The Workspace

This part will deal with more advanced topics regarding workspace and package management. We will go beyond the subject of importing existing packages, which we have already done in the Basics part.

The most important design driver, when building your workspace and build configuration, is to ensure repeatability. The goal is to make sure one can at any time rebuild a workspace from scratch, of course on developer's machines, but also in continuous integration environments, or on embedded systems.

We'll first have a presentation of the conventions that govern the structure of a workspace. We'll then see how to setup a new project, and how to create new package sets.

One important aspect of Rock's build system is that none of the packages should actually rely on it. C++ Rock packages for instance rely on common build systems such as CMake or autotools to build, and pkg-config or CMake mechanisms to handle cross-package dependencies. Autoproj, Rock's build system, is only handling the scheduling of the configuration and build of each the packages, so that build systems and environment variables are set up as required, and dependencies are handled properly.

As such, autoproj mainly needs to know two things about a package:

  • what build system it uses
  • how to download it

These two things are what is needed to add a package in an autoproj build configuration

In order to leverage the underlying OS, autoproj also allows to use OS-provided packages, or language-specific packages – such as Python pip packages or RubyGems in a workspace. This will be covered as well.

Finally, we will go through the more general subject of designing and managing a build configuration

Let's talk first about conventions