Copyright © 2015-2022 LunarG, Inc.

Creative Commons


The VK_LAYER_KHRONOS_synchronization2 extension layer implements the VK_KHR_synchronization2 extension. By default, it will disable itself if the underlying driver provides the extension.

Even though the VK_KHR_synchronization2 extension requires the VK_KHR_get_physical_device_properties2 and VK_KHR_create_renderpass2 extensions, this layer will work on devices that do not implement them. See the Sync2CompatTest.Vulkan10 test case for an example of how to do this.

Configuring the Synchronization2 Layer

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

The Synchronization2 Layer settings are documented in the Layer Details section below.

The Synchronization2 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_synchronization2.json file and corresponding VkLayer_synchronization2 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_KHR_synchronization2 extension, you can set the VK_SYNCHRONIZATION2_FORCE_ENABLE environment variable in the following way:






Packaging layer with application

This layer should not require your application to need any additional permissions.

At vkCreateInstance time add the layer

// std::vector<const char *> instance_layers

VkInstanceCreateInfo info;
info.enabledLayerCount = static_cast<uint32_t>(instance_layers_.size());
info.ppEnabledLayerNames =;

For this to work needs to be packaged inside the APK as Android will be able to read in the layer from there. One can open the APK in Android Studio to verify the binary is there. Make sure to match up the correct ABI as well (armeabi-v7a, arm64-v8a, etc).

Globally Enabling the Layer

This will require a debugable application or additional permissions. For more information please read the Android Developer page

Use ADB to enable the layer for your project by:

adb shell "setprop debug.vulkan.layers 'VK_LAYER_KHRONOS_synchronization2'"

When done, disable the layer using:

adb shell "setprop debug.vulkan.layers ''"

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.

Applying Environment Settings on Android

On Android, you must use properties to set the environment variables. The format of the properties to set takes the following form:

debug. + (lower-case environment variable with 'vk_' stripped)

The easiest way to set a property is from the ADB shell:

adb shell "setprop <property_name> '<property_value>'"

For example:

To set force enable, which on desktop uses VK_SYNC2_FORCE_ENABLE set the following property:


Which you can set in the following way:

adb shell "setprop debug.vulkan.synchronization2.force_enable true"

Layer Details

Layer Properties

Layer Settings Overview

Setting Type Default Value vk_layer_settings.txt Variable Environment Variable Platforms
Force Enable BOOL false khronos_synchronization2.force_enable VK_SYNCHRONIZATION2_FORCE_ENABLE WINDOWS, LINUX, MACOS, ANDROID

Layer Settings Details

Force Enable

Force the layer to be active even if the underlying driver also implements the synchonization2 extension.

Setting Properties: