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Re: What options should be set in Make variables CFLAGS, CXXFLAGS, CPPFLAGS and LDFLAGS?

On Thu, 2019-01-24 at 12:10 -0600, Peng Yu wrote:
> So only the following in the gcc manual go to CPPFLAGS. All other
> options go to other GNU Make variables.
>   Preprocessor Options
>        -Aquestion=answer -A-question[=answer] -C  -dD  -dI  -dM  -dN
>        -Dmacro[=defn]  -E  -H -idirafter dir -include file  -imacros file
>        -iprefix file  -iwithprefix dir -iwithprefixbefore dir  -isystem
>        dir -imultilib dir -isysroot dir -M  -MM  -MF  -MG  -MP  -MQ  -MT
>        -nostdinc -P  -fdebug-cpp -ftrack-macro-expansion
>        -fworking-directory -remap -trigraphs  -undef  -Umacro -Wp,option
>        -Xpreprocessor option -no-integrated-cpp

I don't think you can really make that statement: it depends on your

As I said, one idea behind using a separate variable is that there may
be other tools that you want to use which also take preprocessor
arguments.  It's not uncommon (or at least was not in the past) for
other tools to use the preprocessor to process source code for other
reasons than compilation; those other tools would need the -I and -D
options (and -U although that's rarely used).  However, most of the
less standard flags above will not be recognized by most of these other
tools and could cause them to throw errors.

There's no one-size-fits-all definition, IMO.  The answer to all your
questions is, "it depends on what you want to do".  If you have no
reason to ever use the preprocessor separately maybe you don't need a
separate CPPFLAGS at all.

There's just a general rule-of-thumb:
 * preprocessor options go into CPPFLAGS
 * options that can be used with BOTH C compilers and C linkers go into
 * options that can be used with BOTH C++ compilers and C++ linkers go
   into CXXFLAGS
 * options that can be used ONLY with linkers, but not compilers, go
   into LDFLAGS, except -l which goes into LDLIBS.

Is there a particular reason you want to be so precise about this?

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