Solved External drawing (GDI, D2D, OpenGL) - What I've learned

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Aleksander

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May 10, 2015
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After toying around for a few days, it seems as if the best way to draw externally is by creating a transparent overlay, formally known as a "layered window". They've existed for quite some time and if you have some time to exhaust, you can visit this article:
https://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ms997507.aspx

Some things I've tried:
D2D - HWNDRenderTarget (Typical drawing scenario)
D2D - DCRenderTarget (GDI Interopability: https://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/windows/desktop/dd370971(v=vs.85).aspx)
GDI - Didn't consider this for actual use, just for testing. GDI/GDI+ is considered legacy, it's successor is DirectDraw, and DD's successor is D2D.
OpenGL - Pretty much the same as D2D HWNDRenderTarget

-The GDI scenario worked fine because I wasn't getting a backbuffer flicker (including the D2D interop), however they were very slow.
-Using the "standard" drawing procedures for both OpenGL and D2D gave me the inevitable dilemma of drawing a back buffer on an existing window handle, there is really no good way to mask it.

Externally speaking, did anyone else have an alternative method?
 
Last edited:

Obsta

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Jan 27, 2014
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-The GDI scenario worked fine because I wasn't getting a backbuffer flicker (including the D2D interop), however they were very slow.
What was slow? The update rate at which you draw the image to the buffer? You can set it to refresh at 60fps+.
Or did you mean something else?
 

Aleksander

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May 10, 2015
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What was slow? The update rate at which you draw the image to the buffer? You can set it to refresh at 60fps+.
Or did you mean something else?
Setting it to a faster refresh would chew up even more resources, the drawing itself was flickering. When I talk about flickering using standard D2D/GL, it was merely the back buffer clearing on top of an existing window (not the draws flickering). So I think the best happy-medium is a transparent layered window.
 
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Aleksander

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May 10, 2015
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