Portable real time renderer window without graphical API

I am writing a renderer on CPU and GPU (using Cuda) using C++. I do not use DirectX, Vulkan or OpenGL, I am writing the whole rendering pipeline myself as an exercise. For the moment, the result of the rendering is saved as a PNG file.

However, I would like to display the result of the rendering in real time in a window but I do not know how to do it. For example, in the Nvidia OptiX examples (https://github.com/nvpro-samples/optix_advanced_samples), they create a window using glfw3 and then they create an OpenGL context and they display the result of the OptiX rendering on a simple texture inside the OpenGL context. I would like to do the same, but I do not want to create an OpenGL context because I want to have a portable solution (Windows and Linux) which do not use any graphical API. I do not want to rely on OpenGL, especially if it is only for the display.

Is there a portable C++ library for managing a window and displaying in real time a texture without using any major graphical API (DirectX, Vulkan, OpenGL) ?

Edit: Thank you for your answers. I was probably not so clear in my initial question. I want to use a GUI but I do not want to use a hardware accelerated API such as OpenGL. Because 60 times per second I refresh a buffer in memory which contains the rendering of my scene (an array of 8 bits unsigned int, with a simple RGB representation, 3 values per pixel), and I just want to display this buffer inside a window 60 times per second.

2 answers

  • answered 2018-11-08 06:24 hacksalot

    There are standalone libraries like Window-API that will provide cross-platform window management (Linux + Windows, in that case).

    There are frameworks like Qt and wxWidgets that do that and much more, like providing you a kitchen sink, refrigerator, backyard rocket launching pad, etc.

    You're still going to need to talk to a "graphical" API or framework of some sort (hence GUI, graphical user interface) but you can certainly display images, animations, videos, etc, outside of hardware-accelerated 3D graphical rendering contexts like OpenGL, Vulkan, or DirectX.

  • answered 2018-11-08 06:30 jong hyun park

    For Windows, just use User32 and GDI. (or other DLLs like gdiplus.)

    For Linux distros, you can use GTK or KDE.

    Also, there are cross-platform libraries like SDL.

    These libraries support high(?)-level windowing apis. Thus you can get canvas (or surface) of widget (or window) and you can simply copy your rendering result. Just copy bitmap.

    Or, you can use directly low-level graphics infra libraries like EGL to get display surface.