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You weren't expecting this: Windows 7 gets DirectX 12 support

World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth is the first game to bring DirectX 12 to Windows 7
World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth is the first game to bring DirectX 12 to Windows 7
Although Windows 7 still controls a noticeable share in the desktop market, many gamers were forced to upgrade just to fully enjoy various DirectX 12 titles. However, the latest update for World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth — patch 8.1.5 — is the first title to bring full DirectX 12 support to Microsoft's outdated operating system.

World of Warcraft has been around since 2004 — no less than five years before Windows 7 became generally available, and even before the release of Windows Vista. Last year, World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth received DirectX 12 support (only in Windows 10, obviously). Now, the time has come for the WoW players still stuck with Windows 7 to enjoy the DirectX 12 visual treats in their favorite game.

Released yesterday, the patch 8.1.5 made Blizzard the first game developer to use DirectX 12 for Windows 7. According to Microsoft's Jianye Lu, "Now, Windows 7 WoW gamers can run the game using DirectX 12 and enjoy a framerate boost, though the best DirectX 12 performance will always be on Windows 10, since Windows 10 contains a number of OS optimizations designed to make DirectX 12 run even faster."

This surprising move comes as an answer to the feedback that Microsoft received from both Blizzard and the many WoW players still spending long hours in the game nowadays, more than 14 years since its first iteration came out. However, the user mode D3D12 runtime that was ported from Windows 10 does not take full advantage of all optimizations present in Microsoft's latest Windows release, so DirectX 12 titles might run at least a bit slower in Windows 7.

Unfortunately, there is no information on other titles that will get DirectX 12 support in Windows 7, but Microsoft has confirmed that other game developers are already working with the Redmond giant to bring their D3D12 games to Windows 7. Are you still using Windows 7? Which DirectX 12 title would you like to see in Windows 7 first?

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2019 03 > You weren't expecting this: Windows 7 gets DirectX 12 support
Codrut Nistor, 2019-03-13 (Update: 2019-03-13)
Codrut Nistor
Codrut Nistor - News Editor
Although I have been writing about new software and hardware for almost a decade, I consider myself to be old school. I always enjoy listening to music on CD or tape instead of digital files and I will not even get into the touchscreen vs physical keys debate. However, I also enjoy new technology, as I now have the chance to take a look at the future every day. I joined the Notebookcheck crew back in 2013 and I have no plans to leave the ship anytime soon.