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

Finding files, programs, and paths with CMake

Most projects quickly grow to a size and complexity where they depend on files, libraries, and perhaps even programs that are managed outside the project. CMake provides built-in commands to find these things. At first glance, the process of searching and finding things appears to be quite simple. However, on closer analysis, there are quite a few things to consider. First, we have to handle the search order of where to look for files. Then, we might want to add additional locations where the file might be, and finally, we have to account for the differences between different operating systems.

On an abstraction level higher than the individual files, CMake has the ability to find whole packages that define targets, include paths, and package specific variables. Refer to the libraries in your CMake project section for more detail.

There are five find_... commands that share very similar options and behaviors:

  • find_file:...