Who would’ve believed that ? DirectX 12 arrives on Linux, through the back door, but still!

Nathan Le Gohlisse

Hardware Specialist

January 12, 2022 at 2:15 p.m.


DirectX 12 © © Microsoft

© Microsoft

Unexpectedly, DirectX 12 seems, unofficially and through a roundabout way, to make its way tortuously to Linux.

While some open-source graphics APIs, like Vulkan, make their extended compatibility one of their main strengths, DX12 can’t be said to be very open to non-Microsoft ecosystems. However, the Redmond giant’s programming library makes a few exceptions to the rule. It thus seems to want to make a roundabout entry into Linux.

DirectX 12 wants to unofficially invite itself into Mesa

A first attempt at DirectX 12 support by Mesa, the open-source software implementation of OpenGL for Linux and BSD, has indeed been spotted. Jesse Natalie, chief software engineer at Microsoft, is working on adding and improving support for D3D12 in OpenGL, via Mesa.

The interested party also suggests that this first breakthrough could only be the beginning: “ Now that compute support is available, we can start hooking up compute shaders for things that will need emulation in the future, like a faster path for indirect casts that need state variables.

An interest especially for data centers?

As noted Neowin, the end goal of this D3D12 compute shader support in Mesa is still vague. However, it could prove useful for data centers, which are often powered by Linux. Microsoft and its Azure Cloud indeed offer virtual machines optimized for GPU computing. They could benefit from such support.

However, our expectations should be tempered: we are dealing with what for the moment looks like a simple request for a merger. Neowin thus underlines that Microsoft’s preliminary work is not correlated to an official port of DirectX 12 on Linux.

On the same subject :
Intel disables DirectX 12 on the iGPU of Haswell processors

Source: Neowin

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