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How to build from source


Common requirements

In order to build cmocka, you need to install several components:

  • A C compiler
  • CMake >= 3.5.0.

Note that these version numbers are version we know works correctly. If you build and run cmocka successfully with an older version, please let us know.


First, you need to configure the compilation, using CMake. Go inside the build dir. Create it if it doesn't exist.

GNU/Linux, MacOS X, MSYS/MinGW:


On Windows you should choose a makefile gernerator with -G, for example:

cmake -G "Visual Studio 12 2013" -DCMAKE_BUILD_TYPE=Debug /path/to/source

You can also use the CMake GUI which is shipped with CMake. It will list all available generators for MSVC on Windows. We only support Visual Studio 2013 or newer which supports C99.

CMake standard options

Here is a list of the most interesting options provided out of the box by CMake.

  • CMAKE_BUILD_TYPE: The type of build (can be Debug Release MinSizeRel RelWithDebInfo)
  • CMAKE_INSTALL_PREFIX: The prefix to use when running make install (Default to /usr/local on GNU/Linux and MacOS X)
  • CMAKE_C_COMPILER: The path to the C compiler
  • CMAKE_CXX_COMPILER: The path to the C++ compiler

CMake options defined for cmocka

Options are defined in the following files:

  • DefineOptions.cmake

They can be changed with the -D option:


Browsing/editing CMake options

In addition to passing options on the command line, you can browse and edit CMake options using cmakesetup (Windows), cmake-gui or ccmake (GNU/Linux and MacOS X).

  • Go to the build dir
  • On Windows: run cmakesetup
  • On GNU/Linux and MacOS X: run ccmake ..


If you want to install cmocka after compilation run:

make install


The cmocka library can be found in the build/src directory. You can run the binaries in build/examples/* which is a are example tests.


As mention above you can turn on the unit tests and make it possible to easily execute them:


After that you can simply call make test in the build directory or if you want more output simply call ctest -V.

If you want to enable the generation of coverage files you can do this by using the following options:


After building it you will see that you have several coverage options in

make help

You should have make ExperimentalCoverage and running it will create coverage files. The result is stored in Testing directory.

About this document

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