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Roxlu lib

This is a experimental, personal library used for creative simulations. As you can see from the version it's not yet meant to be a stable version and it's still changing.

Roxlu lib is build around opengl applications using GLFW as a wrapper to setup the GL context. Though, it's possible to use this library withouth opengl and just as e.g. console application or library. See the /compiler flags/ section below for more information about this.

I'm using cmake as build system, and I try to make sure that this library will run w/o making any changes to your CMakelists.txt files on Mac, Windows and Linux, making roxlu lib really cross platform.

I've tried many different solution to make using this library as easy as possible. The easiest solution is to use the cmake files which makes it possible to compile and run your application on Mac, Linux and Windows withouth making any changes, you simple run build/cmake/ on Linux and Mac, and build\cmake\run_release.bat on Windows.

But some of you will probably use an IDE like XCode or VisualStudio. I've tested different solutions to create a zero setup solution to enable roxlu lib in your project by used sub projects which is both possible with Visual Studio and XCode. Although these solutions look very interesting I found out that it has some flaws (e.g. compiler wide preprocessor flags are not possible with subprojects in XCode).

Therefore, to use this library you need to set the correct linker flags, preprocessor flags and include paths manually.

Compiler flags

  • The roxlu lib is prepared to be used with a couple of frameworks. Because the addons all need openGL features we need to include the correct openGL headers and enable extensions (through the frameworks). Therefore all code in the lib that needs openGL features uses #include <roxlu/opengl/GL.h> which includes the correct header files to make opengl available.

    You should define one of the options below as a global preprocessor flag

  • Some defines are set based on the ROXLU_WITH_* define you're using. These are

    • ROXLU_GL_CORE3 if you want to target openGL 3.2 core profile, forward compat.
    • GLEW_STATIC when using the cmake files this set for you. when you target < 3.x, make sure to define this in you preprocessor settings. @todo: this will be set in the GL header depending on the set ROXLU_WITH_* preprocessor flag

Using roxlu lib and the addons

  • Preprocessor flags (choose the one which fits your project)

  • Include paths:

    • roxlu/lib/include/
  • Source files:

    • roxlu/lib/src/*.cpp


Roxlu lib tries to be as portable as possible so you can develop on you platform of choice and compile and deploy on another system. Though some of the addons need system specific libraries; for example DirectX on windows or libudev on Linux for some addons.


On linux we depend on a couple of system libraries which you need to install for your specific distribution. I test this library on Ubuntu and Arch Linux.

/Install dependencies for Ubuntu/

  • apt-get install libudev-dev
  • apt-get install glu

Code Conventions

  • all saving and loading use load and save functions with a parameter to
    load/save from the data path load(std::string filepath, bool datapath = false) and save(std::string filepath, bool datapath = false)
  • when you use paths, make sure to use forward slashes; with rx_norm_path(), you can convert from<>to forward slashes to backward slashes win; we only convert when necessary

Tips & Tricks

  • You can add a icon and create application bundle by calling the roxlu_app_iconify() macro. For now this only works on Mac. If you called roxlu_app_iconify() an application bundle will be created on Mac and the file [yourapp]/build/cmake/icon.icns will be used. Checkout to create icon files.


These are just some blurbs which I will structure at some point


inline GLuint rx_create_shader(const char* vs, const char* fs) 

Creates a shader with given vertex and fragment sources. You need to call glLinkPogram(prog);

Compiling multiple (customer) targets

If you want to add some e.g. tests you can add the following to your application cmake files. Note that we use the ${roxlu_lib_source_files} and link with ${roxlu_libs}

# Add some tests
# ---------------------------------------------------
set(sd ${CMAKE_CURRENT_LIST_DIR}/../../src/tests/)
set(bd ${CMAKE_CURRENT_LIST_DIR}/../../src/)


add_executable(test_client ${sd}/test_client.cpp ${video_encoder_sources} ${roxlu_lib_source_files})
target_link_libraries(test_client ${roxlu_libs})


  • Remove all unused #defines and use compiler preprocessor flag if possible:
    • Eg. opengl/error.h uses ROXLU_DEBUG, use NDEBUG
  • All the build scripts should use the make -j# option for parallel builds
  • Set the window_w + window_h based on the results of glfwGetWindowSize in main.cpp
  • ROXLU_DEBUG: enable verbose output for e.g. opengl shaders @todo maybe just use NDEBUG