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Windows 8.1 issues with older DirectX versions

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With older titles I've noticed many Windows 8/8.1 users have a trend of experiencing poor preformance in games using DirectX 7 or lower as well as DirectDraw. The only thing closest to a remedy I've found this forum post showing use with Microsoft Compatability Toolkit and a custom ddraw.dll. I can confirm that the ddraw.dll really does improve performance on my machine, as for MCT though, its hit or miss. I've started this to see if something more elaborate should be added to the wiki about Windows 8/8.1 D3D compatability or if someone else had a better solution to the problem.


I apologize if this is in the wrong section, as this is my first forum post.

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This is a very useful find. Thanks for posting it. This is a much better solution than running the games in borderless windowed mode.


The toolkit method is preferable since it is more compatible than injection and can be supplied with install/uninstall batch files. The wiki has several fixes that are supplied like this, e.g. the Gothic and Gothic II Windows 8 fixes.


Compatibility databases will work as long as the properties match the executable; deselect version-specific properties like product version and language to ensure compatibility with other languages/patches. Additional game files/folders can be specified to filter the applicable game (in the case of multiple games sharing an executable name) but there are usually easier ways around this.


Note that games might behave differently when using the toolkit's testing feature due to it ignoring any other compatibility fixes that would otherwise be applied to the game (GOG.com in particular will often include some fixes by default); for accurate results you'll have to save and install the database and then run the game normally.


At some point I'll get around to writing up some sort of page explaining how to make fix packages.



Not only it's slower. Afaik it's even uglier


Color depth changes are virtualised on Windows 8 (even when specified in the compatibility settings) whereas Windows 7 and earlier changed the real display color depth. This virtualisation seems to be the cause of the extra dithering in some 16-bit color games.


32-bit color modes aren't affected by this as far as I can tell. Games with Glide renderers can be fixed by using nGlide which always outputs in 32-bit color (regardless of what color depth the game originally used).

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