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Brier Dudley offers a critical look at technology and business issues affecting the Northwest.

August 21, 2009 at 11:33 AM

Nvidia announces GPU+CPU support for Windows 7

If games and Vista Aero didn’t pursuade you to buy a graphics card for your PC, perhaps DirectCompute will.

That’s a new technology in Windows 7 that lets applications tap the power of graphics processors to accelerate performance, giving the system processor a boost. It sounds really promising, but so did ReadyBoost for Vista and it never seemed to take off.

Nvidia today announced that it’s the first manufacturer of graphics processing units to get Microsoft’s DirectCompute driver certification. People running Windows 7 with a GeForce GPU can download the driver (Version 190.62) from Nvidia later today.

I asked for a list of compatible Nvidia cards. Spokesman Hector Marinez said via e-mail that the DirectCompute driver will work with “all of our NVIDIA DirectX 10 graphics cards — GeForce 8 series and later, including ION.”

Mike Ybarra, Microsoft general manager for Windows Product Management, said in the release that “Windows 7 combined with applications that take advantage of the new DirectCompute technology have the potential to transform the personal computing experience for millions of customers using GPUs to turbo-charge scenarios in digital media applications.”

Presumably ATI will announce its drivers soon.

Comments | Topics: Gadgets & products, Microsoft, nvidia

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