Re: Direct 3D

Discussion in 'Computer Information' started by Paul, Jun 28, 2009.

  1. Paul

    Paul Guest

    James D. Andrews wrote:
    > Probably a stupid question, but here's where to get the answers, so ...
    >
    > What's the deal with Direct 3D? Is it limited by graphics card? Is it
    > included in Direct X 9? What does it take to get it?
    >
    > My wife's computer shows no Direct 3D installed, and a program she got won't
    > run without it.
    >
    > I'm already planning to upgrade her computer to a 64MB card. Will this
    > solve the problem?
    >
    > Thanks for your wisdom,
    >
    > Woof


    Can you give some details about your wife's computer ?

    If it is a Dell or something like that, give the make and complete model number.

    Take a look at the back of the computer. You'll see an "I/O plate"
    area, with things like the PS/2 connectors for keyboard and mouse.
    And further away from that, the card slot area, with room for the
    faceplates of PCI, AGP, or PCI Express add-in cards.

    For example, on the back of this computer, there are no add-in
    cards in the computer. The add-in card faceplate area, at the bottom
    of the picture, is not being used. The VGA connector is in the
    I/O plate area. Such a computer has "built-in" graphics, which
    are built into the motherboard itself.

    http://i.dell.com/resize.aspx/vostrodt_200mt_back/300

    On this machine, the bottom most visible add-in card, is a video card.

    http://www.devduff.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/03/dell-studio-xps-435-rear.jpg

    You can get Direct3D and DirectX from integrated graphics. A pre-built computer
    should already have had all the drivers installed.

    If you were starting with a retail WinXP CD, and installed from that,
    some things that you'd need for full graphics function would be

    1) Chipset drivers. These help identify system devices in the Device Manager
    display. The most important component, might be the AGP bridge driver
    component (for a future AGP add-in card upgrade).

    2) With integrated graphics, there is a video driver. It may support Direct3D
    and OpenGL. Integrated graphics are usually UMA, meaning the memory they
    use for the graphics, is stolen from the main memory. So instead of
    1024MB of main memory, you might see 992MB of main memory, and 32MB
    allocated to integrated graphics.

    3) Some version of DirectX from Microsoft should be installed as well.
    Some video device installer packages, include a copy of the minimum
    version of DirectX, that the driver supports. So the problem is solved
    immediately. Otherwise, if you thought it needed to be updated, you
    can get DirectX from Microsoft. The downloads they offer, seem to have
    frequent date changes, but the version still seems to be DirectX 9c.

    You can upgrade her card if you want. You'll need a specific video driver
    for it. Which will likely be on the CD that comes with the video card.
    Depending on the card type (PCI, AGP, PCI Express), they vary in
    how finicky the driver situation is. Some AGP products for example,
    are really PCI Express products with a bridge conversion chip attached.
    And sometimes, it is difficult to identify a good, stable driver version
    for such cards (ATI or Nvidia didn't put much work into it).

    In the BIOS, there may be a setting which determines the "Primary" graphics
    device. If you added an AGP card, setting the Primary to AGP, would mean
    the AGP would likely hold the BIOS screen at startup. Which is the way
    you'd want it, so you could change BIOS settings in the future.

    Before adding the new video card, you could uninstall the existing video
    card driver. Even if the "old" graphics were ATI, and the "new" graphics
    were ATI, you should still uninstall the old driver.

    Paul
    Paul, Jun 28, 2009
    #1
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  2. Paul

    Paul Guest

    James D. Andrews wrote:
    > "Paul" <> wrote in message
    > news:h26fmg$35b$-september.org...
    >> James D. Andrews wrote:
    >>> Probably a stupid question, but here's where to get the answers, so ...
    >>>
    >>> What's the deal with Direct 3D? Is it limited by graphics card? Is it
    >>> included in Direct X 9? What does it take to get it?
    >>> My wife's computer shows no Direct 3D installed, and a program she got
    >>> won't run without it.
    >>> I'm already planning to upgrade her computer to a 64MB card. Will this
    >>> solve the problem?
    >>> Thanks for your wisdom,
    >>>
    >>> Woof

    >> Can you give some details about your wife's computer ?
    >> If it is a Dell or something like that, give the make and complete model
    >> number.
    >> Take a look at the back of the computer. You'll see an "I/O plate"
    >> area, with things like the PS/2 connectors for keyboard and mouse.
    >> And further away from that, the card slot area, with room for the
    >> faceplates of PCI, AGP, or PCI Express add-in cards.

    >
    >
    > Dell Optiplex GX110 with Pent III 1GHz (chopped into like you point out
    > later) {System Max}, 512MB RAM {System Max}, old style PCI slots, VGA plug
    > to on-board graphics, running DSL Internet connection via wireless USB to my
    > Gateway, with a 4-port USB hub, generic mike, Hercules cheap web cam, with
    > Win XP Home Upgrade SP 2 (had to temporarily remove SP3, haven't got to
    > reloading, but that's another story).
    >
    >
    >> http://www.devduff.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/03/dell-studio-xps-435-rear.jpg
    >>
    >> You can get Direct3D and DirectX from integrated graphics. A pre-built
    >> computer
    >> should already have had all the drivers installed.

