SDL Lands Initial Support For OpenGL KHR_no_error
Written by Michael Larabel in Free Software on 25 August 2017 at 06:15 AM EDT. 5 Comments
The Simple DirectMedia Library (SDL) now has initial support for the KHR_no_error extension that was included in this summer's release of OpenGL 4.6.

The KHR_no_error extension as a reminder is about disabling some of the OpenGL error checking in the driver for applications/games that should be GL bug-free. By disabling some of these error checks, it's possible to reduce driver overhead which in turn can lead to some CPU savings and also possible energy efficiency benefits. Valve developers have been working hard on Mesa's KHR_no_error support, which can be forced right now for any OpenGL program via the MESA_NO_ERROR=1 environment variable.

Thanks to Ryan Gordon and Ethan Lee, SDL now has support for creating contexts with KHR_no_error. Honoring the feature request was the initial support and fix landing today for allowing OpenGL contexts to be created in the no-error mode.

It's possible we'll see more benefits out of KHR_no_error in the months ahead or especially with mobile drivers, but currently with Mesa the benefits tend to be quite small and barely measurable. NVIDIA's driver has also worked on KHR_no_error, which disables the error checking but with not much benefit to their OpenGL driver's architecture.
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