3.2.4 Backing Store Attribute

Some implementations of the X server may choose to maintain the contents of InputOutput windows. If the X server maintains the contents of a window, the off-screen saved pixels are known as backing store. The backing store advises the X server on what to do with the contents of a window. The backing-store attribute can be set to NotUseful (default), WhenMapped, or Always.

A backing-store attribute of NotUseful advises the X server that maintaining contents is unnecessary, although some X implementations may still choose to maintain contents and, therefore, not generate Expose events. A backing-store attribute of WhenMapped advises the X server that maintaining contents of obscured regions when the window is mapped would be beneficial. In this case, the server may generate an Expose event when the window is created. A backing-store attribute of Always advises the X server that maintaining contents even when the window is unmapped would be beneficial. Even if the window is larger than its parent, this is a request to the X server to maintain complete contents, not just the region within the parent window boundaries. While the X server maintains the window's contents, Expose events normally are not generated, but the X server may stop maintaining contents at any time.

When the contents of obscured regions of a window are being maintained, regions obscured by noninferior windows are included in the destination of graphics requests (and source, when the window is the source). However, regions obscured by inferior windows are not included.

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Christophe Tronche, ch@tronche.com