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Friday, November 07, 2008
CrossFire, Hybrid SLI Unstable, Says Microsoft


Microsoft described both Nvidia's Hybrid SLI and AMD's CrossFire multi-gpu graphics technoogies as "unstable" and as such, the company siad that it would not natively support them in Windows 7.

"A hybrid graphics system typically has two GPUs: a low-power, fairly low-performance integrated GPU and a second high-power, higher performance discrete GPU," Microsoft wrote in the "Guidelines for Graphics in Windows 7" documentation.

"The integrated GPU is typically used when long battery life is desired, and the discrete GPU is used when battery life is not important or when higher performance is required. Such systems require a reboot to switch between GPUs."

"Windows 7 does not offer native support for hybrid graphics systems. We strongly discourage system manufacturers from shipping such systems, which can be unstable and provide a poor user experience," the company added.

While the latest high-end notebooks feature an IGP and discrete GPU combination with the advantage of switching between the two to save battery life, Microsoft seems to disagree with the approach.

After all, Windows 7 are expected to be available in late 2009, at a time where Intel is expected to release the "Lynnfield" and "Havendale" platforms, which will offer graphics support through new chipset and the GPU itself, respectively.


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