Microsoft Releases DirectStorage API To Speed Up Loading Times On PC

Two years after previewing DirectStorage API, Microsoft has finally made it available to game developers for the purpose of drastically speeding up load times on a PC. DirectStorage taps into how the GPU interacts with the SSD to dramatically increase data transfers, making for a much more pleasant gaming experience with less waiting time.

By releasing the technology as an API, Microsoft has made the DirectStorage technology available to the industry at large, and not just Nvidia. Remember, Nvidia’s RTX technology is built on top of Microsoft’s own Direct Raytracing API. So, while it’s possible that Nvidia’s branding machine will help push Nvidia RTX IO in front of your eyeballs, we should expect that AMD will be able to take advantage of this technology as well.

Specifically, DirectStorage involves three things: a DirectX12-style calling pattern, so that the apps themselves don’t have to manage I/O requests; GPU decompression of those assets; and a storage stack that takes advantage of the DirectStorage features.

According to Microsoft, DirectStorage will accommodate older hardware, even older spinning hard drives. Microsoft will also make DirectStorage available for Windows 10. But the technology is also being optimized for Windows 11, which will “unlock the full potential of DirectStorage.” Fast I/O transfers between a GPU and a storage device will also benefit from fast storage—which means that an NVMe SSD is probably best.

Microsoft’s next steps are to distribute the API, then let gamers know which games will actually support the new DirectStorage technology. Microsoft said it will also continue to work on GPU decompression, a feature that will give developers more control over resources.”

(All information was provided by PCWorld)

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