Sign in to follow this  

Windows XP: Is it dead yet?

This topic is 2641 days old which is more than the 365 day threshold we allow for new replies. Please post a new topic.

If you intended to correct an error in the post then please contact us.

Recommended Posts

As the topic says. It seems that many people are clinging to XP's dead corpse and holding back development of games.
This may sound crude but my opinion is that people hanging onto XP are holding back development and keeping many games from moving past directx 9.

My question of course is, when will XP finally be dead and buried in your own opinions, and have you already started developing in anticipation for its demise? Do you already use functions of directx 10 and above exclusively for indie game development, or even for professional game development?

Please discuss. :-)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Windows XP happens to work just fine, so I have no plans to upgrade. Certainly, not because of some indie developer doesn't want to support directx 9.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Assuming steam's current trend then probably not less than a year until XP goes away. But remember that the end of life for XP is 4/8/2014 (which doesn't mean, but but shows when it will probably die quickly).

Honestly if you want to go for DX10 then go for it, but don't expect a huge change. There's a lot of people that hate change. I had a friend that was using Windows 2000 up until two years ago.

This reminds me of SSE support also since most people don't upgrade their processor for a very long time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by Sirisian
Assuming steam's current trend then probably not less than a year until XP goes away. But remember that the end of life for XP is 4/8/2014 (which doesn't mean, but but shows when it will probably die quickly).

Honestly if you want to go for DX10 then go for it, but don't expect a huge change. There's a lot of people that hate change. I had a friend that was using Windows 2000 up until two years ago.

This reminds me of SSE support also since most people don't upgrade their processor for a very long time.

Yeah not everyone is gung-ho into upgrading their computer. Just like I have a cell-phone that I haven't upgraded for years. All I care is that is still works and let's me make phone calls. Until then I'm not looking to upgrade since I don't have a compelling reason to go out of my way to buy a new one.
Personally, I think Intel's crappy graphics chip they bundle in low cost computers is holding back game development more than people hanging onto XP?

[Edited by - daviangel on October 18, 2010 3:15:27 PM]

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by daviangel
Quote:
Original post by Sirisian
Assuming steam's current trend then probably not less than a year until XP goes away. But remember that the end of life for XP is 4/8/2014 (which doesn't mean, but but shows when it will probably die quickly).

Honestly if you want to go for DX10 then go for it, but don't expect a huge change. There's a lot of people that hate change. I had a friend that was using Windows 2000 up until two years ago.

This reminds me of SSE support also since most people don't upgrade their processor for a very long time.

Yeah not everyone is gung-ho into upgrading their computer. Just like I have a cell-phone that I haven't upgraded for years. All I care is that is still works and let's me make phone calls. Until then I'm not looking to upgrade since I don't find them interesting.
Personally, I think Intel's crappy graphics chip they bundle in low cost computers is holding back game development more than people hanging onto XP?


I do agree that these graphics chips might hold back development, however how many gamers buy cheap systems? :-)
I suppose as more people buy new PCs (as parts of their old XP systems break that are impractical to replace such as motherboards etc) they will end up with windows 7 on them as vendors are no longer allowed to sell new systems with XP as far as i am aware, they have agreements with MS to not do this.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by Ed Welch
Windows XP happens to work just fine, so I have no plans to upgrade. Certainly, not because of some indie developer doesn't want to support directx 9.


Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
If you need the latest features of graphics cards, and still want to support Windows XP, you can always use OpenGL. But really, I think that the type of people who want the latest graphics and those that use out dated operating systems are fairly disjoint sets.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I didn't mind XP when I was still using it but once I had switched to 7 I never looked back.
XP feels terribly unmodern to me now.

That said I'm still developing with DirectX 9 and many of my users run XP.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
my opinion is that people hanging onto XP are holding back development and keeping many games from moving past directx 9.

How exactly are people "keeping" games from moving past DX 9? If you mean, instead, that there is still a sizeable market for games that run on XP and there's still money to be made there, that's how the market works.

Maybe if you describe what you don't understand about making money.. [wink]

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Games have already moved past D3D9. In the interest of supporting as many platforms as possible, of course developers are still supporting D3D9. All of the major AAA engines have had their DX9 renderers for years so the code base is very mature. They won't spend much money updating that piece, but the cost to include is minimal especially considering the potential market they would miss without it. Yes studios will continue to target the XP market as long as the market is alive, but the engines nowadays are scalable enough that the holdouts are not holding anyone back.

When will XP be dead? When new 64 bit drivers are developed for everyone's legacy hardware (a.k.a. never). Seriously though, give it a few more years and market share will largely shift away from XP. Hardware and OS migration tend to happen in sync though.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
When DX9 was at it's peak, many games still supported DX8 or even DX7 renderers, so what's wrong with having a a DX11 and DX9 code-path?

