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Nvidia has been in some deep waters recently; whether it was due to false advertisement regarding the GTX 970, or the backlash against the removal of overclocking support (that was recently added back in by a driver update), it seems that ol’ green team has been taking a pretty decent brow-beating regarding PR. Fortunately, today brings some good news regarding Nvidia, and more specifically their PhysX libraries! Starting this month the source code for the PhysX SDK for all platforms is now viewable – with any Nvidia registered developer able to view the source code whenever they wish. Regarding the limitations to this new intiative, Nvidia states this on the relevant page on their developer website;

The PhysX software development kit (SDK) is already free on Windows platforms. We’re now extending this to include PhysX Clothing and PhysX Destruction, enabling game developers to easily create a more interactive gaming environment. Starting this month, PhysX SDK is now available free with full source code for Windows, Linux, OSx and Android on https://github.com/NVIDIAGameWorks/PhysX.

How to access PhysX Source on GitHub:

In other words; in order to actually view the source code, you’re going to have to register to become an Nvidia GameWorks developer, and then after that you can request an invite to the PhysX SDK’s github page. Also, according to the same piece of text – the SDK’s source was already viewable for Windows, and this change only affects developers that plan on developing for OS X, Linux, or Android. Furthermore; Epic Games is claiming that the implementation being open-sourced is only one version of the CPU implementation for the feature.

Regardless of the fine text; having the CPU implementation more transparent might help with developers optimizing said implementation in the future, meaning better running games for everyone.

Do you think more developers might support PhysX in their games, now that part of it is open-sourced?


James Galizio

Staff Writer

I'm a writer for TechRaptor, and an aspiring indie dev; technology and games in particular have been my passion my whole life, and to contribute to the industry has been my dream. If I'm not writing or working on other work, you can almost always find me playing some sort of game!



  • BlueLight

    Nice to see more tools opening up. I’ll have to look into this but i doubt there is anything i personally can do with this. Always nice to see and hopefully better games will be made because of this

  • Nick

    yay techRaptor is now mis-representing what open source means by trying to state that nVidia released their software as….. open Source. The source code is viewable, it is not open. You have to agree to their terms, you are not able to share it anywhere, and you are not able to make it available for others to see or use. You may only convey it in binary form. It is still proprietary. The only free thing associated with it is that if you do want to use it you may request access for free, but free doesn’t mean open, especially in software. Also this was the case for Windows in the past, nVidia has simply ported it and made it available under the same terms for Linux and Mac OSs. nVidia’s program is Closed-Source Proprietary software that they will now license to you for free, with source access. This does not make it open, it simply reduces the paywall normally associated with proprietary software.

    Also, I don’t think this helps anyone. If you want to develop a game and not use Physx, but have access to nVidia’s source code and have looked at it, you could be liable for creating a derivative work if you use any of their methodologies. It’s a risk, and nVidia even states that they furiously defend their patents, and technologies. It’s nice to see it get ported, and viewable in UE4, but it is nowhere near open source, and unlikely to ever be as that’s not really the nVidia way.

    And for a bit of a education to follow it up first paragraph in here is pretty helpful: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Open-source_software

  • James Galizio

    Sorry for the late response, but I’d like to note that I understand
    different individuals have different standards for what is considered
    open-source – and I was simply sharing the news that had gone out.
    Furthermore, I did in fact mention that this was already the case for
    the windows version of the software in the second to last paragraph.

    I
    do agree that it should be clearer that this move is only allowing the
    source code to be viewed; and that I failed at making that distinction
    clear. The article is now updated.