Windows 10 "Game Mode" Will Boost Your FPS A Few Percent

Windows 10 "Game Mode" Will Boost Your FPS A Few Percent

windows-10-logo-320

Microsoft claims that its new gaming-focused Windows 10 mode will boost FPS a few percent, and help kill the dreaded "microstutter".

Earlier in the month we heard about Windows 10's Game Mode - a high performance "mode" for Windows 10 built specifically for gaming. Other than "increasing gaming performance" we didn't really know what this meant. Now, speaking to Ars Technica, partner group program manager for the Xbox platform Kevin Gammill has shed a little more light, explaining that gamers can expect to see FPS gains of a few percent while using the new mode.

Gammill said that the overarching goal is to make Windows 10 "the best operating system for games"-and critically, to make it more consistent, so that frame rates and performance are more predictable and uniform. He explained that when Game Mode is active, the operating system will tend to be biased toward allocating CPU and GPU resources to the game.

The end result is that for games that are currently CPU- or GPU-bound, you can expect to see FPS gains of two to five percent.

While Game Mode will work with, and increase the FPS in both Win32 and UWP programs, Gammill said that native UWP games will see slightly higher gains. Win32 games can do things like create multiple processes (often used by games with special launchers or copy protection) or install background services, and these are invisible to Game Mode, so they may not be properly optimized. UWP games can't do these things, so they don't suffer the same problem.

The first Insider Preview build of Windows 10 with Game Mode should become available some time tomorrow.

Source: Ars Technica

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I don't want to dismiss something like this out of spite, but my hackles are rising.

1. Oh, it promotes UWP. What a huge coincidence. Yeah, it's a pity that UWP versions of games often seem to run poorly compared to the EXE versions. If we do proper obeisance to Big M, and promise to do all our shopping at the Windows store, and never try to modify or fix our own games, will they hold out hope that some day they'll catch up to what we had before?

2. Until I see some independent numbers run against Windows 7, it may be hard to convince me that Microsoft isn't pulling the magic trick of giving back some of what Windows 10 took away- especially given recent controversies about forced updates and background metrics.

3. "Predictable and uniform" is what you get when a game locks the frame rate. See #1.

4. Not to go hipster/coot, but this is the kind of thing we used to do for ourselves- shutting down background processes to free up memory, having alternate system boots to eliminate programs that might hinder the software we wanted to run optimally, editing config and "INI" files to manually change game settings. But Microsoft has gone so control freak on its user base in the last several years that we may not actually know all the processes that are running at any given time, let alone be able to change them- we're just supposed to trust the people who hid the "Shut Down" button from us when they say that we'll hit their switch and it will do all of that for us.

And, again, I kind of recognize that this is very cynical of me and some section of Microsoft might actually be trying to do right by gamers. Also that some people will probably see this as a welcome change, something they will find useful, and you don't have to if you don't want to and yadda yadda yadda.

But the people responsible for Games For Windows Live, Windows 8, "Always On" XBox One DRM, and more haven't done a hell of a lot lately to warrant consumer trust, and this smells of further maneuverings to try to get more of the games industry playing by its rules. And quite frankly, @#$% Microsoft's rules, Microsoft's rules have a way of benefiting Microsoft and screwing over consumers and developers alike.

Callate:
I don't want to dismiss something like this out of spite, but my hackles are rising.

1. Oh, it promotes UWP. What a huge coincidence. Yeah, it's a pity that UWP versions of games often seem to run poorly compared to the EXE versions. If we do proper obeisance to Big M, and promise to do all our shopping at the Windows store, and never try to modify or fix our own games, will they hold out hope that some day they'll catch up to what we had before?

2. Until I see some independent numbers run against Windows 7, it may be hard to convince me that Microsoft isn't pulling the magic trick of giving back some of what Windows 10 took away- especially given recent controversies about forced updates and background metrics.

3. "Predictable and uniform" is what you get when a game locks the frame rate. See #1.

