In-application API

Reference for RenderDoc in-application API version 1.1.1

Make sure to use a matching API header for your build - if you use a newer header, the API version may not be available. All RenderDoc builds supporting this API ship the header in their root directory.

This page describes the RenderDoc API exposed to applications being captured, both in overall organisation as well as a specific reference on each function.

To begin using the API you need to fetch the RENDERDOC_GetAPI function. You should do this dynamically, it is not recommended to actually link against RenderDoc’s DLL as it’s intended to be injected or loaded at runtime. The header does not declare RENDERDOC_GetAPI, it declares a function pointer typedef pRENDERDOC_GetAPI that you can use.

The two common ways to integrate RenderDoc are either to passively check if the DLL is loaded, and use the API. This lets you continue to use RenderDoc entirely as normal, launching your program through the UI, but you can access additional functionality to e.g. trigger captures at custom times.

To do this you’ll use your platforms dynamic library functions to see if the library is open already - e.g. GetModuleHandle on Windows, or dlopen with the RTLD_NOLOAD flag if available on *nix systems. Just searching for the module name - renderdoc.dll or librenderdoc.so is sufficient here, so you don’t need to know the path to where RenderDoc is running from. Then you can use GetProcAddress or dlsym to fetch the RENDERDOC_GetAPI function using the typedef above.

The other way is a closer integration, where your code will explicitly load up RenderDoc. This needs more care taken as it can be a bit more complex. You will need to locate the RenderDoc module yourself, and load it as soon as possible after startup of your program. Due to the nature of RenderDoc’s API hooking, the earlier you can load it the better in general. Once you’ve loaded it you can fetch the RENDERDOC_GetAPI entry point as above, and use the API as normal.

int RENDERDOC_GetAPI(RENDERDOC_Version version, void **outAPIPointers)

This function is the only entry point actually exported from the RenderDoc module. You call this function with the desired API version, and pass it the address of a pointer to the appropriate struct type. If successful, RenderDoc will set the pointer to point to a struct containing the function pointers for the API functions (detailed below) and return 1.

Note that version numbers follow semantic versioning which means the implementation returned may have a higher minor and/or patch version than requested.

Parameters:
  • RENDERDOC_Version version – is the version number of the API for which you want the interface struct.
  • void** outAPIPointers – will be filled with the address of the API’s function pointer struct, if supported. E.g. if eRENDERDOC_API_Version_1_1_1 is requested, outAPIPointers will be filled with RENDERDOC_API_1_1_1*.
Returns:

The function returns 1 if the API version is valid and available, and the struct pointer is filled. The function returns 0 if the API version is invalid or not supported, or the pointer parameter is invalid.

void GetAPIVersion(int *major, int *minor, int *patch)

This function returns the actual API version of the implementation returned. Version numbers follow semantic versioning which means the implementation returned may have a higher minor and/or patch version than requested: New patch versions are identical and backwards compatible in functionality. New minor versions add new functionality in a backwards compatible way.

Parameters:
  • int* major – will be filled with the major version of the implementation’s version.
  • int* minor – will be filled with the minor version of the implementation’s version.
  • int* patch – which will be filled with the patch version of the implementation’s version.
Returns:

None

void SetCaptureOptionU32(RENDERDOC_CaptureOption opt, uint32_t val)

Set one of the options for tweaking some behaviours of capturing. Note that each option only takes effect from after it is set - so it is advised to set these options as early as possible, ideally before any graphics API has been initialised.

Parameters:
  • RENDERDOC_CaptureOption opt – specifies which capture option should be set.
  • uint32_t val – the unsigned integer value to set for the above option.
Returns:

The function returns 1 if the option is valid, and the value set on the option is within valid ranges. The function returns 0 if the option is not a RENDERDOC_CaptureOption enum, or the value is not valid for the option.

void SetCaptureOptionF32(RENDERDOC_CaptureOption opt, float val)

Set one of the options for tweaking some behaviours of capturing. Note that each option only takes effect from after it is set - so it is advised to set these options as early as possible, ideally before any graphics API has been initialised..

