- Aug 17, 2014
Microsoft released DirectStorage 1.1 recently, an updated technology to improve the loading times of PC games significantly. Games that make use of DirectStorage 1.1 may move decompression tasks from the processor to the graphics processing unit; this speeds up the operation, as GPUs are better suited for these tasks, and reduces the load on the CPU at the same time.
DirectStorage 1.1 does not change the hardware requirements introduced with DirectStorage 1.0: a fast NVMe drive and a GPU that supports DirectX 12 and Shader Model 6.0 is required to make use of the feature.
Graphics processing units that support DirectStorage do support the updated version as well. Manufacturers like AMD, Intel and Nvidia may release optimizations, called metacommands, to optimize the feature on devices that run their graphics cards.
Intel released a new driver for its ARC GPU series this week that introduced support for " optimized Microsoft DirectStorage* 1.1 with GPU accelerated decompression for developer integration".
AMD has yet to release a public driver with metacommands; the company revealed that it has "a build of a metacommand-enabled graphics driver" for partners available. Nvidia released driver 526.98 and with it official support for DirectStorage 1.1.
AMD, Intel and Nvidia have drivers ready that add support for DirectStorage 1.1 on Windows, and optimizations on top of that.