4. Not to go hipster/coot, but this is the kind of thing we used to do for ourselves- shutting down background processes to free up memory, having alertnate system boots to eliminate programs that might hinder the software we wanted to run optimally, editing config and "INI" files to manually change game settings. But Microsoft has gone so control freak on its user base in the last several years that we may not actually know all the processes that are running at any given time, let alone be able to change them- we're just supposed to trust the people who hid the "Shut Down" button from us when they say that we'll hit their switch and it will do all of that for us.

And, again, I kind of recognize that this is very cynical of me and some section of Microsoft might actually be trying to do right by gamers. Also that some people will probably see this as a welcome change, something they will find useful, and you don't have to if you don't want to and yadda yadda yadda.

But the people responsible for Games For Windows Live, Windows 8, "Always On" XBox One DRM, and more haven't done a hell of a lot lately to warrant consumer trust, and this smells of further maneuverings to try to get more of the games industry playing by its rules. And quite frankly, @#$% Microsoft's rules, Microsoft's rules have a way of benefiting Microsoft and screwing over consumers and developers alike.

Yeah, you're pretty much solid on all points and when they say a few percent, yeah that's basically meaning 1-7% increase. Why do I narrow it down to that range, because any higher and it would be close enough to call it a 10% gain which sounds quite nice. Keep in mind a 5% gain on 60fps would just be 63fps. and a 120fps it'd be 126fps. Basically a difference humans can't notice.

These are the same sorts of gains one can get by shutting down your AV or just setting the game's process to a higher priority.

If it can truly eliminate microstutter - good enough!
Everyone who's experienced microstutter should feel optimistic.

Callate:
3. "Predictable and uniform" is what you get when a game locks the frame rate. See #1.

Actually, because they talked about eliminating microstutter, predictable and uniform framerate probably means tighter and more consistent frame times. If that is the case then I'm stoked. But we'll see how much truth there is to their statement.

I'm in the camp that thinks frame time is more important than 60fps in a lot of games. A 60fps game with microstuttering feels worse than a 40fps game without microstutter. Consistent frame time is extremely important. It's the number one reason for smooth gameplay.

You know how videos at 60fps look smoother than actual 60fps gameplay? That's because videos are pre-rendered so they have a consistent frame time that never changes.

I am intrigued to see what kind of performance enhancement we will get out of 32bit apps running on a 64bit system.

Callate:
I don't want to dismiss something like this out of spite, but my hackles are rising.

At this point dismissing it out of spite is the only reasonable action that can be connected to the phrases Microsoft, Windows 10 and Gaming.

It seems that after the abject failure of GFWL the people at Microsoft decided it failed because they weren't being awkward and controlling enough and they had to double and triple down on that to really hold people's attention.

Games on the Windows store is dead already, Activision started giving no questions asked refunds to people who bought Call of Duty Infinite Warfare on the Win Store, I suspect Infinite Warfare will be the last Call of Duty released on that platform.

Meanwhile I'm having fun watching the train wreck and continuing to use Win 7 since everything works so painlessly.

fix-the-spade:
Meanwhile I'm having fun watching the train wreck and continuing to use Win 7 since everything works so painlessly.

Windows 7 isn't perfect. Actually I think 8's a little better in terms of pure performance.

Arnoxthe1:

fix-the-spade:
Meanwhile I'm having fun watching the train wreck and continuing to use Win 7 since everything works so painlessly.

Windows 7 isn't perfect. Actually I think 8's a little better in terms of pure performance.

I agree, Win7 isn't perfect, but the problems on 8/10 more than outweigh slight performance gains.

Arnoxthe1:
Windows 7 isn't perfect. Actually I think 8's a little better in terms of pure performance.

Define 'pure performance,'

I tried Win 10 when it was free and found it worse in just about every regard, frame rates, stability, start up times (for game), viewing options (borderless window without mouse constraining, really Microsoft?) and the dreaded micro stutter.

Maybe Win 10 and DX12 can get some improved benchmarks on specific titles, but my PC has game from the last 30 years installed on it and I expect them all to work consistently when I fire them up. After the initial set up they tend to do that on Win 7, not so much with 10.

