DirectStorage technology support has become available for PC games, announced Microsoft company. Libraries implementing the technology have appeared openly along with the necessary tools and documentation enter. In short, this technology allows the graphics card to receive data almost directly from the SSD.
According to the DirectX Developers Blog, any PC game running on Windows 10 and 11 can now use DirectStorage technology. “This public SDK takes advantage of today’s SSDs and brings PC gaming into a new era with fast loading times and detailed worlds.“, – it says in particular in the blog.
Back in September 2020, Microsoft promised to add DirectStorage technology to desktop PCs, originally found in the Xbox Series X | S was used. Given the long implementation time, it is not surprising that DirectStorage support has landed in both the latest Windows 11 system and Windows 10. However, according to Microsoft, there are some additional optimizations in the new version of the operating system, and the company considers Windows 11 to be the best choice for PC gaming.
DirectStorage technology introduces a new I/O model in PC games that offloads the CPU when data is transferred from the SSD to the graphics card. With its use, it becomes possible to batch transfer game data from an SSD to a graphics card with minimal intervention from the CPU and operating system in this process. It is also assumed that the GPU will unpack this data and free up CPU resources for other work – environmental physics calculations and game AI.
DirectStorage support speeds up game loading from any type of SSD. However, according to Microsoft, NVMe drives with modern PCIe interfaces should deliver the best performance.
More details on DirectStorage-enabled games will be revealed at GDC next week. It is known that one of the first games that will support this library will be the Japanese action RPG Forspoken, which is scheduled for release in October 2022.
As Microsoft promises, the next step after DirectStorage is the implementation of data decompression in the GPU, a feature that will give developers even more control over the hardware and its resources.