which modern multithreaded 3D game engines have you worked on that qualify you to flippantly go against long articles and white papers by the likes of id Software, Valve, Crytek, and Epic Games explaining why it's so difficult to do in games?

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IF that were true, we'd all be running FSX at full sliders at 150 FPS. I think its the other way around, software releases drive hardware purchases.More examples: Vista is software...you need to have new upgraded hardware to run it properly. DX10 is software, you need new upgraded hardware to run it. Exchange 2007 is software but you need new upgraded hardware to run it.I can't think of too many instances where the hardware is sitting around waiting for the software to catch up. I wish that were the case because the FSX question would be a moot point.

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>IF that were true, we'd all be running FSX at full sliders at>150 FPS. >>I think its the other way around, software releases drive>hardware purchases.>>More examples: Vista is software...you need to have new>upgraded hardware to run it properly. DX10 is software, you>need new upgraded hardware to run it. Exchange 2007 is>software but you need new upgraded hardware to run it.>>I can't think of too many instances where the hardware is>sitting around waiting for the software to catch up. I wish>that were the case because the FSX question would be a moot>point.>I would have to respectfully disagree with you. Although the application programs and operating system you mentioned may be the case, games are far, far behind; FSX is one of those main cases! They have admitted that they did not fully see the future of multi core systems when FSX was in development. Think about it, how many games are currently out that use DX10, ZERO, in development, maybe 3 or 5 at the most. Meanwhile video cards like the Nvidia 8800 GTX and multi core processors are sitting around doing what many cards and single core processors did before them. Game consoles are another case in point; most game developers do not take advantage of all the hardware under the hood until many years after it has hit the market. Articles abound about how it will be some time until you see games take full advantage of the PS3 or 360 hardware. I think it has more to do with management, marketing and executive board members scared to invest resources in developing software for hardware until they clearly see that everyone is buying the hardware in droves. It just gets me upset that respectable companies make so much hype about say, Windows Vista and WOW games like FSX and DX10, people like myself go out spend big $ on new hardware to run Vista, thinking FSX, as advertised, is made to run WOW on Vista and DX10 and 6 months later we still don

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>In case you guys haven't heard, Phil says, SP1 will include>multicore support for FSX...It is better said that FSX SP1 will provide *improved* multicore support, not flat-out "support". FSX does currently support and use multicores, but nowhere near enough to make it worth the time to type it. :) SP1 is designed to improve that situation. It has been noted in the postings and blogs that while they have improved it, it is still not at all going to be the case of loading both cores 100% for 100% of the time. Check the blog and materials here for more. eg: from Phil's blog...[blockquote]At load time, we run the terrain loading on threads across the cores. This can result in reduced load times, the actual percent reduction can vary but it could be reduced by as much as 1/3.At render time, we run the terrain texture synthesis on threads across the cores. During flight on multi-core machines, as terrain and terrain textures are loaded you will notice significant multi-core usage. As all tiles are loaded, the multi-core usage will fall off, this is expected. As the terrain is re-lit, approximately every minute, you will see multi-core usage increase. As you bank and load terrain tiles, or as you fly forward and force a load of more terrain tiles, you will see the multi-core usage increase.[/blockquote]I'm probably nitpicking at the details, but just wanted to mention it. :)-Greg

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DX10 patch??I thought the game was already DX10 capable?When is this patch coming out??

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>The question also becomes, why are games or other programs so>slow to use either dual processors or DX10? Both have been out>for a while nowThat is simply incorrect. There is ONE, count 'em ONE DX10 video card on the market, it IT wasn't released until a few short months ago. Granted, there are at least six "varieties" of the 8800 card available, but it is still a very limited - not to mention expensive! - bit of hardware.The Specifications for DX10 have been around for several years, but when's the last time a piece of paper - virtual or otherwise - accomplished anything? ;)Cirrus wrote the "specifications" for their new SR22G3 edition several years ago. Can you actually buy and fly one yet? Nope, they've only built several prototypes so far!DX10 requires more than one element to function:1) OS support2) physical video hardware3) driver support for the video hardware5) Application programming supportI've listed 'em in that order deliberately, because that's the order in which the four elements must be developed...

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The patch/update is currently being spec'ed out and is in the initial stages of development. DX10 support in FSX is not anticipated until the end of the year. (cited: ACES team blogs, ACES team member posts out here)

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"Since this isn't the first time I've seen you making such outlandish claims of how easy it is to program multi-core support into games"Ryan...I think if you take a step back and re-read his response, you'll see he was saying just the opposite, i.e. easy if you are coding directly to the system, much more difficult if you are coding to a third party engine. Also, he mentioned that building a flexible engine, that can also multi-thread is not such an easy task.In this case Ryan, it seems that your response is the outlandish one.My 2 cents,bt

