The Future of Windows Graphics Technology
One of the key pieces underlying WGF is the Longhorn Display Driver Model (LDDM). With it, Microsoft is aiming for that ideal situation of "graphics just works." For example, if you upgrade a graphics driver today, you typically have to reboot the system. One example of the "graphics just works" mantra is one of LDDMs goals of allowing installation of graphics drivers without needing to restart the system. LDDM will actually ship in two stages. The first, called "basic," supports current generation graphics hardware: shader model 2.0 and 3.0 capable hardware. The second generation of LDDM, "advanced," will support hardware features that ship on or after the Longhorn timeframe, but will work with the new features in WGF 2.0. Given the competitive nature of the graphics hardware business, its highly probable well see advanced LDDM capable hardware before Longhorn actually ships. The current Windows XP driver model is still supported, but will be frozen going forward.