Parameters:
  • RENDERDOC_CaptureOption opt – specifies which capture option should be set.
  • float val – the floating point value to set for the above option.
Returns:

The function returns 1 if the option is valid, and the value set on the option is within valid ranges. The function returns 0 if the option is not a RENDERDOC_CaptureOption enum, or the value is not valid for the option.

enum RENDERDOC_CaptureOption
enumerator RENDERDOC_CaptureOption::eRENDERDOC_Option_AllowVSync

specifies whether the application is allowed to enable vsync. Default is on.

enumerator RENDERDOC_CaptureOption::eRENDERDOC_Option_AllowFullscreen

specifies whether the application is allowed to enter exclusive fullscreen. Default is on.

enumerator RENDERDOC_CaptureOption::eRENDERDOC_Option_APIValidation

specifies whether (where possible) API-specific debugging is enabled. Default is off.

enumerator RENDERDOC_CaptureOption::eRENDERDOC_Option_CaptureCallstacks

specifies whether each API call should save a callstack. Default is off.

enumerator RENDERDOC_CaptureOption::eRENDERDOC_Option_CaptureCallstacksOnlyDraws

specifies whether - if CaptureCallstacks is enabled - callstacks are only saved on drawcalls. Default is off.

enumerator RENDERDOC_CaptureOption::eRENDERDOC_Option_DelayForDebugger

specifies a delay in seconds after launching a process to pause, to allow debuggers to attach. Default is 0.

enumerator RENDERDOC_CaptureOption::eRENDERDOC_Option_VerifyMapWrites

specifies whether any ‘map’ type resource memory updates should be bounds-checked for overruns. Default is off.

enumerator RENDERDOC_CaptureOption::eRENDERDOC_Option_HookIntoChildren

specifies whether child processes launched by the initial application should be hooked as well - commonly if a launcher process is needed to run the application. Default is off.

enumerator RENDERDOC_CaptureOption::eRENDERDOC_Option_RefAllResources

specifies whether all live resources at the time of capture should be included in the log, even if they are not referenced by the frame. Default is off.

enumerator RENDERDOC_CaptureOption::eRENDERDOC_Option_SaveAllInitials

specifies whether all initial states of resources at the start of the frame should be saved, rather than omitting large resource contents which are detected to be likely unused. Default is off.

enumerator RENDERDOC_CaptureOption::eRENDERDOC_Option_CaptureAllCmdLists

specifies whether all command lists should be captured on APIs where multithreaded submission is not optimal such as D3D11, rather than only capturing those submitted during the frame. Default is off.

enumerator RENDERDOC_CaptureOption::eRENDERDOC_Option_DebugOutputMute

specifies whether to mute any API debug output messages when APIValidation is enabled. Default is on.

uint32_t GetCaptureOptionU32(RENDERDOC_CaptureOption opt)

Gets the current value of one of the different options listed above in SetCaptureOptionU32().

Parameters:RENDERDOC_CaptureOption opt – specifies which capture option should be retrieved.
Returns:The function returns the value of the capture option, if the option is a valid RENDERDOC_CaptureOption enum. Otherwise returns 0xffffffff.
float GetCaptureOptionF32(RENDERDOC_CaptureOption opt)

Gets the current value of one of the different options listed above in SetCaptureOptionF32().

Parameters:RENDERDOC_CaptureOption opt – specifies which capture option should be retrieved.
Returns:The function returns the value of the capture option, if the option is a valid RENDERDOC_CaptureOption enum. Otherwise returns -FLT_MAX.
void SetFocusToggleKeys(RENDERDOC_InputButton *keys, int num)

This function changes the key bindings in-application for changing the focussed window.

Parameters:
  • RENDERDOC_InputButton* keys – lists the keys to bind. If this parameter is NULL, num must be 0.
  • int num – specifies the number of keys in the keys array. If 0, the keybinding is disabled.
enum RENDERDOC_InputButton
enumerator RENDERDOC_InputButton::eRENDERDOC_Key_0

eRENDERDOC_Key_0 to eRENDERDOC_Key_9 are the number keys. The values of these match ASCII for ‘0’ .. ‘9’.

enumerator RENDERDOC_InputButton::eRENDERDOC_Key_A

eRENDERDOC_Key_A to eRENDERDOC_Key_Z are the letter keys. The values of these match ASCII for ‘A’ .. ‘Z’.

enumerator RENDERDOC_InputButton::eRENDERDOC_Key_Divide

is the Divide key.

enumerator RENDERDOC_InputButton::eRENDERDOC_Key_Multiply

is the Multiply key.

enumerator RENDERDOC_InputButton::eRENDERDOC_Key_Subtract

is the Subtract key.

enumerator RENDERDOC_InputButton::eRENDERDOC_Key_Plus

is the Plus key.

enumerator RENDERDOC_InputButton::eRENDERDOC_Key_F1

eRENDERDOC_Key_F1 to eRENDERDOC_Key_F12 are the function keys.

enumerator RENDERDOC_InputButton::eRENDERDOC_Key_Home

is the Home key.

enumerator RENDERDOC_InputButton::eRENDERDOC_Key_End

is the End key.

enumerator RENDERDOC_InputButton::eRENDERDOC_Key_Insert

is the Insert key.

enumerator RENDERDOC_InputButton::eRENDERDOC_Key_Delete

is the Delete key.

