"Time to make a difference."

Linux 3D

This page hosts some material about hardware accelerated 3D graphics with Linux, slanted towards use with XFree86, Mesa, and 3Dfx Voodoo. Last change: March 29, 1998.

This page has been neglected for a long time. I just found out that the Feb. 5th revision is still not in the LDP site on Sunsite, and Greg Hankins told me that it will take "a few weeks" till it does.
For the time being, revisions will be put here, and my apologies for the inconveniences involved.

Linux 3Dfx HOWTO

THIS HOWTO IS OUTDATED! See glide.xxedgexx.com for more recent information, and use news.3dfx.com for inquiries. I have not had the time for an update in months, and this will probably not change till september 1999. If somebody is interested in taking over, please contact me. The most recent official version of the 3Dfx HOWTO as part of the Linux Documentation Project is available as You should find everything you need to get started in the HOWTO.

Please send corrections and additions to me (bk@gamers.org).

The sections below have not been updated for months. There might be a few useful pointers, but use with care.

Linux 3Dfx Glide documentation

The Glide documentation is available at www.3dfx.com. Please look there for most recent versions. Here is a snapshot of the documentation as of May, in different formats and as separate files. I included compressed versions of the original Word 6.0 files, as they work with StarOffice 3.4, which I used for the conversion. If you need e.g. A4 postscript, use StarOffice and print to a file.

Again, look for more recent releases at www.3dfx.com first.

XFree86 3D

This section is dedicated to the 3D efforts related to the XFree86 project. This is no official XFree86 Project, Inc. page. However, there are several resources that are currently not listed and provided in one place, thus I added a slot here. The following topics will be covered here soon:

This page will list infos to DGA and MIT SHM extensions as well, and will reference the efforts to add hardware accelaration to the XFree86 server by way of the OpenGL API as implemented with Mesa.


OpenGL and Mesa

For OpenGL, see SGI's OpenGL center and Mark Kilgard's infos and links. If you are using XFree86 on a PC or any other X11/UNIX plattform, Linux SVGA or NT, you should definitely explore Brian Paul's freeware implementation of the OpenGL programming interface, Mesa. There is a DOS port under way by Charlie Wallace of Dreamworks.

Mesa includes further OpenGL source code and demos. Other places you can get OpenGL source code and documentation from are:

  • Andy Vesper's HTML manual pages
  • OpenGL for X (FTP)
  • Contribs (FTP)
  • Programming with OpenGL (Siggraph 96)
  • The OpenGL SuperBible Sampler
  • DXF to openGL


    You will find the OpenGL Utility Toolkit (GLUT) source code distribution and the Windows version of the GLUT library at:

    For Windows 95 and NT users, here's a pointer to Nate Robins's home page for the GLUT-NT port: There is a Frequently-Asked-Questions list updated for GLUT 3.2. You can find it at: The newer questions are at the bottom of the list.


    Steven G. Parker has written an as yet unnamed GLX extension patch. Make sure to visit his related page. The most recent patches and binaries are available in the download section.



    Hardware accelerated Mesa

    There is a Postscript description on Accelerating Mesa with a 3-D Graphics Card written by Ken Kozman.

    Commercial OpenGL for Linux and XFree86

    As both Metro OpenGL and XInside OpenGL depend on those vendors commercial X Servers, the only commercial OpenGL implementation for XFree86 has been written by Warren Stout, formerly at Portable Graphics/Evans & Sutherland. He is currently trying to rework the implementation for XFree86 3.2 ELF, and might update to OpenGL 1.1 and GLX 1.2. More info to be added as soon as available..

    Local archive

    As quite a few of the sites above carry heavy load and are not always reacheable from europe. there is a local archive providing OpenGL, Mesa, and GLX related distributions. If you want to add something to this archive, please let me know.

    home r95 r3D dread rsc qdev doom license web archive
    dE r95 r3D dread netrsc quake doom legal web archive
    Author: B., email to bk@gamers.org, with public PGP key
    Copyright (©) 1995-1998 by author. All rights reserved.
    Source: $Id: index.html,v 1.1 1997/01/06 17:06:45 b1 Exp $