View Full Version : Microsoft and OpenGL Support???

09-11-2000, 01:24 PM
I just emailed Microsoft asking them when they were going to implement OpenGL 1.2 in Windows.
Reply was dont know yet in Windows 2000 and no native mode support at all for 98 or Millenium. I know Mesa and SGI provide support, but SGI has backed out of actually supporting Windows implementations. It looks to me like OpenGL is getting treated to the old we told you OPenGL was for high end only applications.
The supposed OpenGL support team members aren't really looking so open or supportive any more. Microsoft has their own agenda with DirextX/3D.
Microsoft has dumped Fahrenheit too by the way. I was a Beta tester and when I got my final release copy it was with the admonition that no more development would be taking place "due to lack of industry interest".
I develop in both Direct3D and OpenGL, and unfortunately, with the current support for the open standard waning with both major players, I am thinking that DirectX/3D is soon going to be the only choice.
OpenGL is cleaner and easier to work with than DirectX and has some feature DiectX/3D does not, but in the end, true support is probably more important. Microsoft seems to have been trying to bury OpenGL for some time, and I beleive this move away from it with 1.2 may do it.
Please kick in your ten cents, and let me know what you think, I hate to see such a great thing as OpenGL get the shaft.
Thaks, Gary

09-11-2000, 10:13 PM
They cannot bury it http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif
What for do you need OpenGL 1.2 ?
3D texturing ? - it is already available.
imaging stuff ? - no consumer accelerator supports it afaik.
OpenGL is worth itself in its current state and DX8 does not beat it.
DX8 just adds features which are not available to DX7 users and less - most of this stuff from direct3d is already inside OpenGL or can be added into it with extensions.
DirectX's power is not only in graphics, though. Sound, input, network, etc. are major parts too.

09-12-2000, 05:41 AM
Thanks for your reply.
3D texturing certainly. Where is it available?
There are other features too of course, but that isn't really the point
With Microsoft reducing their platform support to 2000 only and SGI withdrawing from any active support for the Windows market, the two main supporters aren't. Perhaps, like Linux, users can make it continue to grow anyway, and of course, ID gives it a real boost, but for PC applications it seems to me that this abandonment doesn't bode well for the future.
"Imaging stuff" is largely without a current recognized consumer market, which is, of course, why consumer chips arent supporting it.
Finally, yes, of course, Direct X covers more than 3D or graphics for that matter, and some of it quite comprehensively as well, but Microsoft froze retained mode at V6 and one of the problems with dealing with a semi-open standard like X is that your stuck with one developer who can kiss off any part of what they are doing at any time. That one blasted 16 months of development effort on my part.
Oh well, rock and a hard place they never said this was going to be easy.

09-12-2000, 08:49 AM
Like OnyX said why do we really need the main openGL 1.2 dll from Microsoft, you can use extensions - you can even write the extension definitions so that they will compile openGL1.2 calls.

On the other the hand there is no rush anyway - most consumer cards do not support all the features of 1.2 properly. It would be silly to release 1.2 with all the good-stuff being done in software or badly: nobody would use it.

Its a bit sad for Microsoft that the 'ageing' openGl1.1 can match and potentially better Direct3D8.

09-12-2000, 10:54 AM
Thanks for the input all,
The fact is OpenGL and DirectX are really what we have.
They are both powerful and we just need to make careful descisions based on not always too obvious considerations as to which we use for what.
John Carmak (ID / Quake) said "I never regretted my descision to use OpenGL" and I am not so sure that the same quote might be elicited from the DirectX developers.

09-13-2000, 05:24 AM
3D texturing ? Never used it, but new nVidia drivers report OpenGL version as 1.2.0 ( still not 1.2.1 because of lack of ARB_imaging internal support, I believe ). And their DLLs contain 3D texture manipulation fucntions, which I didn't test, but at least successully GetProcAddress them. Don't think they are hardware accelerated, though, so enabling GL_TEXTURE_3D will probably push you in software mode.

09-13-2000, 05:27 AM
foobar> my nick does not have anything related neither to SGI's machines, nor to onyx music band ( even more, I hate it ). So please, call me XM for short ( or Aristarkh if you need my name http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif

09-14-2000, 07:06 AM
micro(yeah, right! i remember when 640k was a huge amount of memory)$oft will never support openGL for one reason, it breaks the applications barrier to entry they have and fiercely maintain, openGL allows portability, that is why Apple is using it for the new MacOS X

micro$oft's monopoly is threatened by openGL, java and other platform independent api's that is why they do not support it

09-14-2000, 07:57 AM
Hey Rika13,
No doubt you have hit it on the head, Microsofts vested interest is in taking over market, not helping possible competitors.
Of course, US antitrust laws are already giving them a run for their money. Maybe their not so smart after all. Being one of the "core" support members of the OpenGL effort while apparently taking mostly actions to minimize OpenGL hardly seems like support to me. It really is hard to think that this is likely to turn out to be in their own best interests in the long run.
I have GeForce, and Nvidias support is excellent, but if you cant depend on software support on windows, it certainly can limit use of OGL in consumer type products, because hardware compatability is much harder to assure. Further, some hardware vendors dont provide as good support for OGL as others since are being sold DX bill of goods, a situation I am afraid may worsen in future.
Dont get me wrong, I dont think OGL is dead yet, but the API wars rage on, and the money is backing DX "unfortunately".
I don't know exactly what happned between SGI and MSoft with cooperative stance on PoenGL and Fahrenheit, but SGI is no pulled out of primary Windows support role, MSoft has canned Fahrenheit and future MSoft OGL support talk on their web site is drastically scaled back. It could be this was MSofts intent in the first place, or not, Makes you wonder if MSofts whole "alliance" with SGI in the first place might have been simply a wrecking plan.
Thanks for your input XM and Foobar, I appreciate input and agree, OpenGL is an excellent system in spite of possibly apparent attempts to disadvantage it.
I'll be gone for a week, but will look here then and respond to any feedback.
Thanks Again,
Gary McCray

09-27-2000, 01:19 AM
So you think Microsoft will abandon all those professional applications to the Linux space, that's fine. With XBox competing with Win32 for games and all the professional 3D market being relegated to second place 3D on Windows should be phased out nicely by mid 2002.

Somehow I don't expect this to happen.... but anyway I'll bite

Even if MS decided to drop OpenGL, IHV's could and would keep the driver model going.

09-27-2000, 07:46 AM
Hi Dorbie,
I Noticed from your web site that you are definitely an advanced Silicon Graphics OpenGL developer. Since Microsoft "partnered with SG on Fahrenheit, SG has pulled out of all windows support, both for fahrenheit and OpenGL and now Microsoft has dumped Fahrenheit too, and, as I said, they are not supporting Native OpenGL on 98 or Millenium, only 2000. They already are minimizing as much as they can OpenGLs presence on Windoows maachines.
There has been talk of a common platform that combines OpenGL and DirectX and who knows with MSofts touting of "convergence" maybe that will happen, but right now MSoft is putting it's cards in the DirectX basket.
Being left without updated "software" drivers for current 1.2 and future versions of OpenGL is going to make it difficult for 98 and millenium apps writers to get a clean OPenGL application that works across various hardware configurations.
In light of this, it looks to me like MSoft is leveraging DirectX at the expense of OpenGL. Maybe the IHVs can fight this, but without Silicon Graphics or Microsoft or any other major company for that matter supporting it, it's going to be uphill at best.
All that having been said, I also don't think it makes any sense to try to kill OpenGL, it can only damage and slow 3D graphics app development to nobodys real benefit including MSofts. I didn't say it made sense.