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glCreateShader — Creates a shader object

C Specification

GLuint glCreateShader(GLenum  shaderType);



Specifies the type of shader to be created. Must be either GL_VERTEX_SHADER or GL_FRAGMENT_SHADER.


glCreateShader creates an empty shader object and returns a non-zero value by which it can be referenced. A shader object is used to maintain the source code strings that define a shader. shaderType indicates the type of shader to be created. Two types of shaders are supported. A shader of type GL_VERTEX_SHADER is a shader that is intended to run on the programmable vertex processor and replace the fixed functionality vertex processing in OpenGL. A shader of type GL_FRAGMENT_SHADER is a shader that is intended to run on the programmable fragment processor and replace the fixed functionality fragment processing in OpenGL.

When created, a shader object's GL_SHADER_TYPE parameter is set to either GL_VERTEX_SHADER or GL_FRAGMENT_SHADER, depending on the value of shaderType.


glCreateShader is available only if the GL version is 2.0 or greater.

Like display lists and texture objects, the name space for shader objects may be shared across a set of contexts, as long as the server sides of the contexts share the same address space. If the name space is shared across contexts, any attached objects and the data associated with those attached objects are shared as well.

Applications are responsible for providing the synchronization across API calls when objects are accessed from different execution threads.


This function returns 0 if an error occurs creating the shader object.

GL_INVALID_ENUM is generated if shaderType is not an accepted value.

GL_INVALID_OPERATION is generated if glCreateShader is executed between the execution of glBegin and the corresponding execution of glEnd.

Associated Gets

glGetShader with a valid shader object and the parameter to be queried

glGetShaderInfoLog with a valid shader object

glGetShaderSource with a valid shader object



Copyright © 2003-2005 3Dlabs Inc. Ltd. This material may be distributed subject to the terms and conditions set forth in the Open Publication License, v 1.0, 8 June 1999.