wglCreateContext function (wingdi.h)

The wglCreateContext function creates a new OpenGL rendering context, which is suitable for drawing on the device referenced by hdc. The rendering context has the same pixel format as the device context.


HGLRC wglCreateContext(
  HDC unnamedParam1



Handle to a device context for which the function creates a suitable OpenGL rendering context.

Return value

If the function succeeds, the return value is a valid handle to an OpenGL rendering context.

If the function fails, the return value is NULL. To get extended error information, call GetLastError.


A rendering context is not the same as a device context. Set the pixel format of the device context before creating a rendering context. For more information on setting the device context's pixel format, see the SetPixelFormat function.

To use OpenGL, you create a rendering context, select it as a thread's current rendering context, and then call OpenGL functions. When you are finished with the rendering context, you dispose of it by calling the wglDeleteContext function.

The following code example shows wglCreateContext usage.

HDC    hdc; 
HGLRC  hglrc; 
// create a rendering context  
hglrc = wglCreateContext (hdc); 
// make it the calling thread's current rendering context 
wglMakeCurrent (hdc, hglrc);
// call OpenGL APIs as desired ... 
// when the rendering context is no longer needed ...   
// make the rendering context not current  
wglMakeCurrent (NULL, NULL) ; 
// delete the rendering context  
wglDeleteContext (hglrc);


Minimum supported client Windows 2000 Professional [desktop apps only]
Minimum supported server Windows 2000 Server [desktop apps only]
Target Platform Windows
Header wingdi.h
Library Opengl32.lib
DLL Opengl32.dll

See also

OpenGL on Windows


WGL Functions