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Paging in large texture data

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How is this generally done, for things like clipmapping or geo-clipmapping? Do I keep a file pointer open with random access, or do I open and close the file regularly?

For example, with geo-clipmapping, you do these toroidal updates to your clipmap windows. In order to render the clipmap updates, I would need a texture that has the paged-in data (to source from when rendering the clipmaps). Do I keep a file pointer open the entire time, of the full size texture file (the giant heightmap), and then call glTexSubImage2D when I need to update my texture that I use to render the clipmaps with?

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Why would you want to close it?

I keep it open. Opening/closing the file only increases the number of system calls and might constantly flush/refill some internal buffers.

I think Carmack even disabled the io buffers altogether for his SVTs so that he only reads what he really needs.

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