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The Shader object extension Layer implements the VK_EXT_shader_object extension. By default, it will disable itself if the underlying driver provides the extension.

The VK_EXT_shader_object extension requires the VK_KHR_maintenance2 and VK_KHR_dynamic_rendering extensions, this layer will not work on devices that do not implement them.

Because the VK_KHR_dynamic_rendering extension is not supported on most Android devices, this layer is not implemented for Android.

Configuring the Shader object layer

For an overview of how to configure layers, refer to the Layers Overview and Configuration document.

The Shader object Layer settings are documented in the Layer Details section below.

The Shader object Layer can also be enabled and configured using vkconfig. See the vkconfig documentation for more information.

Enabling the Layer

Desktop (Linux/Windows/MacOS)

You must add the location of the generated VK_LAYER_KHRONOS_shader_object.json file and corresponding VkLayer_shader_object library to your VK_LAYER_PATH in order for the Vulkan loader to be able to find the layer.

Then, you must also enable the layer in one of two ways:

Setting the VK_LAYER_PATH


If your source was located in: C:\my_folder\ExtensionLayer and your build folder was build64, then you would add it to the layer path in the following way:

set VK_LAYER_PATH=C:\my_folder\ExtensionLayer\build64\layers\Debug;%VK_LAYER_PATH%


If your source was located in: /my_folder/ExtensionLayer and your build folder was build, then you would add it to the layer path in the following way:

export VK_LAYER_PATH=/my_folder/ExtensionLayer/build/layers:$VK_LAYER_PATH

Forcing the layer with VK_INSTANCE_LAYERS

To force the layer to be enabled for Vulkan applications, you can set the VK_INSTANCE_LAYERS environment variable in the following way:





To force the layer to be enabled for Vulkan applications, even though the Vulkan implementation supports VK_EXT_shader_object extension, you can set the VK_SHADER_OBJECT_FORCE_ENABLE environment variable in the following way:





Settings Priority

If you have a setting defined in both the Settings File as well as an Environment Variable, the Environment Variable value will always override the Settings File value. This is intended to let you dynamically change settings without having to adjust the Settings File.

Layer Details

Layer Properties

Layer Settings Overview

Setting Type Default Value vk_layer_settings.txt Variable Environment Variable Platforms
Force Enable BOOL false khronos_shader_object.force_enable VK_SHADER_OBJECT_FORCE_ENABLE WINDOWS, LINUX, MACOS

Layer Settings Details

Force Enable

Force the layer to be active even if the underlying driver also implements the shader object extension.

Setting Properties: