View Full Version : Is windows XP ideal for CG ? or ****s ?

06 June 2002, 05:46 AM
Is windows XP ideal for CG ? or ****s ?
what are the good and bad ?

06 June 2002, 12:42 PM
I still think win 2000 with service pack 2 is the best!
:bounce: :bounce: :bounce: :bounce: :bounce:


3D Madness

06 June 2002, 03:04 PM
I use 3dsmax4.2 with XP and haven't had any problems.

06 June 2002, 04:21 PM
I find that I get a teeny bit more performance under win 2k. However I know for a fact that win XP is more stable (keep in mind it's still a MS product) and can handle hiccups in software and hardware better. I think XP is too "dumbed-down" to really be able to recomend it strongly. However I hate nothing more than having a system crash or hang up while I'm trying to get work done and XP does that less than 2K.

My 2 cents...

I got a chance to use an SGI box running Unix for a little while but it was a couple of years old so I couldn't appreciate any sort of performance comparisson. But that baby NEVER crashed. Does anybody here in the forum have the opportunaty to compare the performance of the Linux versions of a couple apps to their windows counterparts?

06 June 2002, 04:58 PM
Well, in Linux you can really strip down the interface (easier if you start on RunLevel 3 (command line) rather than on RunLevel 5 (GUI Login)) so pure OpenGL performance can be two thirds up in sayyy Blender.

This does, however, depend on how it's been ported. Maya 3 was ported using an early version of WINE(1) and performance drop was stated in all reviews I've come across but I've not seen anything about Maya 4 even though it appears to have been released.

Of course, you could improve your Windows performance by using something like LiteStep instead of Explorer... but after this last weekend's experience I really wouldn't unless you know exactly what you're doing.
regards, Paul

PS nVidia's Quadro 4 drivers were optimised for XP last I checked and they do have the best drivers for Max

(1)That and it uses OpenMotif for the interface, the performance of which I have no idea about. Why not GTK+ or QT?

06 June 2002, 03:53 AM
mmmm..... i ve installed XP yesterday .... and i used maya 4 nothing wrong ..... but i didnt use 3dmax 4 yet ......

06 June 2002, 04:21 AM
Hi Guys,

Good question good answers.

Basically 3s Max's performance was good on NT.
Later on the performance on 2000 with service pack too was ok.
Win based OS a will help you only with medium scal productions only I think. But still it helps network rendering.

Recently I bought XP and planning to install 3ds Max 4 on it.
But a friedn of mine had problem in installing and licencing.
He was never be able to install 3s Max 4 on Xp. Now he's written to Discreet. So I'm a bit scared of installing Xp.

ALias Wavefront has an driver update for Xp. But I don't think Discreet has one. Have any idea???


06 June 2002, 02:40 PM
Just about all problems that I've heard of people having with 3dsmax4 and WindowsXP can be solved by downloading the cdilla update from the Discreet website:

06 June 2002, 05:05 PM
Yes dude U R right.
Discreet has a driver update for Xp and Alias Wavefront doesn't have one. Sorry I was wrong.

By the way can somebody please expalin me what is the difference between nVidia's Quadro 4 and Tilanium.
I know Tilanium is for gaming. Can't we tweak it for Max or Maya?
What is the advantage in Quadro 4 ? How does the driver support Maya or Max?

Please expalin.

06 June 2002, 08:49 PM
I never heard of a "Tilanium".
Nvidia makes the GeForce line of cards for gameing, and the Quadro line of cards for OpenGL applications.

06 June 2002, 10:46 PM
Yup, he means the GeForce Ti 200-500 range, Ti being the chemical symbol for Titanium... I think.

GeForce performs better in games, Quadro performs better in workstation applications. Quadro boards also have better support for multiple synchronised and non-flickering OpenGL windows, perform better in high resolutions such as 1600x1200 and have many other bells and whistles.

You can get some software that apparently turns on sideband adressing and fastwrites for the GeForce4 but you can't SoftQuadro it like their previous boards.

As well as this, workstation cards tend to come with optimised drivers for major software, in this case I think they're called Maxtreme and switching to DirectX output lets you have all sorts of funky realtime effects.

Quadros also cost a helluva lot more (the Quadro XGL range being equivelant to the GeForce 4)
regards, Paul

06 June 2002, 04:13 PM
Sorry Guys Nimal started this topic by asking which OS is good for CG I think we should continue with that. I'll be starting a new one for OPEN GL support and Crads.:beer:

06 June 2002, 10:17 PM
The newest Ti cards, the 4600, 4400, and 4200 are all Ti cards and are in theory aimed at gamers. They do pretty well for themselves in the modeling/animation but they have the Quadro 900 and 750 that are the 4600 quadro, and 4400 quadro. In the "olden" days of the Geforce2 and Geforce3 you could use a jumper or possibly a softQuadro patch to convert your geforce2/3 to the professional Quadro cards of those times. From all I've seen people haven't been so lucky yet with converting the present day Geforce4 Ti line to their Quadro brethren. If you have the dough then sure get a Quadro, otherwise the Ti series are good cards. I am planning on buying them assuming Matrox's new card isn't within reach.


06 June 2002, 07:31 AM
guys ...
i havnt got a clear answer for my question ......:airguitar
please anyone tell me ....
and Is XP compatible for openGL games ???????????

06 June 2002, 07:38 AM
ado..... amuthan ....
dont change the line of discussion ...... !!!!!
if u want to discuss ur 3d card ..pls open a new thread ...

06 June 2002, 07:38 AM
hehe, sorry. I use Windows XP and it seems fine to me with Softimage XSI 2.01 and 2.02. I haven't used Maya as I really don't know it but I have heard of people using it with XP. As for games, XP is very good as well, no problems to report for me in either D3d or OpenGL. I think most problems occur, if any, on the video cards driver area and not as often on the OS level.


06 June 2002, 08:42 AM
Ok sure Nimal!
anyway ppl are more interested in Cards tha the OS I think.

I start a new one.


06 June 2002, 04:19 PM
OK, here's the short version:
Yes, windows XP is compatable with OpenGL. I have run games (Quake 3 is OpenGL), applications (Maya 4 and Softimage), and benchmarks and haven't had any problems. I think that the only thing you need to do is to make sure the hard drives are formatted with NTFS and not FAT32. It's an option when you are first setting windows up. Other than that it can basically do what ever win2000 can do as far as OpenGL is concerned.

The drive format is for pro 3D application compatability not for games.

06 June 2002, 02:51 AM
I can accept your point that NTFS file system will help you.
But I would like to know how Open GL works with Xp?

Xp has it's own Direct3D and Direct X components.
Can we make them work better than Open GL?

Most of the Games Direct3D Games. Few are only OpenGL games.
We use Open GL only in the view port. When Xp has it's own Direct X supported Direct3D why not we use that?:airguitar

Does it mean that we don't uttlize Xp for our 3d work?

06 June 2002, 05:58 AM
XP its own Direct3d components? Do you mean the fact it installs Direct X 8.1 with the install of XP? At any rate you should stop worrying, OpenGL will work and XP is a great OS. I personally really like it better than 2k for it is easier to setup and for some compatibility issues.

But if it worries you this much then stick to win2k and be done with the what if's. Either OS should work well for ya. Just get good drivers, lotsa ram, a good video card, a large monitor and some time and you'll be set.


06 June 2002, 09:47 AM
No No
I'm asking why we use Open GL???

Can't we use Direct X for all our 3D work?
Which is already in Xp?

06 June 2002, 09:20 PM
Because then all the companies (discreet, newtek, A|W) would have to license D3D technology and then incorporate it into their packages. D3D has always been a part of Windows operating systems, but only in the last few iterations has it matured enough that it's beginning to be on par with OGL. OpenGL is a standard that spans multiple platforms (Win, Mac, Linux/Unix) and D3D/DirectX is Microsoft's own little brainchild brought out to kill OGL and force people to buy Windows OSes to play games. OGL will almost certainly thrive due to the fact that it's on different platforms and most commercial animation houses (which spend the most money to the developers) use non-windows systems.

oh and for the record, I like my games in OGL more than D3D ... if there was a choice for in-game renderer, I choose OGL, it looks better and runs faster. (in general, not all games, but quite a few)

06 June 2002, 11:35 PM
D3D has been with all Windows implementations?

If no-one minds, I'll be laughing my arse off in a quiet corner for the next month.

Windows95 was released a few years before DirectX was even invented never mind D3D.

But yes, DirectX is Windows specific whereas OpenGL can be used on more OSs than you can shake a stick at. Beware the mighty funkdubiousness of OpenGL 2.0. Planned for this autumn it will take a mighty leap and overtake DirectX 9.1 by a monkey mile!!! :bounce:

A realtime 3D language to rival the complexity of even the mighty Renderman Interface Language!!!

See ( for more info.
burn Hollywood burn, Paul


06 June 2002, 11:52 PM
I accept the fact that Open GL supports all the platforms and D3D supports only Windows based.

I have palyed both OpenGL and D3D games. Quake SOF are pretty good as they are OpenGL games. But we have to accept the fact that even D3D games looks equal.

