Version: 3.1.1
CMake Overview

CMake allows building wxWidgets on various platforms with your preferred build system.

Most linux distributions contain CMake as a package on Windows and OS X you can download an installer at the CMake Page.

Using the CMake GUI

  1. Start the CMake GUI
  2. Specify the wxWidgets root as your source folder
  3. Specify a path where the build files should be created. It's recommended to use a path outside the wxWidgets root folder.
  4. Press the Configure button and you will be asked which IDE or build system you wish to use
  5. Optionally: Customize any of the options
  6. Press the Generate button
  7. Open the wxWidgets project with your preferred IDE

Using the CMake Command Line

  1. Create a folder where the build/project files should be created
  2. Change into the created folder
  3. Run cmake -G "Unix Makefiles" path_to_wxWidgets_root
  4. After that you can run cmake --build . to start the build process or directly use your choosen build system.

Run cmake --help to see a list of available generators on your platform. These can than be specified using the -G command line option. On Windows it is recommended to use Visual Studio and on OS X Xcode is recommended. Various build options can be specified using -D see available options.

Command Line Examples

Building with tests using Ninja:

1 cmake -G "Ninja" ~/Downloads/wxWidgets_3.1 -DwxBUILD_TESTS=ALL
2 cmake --build .

Building the minimal sample:

1 cmake ~/Downloads/wxWidgets_3.1 -DwxBUILD_SAMPLES=SOME
2 cmake --build . --target minimal

Installing static libraries to some path:

1 cmake ~/Downloads/wxWidgets_3.1 \
2  -DCMAKE_INSTALL_PREFIX=~/wx_install \
4 cmake --build . --target install

Build options

The following list of build options can either be configured in the CMake UI or specified via the -D command line option when running the cmake command.

Option Name Type Description
wxBUILD_SHARED BOOL Build shared libraries
wxUSE_GUI BOOL Build the UI libraries
wxBUILD_COMPATIBILITY STRING 2.8, 3.0 or 3.1 API compatibility

Using CMake with your applications

If you are using CMake with your own application there are various ways to use wxWidgets:

  • Using an installed, binary or compiled version of wxWidgets using find_package()
  • wxWidgets as a sub directory.
  • CMake's ExternalProject module.

Using find_package

You can use find_package(wxWidgets) to use a compiled version of wxWidgets. Have a look at the CMake Documentation for detailed instructions.

Your CMakeLists.txt would look like this:

1 ...
3 find_package(wxWidgets REQUIRED COMPONENTS net core base)
4 include(${wxWidgets_USE_FILE})
5 add_executable(myapp myapp.cpp)
6 target_link_libraries(myapp ${wxWidgets_LIBRARIES})

Using a sub directory

You can use wxWidgets as a subdirectory in your application's build tree e.g. as a git submodule. This way the wxWidgets libraries will be part of your applications build process.

Your CMakeLists.txt would look like this:

1 ...
2 add_subdirectory(libs/wxWidgets)
3 add_executable(myapp myapp.cpp)
4 target_link_libraries(myapp net core base)