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


In this chapter, we discussed some general tips on structuring and maintaining CMake projects, especially larger projects. With increased project size, configuring and building times usually increase, which could be a hindrance in the developer workflow. We looked at how the CMake profiling feature may be a useful tool to find performance hogs in the configuration process, even though it cannot be used to profile the compilation itself.

To help with long compilation times, we showed how to use unity build and precompiled headers from CMake to improve the compile times themselves. And if all this does not yet bring the desired effect, using a compiler cache such as ccache, or a distributed compiler such as distcc, may be used by prefixing the compiler command.

Optimizing build performance is a very satisfying affair, even if finding the right combination of tools and methods to get the most out of CMake might be a bit tedious. The downside of heavily optimized builds...