    >
    > And so I thought, which is where the problem comes in.
    >
    >> If you were starting with a retail WinXP CD, and installed from that,
    >> some things that you'd need for full graphics function would be
    >>
    >> 1) Chipset drivers. These help identify system devices in the Device
    >> Manager
    >> display. The most important component, might be the AGP bridge driver
    >> component (for a future AGP add-in card upgrade).
    >>
    >> 2) With integrated graphics, there is a video driver. It may support
    >> Direct3D
    >> and OpenGL. Integrated graphics are usually UMA, meaning the memory
    >> they
    >> use for the graphics, is stolen from the main memory. So instead of
    >> 1024MB of main memory, you might see 992MB of main memory, and 32MB
    >> allocated to integrated graphics.

    >
    > Yes, it does allocate some to graphics.
    >
    >> 3) Some version of DirectX from Microsoft should be installed as well.
    >> Some video device installer packages, include a copy of the minimum
    >> version of DirectX, that the driver supports. So the problem is solved
    >> immediately. Otherwise, if you thought it needed to be updated, you
    >> can get DirectX from Microsoft. The downloads they offer, seem to have
    >> frequent date changes, but the version still seems to be DirectX 9c.

    >
    > Direct X Installers came with add-on hardware as you say. Additionally, I
    > went through and picked out some old games, and installed one after the
    > other Direct X 5 - 9c to see what results, but checking each time showed
    > Direct 3D not installed, and the program she wanted to load continued to say
    > something like "Can't find Direct 3D"
    >
    >
    >> You can upgrade her card if you want. You'll need a specific video driver
    >> for it. Which will likely be on the CD that comes with the video card.
    >> Depending on the card type (PCI, AGP, PCI Express), they vary in
    >> how finicky the driver situation is. Some AGP products for example,
    >> are really PCI Express products with a bridge conversion chip attached.
    >> And sometimes, it is difficult to identify a good, stable driver version
    >> for such cards (ATI or Nvidia didn't put much work into it).

    >
    > I went and ordered her a 64MB Jaton nVidia Ge Force 400 (cheap - and I had
    > good results installing a similar card on another system). I'm hoping this
    > install will go well. It comes with the driver disk.
    >
    >> In the BIOS, there may be a setting which determines the "Primary"
    >> graphics
    >> device. If you added an AGP card, setting the Primary to AGP, would mean
    >> the AGP would likely hold the BIOS screen at startup. Which is the way
    >> you'd want it, so you could change BIOS settings in the future.

    >
    > That's another problem I meant to address later. I purchased three of these
    > and 2 GX1's from a library for $5 a piece. Unfortunately, SETUP is
    > password-protected from the old system administrator and I haven't found a
    > way around it. Get this - the librarians don't even know who their Sys Adm
    > is. I've heard the PW can be changed, but don't remember how. But, that's
    > another story.
    >
    >> Before adding the new video card, you could uninstall the existing video
    >> card driver. Even if the "old" graphics were ATI, and the "new" graphics
    >> were ATI, you should still uninstall the old driver.

    >
    > Now, do I disable the on-board graphics, shut down, install the new card,
    > power up on the new card?
    >
    >> Paul

    >
    > Thanks for all your help, Paul
    >
    > Woof
    >


    As near as I can tell, the integrated graphics come from Intel 810e.

    There is a page here from Intel, suggesting a procedure for enabling
    DirectDraw and Direct3D.

    http://www.intel.com/support/graphics/sb/CS-003994.htm

    For video drivers, the most recent 810 family driver is from 2002.

    http://downloadcenter.intel.com/filter_results.aspx?strTypes=all&ProductID=178&OSFullName=Windows*+XP+Professional&lang=eng&strOSs=44&submit=Go!

    If the graphics really are coming from the 810E, there is a
    datasheet here. Apparently, the two identical chips on the GX110
    motherboard, would be up to 4MB of cache for the graphics on the
    810E. That is what I can learn looking at this. But there is no
    hint here, as to what level of DirectX is supported in hardware.

    http://download.intel.com/design/chipsets/datashts/29067602.pdf

    I would think your idea of using a separate video card, would give
    you better performance and compatibility. Up to a point. Modern
    games do a "sniff test", and won't install if the graphics
    hardware isn't powerful enough. So in that case, it is more
    than just "compatibility" they check for.

    If you go too far forward in time, with AGP video cards, eventually
    you get to a point where they need WinXP or later as an OS. So
    an older card may span a more useful set of OSes, for that
    vintage of processor.

    Disabling the built-in graphics can be tricky. A well written BIOS,
    will automatically disable the built-in, once the AGP card is
    detected. But I have heard of cases (a buddy at work), where
    despite trying everything, they cannot get their add-in card
    to work. There is no guarantee of an entry in the BIOS labeled
    "disable" for the graphics, because imagine the scenario of
    someone removing their AGP card... and they cannot get the
    BIOS to display on the 810E VGA output. It would take clearing
    the CMOS, which is not a user friendly procedure (does Dell
    document how to do it properly ?) .

    In summary, with the chipset INF drivers install, and then
    something like the above 810E video driver, you should get
    some level of compliance. That, plus the procedure described
    in the first link, for getting around a "button" problem
    in dxdiag. (Dxdiag is the program provided with DirectX,
    that you can run from a DOS compatibility window. It lists
    capabilities.)

    http://www.dukecg.net/dxdiag_64.jpg

    Good luck,
    Paul
    Paul, Jun 28, 2009
    #2
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