Also, as mentioned above, you can access DX11 functionality on XP via OpenGL.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The first reason why I might migrate from Windows XP Professional to Windows 7 one day would be that Windows XP does not (and will never) support the TRIM command for solid state disks, which admittedly is annoying.

The second reason is that Windows 7 has solid 64 bit support unlike any of previous versions all of which totally sucked in that respect.
To date, 32 bits are limiting for some applications, but for the most part it's still kind of ok. And while a 64 bit environment would make some development tasks considerably easier and more comfortable, you still have to support 32 bit systems anyway, so meh... talk about that again in 5-6 years.

Apart from the above two, I don't really see how Windows 7 does anything significantly better than Windows XP. It has more blinking lights and prettier colours, ok. But it also needs a three times more powerful graphics card and ridiculous amounts of memory, and it does many "intelligent" things that I simply don't want.

Which doesn't mean I won't buy Windows 7 with the next computer, because there's no real alternative. Sticking with Windows XP simply to refuse Windows 7 would be stupid. However, I don't see an urgent reason to migrate now or any time soon.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Added bonus with OpenGL is that it gives you some flexibility to port your work to other computer platforms, if needed. For instance, toying with the idea of supporting OS X at some point is not so outlandish these days.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by Scarabus2
I didn't mind XP when I was still using it but once I had switched to 7 I never looked back.
XP feels terribly unmodern to me now.

That said I'm still developing with DirectX 9 and many of my users run XP.


I agree with you totally. I use a vista machine at work and I find it so difficult at times because I don't have many of the Aero features that windows 7 has.

Personally I think windows xp is still so popular that its not unreasonable for developers to want to stick with developing for it. After all its pointless making a game if most your customers could not run it. I think this especially applies to games that are meant for more casual gamers, for instance small games like Jewel quest,Zuma and etc...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by y2kiah
Seriously though, give it a few more years and market share will largely shift away from XP.


If you target the more 'hard core' gamers then XP is already in a minority; as per the last Steam Hardware Survey Vista and Win7 hold approx 66% of the market and growing nicely.

If you were starting a game today, didn't plan to bring it out for at least a year and weren't targeting "casual gamers" then I would say you would be foolish to use anything but the DX11 API on Windows.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Personally I agree with Valve on this - if I can achieve what I want with DX9 and the features of 10 or 11 don't add anything that I can't do without, what's the point?

Equally, until there is something that Vista/7 offers that I can't do with XP (can't think of anything except DX10+), why wouldn't I support XP?

A random link seems to suggest that XP still dominates.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Having 2 systems, one with XP and another with Vista. Personally I'm just too lazy to reinstall everything again. XP still works good. Vista is a different story but again it probably takes a hardware crash, supervirus or a new system before it gets upgraded. Laptops usually don't hold longer than 2 years with me, but that old XP beast is working 4 years in a row already...

With an average "usuable" life cycle of ~3 years, I would guess XP will remain here till 2012 or something. "Problem" with desktops however is that you can upgrade a videocard for example without touching the OS. Don't forget you also need to purchase a new Windows package. I'm not really jumping to spend money on something that ain't broke yet. Especially not for a hobby-home-game computer. However, when the average game requires more than 4gig RAM, things will get different. That would require a 64bit OS, finally a valid reason to upgrade.

My 2 cents

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by phantomIf you target the more 'hard core' gamers then XP is already in a minority; as per the last Steam Hardware Survey Vista and Win7 hold approx 66% of the market and growing nicely.

If you were starting a game today, didn't plan to bring it out for at least a year and weren't targeting "casual gamers" then I would say you would be foolish to use anything but the DX11 API on Windows.


Did you look at "OS + GPU" to determine DX compliance? They have that trend as well:

DX10 GPU + Vista/Win7: 56%
DX11 GPU + Vista/Win7: 5.7%

At only 5.7% it seems a bit early to move to DX11 only? Also, until the next Xbox is released, anything released on Xbox/PC must have a DX9 version.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by EJH
Did you look at "OS + GPU" to determine DX compliance? They have that trend as well:

DX10 GPU + Vista/Win7: 56%
DX11 GPU + Vista/Win7: 5.7%

At only 5.7% it seems a bit early to move to DX11 only? Also, until the next Xbox is released, anything released on Xbox/PC must have a DX9 version.



