A new DirectX release is now available for download from Microsoft, offered by the Redmond giant just ahead of December 2010.

The fresh version of the DirectX End-User Runtime Web Installer can be grabbed from the Microsoft Download Center, providing updates to 9.0c and previous versions of DirectX, according to the software company.

Although normally Microsoft offers a collection of DirectX releases simultaneously, this time around the DirectX End-User Runtime Web Installer is available alone.

Both the DirectX SDK (software development kit) and the DirectX Redist continue to be live, but they are the same versions released in July 2010.

“The DirectX end-user installation includes the D3DX, HLSL Compiler, XInput, XAudio, and Managed DirectX 1.1 components,” Microsoft revealed.

“Note that the DirectX Runtime (Direct3D, DirectInput, DirectSound) is not part of this package as it is included as part of the Windows operating system, and therefore cannot be installed or uninstalled.

“Updating the DirectX Runtime is achieved by installing the latest Service Pack or obtaining a newer version of Windows,” the company added.

Users must understand that DirectX End-User Runtime Web Installer does not bring Windows 7’s DirectX 11 to older operating systems.

Fact is that customers still running Windows XP continue to be stuck at DirectX 9 level, with the Redmond company consistent in its initial stance to not backport DX11 to Windows Vista’s predecessor.

DirectX 11 continues to be available only by default in Windows 7, or as an update for users which have upgraded all the way to Windows Vista Service Pack 2 (SP2).

Customers running the latest upgrade to Vista need to download and install the “Platform Update for Windows Server 2008 and the Platform Update for Windows Vista.”

Obviously, the Platform Update for Vista SP2 is served automatically through Windows Update, and customers that did not install it should do so as soon as possible in order to be able and also enjoy new software such as Internet Explorer 9 and Windows Live Essentials 2011, which require DirectX 11.

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