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Intel recently announced a big driver update for their Arc GPUs on Windows, because their DirectX 9 performance wasn't as good as it could have been. Turns out, they're using code from the open source DXVK which is part of Steam Play Proton.

Translation layers are everywhere it seems, especially for older software and APIs now.

DXVK translates Direct3D 9, Direct3D 10 and Direct3D 11 to Vulkan. Primarily written for Wine, the Windows compatibility layer, which is what Proton is made from (Proton is what the majority of games on Steam Deck run through). However, it also has a Native implementation for Linux and it can be used even on Windows too. So it's not a big surprise to see this. Heck, even NVIDIA use DXVK for RTX Remix.

In their announcement video below, they talk about how they did a "native implementation of DX9" and "there will be times when games are running on our native DX implementation, but there'll be other times when we take advantage of translation layers to go from DX 9 to a more modern API". Their blog post also mentions this hybrid approach, but neither the blog post nor video actually say it's DXVK. You only find that out when you look through their readme, to find the DXVK note and license.

They say the way it works will be transparent to the end user, so they likely just have a list of games where the driver switches between DXVK or their own work.

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It's amazing to see open source everywhere.

While this isn't for Linux directly, the more companies that end up using the same translation tools we use, the better they could get. Hopefully Intel will also end up helping with DXVK work from this too and not keep any improvements to themselves.

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
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29 comments
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gradyvuckovic 7 Dec, 2022
Maybe AMD could use Bink for Windows to translate from OpenGL to Vulkan too. Given how slow OpenGL is on AMD/Windows, I doubt Bink could be any slower.
whizse 7 Dec, 2022
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Remember, this is a project that was deemed a “a waste of time”. The developer was told they “couldn’t do it and should work on something else”.
Shmerl 7 Dec, 2022
Interesting, but not giving credit by name to the project they directly benefit from is very poor taste, especially when they boast about performance improvements which no doubt prompted them to turn to dxvk in the first place.


Last edited by Shmerl on 7 December 2022 at 11:23 pm UTC
Liam Dawe 7 Dec, 2022
Quoting: whizseRemember, this is a project that was deemed a “a waste of time”. The developer was told they “couldn’t do it and should work on something else”.
Now that's a hilarious thing to bring up.
Liam Dawe 7 Dec, 2022
Quoting: ShmerlInteresting, but not giving credit by name to the project they directly benefit from is very poor taste, especially when they boast about performance improvements which no doubt prompted them to turn to dxvk in the first place.
I did find it a little weird, how they kept praising their own engineers but couldn't even name DXVK itself.
Sakuretsu 7 Dec, 2022
Proton (DXVK) is starting on it's path to take over Windows aswell.
Liam Dawe 7 Dec, 2022
The plot thickens, even though they're clearing using DXVK and include the license they seemingly tried scrubbing mentions of it away (see the whole thread there). Hopefully they at the very least put their changes out in the open and not keep their forked code closed.


Last edited by Liam Dawe on 7 December 2022 at 11:40 pm UTC
WorMzy 7 Dec, 2022
Quoting: Liam DaweThe plot thickens, even though they're clearing using DXVK and include the license they seemingly tried scrubbing mentions of it away (see the whole thread there). Hopefully they at the very least put their changes out in the open and not keep their forked code closed.
Someone needs to tell "Longhorn" about grep -i. >_>
Leviosaur 7 Dec, 2022
Now, these are exciting news! It's great to see DXVK getting traction outside of WINE. First Virtualbox starts using it for 3d acceleration, now intel uses it in their drivers... More users and potential contributors. At this pace, it might even dethrone VMWare's solution as the best 3d acceleration solution for windows guests (outside of intel gvt-g, nvidia vgpu and gpu passthrough).
Quoting: gradyvuckovicMaybe AMD could use Bink for Windows to translate from OpenGL to Vulkan too. Given how slow OpenGL is on AMD/Windows, I doubt Bink could be any slower.
AMD has actually finally started fixing their OpenGL drivers, the 22.8 drivers nearly doubled performance in doom 2016, teardown and minecraft on my rx 5700 under windows. It doesn't quite match radeonSI, but it's a huge improvement nonetheless.
Shmerl 7 Dec, 2022
Hm, original license is Zlib, so it's not strong enough as GPL to prevent Intel from doing such shady stuff. However it mentions this:

Quote– Altered source versions must be plainly marked as such, and must not
be misrepresented as being the original software.
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