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Windows 10 October update finally adds ray-tracing support for Nvidia's RTX Turing cards

With real-time ray-tracing, the eyes are truly a gateway to the soul

If you’ve turned on your Windows 10 PC today, you’ve probably been hassled at least three times by now that it’s time for another big old update – specifically, the Windows 10 October update. This time, however, it’s actually got a bunch of neat gaming goodies in store, especially if you’re one of the three people who have already bought one of Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 2080 or RTX 2080Ti graphics cards since they came out a couple of weeks ago. For this is the update that finally brings public support for Microsoft’s DirectX Raytracing (DXR) tech, allowing you to finally (sort of) get the most out of your shiny new GPU and its very nice-looking reflections.

This should hopefully mean that ray-tracing updates for games like Shadow of the Tomb Raider aren’t far off now, as DXR support means that all DirectX 12 Windows PC can now play nicely with any game or application that supports real-time ray-tracing. DXR also gives all game developers access to Nvidia’s RTX hardware support of ray-tracing, according to Nvidia, so it’s possible we might see the list of currently confirmed RTX-enabled games start to grow.

To remind you of what ray-tracing can potentially add to games, have a gander at this Shadow of the Tomb Raider demo below.

That’s not all for Windows-related gaming fun times, either, as Microsoft are also taking the opportunity to introduce a new-look Game Bar as well (which, if you’ve got it turned on, lets you record clips, screenshots and broadcast your game using Microsoft’s various gaming tools). Along with a cleaner layout and a new, dedicated Game Bar app, you’ll also find it’s been upgraded with all-new audio controls in the October update so you no longer have to alt-tab out of your game to adjust your sound levels.

Microsoft have also made their Windows 10 Game Mode easier to use as well, which should hopefully result in fewer interruptions when you’re mid-game. These new updates will be auto-enabled for all games with a master on/off toggle button in your Windows Settings menu, and include the prevention of both Windows Update driver installations as well as all those irritating Windows Update interruptions such as the lovely messages you get politely asking if you’d like to restart your PC in three seconds time.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ve going to spend the next couple of hours starting at lots of little dots going round in circles.

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Who am I?

Katharine Castle

Hardware Editor

Katharine writes about all the bits that go inside your PC so you can carry on playing all those lovely games we like talking about so much. Very partial to JRPGs and the fetching of quests.

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