OpenGL Dealing with large amount of data

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Hi! I must start saying that I am new to OpenGL. I have inherited an old piece of code that draws surfaces made of triangles. Its basic method is the following: glBegin(GL_TRIANGLES); for (i = 0; i < *n; i++) { glVertex2fv(vert[endpts[nx]-1]); nx++; glVertex2fv(vert[endpts[nx]-1]); nx++; glVertex2fv(vert[endpts[nx]-1]); } glEnd(); On top of all, this code is not using specific matrix calls such as glRotate, glTranslate and glScale to handle the object movement. It holds onto the complete view matrix and does it's own adjustments based on the inputs and then just sets the whole matrix before rendering. It is fine with small models, but when I start playing with millions of triangles, it takes about 5 seconds to render the result of a rotation/translation. I am planning to re-code the stuff, grouping the triangles to render them in 1 call, using index buffering to avoid duplicated vertices, but at the moment, I am having a problem with the following basic problem: Assuming I have already drawn the model using the above piece of code and want now to translate it using the mouse (the mouse event has returned dx and dy), How do I make the graphic card understand to use what it has already in memory and apply on it the glTranslatef(dx, dy, 0) without having to re-do the above piece of code, ie the glBegin ... glVertex2fv ... glEnd stuff? I thought of using glMultMatrixf(), so I did the following: GLfloat new_matrix[] = {1,0,0,0.5,0,1,0,0.5,0,0,1,0,0,0,0,1}; float mat[16]; int r,c; glGetFloatv(GL_MODELVIEW_MATRIX, mat); qDebug("Before glMultMatrixf"); for (c=0 ; c<16 ; c++) std::cout<<mat[c]<<" " ;std::cout<<std::endl; glMultMatrixf(new_matrix); qDebug("After glMultMatrixf"); glGetFloatv(GL_MODELVIEW_MATRIX, mat); for (c=0 ; c<16 ; c++) std::cout<<mat[c]<<" " ;std::cout<<std::endl; So I just want the model to be translate by a factor 0.5 in x and y. The outputs of my debu info are: Before glMultMatrixf -0.53704 -3.71254 -15.0809 5 -0.83904 -3.41054 -15.0809 5 0 0 0.431428 0 -0.167808 -0.742508 -3.01619 1 After glMultMatrixf -0.620944 -4.08379 -16.589 5.5 -0.922944 -3.78179 -16.589 5.5 0 0 0.431428 0 -0.167808 -0.742508 -3.01619 1 So the viewing matrix gets updated, so why not the model? Thanks for your help! -Pierre.

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to speed up the code you can try one of the following methods :
1. Display lists
2. vertex arays .
3. Vertex buffer objects.

as far as the matrix is concerned, where are u placing the glMultMatrix functions ?
Also, since your translation is 0.5 in each direction , probably thats why the change is not apparent ? Try drawing an axis at the origin and then see if the model is translated.

cheers

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Quote:
 It is fine with small models, but when I start playing with millionsof triangles, it takes about 5 seconds to render the result of arotation/translation.

Move up to VBO. It requires GL 1.5
Avoid glGet calls.

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Quote:
 Original post by _gl_coder_one_1. Display lists
Display lists are handy, but they wont do much for you if you are feeding a ton of data.
Quote:
 2. vertex arays.3. Vertex buffer objects.
Vertex arrays should help a lot, and VBOs will help even more - what is best is that the second is only a small step from the first. For best results, interleave the vertices, and possibly even rearrange them for vertex cache coherence.

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Quote:
Original post by swiftcoder
Quote:
 Original post by _gl_coder_one_1. Display lists
Display lists are handy, but they wont do much for you if you are feeding a ton of data.
Quote:
 2. vertex arays.3. Vertex buffer objects.
Vertex arrays should help a lot, and VBOs will help even more - what is best is that the second is only a small step from the first. For best results, interleave the vertices, and possibly even rearrange them for vertex cache coherence.

Display list is usually as good as static VBO (at least on a NVidia display card).

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Quote:
 Assuming I have already drawn the model using the above piece of codeand want now to translate it using the mouse (the mouse event hasreturned dx and dy),How do I make the graphic card understand to use what it has alreadyin memory and apply on it the glTranslatef(dx, dy, 0) without havingto re-do the above piece of code, ie the glBegin ... glVertex2fv ...glEnd stuff?

There is absolutely nothing you can do. That is why the original code is considered bad.

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Hi!

Thank you to all of you!

I think that I started with the wrong assumption. I thought that when a scene has been rendered, if this one has not changed in term of new object being rendered/deleted, a simple rotation could be done without having to redraw everything.

In fact as soon I change a bit in my scene I have to render everything
all again, ie going through the original bit of code:

glBegin(GL_TRIANGLES);
for (i = 0; i < *n; i ) {
glVertex2fv(vert[endpts[nx]-1]);
nx ;
glVertex2fv(vert[endpts[nx]-1]);
nx ;
glVertex2fv(vert[endpts[nx]-1]);
}
glEnd();

With millions of triangles, I will have too many function calls.

So, my only solution is in fact to implement some VBO approach...

Could anyone redirect me to some place where VBO is explained with some code sample?

Cheers..

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Use display list instead, let the driver optimize it for you.

use vbo's.

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Quote:
 Original post by ma_htyDisplay list is usually as good as static VBO (at least on a NVidia display card).
I am going to go out on a limb here and say that this is incorrect. For small amounts of data, you may be right - but in the OP's case, he is most likely bandwidth-limited, and saving the transfer of vertex data every frame should help a lot.

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Quote:
Original post by swiftcoder
Quote:
 Original post by ma_htyDisplay list is usually as good as static VBO (at least on a NVidia display card).
I am going to go out on a limb here and say that this is incorrect. For small amounts of data, you may be right - but in the OP's case, he is most likely bandwidth-limited, and saving the transfer of vertex data every frame should help a lot.

