Got asked how to load a GLSL shader today and as I had an OpenGL wrapper containing this code, I thought it would be nice to share it with you. It also includes loading the files as well as debugging info. Enjoy ;) GLShader.hpp

#ifndef GLSHADER_H
#define GLSHADER_H

#include "GL/glew.h"

GLuint LoadShader(const char *vertex_path, const char *fragment_path);



#include "GLShader.hpp"

#include <string>
#include <iostream>
#include <fstream>
#include <vector>
#include <algorithm>

std::string readFile(const char *filePath) {
std::string content;
std::ifstream fileStream(filePath, std::ios::in);

if(!fileStream.is_open()) {
std::cerr << "Could not read file " << filePath << ". File does not exist." << std::endl;
return "";

std::string line = "";
while(!fileStream.eof()) {
std::getline(fileStream, line);
content.append(line + "\n");

return content;

GLuint LoadShader(const char *vertex_path, const char *fragment_path) {
GLuint vertShader = glCreateShader(GL_VERTEX_SHADER);
GLuint fragShader = glCreateShader(GL_FRAGMENT_SHADER);

// Read shaders
std::string vertShaderStr = readFile(vertex_path);
std::string fragShaderStr = readFile(fragment_path);
const char *vertShaderSrc = vertShaderStr.c_str();
const char *fragShaderSrc = fragShaderStr.c_str();

GLint result = GL_FALSE;
int logLength;

// Compile vertex shader
std::cout << "Compiling vertex shader." << std::endl;
glShaderSource(vertShader, 1, &vertShaderSrc, NULL);

// Check vertex shader
glGetShaderiv(vertShader, GL_COMPILE_STATUS, &result);
glGetShaderiv(vertShader, GL_INFO_LOG_LENGTH, &logLength);
std::vector vertShaderError((logLength > 1) ? logLength : 1);
glGetShaderInfoLog(vertShader, logLength, NULL, &vertShaderError[0]);
std::cout << &vertShaderError[0] << std::endl;

// Compile fragment shader
std::cout << "Compiling fragment shader." << std::endl;
glShaderSource(fragShader, 1, &fragShaderSrc, NULL);

// Check fragment shader
glGetShaderiv(fragShader, GL_COMPILE_STATUS, &result);
glGetShaderiv(fragShader, GL_INFO_LOG_LENGTH, &logLength);
std::vector fragShaderError((logLength > 1) ? logLength : 1);
glGetShaderInfoLog(fragShader, logLength, NULL, &fragShaderError[0]);
std::cout << &fragShaderError[0] << std::endl;

std::cout << "Linking program" << std::endl;
GLuint program = glCreateProgram();
glAttachShader(program, vertShader);
glAttachShader(program, fragShader);

glGetProgramiv(program, GL_LINK_STATUS, &result);
glGetProgramiv(program, GL_INFO_LOG_LENGTH, &logLength);
std::vector<char> programError( (logLength > 1) ? logLength : 1 );
glGetProgramInfoLog(program, logLength, NULL, &programError[0]);
std::cout << &programError[0] << std::endl;


return program;

This is loaded by calling the following code:

GLuint program = LoadShader("shader.vert", "shader.frag");

It can also be used to load multiple shaders by calling glUseProgram on different GLuints or 0 as the parameter to disable.