View Full Version : opengl current version download

04-14-2009, 12:36 PM
What is the current version of OpenGL? Please post a download link. I have spent some time searching for this, and it is surprisingly difficult to find.

Thank you

04-14-2009, 02:03 PM

04-15-2009, 06:43 AM
This is still unclear to me. The wiki page has links to pages where I can install drivers for graphics cards. My understanding is that OpenGL is not a hardware driver. The only driver I might download for my NVidia card is to enhance performance with AutoCAD. I am not using AutoCAD. I was hoping that part of the install might update my OpenGL version, but I am unable to install because I don't have AutoCAD.

It seems to me that I only need a new libraries and header files.

As described in the wiki, I am using GL_VERSION_1_1 which is located in the following directory:

C:\Program Files\Microsoft Visual Studio .NET 2003\Vc7\PlatformSDK\Include\gl

I am trying to learn from the "Red Book" but I am unable to continue because glMultiDrawElements() is only defined in version 1.4 or later.

It is very important to me that the application I write will work "everywhere," not just on my machine with my graphics card. I understand that graphics programming is very hardware dependent, however I wish to serve a "lower common denominator." Because of this I currently do not wish to involve the OpenGL extensions, include GLee.h, and implement code that depends on feature availability.

The "Red Book" covers topics in versions up to 2.0, which leads me to believe that features in 2.0 should work with "many" cards.

Please help clarify my situation. How do I upgrade my OpenGL version.

04-15-2009, 07:23 AM
Short answer: Read the wiki again (properly).

Slightly longer answer: OpenGL features from versions above 1.1 are ALWAYS obtained by using extensions. This will NOT break compatibility to lower end hardware.

There is NO download for OpenGL. All you need is included with your compiler. To get hardware acceleration and / or to access more features you need a proper display driver, that's all.

You are able to initialize function pointers for extensions yourself. However, the best way to use extensions is through GLEW or GLEE. Again, using those does not make it impossible to run on low end hardware. It just spares you to do all the dirty work (and yes, it IS a pain to do it manually).

Whether your application will run on low-end hardware simply depends on which features you actually use. It is not like with D3D, where it won't run on older hardware, only because you are using D3D10. GLEW and GLEE let you easily detect, whether a feature is present, and if so, you can use it. It will only fail, if you do not have a fallback plan for the case, that a feature is not present.

Hope that helps,

04-15-2009, 07:39 AM
That helps, A LOT! I just didn't understand that exentsions are used to obtain any functionality beyond version 1.1. From your explanation, this mechanism makes sense, and extension use is not as risky as it once appeared to me.