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GLUT: The OpenGL Utility Toolkit

The hope of this page is to clarify OpenGLEAN's position by giving the official OpenGLEAN view of GLUT.

This is Mark Kilgard's original OpenGL Utility Toolkit. It was used in numerous early demos. People liked it for the relatively high amount of power achieved with relative simplicity. It let you start writing an application with the common and tedious work of setting up a window mostly hidden from view. It also provided some useful primitives such as a handful of shapes, some rudimentary fonts---both stroked and bitmapped---and menus.

Absent were many things: Common GUI objects such as onscreen buttons and sliders did not exist. The fonts were too impoverished for most "serious" use. Most window managers provided a way for the user to focibly close a window, and GLUT would simply terminate the application. The list goes on...

Despite these problems, people have used it in numerous applications. One author, Steve Baker, asserts that he used it in a million-line (or multi-million-line?) program. On my system, I see that packages "cal3d", "SDL", "libmpeg2", and "xmms" all are direct users of GLUT---and anything tied to those packages implicitly requires GLUT.

The crowning problem was that Mark Kilgard stopped supporting GLUT in 1998, the license prevented anyone else from working on it, and (apparently) he was unwilling to designate a successor. Over time, some bugs have been found with it.

This forced the genesis of freeglut. Logo Supported in part by

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