Topic: Firefox 4 breaks the Direct3D Viewer

Report Abuse Report Abuse
NateLawrence (Over 1 year ago)
I began testing Firefox 4 when they entered into Beta last year and I found that due to how Firefox 4's Direct3D code differs from Firefox 2 and 3's Direct3D code, the Direct3D Photosynth viewer breaks in reliability/functionality.

When the D3D viewer is embedded in the page, it only renders the synth at half the height of the embed window.

Changing to fullscreen mode in the viewer either works the first or possibly second time you switch to it, or freezes my video signal on pure white for 2 or 3 minutes before dumping me back to the embedded version on the page.

I know that the D3D viewer has long ago stopped being worked on, but I love its performance and I would love to see it continue to work in the most recent version of Firefox.

While I'm dreaming, I wouldn't mind if the HDView guys inherited the D3D Photosynth viewer code to update to work in more browsers and combine it with HDView, so that we could view panoramas in higher fidelity as well.
photometheus1 (Over 1 year ago)
"While I'm dream.." LOL

Direct3D Viewer is the bomb though, no two ways about it.

NateLawrence (Over 1 year ago)
Seriously, have you seen what xRez did with MSR's HDView viewer? 

It kind of blows the current Silverlight viewer away between its higher color depth, adaptive exposure, and the higher polygon count projection - plus it works in Chrome and Safari on Windows in addition to IE and Firefox (FF4 too).

I believe I recall someone saying that the early Photosynth community tech preview viewer was actually using HDView as the rendering engine. I guess my only feeling was that it would be great to have a D3D viewer for panoramas as well as synths and if the Photosynth team doesn't have the resources to spend any more time updating the D3D photosynth viewer, then hand it off to the Microsoft Research guys who already have their D3D pano viewer running in four of the top five browsers on Windows, rather than Photosynth's two of five. 

Porting the D3D synth plugin for Chrome, Safari, and ideally even Opera shouldn't take too much of someone's time.
michaeldenis (Over 1 year ago)
Agreed.  That looks like the good stuff.
NateLawrence (Over 1 year ago)
Now that Firefox 4.0 has officially released, it would be great to have someone spend a weekend or two and get the Direct3D viewer running in Firefox 4, since they changed their Direct3D implementation.

I know that going back to spend time on the old abandoned viewer, when you're working on the current one and future versions is inconvenient, but I'd like D3D to remain a viable option for Firefox users without me having to specify that people need to get ahold of FF3.
RayRolfe (Over 1 year ago)
I've just discovered this problem in Firefox 5... oh, I've just been updated to Firefox 6. Confirmed, same problem (half-screen windowed render and frozen white full-screen) still exists. This is a very unfortunate fate for the most sophisticated experience in visual art. I'm about to find a Firefox 3 download just to revisit the luxury that IS D3D Photosynth. I know the Silverlight experience had been worked on and did get a little improved, but still didn't match the smooth speed, render and experience quality of full screen Photosynth D3D.
It's just sad I guess.. I hope I find FireFox 3..
Nathanael (Over 1 year ago)
Ray, if you're a Firefox user, chances are you don't think so highly of IE, but I should point out that Photosynth's D3D viewer can still be used as well as ever in Internet Explorer 6, 7, 8, 9, or 10, so since you've already got one of those, you could skip downgrading Firefox or having two separate Firefox installations.

Naturally, I'd prefer for the plugin be patched to be compatible with modern versions of Firefox but, given the unlikelihood of that happening, I thought I'd just point out that there's an easier way of still using the D3D viewer besides tracking down FF3 and stopping it from automatically updating.
RayRolfe (Over 1 year ago)
THANK YOU! Excellent solution Nathanael. I'll just go with the latest version of IE. I'd actually stopped using firefox for anything other then streaming video without ads (ad-block plus) at sites such as BlogTv. I'm on Chrome mostly because I'm an adsence publisher and I need to see how the ad systems are working for me. But heck, I can get adblock in IE10 and use it exclusively for Photosynth /Bing Maps development and I'll be super happy doing that. THANKS AGAIN!
RayRolfe (Over 1 year ago)
Hah. It's always something isn't it? First try, Silverlight doesn't work with IE9 64 bit. D3D just goes into a loop where it doesn't detect I've allready installed Photosynth 2.0110.0317.1042

I thought I was on the cutting edge there for a second. Back to 32 bit, I suppose.
Nathanael (Over 1 year ago)
Yeah, almost all browser plugins are still 32bit only. Silverlight 5 is supposed to come in 64bit once it comes out of beta, but given Photosynth's D3D plugins abandoned status development-wise, I doubt we'll see it in 64bit IE anytime soon. 

Sorry, mate.