stb single-file public domain libraries for C/C++ (by nothings)

Stb Alternatives

Similar projects and alternatives to stb

NOTE: The number of mentions on this list indicates mentions on common posts plus user suggested alternatives. Hence, a higher number means a better stb alternative or higher similarity.

stb reviews and mentions

Posts with mentions or reviews of stb. We have used some of these posts to build our list of alternatives and similar projects. The last one was on 2024-01-09.
  • Nebula is an open-source and free-to-use modern C++ game engine
    6 projects | | 9 Jan 2024
    Have you considered not using an engine at all, in favor of libraries? There are many amazing libraries I've used for game development - all in C/C++ - that you can piece together:

    * General: [stb](

  • STB: Single-file public domain libraries for C/C++
    4 projects | | 6 Jan 2024
  • Writing a TrueType font renderer
    9 projects | | 1 Jan 2024
    Great to see more accessible references on font internals. I have dabbled on this a bit last year and managed to have a parser and render the points of a glyph's contour (I stopped before Bezier and shape filling stuff). I still have not considered hinting, so it's nice that it's covered. What helped me was an article from the Handmade Network [1] and the source of stb_truetype [2] (also used in Dear ImGUI).



  • Capturing the WebGPU Ecosystem
    9 projects | | 11 Nov 2023
    So I read through the materials on mesh shaders and work graphs and looked at sample code. These won't really work (see below). As I implied previously, it's best to research/discuss these sort of matters with professional graphics programmers who have experience actually using the technologies under consideration.

    So for the sake of future web searchers who discover this thread: there are only two proven ways to efficiently draw thousands of unique textures of different sizes with a single draw call that are actually used by experienced graphics programmers in production code as of 2023.

    Proven method #1: Pack these thousands of textures into a texture atlas.

    Proven method #2: Use bindless resources, which is still fairly bleeding edge, and will require fallback to atlases if targeting the PC instead of only high end console (Xbox Series S|X...).

    Mesh shaders by themselves won't work: These have similar texture access limitations to the old geometry/tessellation stage they improve upon. A limited, fixed number of textures still must be bound before each draw call (say, 16 or 32 textures, not 1000s), unless bindless resources are used. So mesh shaders must be used with an atlas or with bindless resources.

    Work graphs by themselves won't work: This feature is bleeding edge shader model 6.8 whereas bindless resources are SM 6.6. (Xbox Series X|S might top out at SM 6.7, I can't find an authoritative answer.) It looks like work graphs might only work well on nVidia GPUs and won't work well on Intel GPUs anytime soon (but, again, I'm not knowledgeable enough to say this authoritatively). Furthermore, this feature may have a hard dependency on using bindless to begin with. That is, I can't tell if one is allowed to execute a work graph that binds and unbinds individual texture resources. And if one could do such a thing, it would certainly be slower than using bindless. The cost of bindless is paid "up front" when the textures are uploaded.

    Some programmers use Texture2DArray/GL_TEXTURE_2D_ARRAY as an alternative to atlases but two limitations are (1) the max array length (e.g. GL_MAX_ARRAY_TEXTURE_LAYERS) might only be 256 (e.g. for OpenGL 3.0), (2) all textures must be the same size.

    Finally, for the sake of any web searcher who lands on this thread in the years to come, to pack an atlas well a good packing algorithm is needed. It's harder to pack triangles than rectangles but triangles use atlas memory more efficiently and a good triangle packing will outperform the fancy new bindless rendering. Some open source starting points for packing:

  • Www Which WASM Works
    2 projects | | 24 Sep 2023
    The STB headers are mostly built like that:

    You could also add an optional 'convenience API' over the lower-level flexible-but-inconvenient core API, as long as core library can be compiled on its own.

    In essence it's just a way to decouple the actually important library code from runtime environment details which might be better implemented outside the C/C++ stdlib.

    It's already as simple as the stdlib IO functions not being asynchrononous while many operating systems provide more modern alternatives. For a specific type of library (such an image decoder) it's often better to delegate such details to the library user instead of circumventing the stdlib and talking directly to OS APIs.

  • File for Divorce from LLVM
    9 projects | | 29 Jun 2023
    My stuff for instance:

    ...inspired by:

    But it's not so much about the build system, but requiring a separate C/C++ compiler toolchain (Rust needs this, Zig currently does not - unless the proposal is implemented).

  • What C libraries do you use the most?
    4 projects | /r/C_Programming | 29 Jun 2023
    STB Libraries:
  • [Noob Question] How do C programmers get around not having hash maps?
    3 projects | /r/C_Programming | 22 Jun 2023
    stb_ds is also very popular.
  • Is there an existing multidimensional hash table implementation in C?
    4 projects | /r/C_Programming | 20 Jun 2023
  • Package manager for single file libs?
    2 projects | /r/C_Programming | 17 Jun 2023
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