I want to learn OpenGL development and I am running Linux Mint. Khronos.org says the following:The OpenGL 4.4 and OpenGL Shading Language 4.40 Specifications were released on July 22, 2013.As far as I understand Mesa is the OpenGL implementation for Linux but it is only on version 3.1 I believe. My question is, can I develop OpenGL 4.4 apps in the Linux environment or do I have to use Mesa’s 3.1 version?
If you’re using nVidia or AMD and an OpenGL 4.4 compatible graphics card you can install their propietary driver and use it. If you have an Intel graphics card, you’ll have to wait a long time before using OpenGL 4.x.
I use Ubuntu 14.04 LTS with Catalyst 14.4 and it works perfectly with OpenGL 4.4. It hasn’t got GLSL 4.4 but I don’t know its difference with GLSL 4.3 so I don’t mind it.
So then what is the API or libraries I need to install in order to write OpenGL apps?
libGL, libglew, maybe SDL2 if you wish.
You can download libGL and libglew. I don’t know Linux Mint’s packages but in Ubuntu they’re: mesa-common-dev and libglew-dev. If you wish to create a window without using directly X11 you can use SDL2.
There are multiple OpenGL implementations for Linux. Mesa is the open source one installed by default. NVidia and ATI both have implementations as well. My recommendation: Grab an NVidia GTX4xx+ card and install the NVidia OpenGL drivers.
As a for instance, here’s a glxinfo output snippet from an GPU I used to be running along with the NVidia drivers:
OpenGL vendor string: NVIDIA Corporation OpenGL renderer string: GeForce GTX 560 Ti/PCIe/SSE2 OpenGL version string: 4.4.0 NVIDIA 325.05.13
Do you have specific capabilities you’d like to use? That could drive your GPU requirements. Here’s an OpenGL capabilities DB I sometimes find useful: