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New SoftR9x00 scripts to handle Catalyst 3.1!

Informing our readers that SoftR9x00 scripts for transforming RADEON 9500 into 9700 by software now support recent Catalyst 3.1 drivers and are ready for release.

Naturally, ATI answered to the announcement of SoftR9x00-packed RivaTuner by protecting a new driver from modifications. PCI DeviceID change prevention patch appeared in the miniport – an additional check for correcting driver internals in case actual and read DeviceID differ (as you know, SoftR9x00 patches the latter). However, ATI decided to double-secure in case PCI DeviceID is changed by software and embedded an original "artefact emulator".

We’ve seen something like this in the first SoftQuadro protections in Detonator 14.xx, when after detecting forced properties a driver was disfiguring its internals which resulted in system crashes. This along with information about artefacts on some remade RADEON 9500 cards encouraged ATI to this solution.

The essence of Catalyst 3.1 artefact emu is that a driver checks the original PCI DeviceID after any Direct3D/OpenGL app is initialized and distorts CRT controller’s control register in case any inconsistencies, which results in visual artefacts.

It’s important that both protection schemes awaken only on detecting presence of RADEON 9500(PRO), RADEON 9700(PRO), or RADEON 9800. However, if our readers are fimiliar with RADEON 9500 and 9700, then RADEON 9800 is something new. These are not RV350-based cards, but as ATI is already protecting them from patching PCI DeviceID, you can guess RADEON 9800 is to be based on the same R300 made via pixel shaders and hierarchical Z buffer soft-paring. But let’s wait until these cards are in retail.

All information is provided by RivaTuner´s creator – Alexey Nikolaychuk AKA Unwinder. The script is available here.

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