And D3D is developed by Microsoft. Therefore it'll co-operate well with Windows Xp. There why not we use it for Animation development?

True that Microsoft has been tring to monopolize the market for a long time. But why don't we use it if the system developed by it is really good.

I'm using OpenGL 1.3 for 3DsMax4 viewports.
Could you please tell me what are the main differences between D3D and OpenGL?

BTW , I have configured OpenGL only for the viewports. I don't think it's making any influence in my rendering. how do I configure OpenGL for rendering in 3DsMax and Maya4?

I'm too confused.:annoyed:

06 June 2002, 01:30 AM
Originally posted by odubtaig
Windows95 was released a few years before DirectX was even invented never mind D3D.

my bad, I totally forgot about 95 ... I dont really consider anything before 98SE an operating system though.

06 June 2002, 03:09 AM
The OpenGL used in 3D applications is used in the viewports we interact with to build, texture, light, and animate our 3D pieces. It has very little, to almost nothing to do with the performance or quality of our renders.

The render process does not use the video card at all during the processing of the image. The computer's CPU, RAM, and motherboard performance is entirely responseable for the speed at which an image is rendered.

OpenGL and the professional graphics cards which are optimised to work with it are there mostly to help 3D artists visualise the image and manipulate the models to get the animation or still frame ready to be rendered by the computer.

It is best to think of making the scene and rendering the scene as two seperate and nonrelated processes.

As far as the questions about why the 3D applications use OpenGL instead of DirectX is one that should be asked of the companies that developed the applications. Not the artists who use them. But....being that I have a degeree in computer science with a specialization in computer graphics, I think that I could take a guess as to why companies use OpenGL and not DirectX in their applications.

OpenGL was developed from the start as a standardised collection of protocols dealing almost entirely with 3D computer graphics. It is designed by the 3D industry, for the 3D industry. DirectX, on the other hand, was developed by one company to provide a multitude of multimedia support for it's own OS. DirectX is not standardized, it is propriatary to Microsoft, and only a small part of DirectX (Direct3D) is actually designed for 3D processing. When Direct3D was developed it was developed almost entirely for computer game performance (real-time rendering). It wasn't initially designed for professional 3D work. The fact that it has evolved into a more powerfull and capable protocol says a lot for microsoft.

However, imagine the enormous cost that would be incurred by not only the 3D application designers but also the professional video card manufacturers if they had to re-write their code every time Microsoft released a new version of DirectX. OpenGL on the other hand is not proprietary to any one company. Almost every company involved in professional computer graphics has a hand in the development of OpenGL. This means that OpenGL evolves as the technology that it supports evolves. With DirectX often technology has to develop to support the new features supported by DirectX. Basically, the industry can submit their new technologies to the OpenGL development team as they are developed; whereas they often have to play catch-up with DirectX and Microsoft. This is evident in some very obvious ways. The first is the fact that DirectX is already up to version 8.1 (9.1 soon), yet there are very few games, and almost no applications that can take full advantage of all of the features that DirectX supports. Contrasting that, OpenGL is still at version 1.3 (2.0 soon) and almost if not all of it's features are fully implemented in most software and hardware available today.

It's not that the folks that are developing OpenGL are really slow. It's because OpenGl already supported many of the processes needed by 3D apps in version 1.0 and has only be updated as is needed by the industry as a whole not one company.

After all of this I guess I can sum up by explaining the differences between OpenGL and DirectX like this:
Today, graphics cards have become so powerfull that you could use either a card designed for gaming or a card designed for professional work for your 3D art. However, using the professional cards has a huge advantage because they were designed from the ground up just for that kind of work. Many people could make due with using a game card for 3D work, but performance and quality during the building process are hurt because the card is doing work it was not designed for. OpenGL was designed from the ground up for professional graphics work. DirectX was designed for general multimedia support which includes 3D. Because of this, focusing outside of just Microsoft, OpenGL is a better protocol to use for professional work. DirectX is for playing games with.

06 June 2002, 10:55 AM
Wonderful Reply Zro-1.

But I still I have a doubt.
If we don't use OpenGL and D3D for rendering in 3D animation softwares,
why do we need to use them in Games???

06 June 2002, 02:44 PM
Originally posted by amuthan
If we don't use OpenGL and D3D for rendering in 3D animation softwares,
why do we need to use them in Games??? Compatability.

A longlonglonglonglonglonglonglong time ago, all 3D 'realtime' rendering was done using the computer's CPU and because all CPU's had the same basic set of instructions plus a few bells and whistles (and this is still true today) the program could be more or less guaranteed to work with it.