I really don't want to start a discussion about it in the first place because I don't really have any official spec about it. However, from my experience, the display list does have some kind of optimization to save the transfer of vertex data.

You can verify it easily. Get a big 3D model (at least 100 MB in file size), and draw it using display list, vertex pointer and VBO.

[Edited by - ma_hty on May 16, 2008 10:15:52 AM]

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I am trying to use display list, because I want to see the benefit of them. However, the code I am dealing with is rather tricky. It is a mixture of Fortran 77 (I know...) and C and If I may I am going to describe it here:

from fortran, I do

call XFtnDisTriCol(GC3, tris(1,kx), 1, snorm, xyz, iwk3, cmap, ntri, 0, norflg)

and from C I have
XFTNDISTRICOL(Window *window, int *endpts, int *skip, float norms[][3],
float vert[][3], int ci[][3], float cmap[][3],
int *n, int *mirror, int *nf)
{
static int surf = 1;
int i, mir, ninst, ni, nx;
float col[4];

// Block 1
if ((XFtnXparVal != 0.0)) {
glEnable(GL_BLEND);
glBlendFunc(GL_SRC_ALPHA, GL_ONE);
for (ni = 0; ni < ninst; ni++) {
if (*mirror < 0) {
XFTNAPPLYXFORM(&surf, &ni, &ninst);
if (pV3_inst != NULL)
if (pV3_inst[ni] == 0) continue;
}
if (*nf == 0) xftnFixNor(norms[0], mir);
nx = 0;
glBegin(GL_TRIANGLES);
for (i = 0; i < *n; i++) {
if (*nf != 0) xftnFixNor(norms[i], mir);
xftnFixCol(cmap[ci[i][0]], col);
col[3] = XFtnXparVal;
xftnColor4fv(col);
xftnFixPos(vert[endpts[nx]-1], mir);
nx++;
xftnFixCol(cmap[ci[i][1]], col);
col[3] = XFtnXparVal;
xftnColor4fv(col);
xftnFixPos(vert[endpts[nx]-1], mir);
nx++;
xftnFixCol(cmap[ci[i][2]], col);
col[3] = XFtnXparVal;
xftnColor4fv(col);
xftnFixPos(vert[endpts[nx]-1], mir);
nx += *skip + 1;
}
glEnd();
}
glBlendFunc(GL_ONE, GL_ZERO);
glDisable(GL_BLEND);

} else {

// Block 2
for (ni = 0; ni < ninst; ni++) {
if (*mirror < 0) {
XFTNAPPLYXFORM(&surf, &ni, &ninst);
if (pV3_inst != NULL)
if (pV3_inst[ni] == 0) continue;
}
if (*nf == 0) xftnFixNor(norms[0], mir);
nx = 0;
glBegin(GL_TRIANGLES);
for (i = 0; i < *n; i++) {
if (*nf != 0) xftnFixNor(norms[i], mir);
xftnFixCol(cmap[ci[i][0]], col);
xftnColor3fv(col);
xftnFixPos(vert[endpts[nx]-1], mir);
nx++;
xftnFixCol(cmap[ci[i][1]], col);
xftnColor3fv(col);
xftnFixPos(vert[endpts[nx]-1], mir);
nx++;
xftnFixCol(cmap[ci[i][2]], col);
xftnColor3fv(col);
xftnFixPos(vert[endpts[nx]-1], mir);
nx += *skip + 1;
}
glEnd();
}
}

}

the xftnFixCol functions fix the colour (no opengl calls)
the xftnColor3fv makes sure that the color is between 0 and 255 and then call glColor3ubv
xftnFixPos calculate the vertex position and call glVertex3fv

My implementation for Block 1 is

iflag = 1; list1=0;
get_listflag_(&iflag,&list1); // list1 is stored in a common block in the fortran
if (list1==0)
{
listName1 = glGenLists (1);
glNewList(listName1, GL_COMPILE);
fprintf(stderr, "In XFTNDISTRICOL 1\n");
glBegin(GL_TRIANGLES);
for (i = 0; i < *n; i++) {
if (*nf != 0) xftnFixNor(norms[i], mir);
xftnFixCol(cmap[ci[i][0]], col);
col[3] = XFtnXparVal;
xftnColor4fv(col);
xftnFixPos(vert[endpts[nx]-1], mir);
nx++;
xftnFixCol(cmap[ci[i][1]], col);
col[3] = XFtnXparVal;
xftnColor4fv(col);
xftnFixPos(vert[endpts[nx]-1], mir);
nx++;
xftnFixCol(cmap[ci[i][2]], col);
col[3] = XFtnXparVal;
xftnColor4fv(col);
xftnFixPos(vert[endpts[nx]-1], mir);
nx += *skip + 1;
}
glEnd();
glEndList();
list1 = 1;
iflag = 1;
set_listflag_(&iflag,&list1);
}
else
{
glCallList(listName1);
}

So the idea is that the first time the code execute the bloack, it initialise the display list. Then it uses it.

I am sorry for this rather tedious explanation and ugly code, but, hey, I don't have the choice....

I did this implementation in 3 functions, so I have 6 display lists. As a results, Some of the surfaces are drawn properly whereas some others are simply not drawn in color.... just transparent. When the model gets re-drawn, due to some rotation, for instance, I get the same result. So it is kind of work, but not completely.

Question: Can anyone spot any fundamental error that would explain why the code does not behave as the original one, ie without the display lists? I would like to know if the fact that vertices and colors are constantly changing their states and not in a direct block but in functions that are called could be the problem...

Any thoughts?

-Pierre.

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