September 29, 2022

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Windows gets fast game loading – Tek.no

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Windows gets a fast game loading

Get Xbox technology to take advantage of modern solid state drives.

The latest NVMe SSDs are so fast that Windows hasn't kept up with them.  This is now changing.

As we reported in 2020, Microsoft has been working on making Windows a better gaming platform. After several years of development, they finally succeeded announce That the so-called “DirectStorage” is ready for use in computer games.

This is a new Game Programming Interface (API) that promises faster game startup and loading. The result could also be better textures and increased empathy in massive game worlds that stretch as far as the eye can see. Among other things, the so-called “fast travel” can occur almost immediately.

The problem with today’s APIs is that they cannot scale the read/write operations that a modern NVMe SSD can handle.

So jams happen quickly, and with it the speed of your computer does not help otherwise, because this will limit the games that will be able to play.

This is the bottleneck that Microsoft has now done something about. DirectStorage is a technology originally developed by Microsoft for the Xbox Series X and S, and by porting it to Windows, a PC with a proper NVMe SSD could become a better gaming machine.

The technology takes advantage of the capabilities of modern NVMe SSDs that more and more PC gamers have access to. Specifically, DirectStorage NVMe SSDs allow you to send more data directly to the graphics card, without going to the method of the processor, which today acts as an intermediary for all processes.

The technology also makes it possible to take advantage of the massive bandwidth of NVMe SSDs by sending data in larger parallel bars, reducing the chance of bottlenecks. In addition, DirectStorage includes new and smarter algorithms for compressing and decompressing game data so that it can be read much faster than today.

DirectStorage requires you to have an NVMe SSD that supports PCIe 3.0 or later for the most visible effect. In addition, you must have a graphics card from Nvidia’s RTX 20 series or AMD’s RX 6000 series and above, as well as Windows 10 or 11.

Microsoft says support is best in the new Windows 11, while Windows 10 doesn’t take advantage of all the possibilities in the technology. Initially, Microsoft had no plans to support Windows 10 at all.

Game developers must also incorporate support for new technology into all of their games for them to work. Nobody has done it yet, and as it stands now, Square Enix’s “Forspoken” will be the first title to be released with lightning-fast loading times.

However, more will follow now that developers have received a clear indication of the use of the new technology.

Microsoft wrote that it will continue to develop DirectStorage with more features and improvements in the future.

Below you will find our comprehensive test of NVMe SSDs that support DirectStorage:

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