gl_generator 0.14.0

Code generators for creating bindings to the Khronos OpenGL APIs.


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Code generators for creating bindings to the Khronos OpenGL APIs.


If you need a specific version of OpenGL, or you need a different API (OpenGL ES, EGL, WGL, GLX), or if you need certain extensions, you should use the gl_generator plugin instead.

See gfx_gl for an example of using a custom gfx-rs loader for a project.

Add this to your Cargo.toml:

gl_generator = "0.5.0"

Under the [package] section, add:

build = ""

Create a to pull your specific version/API:

extern crate gl_generator;

use gl_generator::{Registry, Api, Profile, Fallbacks, GlobalGenerator};
use std::env;
use std::fs::File;
use std::path::Path;

fn main() {
    let dest = env::var("OUT_DIR").unwrap();
    let mut file = File::create(&Path::new(&dest).join("")).unwrap();

    Registry::new(Api::Gl, (4, 5), Profile::Core, Fallbacks::All, [])
        .write_bindings(GlobalGenerator, &mut file)

Then use it like this:

mod gl {
    include!(concat!(env!("OUT_DIR"), "/"));

/// Simple loading example
fn main() {
    let window = ...;

    // Assuming `window` is GLFW: initialize, and make current
    gl::load_with(|s| window.get_proc_address(s) as *const _);

The file will generate all the OpenGL functions in a file named, plus all enumerations, and all types in the types submodule.

Generator types

Global generator

The global generator is the one used by default by the gl crate. See above for more details.

Struct generator

The struct generator is a cleaner alternative to the global generator.

The main difference is that you must call gl::Gl::load_with instead of gl::load_with, and this functions returns a struct of type Gl. The OpenGL functions are not static functions but member functions in this Gl struct. This is important when the GL functions are associated with the current context, as is true on Windows.

The enumerations and types are still static and available in a similar way as in the global generator.

Static generator

The static generator generates plain old bindings. You don't need to load the functions.

This generator should only be used only if the platform you are compiling for is guaranteed to support the requested API. Otherwise you will get a compilation error. For example, you can use it for WGL and OpenGL 1.1 on Windows or GLX and OpenGL 1.3 on Linux, because Windows and Linux are guaranteed to provide implementations for these APIs.

You will need to manually provide the linkage. For example to use WGL or OpenGL 1.1 on Windows, you will need to add #[link="OpenGL32.lib"] extern {} somewhere in your code.

Custom Generators

The gl_generator can be extended with custom generators. This is a niche feature useful only in very rare cases. To create a custom generator, implement the gl_generator::Generator trait. See the source of the gl_generator::generators module for examples.

Various utility functions are provided in the generators module, but the api is unstable, so it has been placed behind a feature flag. In access these functions, you will need to add the "unstable_generator_utils" feature to your Cargo.toml:

version = "0.4.2"
features = ["unstable_generator_utils"]

Extra features

The global and struct generators will attempt to use fallbacks functions when they are available. For example, if glGenFramebuffers cannot be loaded it will also attempt to load glGenFramebuffersEXT as a fallback.



  • Rename Ns to API, and expose at the top level
  • Remove the need for clients to depend on the khronos_api crate by determining the XML source based on the requested API
  • Use a (u8, u8) instead of a string for the target version number
  • Use a Profile enum instead of a string for the profile
  • Remove unused fields from Registry
  • Accept types satisfying AsRef<[&str]> for extension lists
  • Separate parsing and generation stages in API
  • Hide registry::{Feature, Filter, Require, Remove, Extension} types from the public API
  • Move registry::{Fallbacks, Api, Profile} types to top level module
  • Remove GlxOpcode::type field
  • Make ty fields on Enum and Binding take Cow<'static, str>s to reduce allocations


  • Update crate metadata


  • Upgrade khronos_api to v1.0.0


  • Upgrade xml-rs to v0.2.2
  • Use raw::c_void for GLvoid
  • Remove registry::{Group, EnumNs, CmdNs}
  • Remove groups field from registry::Registry
  • Remove is_safe field from registry::Cmd
  • Remove comment field from registry::{Require, Remove, GlxOpcode}
  • Downgrade khronos_api to be a dev-dependency