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2.6. Avoid infinite command lists

This section describes infinite command lists and the issues they can cause.

The process of deferred rendering involves placing commands into lists. If you do not clear buffers between frames, the command lists can keep growing. This causes the Mali GPU to repeat work already completed for previous frames. This is obviously more work than necessary.


  • This issue is typically only a problem if your application renders to a surface such as a pixmapsurface, or pbuffersurface, and it does not clear the command lists at the end of a frame.

  • This issue is not a problem if your application uses Frame Buffer Objects (FBO).

  • An application that renders to a eglWindowSurface naturally ends the frame every time it calls eglSwapBuffers.

To prevent command lists growing, ensure your application clears the following buffers before drawing a new frame:

  • color buffers

  • depth buffers

  • stencil buffers.

You must clear all these buffers at the same time.

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