Effect Compiler & Disassembler

Updated! Now supports nVidia’s ShaderPerf tool.


EffectCompiler.zip [51.3kb] – XNA Game Studio Express 2.0 (Visual C# 2005 Express), Source + Binaries


Yesterday I took apart my Effect Compiling Tool which took a HLSL shader and converted it to Windows/Xbox360 bytecode, and made it into something more useful outside of XNA.

It’s always been somewhat of a hassle for me to compile and disassemble HLSL shaders. I can edit them pretty well in Visual Studio with code coloring and tabulations/undo’s/whatnot, but to compile them I always had to go with something else. I had read in the book Programming Vertex and Pixel Shaders by W.Engel how to compile them in VC++ 2005 using a Custom Build Step and fxc.exe, but when working in C# I had to have a parallel C++ project just for shaders, which is dumb. Also, fxc.exe has become less and less stable for some reason… So I finally made my own compiler and disassembler using XNA 2.0.

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XNA Effect Compiling Tool


EffectCompilingTool.rar [41.5kb] – XNA GSE 1.0 Refresh Project w/ Binaries


I love the content pipeline in XNA, but for effects, like the author of the XNA Effect Generator understood and mentioned already, it’s just not practical.

I liked the XNA Effect Generator too, but I wanted to implement my own effect framework so the generated classes were not what I was looking for either. Besides I had some problems with it (localization issues, dreaded french accents…). So I made a little tool that gets the Xbox 360 and Windows byte-code out of a shader in a convenient format and presentation.

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