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wiki3406: ProjectsBuildAndIDE (Version 10)

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Projects, Build and IDE#

This article will talk about how to set-up projects in IDE, what types of projects to pick and how to organize projects to perform effective builds from IDE and command line. This article based on IDE 4.5.1 features.

What do you need to know about IDE project model#

Qnx Momentics IDE is based on open source Eclipse platform and open source CDT project which give essential part of functionality of projects and builds. IDE uses concept of "Workspace" which is user specific writable directory on the local host. This directory itself should never be part on revision control system shared between users nor be located on shared drive (unless you sure only one user using it). IDE (Eclipse) uses concept of "project" which is container for source and binaries together with some configuration files, which is located in workspace, which can be shared between users using version control system. Projects are flat - they cannot contain one another. However there is a concept of Working Set which allows you to filter and group projects if you have too many of them in a workspace. There is also special qnx Container project which allows you to control/build sets of projects at the same time.

When you pick location of workspace and names of the projects be aware that these names can be used in the build and make does not like directory/files with spaces and funky characters in them, even it is fine with IDE - build would not work with such paths.

If you used Visual Studio before you may think that project is virtual container which contains arbitrary files and directories - it is not the case with Eclipse. You can stretch eclipse project to use "Eclipse Links" but they have limited functionality and only support absolute paths now, which makes it impossible to share. In general you have to have a directory in file system that contains project root (source and build output) and same directory would contain eclipse project metadata. The only option you have is to put project inside workspace or outside workspace. However you can your imagination about how this directory is created - you can check out top level from one place, and subdirectories from another, you can use OS soft links or some other means to create it.

Qnx IDE supports 3 project types for C/C++: Makefile project, Qnx project and Managed project.

Makefile Project#

Makefile project would work for any project that has a Makefile. IDE kicks make and after make exists refreshes the workspace to see what you have created. You can change make command and/or run specific make targets, but IDE has no control over what make is doing.

Because IDE would not know what is building it would have problems parsing source files (which it does internally to allow Navigation, Code Completion, Syntax Highlighting, Code Generation and Refactoring). So if you using Makefile project you have to tune "Indexer" (the internal parser) to point it to where are missing Includes and what Defines your parser uses for conditional compilation. The process of figuring this out called "Discovery" and can be controlled using "Discovery Options". If you know what includes and defines you are using it is probably easier just to enter them directly (Project->Properties->C/C++ General -> Path and Settings).

Qnx Project#

Qnx project is special flavor or Makefile project with additional control over the make. To use qnx project you also have to use qnx recursive makefiles. Qnx recursive makefiles - are conversions on creating makefiles which uses specific variables and uses specific layout. This allow IDE to parse makefile and provide UI control over makefile options and build variants.

Managed Project#

Managed project is CDT specific project which does not use makefiles, and all build settings are controlled by UI. The inconvenience of it is inability to perform a build of the project from command line* (* - it may be possible in simple cases with some extra setup files or you use makefile generator). Also there are restrictions on what you building and how, especially if you use special steps in the build which involves other tools.

Original Project Creation#

Lets consider scenarios when you creating project for the first time (compare to checking out pre-made project, which will be discussed below)

When creating a new IDE project you have to pick from one of the following options:

  1. This is new project, I will create all sources in IDE
  2. The sources/structure exists already in the file system, I want to "attach" IDE project to it
  3. The project source/structure exists in the Version Control

New Project (#1) - pick one the project types described above. Use File->New... menu and pick C or C++ project wizard:

  • For Qnx Project pick "Qnx C Project" (or "Qnx C++ project" for c++). On the first page pick build variants. For example x86 Debug & Release.
  • For Makefile pick "C Project" (or "C++ Project" for c++). Select Makefile on the left. Pick QNX Toolchain on the right. Click next.
  • For Managed project pick "C Project" (or "C++ Project" for c++). Select one the projects types or templates on the left, except Makefile. Pick QNX Toolchain on the right. Click next.

Attaching to existing folder(#2) - pick one the project types described above for your project. Open corresponding wizard as described in #1, but don't proceed further. First wizard page would offer you to Use default location or pick one. Uncheck "Use default location". Select location of you existing project using "Browse" button. Follow the wizard as in #1.

Checking out from source control(#3) - pick one the project types described above for your project. If whole project is in one directory in version control you can use Check Out As... action of SVN or CVS plugins to check it out. Use "Check out as a project configured using New Project Wizard" and pick wizard of your choice. For Qnx project make sure you uncheck Generate default file and Generate Makefiles (? - not in 4.5 - need to revert to base to restore makefiles after check out). If you want a partial check out see next section.

Sharing projects#

No when you created a project you may want to "share" the settings so next person can just check it out as eclipse project. If given project root match with exactly one folder in source control system you may commit project metadata files back (.project and .cproject). If your project is attached to version control but you don't want them to be committed you have to add those file into "ignore" list.

Qnx project share most of options in makefiles itself, however some options such as current build variants are user specific (i.e. not in project metadata). You can make them "shared" by enabling "Share project properties" in the Main tab of Qnx project properties.

Checking out partial source tree#

This procedure is how to create a project by checking out from several folders from version control system (example with SVN).

Lets say you have a folder in svn called big_project and it has 100 sub folders each of them represent different binary, but big_project has a makefile and some other common folders such as "public_includes" which you need to compiler you subfolder "my_binary"

  • Follow instruction to check out a folder as new project (big_project) but de-select "Checkout recursively" (SVN cannot checkout one file; it has to be the whole folder).
  • Now find the "my_binary" subfolder in SVN, right click->Find/Check Out As.. and select "Check out as folder into existing project". Click Next.
  • Select previously created project. Click Finish.
  • If you need any other sub folders repeat the process.
  • Switch to C/C++ Perspective.

If you checked out more than one project that shares an SVN folder as its project root, you cannot commit the .project file back to SVN. You would need to add it to svn ignore to prevent showing up as changed resource.

Checking out existing eclipse projects#

Source control IDE integrations (CVS and SVN) can detect presence of eclipse project metadata in the repository and check out pre-made projects. You have a option to search recursively and check out all exiting project from selected folder or choose specific project. You can also create a special file called "Team Project Set" (.psf) which contains set of projects that you want everybody to check out. Team sets can be located in the source control repository as well and IDE will recognize them and should be able to check out all specified projects automatically.

Setting up automated builds#

to be continued