Microsoft has refreshed its lineup of DirectX offerings at the start of this week, and the company is by no means shy of focusing the spotlight on the evolution of the graphics technology as Windows 7 is contouring. The software giant is offering fresh Technical Previews of Direct2D, DirectWrite, and DXGI 1.1, but also a new TP release of Windows 7/Direct3D 11. The components are available for download as an integral part of the March 2009 iteration of the DirectX Software Development Kit, which is accompanied by the DirectX End-User Runtimes (March 2009) and the DirectX End-User Runtime Web Installer. Microsoft delivered the first taste of Windows 7 DirectX 11 through the SDK back in November 2008
Obviously the releases are aimed at a professional audience. Developers will be able to leverage the latest release of the SDK, combining the DirectX Runtime and additional software designed to permit the building of DirectX compliant solutions. With the March 2009 DirectX update, Microsoft has refreshed the tools and utilities included with the software development kit, but also the code samples, documentation, and the 32-bit and 64-bit runtime debug files.
“This version of the Windows 7/Direct3D 11 Technical Preview ships as part of the DirectX SDK and contains the following new features, tools, and documentation: Technical Preview of Direct2D; Technical Preview of DirectWrite; Technical Preview of DXGI 1.1,” the Redmond company informed.
According to Microsoft: “Direct2D is a hardware-accelerated, immediate-mode, 2-D graphics API that provides high performance and high quality rendering for 2-D geometry, bitmaps, and text. The Direct2D API is designed to interoperate well with Direct3D and GDI. (...) DirectWrite provides support for high-quality text rendering, resolution-independent outline fonts, and full Unicode text and layout support, and much, much more. (...) DXGI 1.1 builds on DXGI 1.0 and will be available on both Windows Vista and Windows 7.”
On top of the March 2009 release of the DirectX Software Development Kit, the Redmond company is also offering for download the DirectX End-User Runtimes (March 2009) and the DirectX End-User Runtime Web Installer. Documentation for the latter has not yet been updated on the Microsoft Download Center.
DirectX End-User Runtimes (March 2009) is available in Chinese (Simplified), Chinese (Traditional), Czech, Dutch, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Polish, Portuguese (Brazil), Russian, Swedish, and English. “DirectX end-user multi-languaged redistributable that developers can include with their product. The redistributable license agreement covers the terms under which developers may use the Redistributable,” the company informed.
The March 2009 DirectX Software Development Kit (containing the Windows 7/Direct3D 11 Technical Preview) is available for download here
DirectX End-User Runtimes (March 2009) is available for download here
DirectX End-User Runtime Web Installer is available for download here