How do I install OPENGL?

missymadi used Ask the Experts™

     I am trying to set up opengl so that I can start to manipulate 2 & 3 D programs. I'm not sure where to start? I think I need to download Opengl SDK but cannot find a copy of this. I am running WinXP and opengl is not included on my PC. How do I get started using Opengl and opening a Simple C (3D app)? I have installed eclipse as my IDE.

Thanks, MissyMadi
Watch Question

Do more with

Expert Office
EXPERT OFFICE® is a registered trademark of EXPERTS EXCHANGE®
Hi MissyMadi,
you should download GLUT, from,
it will help you with opening window and initializing OpenGL context quickly, so you can concentrate
on learning 3D & OpenGL itself.
Basic OpenGL drivers should be available in XP or in your video card drivers (if not, tell me I'll upload them for you).
I think one of the greatest to learn from is "The Red Book', available in HTML format (
and LightHouse3D has also nice tutorials (
Hi missymadi,

You dont need to _install_ OpenGL. The library is part of Windows XP installation, its in your WINDOWS/system32 folder, its called opengl32.dll
However, what you need is the header, located in "GL/gl.h"
I use Visual Studio, and the header is part of the Visual Studio installation. Check your compiler, if it has the header in its package.

However, as khdani said, you can download an OpenGL library from your graphics-card provider.
The problem is, then you use OpenGL version 3.x . But on normal windows XP installations the OpenGL version is 1.x
So if you use new features, chances are high, that it will not work on other machines, which have not installed such a high OpenGL version.

Glut is, as khdani said, a useful library, but its not OpenGL, it does not come with OpenGL-headers and the library, so installing glut will not solve your problem.

Btw, what compiler do you use? I guess its Mingw/gcc, it has the header in:


and the libaray in:


Thats all you need then.

In case its another compiler, just search for "gl.h" in your compiler installation.
Should give you the best information and resources....

Do more with

Expert Office
Submit tech questions to Ask the Experts™ at any time to receive solutions, advice, and new ideas from leading industry professionals.

Start 7-Day Free Trial