enumerator RENDERDOC_InputButton::eRENDERDOC_Key_PageUp

is the PageUp key.

enumerator RENDERDOC_InputButton::eRENDERDOC_Key_PageDn

is the PageDn key.

enumerator RENDERDOC_InputButton::eRENDERDOC_Key_Backspace

is the Backspace key.

enumerator RENDERDOC_InputButton::eRENDERDOC_Key_Tab

is the Tab key.

enumerator RENDERDOC_InputButton::eRENDERDOC_Key_PrtScrn

is the PrtScrn key.

enumerator RENDERDOC_InputButton::eRENDERDOC_Key_Pause

is the Pause key.

void SetCaptureKeys(RENDERDOC_InputButton *keys, int num)

This function changes the key bindings in-application for triggering a capture on the current window.

Parameters:
  • RENDERDOC_InputButton* keys – lists the keys to bind. If this parameter is NULL, num must be 0.
  • int num – specifies the number of keys in the keys array. If 0, the keybinding is disabled.
uint32_t GetOverlayBits()

This function returns the current mask which determines what sections of the overlay render on each window.

Returns:A mask containing bits from RENDERDOC_OverlayBits.
enum RENDERDOC_OverlayBits
enumerator RENDERDOC_OverlayBits::eRENDERDOC_Overlay_Enabled

is an overall enable/disable bit. If this is disabled, no overlay renders.

enumerator RENDERDOC_OverlayBits::eRENDERDOC_Overlay_FrameRate

shows the average, min and max frame time in milliseconds, and the average framerate.

enumerator RENDERDOC_OverlayBits::eRENDERDOC_Overlay_FrameNumber

shows the current frame number, as counted by the number of presents.

enumerator RENDERDOC_OverlayBits::eRENDERDOC_Overlay_CaptureList

shows how many total captures have been made, and a list of captured frames in the last few seconds.

enumerator RENDERDOC_OverlayBits::eRENDERDOC_Overlay_Default

is the default set of bits, which is the value of the mask at startup.

enumerator RENDERDOC_OverlayBits::eRENDERDOC_Overlay_All

is equal to ~0U so all bits are enabled.

enumerator RENDERDOC_OverlayBits::eRENDERDOC_Overlay_None

is equal to 0 so all bits are disabled.

void MaskOverlayBits(uint32_t And, uint32_t Or)

This function modifies the current mask which determines what sections of the overlay render on each window.

Parameters:
  • uint32_t And – is a 32-bit value the mask is binary-AND’d with before processing Or.
  • uint32_t Or – is a 32-bit value the mask is binary-OR’d with after processing And.
void Shutdown()

This function will attempt to shut down and remove RenderDoc and its hooks from the target process. It must be called as early as possible in the process, and will have undefined results if any graphics API functions have been called.

void UnloadCrashHandler()

This function will remove RenderDoc’s crash handler from the target process. If you have your own crash handler that you want to handle any exceptions, RenderDoc’s handler could interfere so it can be disabled.

void SetLogFilePathTemplate(const char *pathtemplate)

Set the template for new captures. The template can either be a relative or absolute path, which determines where captures will be saved and how they will be named. If the path template is my_captures/example then captures saved will be e.g. my_captures/example_frame123.rdc and my_captures/example_frame456.rdc. Relative paths will be saved relative to the process’s current working directory. The default template is in a folder controlled by the UI - initially the system temporary folder, and the filename is the executable’s filename.

Parameters:const char* pathtemplate – specifies the capture path template to set, as UTF-8 null-terminated string.
const char *GetLogFilePathTemplate()

Get the current log file path template.

Returns:the current capture path template as a UTF-8 null-terminated string.
uint32_t GetNumCaptures()

This function returns the number of frame captures that have been made. :return: Returns the number of frame captures that have been made

uint32_t GetCapture(uint32_t idx, char *logfile, uint32_t *pathlength, uint64_t *timestamp)

This function returns the details of a particular frame capture, as specified by an index from 0 to GetNumCaptures() - 1.

Parameters:
  • uint32_t idx – specifies which capture to return the details of. Must be less than the return value of:cpp:func:GetNumCaptures.
  • char* logfile – is an optional parameter filled with the UTF-8 null-terminated path to the file. There must be enough space in the array to contain all characters including the null terminator. If set to NULL, nothing is written.
  • uint32_t* pathlength – is an optional parameter filled with the byte length of the above logfile including the null-terminator. If set to NULL, nothing is written.
  • uint64_t* timestamp – is an optional parameter filled with the 64-bit timestamp of the file - equivalent to the time() system call. If set to NULL, nothing is written.
Returns:

Returns 1 if the capture index was valid, or 0 if it was out of range.