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I humbly think that you are confusing development timelines and hardware availablility timelines. The Nvidia 8800 GTX doesn't have any DX10 titles to run on it not because the software (DX10) hasn't caught up, but because development time for the new API is long and the API is brand new. If it took a week to make a DX10 game, the hardware would already exist to run it....but:The Nvidia 8800 is an exception to the rule. There is a grand total of ONE card right now available to take advantage of the software to run it, but there are scores of video card manufacturers without the hardware sitting around waiting for DX10 games. Even ATI does not have a DX10 compatible card on the market. At the end of the day, pick any 10 video card mfgs and only 1 of them have a DX10 card available. Apropos, even with SP1, FSX doesn't rocket to running flat out at 60 fps on today's hardware. SP1 will make FSX 'usable' for the masses and not just a chosen few. Even full dual-core support doesn't mean that your new Quad Core has caught up with FSX. FSX is far ahead of what can be run at fluid cinema quality on today's system, quad core, dual core or single core. Turn your sliders full right post SP1 and enable all enhancements, I think that will become very apparent.If that were not the case then hardware today would be able to run FSX at Pixar-like realism, but that doesn't exist. Hardware will need to catch up with FSX. Which is ALSO the reason that so many are tickled pink with FS9. Hardware has finally caught up with FS9 after 4 years and it will take at least that long for it to catch up with FSX.Right now, it is possible to develop a flight simulator that is 100% photorealistic, 100% based on complex fluid-dynamic computations, 100% modeling of every airport, house, cabin, blade of grass and man, woman, and child on this earth, every bolt, circuit breaker, raindrop and dust storm. There is absolutely nothing stopping this product from being released as soon as development is finished. Nothing except the fact that there is no hardware available to run it. Rest assured that there is also no service pack, tweak or patch that can get it to run either without AMD and Intel releasing faster chips.

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>Right now, it is possible to develop a flight simulator that>is 100% photorealistic, 100% based on complex fluid-dynamic>computations, 100% modeling of every airport, house, cabin,>blade of grass and man, woman, and child on this earth, every>bolt, circuit breaker, raindrop and dust storm. There is>absolutely nothing stopping this product from being released>as soon as development is finished. Nothing except the fact>that there is no hardware available to run it. Rest assured>that there is also no service pack, tweak or patch that can>get it to run either without AMD and Intel releasing faster>chips.>> What a load of Cods Wallop!I've seen some Outlandish claims in my time but this takes the bisquit :)Len

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I'm advising two game companies in architecture design matters. Which ones, I can't says as I am on NDA.You also missed my point. What I am saying is that making an easy to use high performance multi-processor (threaded) game engine is difficult. High level developers usually don't want to be confined in a restricted API environment. They're always trying to exploit the back doors and making the engine not as stable as it should be. The engine developer's job is to make sure that the engine can ONLY be controlled through a well published API and at the same time, provide a set of well thought, flexible, and powerful commands for the user (developer) to use. That's very difficult. Given the information out there about SP1, I think ACES did a great job. However, I think they can do more. Especial for people who have a multi-process(core) system.

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>If that were not the case then hardware today would be able to>run FSX at Pixar-like realism, but that doesn't exist. >Hardware will need to catch up with FSX. Which is ALSO the>reason that so many are tickled pink with FS9. Hardware has>finally caught up with FS9 after 4 years and it will take at>least that long for it to catch up with FSX.Hardware catching up is all relative. I'm tickled pink about FSX right now pre-SP1. But then I don't need 60 FPS. 20 FPS with the scenery I see makes my day. Someone else who needs 60 fps is going to run FS9. >Right now, it is possible to develop a flight simulator that>is 100% photorealistic, 100% based on complex fluid-dynamic>computations, 100% modeling of every airport, house, cabin,>blade of grass and man, woman, and child on this earth, every>bolt, circuit breaker, raindrop and dust storm. There is>absolutely nothing stopping this product from being released>as soon as development is finished. Nothing except the fact>that there is no hardware available to run it. Rest assured>that there is also no service pack, tweak or patch that can>get it to run either without AMD and Intel releasing faster>chips.No it is not possible. Every blade of grass? That's not a hardware issue. Going out and modeling all of them is the issue.Also, saying it is possible stipulates that someone (Microsoft) would pay to develop it. Even they don't have that much money (or are stupid enough to spend it like this).

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There are many issues with respect to concurrent sub-processes and threads which suggest that multi-threaded programming isn't necessarily a cake-walk either. When these threads have to share resources or otherwise depend on the activities of other concurrent actions, the costs and complexities of coordination are high. For those who don't really know much about concurrent programming, here is a reasonable article (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Concurrent_programming) describing some of the basics and issues.Thread contention is a complex, yet solvable, problem. As Phil has stated previously (about 6 months ago), the very nature of Flightsim precludes all-out multi-threading for everything - some sub-processes would be unreasonably held up waiting for others. One result of this would be worse, not better, performance.

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There's nothing outlandish about it...It is possible, with contemporary software techniques, to do exactly what Mike has described.It seems outlanding because, just as Mike mentioned, we can't even conceive of the hardware needed to do all of that simultaneous processing.However, the imaging, physics/dynamics and atmospheric modeling are in-place do to these things in the 90% - 100% realistic level. Anything we do within a computer is a model anyhow. The model is NOT the real thing - but models can come "close enough."

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