find_package Using CMake with GNU Make: How can I see the exact commands?

cmake_verbose_makefile (4)

I was trying something similar to ensure the -ggdb flag was present.

Call make in a clean directory and grep the flag you are looking for. Looking for debug rather than ggdb I would just write.

make VERBOSE=1 | grep debug

The -ggdb flag was obscure enough that only the compile commands popped up.

I use CMake with GNU Make and would like to see all commands exactly (for example how the compiler is executed, all the flags etc.).

GNU make has --debug, but it does not seem to be that helpful are there any other options? Does CMake provide additional flags in the generated Makefile for debugging purpose?

If you use the CMake GUI then swap to the advanced view and then the option is called CMAKE_VERBOSE_MAKEFILE.

Or simply export VERBOSE environment variable on the shell like this: export VERBOSE=1

When you run make, add VERBOSE=1 to see the full command output. For example:

cmake .
make VERBOSE=1

Or you can add -DCMAKE_VERBOSE_MAKEFILE:BOOL=ON to the cmake command for permanent verbose command output from the generated Makefiles.


To reduce some possibly less-interesting output you might like to use the following options. The option CMAKE_RULE_MESSAGES=OFF removes lines like [ 33%] Building C object..., while --no-print-directory tells make to not print out the current directory filtering out lines like make[1]: Entering directory and make[1]: Leaving directory.

make --no-print-directory