I agree Win 7 isn't perfect, but in just about everything I use my PCs for it's better than 8 and 10.

nickpy:
I agree, Win7 isn't perfect, but the problems on 8/10 more than outweigh slight performance gains.

The only problem really with 8 over 7 is the Metro UI easily. Which is easily gotten rid of with one or two third party apps. Yes, it's a little annoying that you have to go to a third party app at all for this but there you go.

fix-the-spade:
Define 'pure performance,'

I tried Win 10 when it was free and found it worse in just about every regard, frame rates, stability, start up times (for game), viewing options (borderless window without mouse constraining, really Microsoft?) and the dreaded micro stutter.

Maybe Win 10 and DX12 can get some improved benchmarks on specific titles, but my PC has game from the last 30 years installed on it and I expect them all to work consistently when I fire them up. After the initial set up they tend to do that on Win 7, not so much with 10.

I agree Win 7 isn't perfect, but in just about everything I use my PCs for it's better than 8 and 10.

It runs stuff faster. Both the OS itself and other games/apps. In this case though, not that much over 7.

As to 10, most people just upgraded to 10 which was a huge mistake. Upgrading a Windows OS anytime is and has always been a finicky business. 10 is best with a full install. And in any case, 8 isn't 10 at all really. It's just 7 but enhanced except for that dumb but easily replaceable UI as I was talking about above.

Arnoxthe1:
It's just 7 but enhanced except for that dumb but easily replaceable UI as I was talking about above.

  • And also all the privacy stuff which is by design impossible to completely disable.
  • And the removal of features I actually use, replaced with ones I have no interest in.
  • And the constant shoving of UWP/WinStore (yes, technically optional, but in principle I don't want to encourage an MS walled garden by even entertaining an OS that includes their store).
  • And the constant shoving of Edge/Cortana (again, deliberately difficult to bypass).
  • And Mandatory updates that have a tendency to break things.
  • And WiFi Share (or whatever it was called). I know this one has been removed, but it was a reason why I didn't go to 10.

There are others, but those are the mains one and I suspect you get the point.

If none of the above are issues to you, then I am happy that you are happy with 10. Don't let me stop you using your OS of choice. However, just because 10 is your OS of choice doesn't mean others don't have perfectly valid reasons to choose something else, even if those reasons are not of concern to you.

nickpy:

  • And also all the privacy stuff which is by design impossible to completely disable.
  • And the removal of features I actually use, replaced with ones I have no interest in.
  • And the constant shoving of UWP/WinStore (yes, technically optional, but in principle I don't want to encourage an MS walled garden by even entertaining an OS that includes their store).
  • And the constant shoving of Edge/Cortana (again, deliberately difficult to bypass).
  • And Mandatory updates that have a tendency to break things.
  • And WiFi Share (or whatever it was called). I know this one has been removed, but it was a reason why I didn't go to 10.

1. You can disable ALL of it. You know how? Just turn off your internet connection. Seriously though, I think people are being really hypocritical with the whole privacy thing. They'll go on facebook, Twitter, what have you, and post their entire life story and what they ate for dinner that day and then complain about MUH PRIVACY when Windows 10 begins sending data to Microsoft. Yes, it's super annoying, but not because of privacy but because it sucks down resources. And even further, 7, yes 7, has some of the same privacy issues. If you wanna be totally anonymous then you'll have to be a big boy and get Linux.

2. Which features? The only one that was significant was that 10 has an arbitrary VRAM limit for certain old games. And even then, there's a bypass for that.

3. Don't use it.

4. You don't have to use any of those and can turn them off completely.

5. Mandatory updates are actually definitely the most annoying and legitimate point against 10. It's pretty obvious Microsoft wants more control. But again, this can definitely be stopped. Honestly? I don't even update Windows. Haven't had malware in YEARSSSS. Because I take good care of my computer. All the same though, yes, it's definitely more annoying.

6. Has been removed.

Funnily enough, I wasn't even arguing FOR 10 at first. I was arguing for Windows 8. lol But yeah, wanted to debunk some stuff.