I know this misconception is mostly Microsoft's fault, but I really wish it would die. You can use DirectX 11 on DirectX 10 GPUs. DirectX 11 has the concept of feature levels. When building your device, you simply set the feature level to D3D10_FEATURE_LEVEL_10_0, and then avoid using DirectX 11 features.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Windows XP is two generations behind and so is DX9. If people want to use it, by all means, but I don't think these people should have any expectations of being able to play modern games. I'd like to see more games that use DX11 with DX10 fallback.

I honestly doubt there are that many people out there with modern hardware (eg. Core i7, GTX480, HD5870) that are using Windows XP. So most people using a legacy OS are most likely using older hardware as well, so they really shouldn't expect to be able to play cutting edge games.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I read the first post and went "OM*G what the *beep*, laugh" :)

For me Windows XP is fine. I've had it since 2002 when I bought the computer and I've upgraded the hardware a few times but never the operating system, other than installing Linux.

Yeah I am not the guy who goes after the latest fashion trends. I am not a sheep who follows all the trends. The System will eventually make it unbearable for me to use Windows XP and then I will have to upgrade but I try to avoid upgrading as much as I can. Yeah I don't play the latest games and this hardware probably can't, if we talk about the shiniest first-person-shooters out there. That's a fair point, but one thing you need to understand is that a lot of people don't need the latest shiny thing, and it's totally fine so you should absolutely not get upset because of that. The first post sounds like the guy is a bit upset about this and that caused a bit of a WT* reaction here, with some laughter.

I think what you will do with this really depends on what kind of games you are going to create. Do you have a budget of millions of dollars and a team of many people? Or are you a lone developer who wishes to some day get something actually done? If you are the latter, then you don't have to worry about people not using the latest hardware and operating system at all. You have other worries like how are you going to finish that game and still have some life left after that.

Create the cutting-edge game all you want but also let me do whatever I want to do with my computer and operating system. If I fall behind the trends then that ought to be my "problem" and not yours :)

In other words do not try to place some "blame" on me - I will take none of it :) and will also consider you a bit rude for trying to put some blame on me :)

[Edited by - reptor on October 18, 2010 5:33:57 PM]

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
A few days ago I worked on an XP machine again. Nothing fancy, but Firefox worked really well (videos and such), so did office and rest of stuff. So I open the task manager...

68MB memory used out of 1 gigabyte total, dual core 1800MHz CPU. The 7 I use most takes 1.7GB just to boot.


Point being, for everything except AAA quad-SLI OC DDR5 GPU-based epeen boasting, the machine above is just fine.

So now the question becomes, how difficult is it to create something that is worthy of such insane next-gen beast?

Because if it's just about burning cycles, why not use Flash and be done in a fraction of time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by Antheus
A few days ago I worked on an XP machine again. Nothing fancy, but Firefox worked really well (videos and such), so did office and rest of stuff. So I open the task manager...

68MB memory used out of 1 gigabyte total, dual core 1800MHz CPU. The 7 I use most takes 1.7GB just to boot.

You know how modern operating systems work probably so you're probably trying to make a cheap point. The idea is to use RAM as a cache. So if you have 4 GB expect to use 2 GB all the time. Have 2 GB? Expect at least 1 GB allocated.

My laptop has 2 VS2010 instances, FF 4b6 (30 tabs), Adobe Fireworks and a few other programs and I'm at 1.16/2 GB of RAM.

Quote:
Original post by EngrChris via IRC
<Sirisian> EngrChris, How much RAM do you have and how much is being used?
<EngrChris> I have 12gb
<EngrChris> Right now I'm using 2.7gb
<Sirisian> Do you have much running?
<EngrChris> folding at home, ff4b, xchat

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Newer isn't always better.

One of the games I play a lot, Mount & Blade: Warband,(admittedly far from cutting edge) still has a DirectX7 mode, which I use all the time because it gives me about 2x the framerate that the DirectX9 mode does. So it doesn't look quite as shiny, it's good enough, and the additional speed makes the game far more playable.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by braindigitalis
My question of course is, when will XP finally be dead and buried in your own opinions, and have you already started developing in anticipation for its demise? Do you already use functions of directx 10 and above exclusively for indie game development, or even for professional game development?

XP will live on for several more years in many environments. You can still find Windows 2000 and even Windows 98/95 if you look hard enough. The gamer environment is not one of them, at least directly. Many games require XP mode, which is free with Windows 7.

Don't let this hold you back on games. As the Valve OS study points out, gamers are updating and it is a dying breed. Target whatever operating system you want.

If you have a very broad audience and you want maximum compatibility (eg: The Sims, Peggle, other casual games) then you probably ought to keep XP compatibility for a few more years. When writing your own games, or writing games targeting more hardcore gamers, you can safely assume newer systems.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sign in to follow this