Description

To use a Vulkan extension supporting a platform-specific window system, header files for that window systems must be included at compile time, or platform-specific types must be forward-declared. The Vulkan header files cannot determine whether or not an external header is available at compile time, so platform-specific extensions are provided in separate headers from the core API and platform-independent extensions, allowing applications to decide which ones should be defined and how the external headers are included.

Extensions dependent on particular sets of platform headers, or that forward-declare platform-specific types, are declared in a header named for that platform. Before including these platform-specific Vulkan headers, applications must include both {core_header} and any external native headers the platform extensions depend on.

As a convenience for applications that do not need the flexibility of separate platform-specific Vulkan headers, {full_header} includes {core_header}, and then conditionally includes platform-specific Vulkan headers and the external headers they depend on. Applications control which platform-specific headers are included by #defining macros before including {full_header}.

The correspondence between platform-specific extensions, external headers they require, the platform-specific header which declares them, and the preprocessor macros which enable inclusion by {full_header} are shown in the following table.

Table 1. Window System Extensions and Headers
Extension Name Window System Name Platform-specific Header Required External Headers Controlling {full_header} Macro

VK_KHR_android_surface

Android

vulkan_android.h

None

VK_USE_PLATFORM_ANDROID_KHR

VK_KHR_wayland_surface

Wayland

vulkan_wayland.h

<wayland-client.h>

VK_USE_PLATFORM_WAYLAND_KHR

VK_KHR_win32_surface, VK_KHR_external_memory_win32, VK_KHR_win32_keyed_mutex, VK_KHR_external_semaphore_win32, VK_KHR_external_fence_win32, VK_NV_external_memory_win32, VK_NV_win32_keyed_mutex

Microsoft Windows

vulkan_win32.h

<windows.h>

VK_USE_PLATFORM_WIN32_KHR

VK_KHR_xcb_surface

X11 Xcb

vulkan_xcb.h

<xcb/xcb.h>

VK_USE_PLATFORM_XCB_KHR

VK_KHR_xlib_surface

X11 Xlib

vulkan_xlib.h

<X11/Xlib.h>

VK_USE_PLATFORM_XLIB_KHR

VK_EXT_directfb_surface

DirectFB

vulkan_directfb.h

<directfb/directfb.h>

VK_USE_PLATFORM_DIRECTFB_EXT

VK_EXT_acquire_xlib_display

X11 XRAndR

vulkan_xlib_xrandr.h

<X11/Xlib.h>, <X11/extensions/Xrandr.h>

VK_USE_PLATFORM_XLIB_XRANDR_EXT

VK_GGP_stream_descriptor_surface, VK_GGP_frame_token

Google Games Platform

vulkan_ggp.h

<ggp_c/vulkan_types.h>

VK_USE_PLATFORM_GGP

VK_MVK_ios_surface

iOS

vulkan_ios.h

None

VK_USE_PLATFORM_IOS_MVK

VK_MVK_macos_surface

macOS

vulkan_macos.h

None

VK_USE_PLATFORM_MACOS_MVK

VK_NN_vi_surface

VI

vulkan_vi.h

None

VK_USE_PLATFORM_VI_NN

VK_FUCHSIA_imagepipe_surface

Fuchsia

vulkan_fuchsia.h

<zircon/types.h>

VK_USE_PLATFORM_FUCHSIA

VK_EXT_metal_surface

Metal on CoreAnimation

vulkan_metal.h

None

VK_USE_PLATFORM_METAL_EXT

VK_QNX_screen_surface

QNX Screen

vulkan_screen.h

<screen/screen.h>

VK_USE_PLATFORM_SCREEN_QNX

Note

This section describes the purpose of the headers independently of the specific underlying functionality of the window system extensions themselves. Each extension name will only link to a description of that extension when viewing a specification built with that extension included.

See Also

provisional-headers

Document Notes

For more information, see the Vulkan Specification

This page is extracted from the Vulkan Specification. Fixes and changes should be made to the Specification, not directly.

Copyright 2014-2021 The Khronos Group Inc.

SPDX-License-Identifier: CC-BY-4.0