Proposal: Revive Async Drawing API

Robert O'Callahan robert at
Wed Nov 18 00:32:41 UTC 2015

On Wed, Nov 18, 2015 at 10:30 AM, David Anderson <danderson at>

> In 2012, an API for hardware-accelerated, windowless drawing was proposed
> and accepted [1]. Flash used this API in beta but it never went to release,
> and the API was thus retracted in early 2014.
> This code was never removed from Flash, and builds from Adobe with it
> re-enabled still work as intended. This is a huge performance boon to
> windowless plugins, and it removes one of the remaining use cases for
> windowed plugins. We would like to move forward with the API again.
> I have made two changes to the original documentation:
>  (1) NPN_SetCurrentAsyncSurface() must be called from the main thread,
> rather than any thread. This simplifies its implementation in browsers, and
> matches the behavior already implemented in Flash.
>  (2) A new NPNVariable, NPNVpreferredDXGIAdapter. This allows Flash to
> negotiate the correct GPU with Firefox, a problem not originally
> anticipated since dual GPUs were not popular when this API was first made.
> Proposed SDK changes [2] and sample plugin with both drawing models [3]
> are available.

That sounds very good!

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