Arnoxthe1:

nickpy:

  • And also all the privacy stuff which is by design impossible to completely disable.
  • And the removal of features I actually use, replaced with ones I have no interest in.
  • And the constant shoving of UWP/WinStore (yes, technically optional, but in principle I don't want to encourage an MS walled garden by even entertaining an OS that includes their store).
  • And the constant shoving of Edge/Cortana (again, deliberately difficult to bypass).
  • And Mandatory updates that have a tendency to break things.
  • And WiFi Share (or whatever it was called). I know this one has been removed, but it was a reason why I didn't go to 10.

1. You can disable ALL of it. You know how? Just turn off your internet connection. Seriously though, I think people are being really hypocritical with the whole privacy thing. They'll go on facebook, Twitter, what have you, and post their entire life story and what they ate for dinner that day and then complain about MUH PRIVACY when Windows 10 begins sending data to Microsoft. Yes, it's super annoying, but not because of privacy but because it sucks down resources. And even further, 7, yes 7, has some of the same privacy issues. If you wanna be totally anonymous then you'll have to be a big boy and get Linux.

2. Which features? The only one that was significant was that 10 has an arbitrary VRAM limit for certain old games. And even then, there's a bypass for that.

3. Don't use it.

4. You don't have to use any of those and can turn them off completely.

5. Mandatory updates are actually definitely the most annoying and legitimate point against 10. It's pretty obvious Microsoft wants more control. But again, this can definitely be stopped. Honestly? I don't even update Windows. Haven't had malware in YEARSSSS. Because I take good care of my computer. All the same though, yes, it's definitely more annoying.

6. Has been removed.

Funnily enough, I wasn't even arguing FOR 10 at first. I was arguing for Windows 8. lol But yeah, wanted to debunk some stuff.

Most of the gripes apply equally to 8 as they do to 10.
As to point 1, I don't use any social media platforms at all because I do care about my privacy, and I do use linux on my secondary computer (Unfortunately for gaming purposes, Windows is still top-dog, hence it remains on my gaming box).

Again, however, my point is not to say 8/10 are awful OSes. They're not. They're just not for me and many others, for perfectly legitimate reasons, which you shouldn't just dismiss on the basis that they are not of concern to you.

Now, as I do not game as much as I used to these performance benefits mean little to me, on other hand I wonder how they will deal with the issue that everyone seems to be having with Redshift, Octance, Cycles, etc, where they perform double digit percentages slower on Windows 10 than on 8, 7, and Linux. I have no incentive to switch to an O.S. that buggers with 3D rendering engines. Those bastards are bad enough as is with optimising picture quality to rendering speed. You can create the best looking 4K image but if it takes 10 hours to render then it is useless to create an animation without a renderfarm. Even worse when the O.S. kneecaps you.

Hell, it is bad enough juggling around a dozen commercial licenses. I do not want to call up half the companies on the phone in order to unlock the software so that I can reinstall them after I swap out the O.S.

Arnoxthe1:

1. You can disable ALL of it. You know how? Just turn off your internet connection. Seriously though, I think people are being really hypocritical with the whole privacy thing. They'll go on facebook, Twitter, what have you, and post their entire life story and what they ate for dinner that day and then complain about MUH PRIVACY when Windows 10 begins sending data to Microsoft. Yes, it's super annoying, but not because of privacy but because it sucks down resources. And even further, 7, yes 7, has some of the same privacy issues. If you wanna be totally anonymous then you'll have to be a big boy and get Linux.

Without turning off your internet connection, it is just disengenious to imply that is not an inherent given when discussing the privacy issues.

Furthermore, while I do not use facebook or twitter, or even Google outside of a VPN, we still choose what we want to put online. Windows 10 does not give you the option of saying what you do or do not want to share. Making the argument that you are still tracked by other websites is also a non issue with software such as Noscript, Disconnect, and Ghostery being so damn easy to setup and use. The privacy issues surrounding Windows 7 were easy enough to deal with as well but even after making changes to the registry of Windows 10 to supposedly turn off all tracking it still sends a continuous stream of data to Microsoft that still needs to be blocked.

 

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