Then came proprietary graphics hardware, and the hardware was wide and varied and none of it behaved the same or talked the same language so SGI in all their wisdom opened the standard that was once IRISGL and it became OpenGL... and thus for higher sales and better support for different hardware/software combinations the developers of the world decided to conform to this standard.

IOW, if you programme your game to talk to a standard OpenGL interface (which has a standard language, etc) and every card manufacturer in the world privides an OpenGL interface that passes the instructions between the software and hardware translating along the way then every software company can safely ignore the huge variations in structure of the different GPUs and just program for OpenGL.

If you ever played computer games in the days when you had to setup configuration files for which soundcard you had and what its settings were etc. then you'd know how much this sort of things was needed.

This also works for Direct3D and, come to think of it, DirectX as a whole. It is, in fact, the raison detre(sp?) for all standard libraries and APIs

Now, as to why they're not used for accelerating rendering? Well, until very recently, graphics cards have been very good at chucking millions of polys around the screen with basic textures and not much else, you couldn't have much variation as to how they worked. However, with the advent of programmable GPUs (or VPUs as 3DLabs likes to call them) and more complex and ambitious APIs (DirectX 8.0 and upwards, the forthcoming OpenGL2.0) it's now just about viable for your graphics hardware to be utilised (if it's very recent that is) and I believe Final Render for 3DSMax does this to a certain extent.

So why you couldn't use 3D hardware via Direct3D or OpenGL for rendering? They were bloody crap at it, still are mostly.

They're also shite for pure higher order surfaces, such as NURBS and SubSurfs, arbitrary surfaces (pure spheres, cones, cylinders, etc.) and many other things such as Superquadrics, parametric surfaces etc.
regards, Paul

06 June 2002, 03:03 AM
Ooooo good stuff Odubtaug. I totally forgot to talk about polygonal vs. higher-order geometry and how its pushed onto the screen. :applause:

06 June 2002, 04:24 PM
I'm a quick study :D Been getting way back into all this stuff since I got an unconditional offer (in January) from Sheffield Hallam to do this course ( :bounce:

Yep, I'm an graphics I/O Über-Geek®. When you've just re-bookmarked Henrik Wann Jensen's website and have all the OpenGL2.0 whitepapers you know you're doomed :argh:

Don't suppose you know where to learn about Matrix Transforms in Renderman? I havnae a bloody clue :shrug:
regards, Paul

06 June 2002, 04:56 PM
Ok Guys.... u r simply great.... Now pls tell us what r the new fetures WinXp has to boos 3D graphics softwares/games

06 June 2002, 05:06 PM
WinXP doesn't have any "new" features to boost 3D games. The only thing that is different is that it ships with DirectX 8.1 that's all.

06 June 2002, 05:10 PM
My limited understanding of renderman is that it's code is basically like C++ so a matrix transform should be written and executed basically the same way. I'd have to do some digging in my linear algebra and C++ for CG books to give any really specific info on that stuff. I'm afraid I've forgotten more coding than I'd like to admit. I've gotten really rusty.

06 June 2002, 01:21 AM
Lemme rephrase that... what's a matrix transform and how does it work?
regards, Paul

06 June 2002, 05:34 AM
Well, a matrix transform is simply an elegant way of mathmatically representing any affine transformation (translation, scaling, rotation, and shear). I will try to lay out the basic matricies for transformations, keep in mind a basic understanding of linear algebra is needed for the matrix operations:

V is the vertex point you are effecting

Translation (V' = T V):

|x'| |1 0 0 Tx| |x|
|y'| = |0 1 0 Ty| |y| so x' = x + Tx
|z'| |0 0 1 Tz| |z| y' = y + Ty
|1| |0 0 0 1 | |1| z' = z + Tz

Scalling (V' = S V):

|Sx 0 0 0|
|0 Sy 0 0| so x' = x * Sx
S = |0 0 Sz 0| y' = y * Sy
|0 0 0 1 | z' = z * Sz

Rotation (assuming the right-hand rule for the axis and "<" is theta):

Rx = | 1 0 0 0 |
| 0 cos< -sin< 0 |
| 0 sin< cos< 0 |
| 0 0 0 1 |

Ry = |cos< 0 sin< 0|
| 0 1 0 0| so x' = x cos< - y sin<
|-sin< 0 cos< 0| y' = x sin< + y cos<
| 0 0 0 1| z' = z

Rz = |cos< -sin< 0 0|
|sin< cos< 0 0|
| 0 0 1 0|
| 0 0 0 1|

06 June 2002, 05:35 AM
crap the spacing I tried to put in so the lines would line-up vertically didn't work. I guess I'll draw it out and post it as an image.