Note

It is advised to call this function twice - first to obtain pathlength so that sufficient space can be allocated. Then again to actually retrieve the path.

The path follows the template set in SetLogFilePathTemplate() so it may not be an absolute path.

void TriggerCapture()

This function will trigger a capture as if the user had pressed one of the capture hotkeys. The capture will be taken from the next frame presented to whichever window is considered current.

uint32_t IsTargetControlConnected()

This function returns a value to indicate whether the RenderDoc UI is currently connected to the current process.

Returns:Returns 1 if the RenderDoc UI is currently connected, or 0 otherwise.
uint32_t LaunchReplayUI(uint32_t connectTargetControl, const char *cmdline)

This function will determine the closest matching replay UI executable for the current RenderDoc module and launch it.

:param uint32_t connectTargetControl should be set to 1 if the UI should immediately connect to the application. :param const char* cmdline: is an optional UTF-8 null-terminated string to be appended to the command line, e.g. a capture filename. If this parameter is NULL, the command line will be unmodified. :return: If the UI was successfully launched, this function will return the PID of the new process. Otherwise it will return 0.

void SetActiveWindow(RENDERDOC_DevicePointer device, RENDERDOC_WindowHandle wndHandle)

This function will explicitly set which window is considered active. The active window is the one that will be captured when the keybind to trigger a capture is pressed.

Parameters:
  • RENDERDOC_DevicePointer device – is a handle to the API ‘device’ object that will be set active. Must be valid.
  • RENDERDOC_WindowHandle wndHandle – is a handle to the platform window handle that will be set active. Must be valid.

Note

RENDERDOC_DevicePointer is a typedef to void *. The contents of it are API specific:

  • For D3D11 it must be the ID3D11Device device object.
  • For OpenGL it must be the HGLRC or GLXContext context object.
  • For Vulkan it must be the dispatch table pointer within the VkInstance. This is a pointer-sized value at the location pointed to by the VkInstance. NOTE - this is not the actual VkInstance pointer itself.

RENDERDOC_WindowHandle is a typedef to void *. It is the platform specific HWND, xcb_window_t, or Xlib Window.

void StartFrameCapture(RENDERDOC_DevicePointer device, RENDERDOC_WindowHandle wndHandle)

This function will immediately begin a capture for the specified device/window combination.

Parameters:
  • RENDERDOC_DevicePointer device – is a handle to the API ‘device’ object that will be set active. May be NULL to wildcard match.
  • RENDERDOC_WindowHandle wndHandle – is a handle to the platform window handle that will be set active. May be NULL to wildcard match.

Note

RENDERDOC_DevicePointer and RENDERDOC_WindowHandle are described above in SetActiveWindow(). device and wndHandle can either or both be set to NULL to wildcard match against active device/window combinations. This wildcard matching can be used if the handle is difficult to obtain where frame captures are triggered.

For example if device is NULL but wndHandle is set, RenderDoc will begin a capture on the first API it finds that is active on that window.

If the wildcard match has multiple possible candidates, it is not defined which will be chosen. Wildcard matching should only be used when e.g. it is known that only one API is active on a window, or there is only one window active for a given API.

If no window has been created and all rendering is off-screen, NULL can be specified for the window handle and the device object can be passed to select that API. If both are set to NULL, RenderDoc will simply choose one at random so is only recommended for the case where only one is present.

uint32_t IsFrameCapturing()

This function returns a value to indicate whether the current frame is capturing.

Returns:Returns 1 if the frame is currently capturing, or 0 otherwise.
void EndFrameCapture(RENDERDOC_DevicePointer device, RENDERDOC_WindowHandle wndHandle)

This function will immediately end an active capture for the specified device/window combination.

Parameters:
  • RENDERDOC_DevicePointer device – is a handle to the API ‘device’ object that will be set active. May be NULL to wildcard match.
  • RENDERDOC_WindowHandle wndHandle – is a handle to the platform window handle that will be set active. May be NULL to wildcard match.

Note

RENDERDOC_DevicePointer and RENDERDOC_WindowHandle are described above in SetActiveWindow(). device and wndHandle can either or both be set to NULL to wildcard match against active device/window combinations. This wildcard matching can be used if the handle is difficult to obtain where frame captures are triggered.

Wildcard matching of device and wndHandle is described above in BeginFrameCapture().

There will be undefined results if there is not an active frame capture for the device/window combination.

void TriggerMultiFrameCapture(uint32_t numFrames)

This function will trigger multiple sequential frame captures as if the user had pressed one of the capture hotkeys before each frame. The captures will be taken from the next frames presented to whichever window is considered current.

Parameters:uint32_t numFrames – the number of frames to capture, as an unsigned integer.