Book Image

CMake Best Practices

By : Dominik Berner, Mustafa Kemal Gilor
5 (2)
Book Image

CMake Best Practices

5 (2)
By: Dominik Berner, Mustafa Kemal Gilor

Overview of this book

CMake is a powerful tool used to perform a wide variety of tasks, so finding a good starting point for learning CMake is difficult. This book cuts to the core and covers the most common tasks that can be accomplished with CMake without taking an academic approach. While the CMake documentation is comprehensive, it is often hard to find good examples of how things fit together, especially since there are lots of dirty hacks and obsolete solutions available on the internet. This book focuses on helping you to tie things together and create clean and maintainable projects with CMake. You'll not only get to grips with the basics but also work through real-world examples of structuring large and complex maintainable projects and creating builds that run in any programming environment. You'll understand the steps to integrate and automate various tools for improving the overall software quality, such as testing frameworks, fuzzers, and automatic generation of documentation. And since writing code is only half of the work, the book also guides you in creating installers and packaging and distributing your software. All this is tailored to modern development workflows that make heavy use of CI/CD infrastructure. By the end of this CMake book, you'll be able to set up and maintain complex software projects using CMake in the best way possible.
Table of Contents (22 chapters)
Part 1: The Basics
Part 2: Practical CMake – Getting Your Hands Dirty with CMake
Part 3: Mastering the Details

Keeping a CMake project maintainable

When maintaining a CMake project over a long time, there are often a few tasks that regularly come up. There are the usual things, such as new files being added to the project or versions of dependencies increasing, which are usually relatively trivial to handle with CMake. Then, there are things such as adding new toolchains or platforms for cross-compiling, and lastly, there are updates to CMake itself, when new features such as presets are available.

Regularly updating CMake and making use of new features can help keep projects maintainable. While it is often not practical to update every single new version, checking for new big features of CMake and using them when they are released may make projects easier to maintain. For example, the introduction of CMake presets in version 3.19 of CMake is such a feature that has the potential to make many complicated CMakeLists.txt files much simpler.

Keeping dependencies up to date and under control...