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Microsoft has never given the OpenGL specification any real support and the reason is of course that it has its own API to care for when it comes to 3D graphics; Direct3D. With Windows Vista, Direct3D will be updated with some really nice features through DirectX 10 and Microsoft has for long claimed that the OpenGL support with Vista will only be as a layer on top of Direct3D. This would of course cause a severe performance loss when data will have to be translated from OpenGL to Direct3D and had made OpenGL considerably less interesting. Now the Khronos group, which has taken over the development of OpenGL, has announced that Vista will get full support for OpenGL through a new ICD (Installable Client Driver).

The new OpenGL ICD will not be shipped with Windows Vista but will have to be downloaded separately, otherwise Vista will use a simple OpenGL layer to emulate these graphical functions. But with the ICD installed OpenGL will come to life and according to Khronos and NVIDIA the Windows 3D intreface (Aero Glass) will even be faster with OpenGL to begin with.


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