Summer is here, and so is the start of info about FSX-DX10


So it’s the first day of summer! As part of the celebration, I wanted to talk about and show progress on FSX-DX10.


First, though, let’s talk what I can show and when, as well as requirements for FSX-DX10.


I am not here to talk features. Not yet anyways. I am going to show progress on bringing the engine up on the DX10 pipeline before I talk features. So there are going to be 2 to 3 posts on progress before talking to FSX-DX10 specific features. Expect those every 2-3 weeks until mid-August or so, when I can take our famous screenshots, deconstruct them, and talk to features. Ok?


Now, what does FSX-DX10 require? First - Vista, a DX10 graphics card, and a DX10 driver. Second - FSX and SP1. Yes, SP1is a pre-req. More on that in a later post.


On to where we are with FSX-DX10.


We have all FSX geometry going thru the DX10 geometry pipeline. We have the entire child view/window system up, including docked and undocked windows. We have multimon working in windowed mode, but not fullscreen yet.


So what does that mean? Two things:


1)The device and view infrastructure is up and functional, we just need to finish it off with the fullscreen support. FSX with its view and multimon support is *the poster child* for multimon so that’s a key piece of infrastructure and non trivial. Early DX10 SDKs had no multimon sample code, so digging for information on how to do multimon in DX10 was hard and it is very good that part of the port is largely past us.


2)The geometry pipeline is up and functional; including loading vertex data, packaging vertex data into vertex buffers and index buffers, and submitting Draw calls.  That is another key piece of infrastructure.


 Here are some screenshots that show pushing geometry thru the pipeline in wireframe:


The World


Seattle and the Space Needle


Chicago and Meigs Field



Here is a screenshot showing multiview:


Multiview



And here is a screenshot showing multiview and multimon:


Multimon



So how did we get here so fast, just 5 weeks after SP1? We had help :-). We had one developer work on DX10 in the background while the rest of the team was engaged on SP1. He was the newest member of the Graphics and Terrain team, so this was his learning and trial by fire. He did all of the device, view, and multimon infrastructure code. And because he was in "learn-mode" and we had good coverage already for SP1 tasks this seemed like a smart deployment of resources. The progress so far bears out that call.


So what remains?


Quite a bit. We still have all the pixel pipeline work to get parity with DX9, and then the feature work. So the next progress report will be about the pixel pipeline. In 2-3 weeks you can expect another progress report. And at least one progress report past that before I talk features, maybe two.


So with all that, let me state that we are still on track for a Fall 2007 delivery of FSX-DX10.

Comments (7)
  1. SilentGenie says:

    Great news Phil, looks like FSX is gonna be amazing after the release of DX10 not that it aint already 🙂 gonna build a new rig over the next month with 2 8800GTX in sli, will fsx ever support SLI ? i have 1 8800gtx already and it really helps fsx but obviously two would be better. thanks for keeping us informed

  2. sclincoln says:

    Speaking of multi-monitor support, I have the Matrox Triple Head 2 Go on my system.  Will it still work with DX10, or does that change something fundamental enough to screw it up?  I’m assuming it doesn’t matter, but I really don’t know enough about how it works to say for sure.

  3. Phil Taylor says:

    SCLincoln:

    thats really a question for Matrox.

  4. Aberforth says:

    I tested some of the Dx10 sample codes from Nvidia Developer site…but performance is really horrible especially when rendering smoke, water etc. Is it becuase of DX10 or crappy 8800 drivers? I want to know if the current high end dx10 cards are capable of handling dx10 smoothly?

    glad to know you guys are making some progress…

  5. Phil Taylor says:

    Aberforth:

    what DX10 features are used in that sample, and how does it make use of them?

    Geometry Shader is definitely shaky in 1st generation, for all IHVs. Anything past 4x expansion is probably not performant, and that is becaues thats what point sprites do/are already so that level of vertex expansion has already been going on.

    Other features I’d have to look at the sample code. I do know the DX10 drivers are incrementally getting better all the time, so that is some help as well.

  6. Ian McPhail says:

    Thanks for this really informative article, and your intention to provide a continuing series of comments.   I also have a matrox triplehead but I can’t see in logic that there should be any problem.  My main concern is fullscreen which is a feature of matrox, and necessary to get pop-ups on to a fourth screen.  I will be interested in your reports as you work on this aspect.

  7. It is time to update everyone on the progress we have made on the FSX-SP2(DX10) release. First, we have

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