DirectX is a set of libraries used by the Windows operating systems to play multimedia content.
These libraries are used mainly to play games, as many companies of video games develop games using the facilities offered by DirectX technology. This implies that we must have these libraries installed to be able to play certain games.
At present it is straightforward to install the DirectX libraries, since they are built into the Windows operating system and is updated automatically using “Windows Update” function.
Then, why there are downloadable versions of DirectX?. To answer this question we need to know how these libraries versions system are named, and which one is compatible with different Windows versions. The following list shows the DirectX version, and compatible Windows version:
- Directx 11.2 => Windows 8.1
- Directx 11.1 => Windows 8, Windows 7 SP1
- Directx 11.0 => Windows 7 and Windows Vista SP2
- Directx 10.1 => Windows Vista SP1
- Directx 10.0 => Windows Vista
- Directx 9.0c => Windows XP SP2
Keep in mind that the above table includes only the operating systems that are more representative of Windows, and normally are most commonly used for playing video games.
The list is interpreted in the following way: if a game requires DirectX 11 to run, we will need at least Windows 7 or Windows Vista SP2 to run the game. However, if a game requires DirectX 10, and our Operating System is Windows 7, we will be able to play the game without problems, because Windows 7 comes with the version of DirectX 11, which is backwards compatible. The backwards compatibility means that if we have version 11 installed, we will be able to play games that make use of DirectX 9c or 10 version.
There are certain occasions in which the backwards compatibility is not 100% complete, so we need to install older versions of DirectX. This happens on some games that require us to install, DirectX 9.0c libraries, despite the fact that we have more recent libraries.
If we try to run a videogame and it shows an error like this “Error when you start the application because it was not found d3dx9_35.dll. Reinstalling the application may fix the problem“, this indicates that we need to install 9.0c version of this libraries.
Here we offer the file needed to download and install DirectX 9.0c version. We should pay attention when installing the library, since theinstaller will ask us if we want to install Bing toolbar (Microsoft's browser). We must uncheck this option if we don't want to install this toolbar in our browser.
We must be aware of that there are no DirectX 10 version for Windows XP or DirectX 11 for Windows Vista SP1. On the Internet there are sites that offer this type of downloads. We must be careful, since they tend to be files with malware, viruses, or files that can corrupt our operating system.