What's new in in CMake
This is an abbreviated version of the CMake changlog with just the highlights for authors. Names for each release are arbitrarily picked by the author.
CMake 3.0 : Interface libraries
There were a ton of additions to this version of CMake, primarily to fill out the target interface. Some bits of needed functionality were missed and implemented in CMake 3.1 instead.
- New documentation
- INTERFACE libraries
- Project VERSION support
- Exporting build trees easily
- Bracket arguments and comments available (not widely used)
- Lots of improvements
CMake 3.1 : C++11 and compile features
This is the first release of CMake to support C++11. Combined with fixes to the new features of CMake 3.0, this is currently a common minimum version of CMake for libraries that want to support old CMake builds.
- C++11 Support
- Compile features support
- Sources can be added later with
- Better support for generator expressions and INTERFACE targets
CMake 3.2 : UTF8
This is a smaller release, with mostly small features and fixes. Internal changes, like better Windows and UTF8 support, were the focus.
- File and directory locks added
CMake 3.3 : if IN_LIST
This is notable for the useful
IN_LIST option for if, but it also added better library search using
$PATH (See CMake 3.6), dependencies for INTERFACE libraries, and several other useful improvements. The addition of a
COMPILE_LANGUAGE generator expression would prove very useful in the future as more languages are added. Makefiles now produce better output in parallel.
COMPILE_LANGUAGEgenerator expression (limited support in some generators)
CMake 3.4 : Swift & CCache
This release adds lots of useful tools, support for the Swift language, and the usual improvements. It also started supporting compiler launchers, like CCache.
CMAKE_*_COMPILER_LAUNCHERadded for make and ninja
TARGET_MESSAGESallow makefiles to print messages after target is completed
- Imported targets are beginning to show up in the official
CMake 3.5 : ARM
This release expanded CMake to more platforms, and make warnings easier to control from the command line.
- Multiple input files supported for several of the
- Boost, GTest, and more now support imported targets
- ARMCC now supported, better support for iOS
- XCode backslash fix
CMake 3.6 : Clang-Tidy
This release added Clang-Tidy support, along with more utilities and improvements. It also removed the search of
$PATH on Unix systems due to problems, instead users should use
CMAKE_*_STANDARD_LIBRARIESadded for toolchains
- Try-compile improvements
- External projects can now be shallow clones, and other improvements
CMake 3.7 : Android & CMake Server
You can now cross-compile to Android. Useful new if statement options really help clarify code. And the new server mode should (eventually?) improve integration with IDEs. Support for the VIM editor was also improved.
- Better 32-bit support on 64-bit machines
- Lots of useful new if comparisons, like
VERSION_GREATER_EQUAL(really, why did it take this long?)
- Lots of custom properties related to files and directories
- CMake Server added
--trace-source="filename"to monitor certain files only
CMake 3.8 : C# & CUDA
This adds CUDA as a language, as well as
cxx_std_11 as a compiler meta-feature. The new generator expression could be really useful if you can require CMake 3.8+!
- Native support for C# as a language
- Native support for CUDA as a language
- Meta features cxx_std_11 (and 14, 17) added
try_compilehas better language support
COMPILE_FLAGSnow supports generator expression
CMake 3.9 : IPO
Lots of fixes to CUDA support went into this release, including
PTX support and MSVC generators. Interprocedural Optimizations are now supported properly.
Even more modules provide imported targets, including MPI.
- CUDA supported for Windows
- Better object library support in several situations
CMAKE_*initializer added, CheckIPOSupported added, Clang and GCC support)
CMake 3.10 : CppCheck
CMake now is built with C++11 compilers. Lots of useful improvements help write cleaner code.
- Support for flang Fortran compiler
- Compiler launcher added to CUDA
#cmakedefinesnow supported for
include_guard()added to ensure a file gets included only once
LABELSadded to directories
- FindMPI vastly expanded
- FindOpenMP improved
- Dynamic test discovery for
CMake 3.11 : Faster & IMPORTED INTERFACE
This release is supposed to be much faster. You can also finally directly add INTERFACE targets
to IMPORTED libraries (the internal
Find*.cmake scripts should become much cleaner eventually).
- Fortran supports compiler launchers
- Xcode and Visual Studio support
COMPILE_LANGUAGEgenerator expressions finally
- You can now add INTERFACE targets directly to IMPORTED INTERFACE libraries (Wow!)
- Source file properties have been expanded
FetchContentmodule now allows downloads to happen at configure time (Wow)
CMake 3.12 : Version ranges and CONFIGURE_DEPENDS
Very powerful release, containing lots of smaller long-requested features. One of the smaller
but immediately noticeable changes is the addition of version ranges;
you can now set both the minimum and maximum known CMake version easily. You can also set
CONFIGURE_DEPENDS on a
GLOBed set of files, and the build system will check those files and
rerun if needed! You can use the general
find_package searches. Lots of additions to strings and lists, module updates,
shiny new Python find module (2 and 3 versions too), and many more.
- Support for
cmake_minimum_requiredranges (backward compatible)
- Support for
--buildmode (passed on to build tool)
- Support for
$<SHELL:shell strings (not deduplicated)
- New FindPython module
- C++20 support
- CUDA as a language improvements: CUDA < 7.5 supported
- Support for OpenMP on macOS (command line only)
- Several new properties and property initializers
- CPack finally reads
CMake 3.13 rc1 : Linking control
You can now make symbolic links on Windows! Lots of new functions that fill out the
popular requests for CMake, such as
target_link_options. You can now do quite a bit more modification to targets outside
of the source directory, for better file separation. Generator expressions can be used in
more places. And,
target_sources finally handles relative paths properly.
ctest --progressoption for live output
- Symbolic link creation,
-E create_symlink, supported on Windows
- IPO supported on Windows
- You can use
-Bfor source and build directories
installwork outside the current target directory
target_sourcesis now relative to the current source directory