06 June 2002, 11:35 PM
Don't suppose you could say why things are where they are and what position changes do? Also, what does the 1 line do?
thanks, Paul

06 June 2002, 12:02 AM
Ah, I was trying to make it look like the elements were in matrix formatting. the "|" was supposed to be the "[ ]" brackets of the matrix.

06 June 2002, 12:22 AM
I meant the 1 inbetween the | and | :p as in |1| |0 0 0 1 | |1|

Yeah, I was ill through most of A' Levels :rolleyes:
regards, Paul

06 June 2002, 01:59 AM
That's to keep it a 4 x 4 matrix transformation.
a 3 x 3 or 3 x 4 would cause coordinate data corruption or loss.

06 June 2002, 11:36 PM
I've come across some problems with OpenGL drivers on a Dell Inspiron 4000 (laptop).

But apart from that it seems fine

06 June 2002, 02:46 AM
Lot of my friends are saying that Win Xp is giving trouble with 3dsMax. Any I dea???:thumbsdow

06 June 2002, 05:11 PM
I would have to say that the XP Os while being built on NT isnt really that much better then NT.

Dont install it if you dont want to or dont think it is right for you. Because you have to debug your HD just to get XP completely out of your MBR.

I dont like it. I prefer 2000professional to this OS especially since there are about 5 different patches that come out every week.

Its not bad for a gaming machine but not a professional environ!

06 June 2002, 05:16 PM
"Debug your HD"????? There is no such thing as debugging a harddrive.

Windows XP (home and pro) is based on Windows 2000. Windows 2000 is based on Windows NT. All three OS's write data in the master boot record (MBR) and a full format will get rid of that no matter which OS it is.

06 June 2002, 12:27 AM
You can debug your filesystem, so why not your MBR?
regards, Paul

06 June 2002, 02:45 AM
"There is no such thing as debugging a harddrive."

Ya right..
I can prove it to you but you would have to run it and sware that all loss of data was based on your own stupidity.

I wont force that upon you but just look up debug routines and you might find a debug solution to clear cmos/ clear sector 0 1 2/ and do all sorts of wacky stuff with it.

Oh and btw "and a full format will get rid of that no matter which OS it is." This is not true. I blew away partitions on my computer at work and did a full format and in the boot list XP still is there. Hmm very interesting

06 June 2002, 03:10 AM
I stand corrected. I'm man enough to admit when I'm wrong. sorry 'bout that guys.

06 June 2002, 03:22 AM
Thank you much.

06 June 2002, 10:57 AM
Guys what is the summary ? waiting for that ?:airguitar

06 June 2002, 01:03 PM
Go for it... unless you're using 3DSMax
regards, Paul

06 June 2002, 06:56 PM
Nah, 3dsmax works FINE in XP.

All the problems people are having with 3dsmax are licensing problems which can be EASILY solved by downloading the CDilla update that I posted a link to early in this thread.

So, WinXP is not a bad choice for 3d.

07 July 2002, 10:04 PM
In reading this series of unthought out posts I nearly puked on my desk. I hope the "debug" argument is taken care of b/c to not know about this either says you are too young to remember DOS or brand new to computers. Either way you should not advise anyone until you are sure about what you are saying.

Now as far as XP and CG goes....the MSI and ASUS MP Athlon boards seem to disagree with XP. So many people that I know have had this blue screen trouble that I decided to call ASUS and MSI. Both tech support calls ended in a suggestion to return to Windows 2000. We updated the BIOS, got all the latest drivers, tried different memory (Mushkin>Corsair>Crucial).

I should have probably posted this in a new thread, but you may consider it before getting XP if you have one of these boards. If anyone has had similar problems and fixed, please let me know.

If this problem gets traced to a USB device I will burn all my USB hardware and go back to serial.

07 July 2002, 09:18 AM
Originally posted by DocBledsoe
In reading this series of unthought out posts I nearly puked on my desk. I hope the "debug" argument is taken care of b/c to not know about this either says you are too young to remember DOS or brand new to computers. Either way you should not advise anyone until you are sure about what you are saying.

First of all I have a BS in computer science. So I think I know just a bit about what I'm talking about. I've heard of debugging software, but I haven't heard of debugging a harddrive...ever...except for this thread. So go ahead and puke all you want. That still dosen't change the fact that in my 4 and a half years of schooling I never heard one of my professors mention debugging a harddrive.

07 July 2002, 02:35 PM

I'm sorry, I recently forgot the keystrokes for this command and upon asking several people my answers ranged from "I never heard of it" to "you're a moron".

Hope theres no hard feelings, I will clean my desk up now.

07 July 2002, 06:24 PM
No hard feelings my man. I'm sorry if I snapped at you in that last post. :buttrock:

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