Freeglut requires GL/gl*.h

Dan Nicholson dbn.lists at
Mon Dec 15 13:57:08 PST 2008

On Mon, Dec 15, 2008 at 1:21 PM, Matthew Burgess
<matthew at> wrote:
> Hi all.
> I'm running through an Xorg-7.4 build, but have hit a problem.  Firstly, there's
> a slight inconsistency:
> The Xorg Apps page says that MesaGlut is recommended. But, visiting the MesaGlut
> page suggests that FreeGlut is recommended, due to licensing issues with
> MesaGlut.

I'm pretty sure BLFS has it backwards. No one really works on either
of the GLUTs, but Mesa's has the troublesome license. I'm pretty sure
all the distros use FreeGLUT.

> Now, FreeGlut states that it is dependent on the entire 'X Window System', but
> that won't be completed for some 7 packages (plus deps), which includes the apps,
> fonts, and drivers, all fairly substantially sized.
> Ignoring that advice completely (hey, it's my distro, I get to keep all the
> broken pieces!), I decided to compile it immediately after xbitmaps-1.0.1. This
> results in:
> error: GL/gl.h: No such file or directory
> error: GL/glu.h: No such file or directory
> error: GL/glx.h: No such file or directory

FreeGLUT depends on the GL implementation, which is Mesa. So, you'd
have to install Mesa then FreeGLUT. FWIW, nothing else in the Xorg
stack uses GLUT, so you can definitely postpone FreeGLUT until later.
The GL headers come from Mesa.

> Does anyone have any info on what, exactly, Freeglut requires?  My initial
> googling suggests that Xorg Drivers will provide GL/gl*.h, but does that then
> mean I need to rebuild the whole lot again, or just the Xorg Apps?

GLUT is the GL Utility Toolkit. It's just convenience utilities on top
of GL which makes developing GL applications easier (apparently).
There are a couple free implementations available: Mesa's GLUT with
the troublesome license, or FreeGLUT, which was started to address
this license problem (I think).


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